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Art Plus Fashion - Louis Vuitton

The best collaborations of the Maison with contemporary artists in the last decade

Art Plus Fashion - Louis Vuitton The best collaborations of the Maison with contemporary artists in the last decade

Art and fashion are fragments of a mirror that reflect specular images. The one is lost in the other, it merges, confuses to give shape to unique designs. From COMME des GARÇONS to Chanel, from Prada to Gucci, the brands that have collaborated or were inspired by artists and works are many, but if there is a mansion inherently tied to that world, Louis Vuitton.

Just a few days ago the presentation of a collection of bags and accessories made with Jeff Koons cemented a long tradition begun by Marc Jacobs of collaborations and exchanges of ideas, enriched before him, among others, by Stephen Sprouse, Takashi Murakami, Richard Prince, Yayoi Kusama, Cindy Sherman, James Turrell, Olafur Eliasson and Daniel Buren.

Here's how art and fashion have twisted each other at Louis Vuitton over the past ten years. 

Louis Vuitton x Jeff Koons - 2017

April 28 arrives in stores Masters, a collection of bags made with Jeff Koons. The brilliant artist chooses maison’s iconic handbags (Speedy, Keepall and Neverfull) and dresses them with works by great masters of the past such as Leonardo da Vinci or Van Gogh, but reworked as in his series of paintings Gazing Ball.

 The titles of the original work? Mars, Venus and Love by Titian, Tiger Hunt by Peter Paul Rubens, Fragonard’s Girl with a Dog, Mona Lisa by Leonardo da Vinci and Vincent Van Gogh’s Wheat Field with Cypresses.


Louis Vuitton x the Chapman Brothers - 2017

The surreal beastiary of the terrible artist brothers Jake and Dinos Chapman has been part of the Vuitton universe for twice.

In 2013 Kim Jones, a friend of the duo, chooses them to interpret the extreme environment of the Himalayas "populated by unusual animals and fantastic creatures that can be encountered on the roof of the world and in their imagination”. In 2017, the designer walked on a market just before leaving for South Africa, went on an album with nasty animal illustrations of savannah, and sent it to Jake Chapman who, together with Dinos, used it as a starting point for decorating With zebra, giraffe, elephants and lions the SS17 collection.


Louis Vuitton x Cindy Sherman - 2014

In 2014 Louis Vuitton celebrates 160 years with a special collection: six iconic geniuses, Frank Gehry, Rei Kawakubo, Karl Lagerfeld, Christian Louboutin, Marc Newson, and Cindy Sherman free to create their personal interpretation of a bag or luggage, using the iconic Monogram. Result?

A collection of original and exclusive pieces such as Lagerfeld’s gloves box bag or the square trunks transforming almost into a makeup mini room by Cindy Sherman. The object is packed with many intern compartments, reflecting on the many facets of her performances, while the colors resemble are those of Mister Frida, the artist's macaw parrot.


Louis Vuitton x el Seed - 2014

With the Foulard artiste series, Louis Vuitton explores street art, from Kenny Scharf to Inti, from Eko Nugroho to Gustavo and Otavio Pandolfo.

One of the most interesting collaborations? The one with the artist and calligrapher el Seed and with his poetry based on universal messages of peace, tolerance, coexistence and dialogue between peoples and cultures.


Louis Vuitton x Takashi Murakami - dal 2003 al 2013

It is LV's longest partnership. For a decade the French brand and Takashi Murakami worked together. Everything started in 2003 with Cherry Blossom, a handbag that became a cult and a first step that has revolutionized Maison's canvas with the invention of Monogram Multicolore, Monogram Cerise, Monogramouflage, Superflat Monogram, Eyes Series, Cosmic Blossom.

The manga figures, the otaku subculture, the love for pop art of Murakami blend with the classic texture of the Vuitton logo creating a new kind of language and collaboration that will last until 2009, with above $ 300 million profit only in the first year.


Louis Vuitton x Yayoi Kusama - 2012

Vuitton’s most important collaboration with the world of contemporary art is that with Yayoi Kusama.

The iconic Japanese artist invades with her polka dots the fashion universe. Her obsession, the seriality, her color palette of white, yellow, red and black become the key codes of a capsule collection including accessories and ready-to-wear united by the concept of Love Forever because, as Yayoi says,

"My main message is please stop war and live out the brilliance of life".


Louis Vuitton x Daniel Buren - 2012 

In 2016 the Louis Vuitton Foundation entrusts Daniel Buren with the task of temporarily dressing up its structure.

3600 pieces of colored glass, arranged at the same distance from each other, interspersed with white and black stripes perpendicular to the ground. The thirteen colors of L'Observatoire de la lumière create a mosaic of shapes and reflections that will appear and disappear depending on the different hours of the day and the seasons, thus also modifying the bright effects inside the building designed by Frank Gehry. 


Louis Vuitton x Stephen Sprouse - 2009

Do you remember the latest Marc Jacobs fashion show for Louis Vuitton in 2013 with model Edie Campbell covered with black paint writing? One of  LV’s most memorable moments coincides with the tribute to the designer and artist Stephen Sprouse, started a few years ago with the We love Stephen Sprouse project: a line of handbags, accessories, and clothing, all characterized by a dissecting the classic Monogram in a fluo, street, and contemporary versions.

A sales success celebrated by Marc Jacobs posing naked for the January 2009 issue of Harper's Bazaar magazine.


Louis Vuitton x Richard Prince - 2008

American Richard Prince's nursing paintings, one of the most expensive paintings of a live artist auctioned, become the inspiration for one of Marc Jacobs's most iconic collections for Vuitton.

If looks and outfits are an obvious tribute to the Nurses series, mysterious nurses wearing chapels and surgical masks, references of a vintage pulp novel’s cover, the bags recall the Jokes used by Prince in his other work.