The windows of 10 Avenue George V, BALENCIAGA ,were for many seasons, graced with the fantastic sculptures by Janine Janet made just for Balenciaga. Balenciaga let Janine Janet have free reign to her fantasies-only stipulating that the windows never appear commercial. Within the three windows, perfumes or other hints of Balenciaga were discreetly placed by Janet. The effect of the windows was to suggest the art of the couturier not the production of-just imagine.
The success of the windows was evident in their longevity. Many of Janet's works would stay in place for a year or more. Her first windows in 1952 were representations of Air, Earth and Water. She employed feathers, arrows, sculpted birds, sheaves of wheat, straw hats and flowers eluding to the elaborate work of the famous silk weavers of the 18th century. She continued to work with Balenciaga for years.
Her work can also be seen in Cocteau's. Le Testament d' Orphée,
by Janine Janet- made of wood and nails, with the nails creating the entirety of detailing in the sculpture.
image from BALENCIAGA PARIS
In 1959, La Reine-the Queen, Le Roi-the King and Le Valet-the knave- were commissioned by Balenciaga for his windows.
One couldn't help see these Janet sculptures and not think of this 1949 Balenciaga gown.
There was a constant play between the couturier and the sculptor.
image from BALENCIAGA, by Lesley Ellis Miller
Janet's La Reine at Balenciaga
Posing with a Janet sculpture in a Balenciaga Autumn mohair dress, from 1957.
(photograph from BALENCIAGA, by Lesley Ellis Miller)
additional links for Janine Janet here