“From the exterior, a handbag is something we show off, a status symbol. But from within, it hides our most personal possessions and secrets,” explains Elisabeth Azoulay, the curator of Bagism.

As part of their  studies in the programs MBA Luxury Brand Management and MBA Fashion Business, IFA Paris’ students were taken to the Bagism exhibition in Shanghai which tells the story of bags and their evolution throughout the centuries.

The exhibition showcases 300 bags together with Chinese contemporary art and revolved around four themes: History, Femininity, Celebrity and Art.Hermés bag hand painted by artist Zhang Anli

From the first forms of bags to the most iconic ones, the exhibition relates 400 years of history of bags, women’s beloved accessories. First a convenient item used to carry objects, bags took greater importance throughout history to become a real fashion accessory and a part of a woman's appearance in the same manner as a woman’s outfit. As such, it now follows trends and seasons.

From Lady Diana to Queen Elizabeth, from Grace Kelly to Jane Birkin, for whom the iconic Hermés Birkin was created in 1984, all used to carry around their favourite bags of which they became the best ambassador.

This exhibition allowed IFA Paris students to learn more about this accessory, which is now a very important part of fashion and its history.

To learn more about the programs related to this field trip: MBA Luxury Brand Management and MBA Fashion Business.