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Rimowa’s First Retrospective at Sotheby’s Shows 121 Years of Design

Eliza Jordan

25 September 2019

This week at Sotheby’s, renown German luggage brand presented a historic exhibition entitled “RIMOWA Archive Collection: 1898­–2019.” On view from September 20­­ through today, the presentation is Rimowa‘s first retrospective, highlighting its 121-year journey in travel.

Functionality and heritage were at the center of the show, punctuated with over two dozen carefully curated pieces. Against a reflective chrome vinyl backdrop, pieces were stylishly arranged on minimal industrial white pedestals in the white wide-open space. There, never-before-seen pieces from over a century ago are seen amid early and mid-century pieces, ending in today’s coveted contemporary gems—collaboratively made with creators like Virgil Abloh, Daniel Arsham, and Supreme.

Rimowa

Courtesy of Rimowa.

Throughout the exhibition, travel itself is seen in timeline highlights. Ship and train travel of yesteryears is seen exemplified with the preserved 1920s Wardrobe Trunk (No. 803). The archival piece shows a fabric-lined interior that opens up to a compartment for hanging clothes and storing valuables.

Other rare items included are: the brand’s first grooved aluminum suitcases from the early 1950s; the vulcanized fiber Suitcase No. 602; the waterproof Camera Case made of anodized aluminum in 1976, the wooden trunk Train Cabin Case No. 714; and the aluminum shell Calypso Suitcase, covered in nylon fiber coating, patented by the founder’s grandson, Dieter Morszeck in the late 1970s.

Rimowa

Courtesy of Rimowa.

 

 

Rimowa

Courtesy of Rimowa.

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