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Art: 10 Wonders of Harrods

Feature: Long Read
Words by Emilie Dock

Bet you didn’t know we house Picasso. Or that the tiles that decorate the Dining Hall date back to 1902. Explore our seven floors and you’ll realise that Harrods is brimming with artful surprises – some painted, some sculpted, some edible. You might say we’re one of London’s best unknown museums of art and design. You just need to know where to look. 

Halcyon Gallery

Salvador Dalí, Pablo Picasso, Joan Miró – the list of artists exhibited at the Halcyon Gallery reads like a who’s who of contemporary art. New in August, the Summer Exhibition puts 20th-century masterpieces side by side with the works of 21st-century talents, from Pedro Paricio’s idiosyncratic take on iconic masterpieces to Dominic Harris’s mesmerising digital innovations, exploring how seminal works including Andy Warhol’s iconic Campbell’s Soup have paved the way for present-day artists to cover new ground.  

  • Halcyon Gallery
  • Halcyon Gallery - Pablo Picasso
  • Halcyon Gallery - Pablo Picasso
  • Halcyon Gallery - Mitch Griffiths
  • Halcyon Gallery - Chagall
  • Halcyon Gallery - Bob Dylan
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Hennessy cognac boutique
Hennessy Dame Jeanne

 

The new Hennessy cognac boutique houses a great many treasures, but this one-of-a-kind masterpiece truly raises the bar. Crafted by celebrated French plumassière (feather artist) Nelly Saunier, the Dame Jeanne is decorated with feathers from Lady Amhersts, Marabou storks, Kingfishers, Tragopan and Silver pheasants, and Abyssinian rollers. Finished with gilded cock feathers, it comes with 10 decanters of Hennessy’s most precious cognac. 

Salon de Parfums

 

For centuries, perfumes have been housed in ornate terracotta jars, bottles, porcelain cups and crystal flacons. The earliest examples can be traced back to Ancient Egypt, but today you’ll find the most exquisite designs in Salon de Parfums.

So precious is Dior’s gold and diamond-studded J'Adore Exceptional Edition in Baccarat crystal that it’s locked in its own glass cabinet. While over in Henry Jacques, Les Toupies (meaning spinning tops in French) are individually crafted by crystal artisans to capture the light. Perhaps most special of all, however, is the Deux Cigalles created by Lalique for Roja Parfums. Made using the ‘lost wax’ technique, two cicadas appear on the inside of the crystal flacon, and it’s the last one in existence.  

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Door 7 at Harrods
Door 7

 

Have you ever stopped to admire Door 7 on Brompton Road? Located on the site of the original 1949 Harrods store, which burned down and was rebuilt in the 1880s, it was remodelled and widened in 1927. Though Harrods has vastly expanded since then, the ornate 1920s coffered ceiling at Door 7 remains to this day – and it’s now joined by a mosaic on the floor (replicated from an original Edwardian design) and beautiful glazed and curved windows, added in 2019.  

Plan Your Visit

Fashion x Art

There has always been a synergy between fashion and art. Some of the most well-known and innovative designers have straddled both worlds and you can see several examples in-store. The Prada Metropolis pop-up, for instance, recalls and reimagines the visionary set designs from director Fritz Land’s sci-fi epic, while in the Fendi boutique Kim Jones’ SS22 line channels the drawings of legendary illustrator Antonio Lopez. You might also look out for Terry O’Neill’s celebrated photographs on Limitato’s latest T-shirt collection.   

  • Prada Metropolis Pop-Up Harrods
  • Prada Metropolis Pop-Up Harrods
  • Prada Metropolis Pop-Up Harrods
  • Prada Metropolis Pop-Up Harrods
Rare, authentic autograph by Christian Dior presented on a vintage fashion poster, dated 1957
Leipzig Galleries

 

Tucked away in the Arcade is an expertly curated collection of some of the world’s oldest and rarest pieces of history. Leipzig Galleries has spent the past 200 years acquiring signed photographs, sports memorabilia, historical documents and autographs. Go there now and you’ll see an exceedingly rare authentic autograph by Christian Dior presented on a vintage fashion poster, dated 1957.  

Dedar x Papier Français Wallpaper
Dedar x Papier Français

Forget paint. Wallpaper is making a comeback and you’ll find everything from lush oversized florals and hallucinatory geometric patterns to Arabesques scenes in The Fabric Library. Dedar’s collaborations with Papier Français are particularly breathtaking. Specialising in reviving archival patterns, Papier Français worked with the National Library of France to create a number of exclusive designs inspired by 18th and 19th-century motifs. Find these and many more artistic gems in our Home & Furniture department.  

Fine Jewellery
Fine Jewellery

 

It’s hard to pick just one creation worthy of mention in Fine Jewellery, but taking inspiration from the Op Art movement, De Beers' Optical Wonder set makes the final cut. Part of The Alchemist of Light collection, the necklace and earrings boast geometric patterns created from pavé-set diamonds and coloured aluminium, casting mesmerising beams of reflected and refracted light. And there’s plenty more haute joaillerie art where that came from. 

  • The Harrods Chocolaterie

    The Harrods Chocolaterie

    Our chefs dish out culinary artistry across the store, but The Harrods Chocolaterie (located in The Chocolate Hall) holds particular appeal. There, you can feast your eyes on the making of mendiants, topped bars, stuffed slabs, chocolate-covered confit fruit and bonbons – the latter of which are flavoured with the likes of strawberry and mint cream or peach and verbena, then sprayed with high-pressure coloured cocoa butter for a glistening marble effect.  

  • Harrods Chocolaterie
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