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louis vuitton exhbition

art fashion Fashion exhibit Travel Uncategorized

Louis Vuitton Exhibition Rooms 6-10

If you pay attention to fashion news you probably already know that the Louis Vuitton exhibition, that has been a hit in other international cities has made its way to New York City. I made my way to the exhibition twice already and plan to go back before it closes. I wrote a review of the first 5 rooms of the exhibit which you can read here. The following is an overview of the next 5 rooms, which concludes the exhibition.

 

The Painting Trunk

Louis Vuitton’s relationship with the world of art began in 1924 when art dealer Rene’ Gimpel ordered a trunk for his business trips to New York, Paris and London. To meet the needs of artists like Rene, Louis Vuitton created larger trunks with drawers that could protect the artwork during travel. Returning to the companies roots of protective packaging caught the eye of the art world and soon other artists became customers as well. Masters of the art world such as the artist Matisse became clients of Louis Vuitton. Many artists developed close ties to the company and were given the opportunity to design one of a kind trunks. Over the years these ” artists in residence” have created new fabrics, patterns and designs for the house of Louis Vuitton. Louis Vuitton’s most recent collaboration has been with the artists Jeff Koons whose collection includes recreations of master works.

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Curio Trunks

During the 1900’s Gaston-Louis started buying trunks from previous customers to create his trunk collection. To start this process he would send certain customers a questionnaire to learn more about their trunks. Next the customers that returned the questionnaire, were sent an offer by Gaston to buy their trunks. The trunks in The Curio Trunks room consists of the trunks Gaston bought to create his collection.

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The Beauty of Fashion

Trunks for Stars

During the 1920’s and 1930’s the house of Louis Vuitton stepped beyond the trunk and started making beauty items, furniture pieces and specialty items. Hollywood’s starlets ordered velvet lined trunks along with the various new pieces the house was creating. Specialty pieces that were made for stars include a vanity case for Sharon Stone, wardrobe trunk for Katharine Hepburn and a suitcase and vanity set for Elizabeth Taylor. Stars around the globe continue to order from the house to help them with their travel and everyday needs.

 

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Exquisite Bottles

It was in 1927 that Gaston-Louis Vuitton created the first fragrance for Louis Vuitton, in an effort to expand the fields in which Louis Vuitton played. He cared just as much for the look of the bottle as he did the fragrance itself. Being so each time the house created a new fragrance Gaston would commission masters in the decorative arts field to design the bottles. The collaborations became a tradition for the house with its latest being in 2016 with designer Marc Newson.

 

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Sophisticated Dandies

Not only were silver screen actresses customers of Louis Vuitton, but so were actors. Many of the first were French actors that ordered foot and wardrobe trunks. The actors also ordered garment bangs and toiletry bags that helped push the brand into the menswear arena. In the 1920’s the making of canes with carved heads was another collaboration opportunity for the house and different artists to create unique pieces.

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Collaborations

Besides artists the house has collaborated with individual designers over the years. The introduction of different designers to Louis Vuitton began in 1996 when Azzedine Alana, Manolo Blahnik, Romeo Gigli, Helmut Lang, Isaac Mizrahi, Sybilla and Viviene Westwood were invited to collaborate with the house. This event helped mark Louis Vuitton’s one-hundredth anniversary. In 1997 Louis Vuitton officially entered the  fashion sphere with a ready-to-wear line. Guiding this new avenue for the brand was Marc Jacobs, the artistic director of the ready- to-wear line for almost 16 years. Jacobs used many of the artistic collaborations as inspirations for his collections. The designers that took on the role as Artistic Director after Jacobs departure also used artists and authors to create unique collections.

 

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The Music Room

Other than making trunks for clothing, art and writing the house of Louis Vuitton has been known to make trunks for musical artists as well. Delicate musical instruments have been stored in these special order trunks. Violins, guitars and more have found a safe haven for travel with Louis Vuitton.

Louis Vuitton

 

Louis Vuitton Loves America

In 1893 Georges Vuitton made his first step into the U.S market when he attended the Chicago World’s Fair. While there he met John Wanamaker, owner of the first ever department stores. A few years later in 1898 Wanamaker put Louis Vuitton in his New York and Philadelphia stores. By the roaring 20’s Louis Vuitton had become the luxury luggage of choice for people all over the country.

Fast forward to 1997 to one of the most memorable Louis Vuitton eras which is when Marc Jacobs became Artistic Director. The designer guided the brand into the new millennium and held the position as Artistic Director for 16 years. During this time he made iconic collaborations with various artists including Yayoi Kusama who introduced her signature polka dot and Stephen Spouse who created graffiti inspired designs. Currently guiding the Louis Vuitton brand through each season is Nicolas Ghesquiere whose dressed celebrities like Taylor Swift and Nicole Kidman among others.

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Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton by Nicolas Ghesquiere worn by Riley Keogh at the 2014 Amfar Ceremony

 

Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton by Nicolas Ghesquiere 2017 worn by Ruth Negga for the Golden Globes

Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton by Nicolas Ghesquiere 2017 worn by Michelle Williams

Louis Vuitton

Nicolas Ghesquiere for Louis Vuitton worn by Taylor Swift at the 2016 Met Gala.

Louis Vuitton

Nicolas Ghesquiere for Louis Vuitton worn by Jennifer Connelly at the 2017 Met Ball.

