The Bowes Museum And Fenwick Announce Major Sponsorship Deal In Support Of UK’s First Yves Saint Laurent Exhibtion

The Bowes Museum And Fenwick Announce Major Sponsorship Deal In Support Of UK’s First Yves Saint Laurent Exhibtion

The Bowes Museum and Fenwick are delighted to announce the company’s sponsorship of the forthcoming exhibition, Yves Saint Laurent: Style is Eternal, the first ever exhibition of Yves Saint Laurent in the UK, organized in partnership with the Fondation Pierre Bergé – Yves Saint Laurent, Paris.

The partnership brings together two of the region’s iconic brands for the presentation of this highly anticipated show, which opens on Saturday 11th July. Fenwick, the UK’s premier independent department store group, are supporting the exhibition and will create associated window displays in their Newcastle and York stores. Tickets and YSL merchandise will be available in the Newcastle store.

The Bowes Museum, which counts a number of French designers among its permanent collection alongside garments once worn by the Empress Eugenie, is delighted to collaborate with Fenwick. The company’s early support for the YSL brand is borne out by a photograph in the forthcoming exhibition catalogue, which pictures Yves Saint Laurent, Loulou de La Falaise and Betty Catroux at the 1969 launch of the first SAINT LAURENT rive gauche boutique in London, located across the street from Fenwick’s flagship Bond Street store.

The Bowes Museum and Fenwick were both founded in the North of England during the latter part of the 19th century. Forward thinking philanthropists, John Bowes and his French wife Joséphine set their sights on building a museum in his home town of Barnard Castle. John James Fenwick, an entrepreneurial young Yorkshireman, began building his retail empire when he took over a doctor’s house in what was then a residential area of Newcastle.  The Fenwick family’s previous support of The Bowes Museum includes the donation in 1964 from the Founder’s wife, of a pair of elaborately decorated shoes dating back to 1904 and an unusual French marquetry hat made of fine woods in the style of a helmet-shaped cloche fashionable in the 1920’s. These are currently on display in the Fashion & Textile Gallery.

Mark Fenwick, Chairman of Fenwick said: “We are delighted to be instrumental in bringing this exhibition of the iconic fashion designer, Yves Saint Laurent to the UK. Yves Saint Laurent was hugely influential in the cultural revolution of the 60s and early 70s. The Bowes Museum is an inspired choice for this ground breaking show.”

Adrian Jenkins, Director of The Bowes Museum, was equally enthusiastic about the partnership, saying: “We are delighted to be developing our relationship with Fenwick, who have been supportive of The Bowes for many years. It is pertinent that Fenwick are the main sponsor of the first ever Yves Saint Laurent exhibition in the UK which The Bowes are honoured to be showing.”

Yves Saint Laurent: Style is Eternal will be exhibited at The Bowes Museum from 11th July – 25th October.

The Bowes Museum, Café Bowes and Shop are open daily from 10.00. A full programme of events and exhibitions is available by calling 01833 690606 or by clicking here


Notes to Editors

For further information contact:
Sheila Dixon, Media & PR Officer, The Bowes Museum,
Tel: 01833 690606

Merrie Ashton, Brunswick Arts,
Tel: 0207 396 5339, 07801 930 847 

About Fenwick
  • Fenwick is the UK’s premier independent department store group, with a selection ranging from fashion and beauty to furniture and homewares.
  • It has a portfolio of eleven stores throughout the country, retailing under Fenwick, Bentalls and Williams & Griffin.
  • The business was founded in Newcastle upon Tyne in 1882 by an ambitious young shop assistant, John James Fenwick. He took over a doctor’s house in a residential area of Newcastle, converted it to a shop and began selling silks, dresses, fabrics and trimmings. The business grew and JJ Fenwick acquired adjacent properties. The Newcastle store remains on this exact same site and as one of the largest department stores in the country is the undisputed highlight of any shopping trip to the city.
  • JJ Fenwick had the foresight to open a second store in London’s New Bond Street in 1891 that also specialised in exclusive tailoring for ladies. Today the Bond Street store is the group’s flagship premium fashion business, with quirky fledgling labels alongside international designers.
  • The Department Store concept emerged in Paris and Fenwick immediately embraced it. In 1894 FB Fenwick, son of  the Founder, was inspired by what he saw at Le Bon Marché, widely regarded as the world’s first department store. Fenwick embraced the idea of combining different types of goods in clearly defined departments all under the same roof.
  • The Fenwick group expanded further in 1962 with the acquisition of a store in Leicester. This was followed by the opening of Brent Cross in 1976 and York in 1984. Stores in Kent were next, with Canterbury acquired in 1986 and Tunbridge Wells opened in 1992. In 2001 the Bentalls group was purchased, with stores in Kingston upon Thames and Bracknell being retained. The Colchester based store of Williams and Griffin was added to the group’s portfolio in 2008.
The Bowes Museum

  • The Bowes Museum was created over 100 years ago by an extraordinary couple, John and Joséphine Bowes.  Together they built up the greatest private collection of fine and decorative arts in the North of England and constructed a magnificent building to house them in.  The collection contains thousands of objects including furniture, paintings, sculpture, ceramics, textiles and many other items covering an extensive range of European styles and periods. 
  • The Bowes Museum receives a core funding grant from Durham County Council and as a Major Portfolio Museum, receives support from the Department of Culture, Media and Sport through the Arts Council England’s Renaissance programme.  Additional revenue funding specifically for the Museum’s acclaimed exhibition programme is provided by The John Ellerman Foundation and The Friends of The Bowes Museum.
  • The Bowes Museum has recently undergone major redevelopment. This work was supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, One NorthEast through the County Durham Economic Partnership, English Heritage, Northern Rock Foundation, The Monument Trust, Garfield Weston Foundation, The Foyle Foundation, The European Regional Development Fund, DCMS/Wolfson Museum and Galleries Improvement Fund, Designation Challenge Fund, The Shears Foundation, The Richard and Suzanna Tonks Family Fund at County Durham Foundation, Durham County Council, The Friends of The Bowes Museum, The Headley Trust, Sir James Knott Trust, Catherine Cookson Charitable Trust, Fenwick Ltd, Mercers Charitable Foundation, Welton Foundation.
  • Normal admission to the Museum: Adults £10.50, Concessions £9.50, Students £6.00, Six Month Pass £16.00, Carers and children Free (under 16s).  Admission allows access to exhibitions, permanent displays and some events. Admissions are donation inclusive and are eligible for Gift Aid. If you do not wish to make a charitable donation or are not a UK taxpayer admission prices are: Adults £9.25, Concessions £8.50, Six Month Pass £14.00, Children (under 16) and carers free.
  • The Bowes Museum is a member of the Discover Durham partnership of attractions. Our commitment is to promote Durham as an exciting and vibrant group travel destination and to provide the travel trade with a professional and knowledgeable service: hotline number 0191 301 8531,
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