To celebrate the 160th anniversary of Louis Vuitton‘s founding, executive vice president Delphine Arnault, daughter of LVMH chairman Bernard Arnault, Delphine, and artistic director Nicolas Ghesquière have joined forces to initiate the “Celebrating Monogram” project and have therefor enlisted 6 iconoclasts to actually re-interpret the iconic LV monogram.
The project strongly reminds one of the project undertaken back in 1996 for Louis Vuitton’s centenarian celebration – when designers Azzedine Alaïa, Manolo Blahnik, Romeo Gigli, Helmut Lang, Isaac Mizrahi, Sybilla and Vivienne Westwood had contributed designs. But this time, Delphine Arnault and Nicolas Ghesquière have broadened the scope of the initiative and grabbed themselves quite a few visionaries from the fields of art, architecture, and industrial design.
Admittedly, the Monogram is the timeless icon of the Maison Louis Vuitton. “It has lived through the brand’s countless evolutions, never losing its essence. The leading testament to the fashion house’s success, it was only natural that we should pay homage to it,” says Delphine Arnault.
Do note that the selected iconoclasts include Karl Lagerfeld, creative director of Chanel and Fendi, who has unveiled a trio of traveling pieces with the Punching Bag, Punching Suitcase and Punching Trunk. But there is also architect Frank Gehry, whose Fondation Louis Vuitton centre opens next month in Paris, giving the handbag a unique structural re-think with the Twisted Box. And artist Cindy Sherman with the Studio in the Trunk and Camera Messenger, and industrial superstar designer Marc Newson – with the Fleece Pack of backpacks. Shoe designer Christian Louboutin, who has incorporated the monogram, LV logo and the scarlet that lines the sole of his shoes into the Shopping Bag and Shopping Trolley is also a part of this epic project. And so is beloved Rei Kawakubo of Comme des Garçons, who designed a Bag with Holes that reveal the tote’s inner lining.
And, by the way, Karl Lagerfeld shot each of the 6 iconoclasts (and their finished products) for Harper’s Bazaar’s upcoming October issue. Thumbs up, and respect.