 

Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton by Marc Jacobs and artist Stephen Spouse printed roses skirt.

Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton by Marc Jacobs, feather headpiece and mink short dress and graffiti legging.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Louis Vuitton

Marc Jacobs for Louis Vuitton. Worn by Madonna at the 2009 Met Ball.

 

I hope you get to see this amazing and encompassing exhibition. If you don’t I hope you’ve enjoyed my reviews. I learned so many interesting facts of a brand that I’ve worked for in the past, but had no idea of!

The Louis Vuitton Volez, Voguez, Voyagez exhibition will be on display at the New York Stock Exchange building on 86th Trinity Place in the financial district until January 7th 2018.

T.S.

fashion Fashion exhibit History Uncategorized

The Louis Vuitton Exhibition: Rooms 1-5

Louis Vuitton

 

The Louis Vuitton Volez, Voguez, Vayagez (Fly, Sail, Travel) exhibition has made its way around the globe. Originating in Paris, the brands birthplace the presentation has finally made its way to New York City after much anticipation. Both Paris and Tokyo viewers of the exhbition have given rave reviews of this immersive exhibition. And it is no wonder why when each room of the Louis Vuitton exhibition was curated to not only showcase the immersive Louis Vuitton history from past to present, but honor the city in which it is held. The original stock exchange building where the exhibition is housed is a New York City institution and is magnificent on its own. As you make you way into each room you are transported to the past, with each interiorly transformed to represent Louis Vuitton’s history. The exhibition has an accompanying app that gives you an interactive experience, so be sure to download that first!

 

History of Louis Vuitton the Man

At the age of 14 Louis Vuitton left his village in Eastern France on foot and made his way to Paris two years later. As a young man he apprenticed as a box maker and packer for the box manufacturer Romaine Marechal. By 1854 he founded the company of Louis Vuitton on rue Nerve-des-Capucines which became  one of Paris’s most famous shopping boulevards. His lightweight yet strong designs became a hit amongst high society. Louis is credited in perfecting the flat trunk, the first step towards modern luggage. By 1875 he created the wardrobe trunk which allowed the traveler to hang their clothes in the luggage. This invention skyrocketed the already booming company.

Louis Vuitton

 

Part 1-The Trunk of 1906

In 1896 Louis Vuitton’s son Georges created the “LV” monogram which the house is known for. In 1906 the monogram was added to the trunk for the first time by Gaston-Louis Vuitton, grandson of Louis Vuitton. 1906 was also the first time the trunk was designed with their signature brass corners with a patent lock added for security.

Louis Vuitton

Part 2-Wood

Woodwork was Louis’s first craftsmanship. As a young boy who grew up near a forest wood was always influential for him. As a box maker he also worked with wood, so it was second nature for Louis to create his own trunks out of wood. In particular he used camphor wood to detour pests, poplar wood for the frame and beech wood for reinforcement. Lastly he would use rosewood for its aromatic scent.

 

Louis Vuitton

Left: Interior luggage labels of the 1800’s.
Top Right: Advertising card of 1885.
Bottom Right: Mailing envelope for the LV stores of Paris and London 1890.

Louis Vuitton

 

Part 3-Classic Trunks

The linage of trunks begins with the Trainon Grey in 1854. The Striped Canvas trunk came next in 1872 which came in the colors red, brown and later in the combination of beige and brown. 1888 introduced the Damier canvas trunk and soon the flat trunk was invented. The house continued to build their reputation for trunks and cemented their reliability with the Ideale trunk, with the purpose of keeping items safe  during travel.

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Part 4-The Invention of Travel

Louis Vuitton was the luggage of choice for explorer and engineer André-Gustave Citroën during the excursions of the 1924 and 1925. The House of Louis Vuitton created particular trunks that could withstand the hot climate, different types of transportation and accommodate the portable comforts needed for explorers like Citroën.

 

During the rise of yachting the house of Louis Vuitton created the Steamer Bag, which modernized the hand luggage spectrum. The bag had the ability to be folded into any wardrobe trunk compartment. The bags weight, size and ease is considered to be the blueprint for the modern day gym bag.

Steamer Trunk on the right.

 

 

During the automobile rise the Vuittonite or Monogram canvas wardrobe and hat trunks were the some of Louis Vuitton’s most popular trunks. Picnic trunks, coolers and flat Morocco leather bag, the precursor to the handbag were in high demand as well.

 

Chauffeur’s Kit in Vuittonite Canvas 1910

 

 

 

The invention of airplanes led the house of Louis Vuitton to meet the needs of aviators and travelers alike. The Aero trunk, the grandfather of the carry-on luggage was the answer for people needing compact and lightweight luggage.

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Advancements in train travel gave the house the chance to create the Cabin trunk. This new trunk could fit under seats, while other bags such as garment and overnight bags also became in demand models.

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Part 5-Writing

Gaston-Louis Vuitton was an appreciator of writing and books. He himself was an author so its no wonder that the house of Louis Vuitton created mobile offices and various trunks that suited traveling writers.

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The Louis Vuitton Volez, Voguez, Voyagez exhibition will be open until January 7, 2018 on 86 Trinity Place in the financial district. I will have a follow up post covering rooms 6-10 soon. Have you seen the exhibition or are you looking forward to seeing it? Let me know your comments and thoughts here and on social media!

T.S.