WORK: Nick Veasey’s x-ray photographs of Balenciaga’s garments, on view at the V&A

Above: Evening dress of silk taffeta, designed by Cristóbal Balenciaga, Paris, 1953-1954. Silk taffeta, mounted on a boned and padded foundation, fastened with a metal zip and buttons, machine-sewn and hand-finished; the flounces of the skirt are wired

The V&A is set to host its first ever exhibition of Cristóbal Balenciaga’s most iconic designs – known best for their complex structural construction. Ahead of the exhibition photographer Nick Veasey has set up a mobile x-ray studio to photograph Balenciaga’s creations using x-ray techniques that reveal the inner layers of the garments.

Above: Pink gazar silk evening dress with lace bustier, designed by Cristóbal Balenciaga for Eisa, Spain, winter 1965. Based on the label. Spain; Probably made in Madrid, a city Ava Gardner frequented Madrid. Date based on a house photograph from Balenciaga Archives in Paris, showing model no. 76 for winter 1965 (illustrated in Bowles, 2011, pp. 46-7). 1965
Gazar silk with lace

The resulting series of images will be displayed along side the garments themselves, giving visitors a chance to appreciate the Balenciaga’s exquisite craftsmanship and the architecture that supports the visible silhouettes and fabric.

Balenciaga: Shaping Fashion will be on view at Gallery 40, V&A, May 27 2017 to Feb 18 2018