Bali Barret

Bali Barret, a true embodiment of Parisian elegance, is the artistic director of the women’s universe at Hermès, responsible for the iconic silk scarves that are continuously reimagined. At 51 years old, Barret’s passion for innovation and creativity is evident in her work for the luxury brand.

Barret joined Hermès in 1996, when Pierre-Alexis Dumas, preparing to take on the artistic direction of the company alongside his father Jean-Louis, offered her the opportunity to oversee the silk scarves that contributed to the French brand’s success and notoriety. At first glance, the collaboration might not have seemed like an obvious fit. Barret had previously made a name for herself as the designer of her own brand, which featured a modern, minimalistic wardrobe that borrowed from classic masculine styles and was hugely successful in Japan (where she made 70% of her sales).

However, the prospect of working on the iconic Hermès scarf intrigued Barret, who saw it as a thrilling challenge for a creative mind. She has had a personal connection to the silk scarves since her childhood, as her mother had an extensive collection inherited from her own mother.

Throughout her career, Barret has made a significant impact on the Hermès brand, with her designs such as Tout en carré, Monsieur et madame, La femme au carré, and À cheval sur mon carré. Her artistic contributions extend beyond the scarves, as she coordinates the work of various in-house artistic directors (shoes, silk, women’s ready-to-wear, etc.) and collaborates on events that showcase the Hermès woman to the world.

One such event was “Avec elle,” held in Tokyo, which Barret attended and helped conceive in collaboration with curator Laure Flammarion at the National Art Center in Tokyo. This ambitious project, a blend of installation and performance, invited visitors to immerse themselves in a sensory and poetic experience, exploring the traces of a mysterious woman whose absence permeates the narrative.

Bali Barret’s vision of the Hermès woman is one of contrasting elements: a blend of classicism and revolution, a mix of tradition and the ability to change direction unexpectedly. It is this unique perspective that has allowed Barret to bring fresh ideas and contemporary style to the world of Hermès, ensuring the brand remains a symbol of luxury and elegance for generations to come.

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