Pre-twilight in Hollywood last night, at the peak of rush hour traffic, it seemed every other car was a waxed black sedan with a boldly brandished X on its cheek. As the sun set, June gloom thinned itself into a clear, starry, crisp Summer expression, and the mood was groovy. The moment had come for luxury star, Louis Vuitton, in town with its usual sex appeal, to launch its highly-anticipated, experiential exhibit, “Louis Vuitton X”, at a pop-up corner of Rodeo and Santa Monica Blvd. At the center of the show is a debut expression of the brand’s ongoing love affair with contemporary art, ArtyCapucines. The coyly irreverent collection, a twist on the iconic bag, features designs by artists Sam Falls, Urs Fischer, Nicholas Hlobo, Alex Israel, Tschabalala Self and Jonas Wood. The spanning exhibition in surrounds runs through mid-September and showcases the brand’s unequivocal heritage.
Inside the vibrant fuchsia foyer, a façade replica of the original 1854 Vuitton store, are art objects by Virgil Abloh. Next, a corridor showcasing iconic reworkings of the Vuitton codes, starting with their 1996 collaborations with Vivienne Westwood, Helmut Lang, Alaïa, and a host of other designers. This gallery also displays later collaborations from Rei Kawakubo, Karl Lagerfeld (a punching bag!) as well as the design of Zaha Hadid. Other noteworthy relics are a fold-out bed and a custom-made trunk used to house paintings for Claude Monet. Next, a scarf gallery. Iconic looks from the house’s past and present artistic directors offer some very psychedelic Instagram filters. The exhibit concludes in a gallery of newly commissioned art works from the Capucines collaborators.
Guests were ushered to the second level for a pop-up shop featuring a selection of products curated by Just an Idea founder and former Colette Creative Director, Sarah Andelman, alongside Louis Vuitton Women’s ready-to-wear, leather goods, accessories, shoes, fragrances, Objets Nomades and books.
The evening then loosened its cuffs and headed up the hill to the brilliant Sheats-Goldstein House for a cocktail dinatoire, where Mr Goldstein himself could be seen inside Club James recounting recent fashion fêtes and court-side NBA playoff games, amidst a bevy of brand muses and fashion insiders. It was one for the books.