Chesterfield News

New fashion exhibition inspired by Duchess Deborah to launch at Chatsworth

The Chatsworth House Trust has announced it will be opening a new exhibition showcasing renowned London-based fashion house, ERDEM’s Spring Summer 2024 collection, which is inspired by Duchess Deborah and the Devonshire Collections.

From 22 June – 20 October 2024, Chatsworth will be home to Imaginary Conversations, an exhibition which celebrates the legacy of the late Duchess, using the house as a source of inspiration for the collection.

As part of the research and development process for the collection, Erdem and his design team were given access to the extensive archives at Chatsworth. Archival fabrics from the collection, including historic curtains that once hung within the house, were reimagined into the collection along with the shapes, silhouettes and styles of the pieces Duchess Deborah wore.

Imaginary Conversations provides insight into Erdem’s creative process, from the initial thrill of discovery when delving into the Chatsworth archives, to the artistry and techniques of designing new clothes.

Erdem Moralioglu MBE, Creative Director and Founder at ERDEM, said: “I have always wanted to create a collection on Deborah, Duchess of Devonshire and the history of Chatsworth. I have long been fascinated by her story and found the archives at Chatsworth to be endlessly inspiring.”

Set within the guest bedrooms, the exhibition brings together historic prints and drawings, textiles, jewellery and photographs, with the eclectic taste of Deborah, the late Dowager Duchess, woven throughout.

Key looks from the Erdem SS24 collection will sit alongside the source material. Collectively, these stories of the past and present pay tribute to British craft and flair, reinforcing Duchess Deborah’s inimitable spirit and vision.

Imaginary Conversations celebrates how Chatsworth, and the Devonshire Collections, can inspire the artists, makers and designers of today.

Jane Marriott, Director at Chatsworth House Trust, commented: “For five centuries, Chatsworth has been a home of creativity and a source of inspiration for countless designers, makers, and artists, and we are delighted to build on this legacy with Imaginary Conversations. The exhibition provides insight into Erdem’s creative process, from the initial thrill of discovery when delving into the Devonshire Archives, to the artistry and techniques of his new designs.

“As a charity, we care for the incredible Devonshire Collections in order to share them with everyone. It is so exciting to see the historic collections reimagined through a contemporary lens in this way, and we hope that by sharing the process behind this collaboration we can inspire the next generation of creative leaders.”

The exhibition begins in the Queen of Scots’ Lobby, with cases filled with material that once belonged to Duchess Deborah, including letters, objects and photographs of particular inspiration to Erdem.

At various points throughout the exhibition, largescale projections will play the Spring Summer 24 catwalk show, immersing visitors in the live experience.

A recording of the Duchess’s voice, used in the Spring Summer 24 fashion show soundtrack for the launch at the British Museum, will play in the background, and Lucian Freud’s portrait of the Duchess, Woman in a White Shirt, will bring her voice to life. Whilst select pieces from Duchess Deborah’s legendary jewellery collection of insects will also be displayed amongst pieces from Erdem’s collection.

The exhibition concludes in the Wellington Bedroom, where Duchess Deborah’s own inspirations and passions are to be displayed alongside the looks from Erdem’s collection that honour them.

Lady Burlington added: “Chatsworth’s fashion archive is perhaps a lesser-known part of the collection, but seeing Duchess Deborah’s clothing inspire this new body of work by Erdem, and being able to bring these pieces back to Chatsworth with the original source material has been an incredibly rewarding process. Debo loved clothes and creativity and I hope she would be quietly pleased to see all these things she enjoyed inspire Erdem and fuel his work.”

Imaginary Conversations is sponsored by Farfetch, and access to the exhibition is included with all house and garden tickets between 22 June and 20 October 2024. There will also be a series of curator tours taking place throughout the summer.

To book tickets and find out more, visit:

Chatsworth ERDEM Spring Summer

Josh Marsh

Destination Chesterfield Coordinator (Investment and Marketing)

Email Josh

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