New York's Fifth Avenue covered in frenzied spots as Louis Vuitton launches new polka dot collaboration with artist Yayoi Kusama
20:25 GMT, 12 July 2012
Louis Vuitton is again putting a bit of Japanese culture on the arms, and streets, of its customers.
The French fashion house unveiled a new collection on Tuesday created in collaboration between dot-obsessed artist Yayoi Kusama and Louis Vuitton creative director Marc Jacobs – and everyone within a five-block radius of 57th Street and Fifth Avenue in New York City was seeing nothing but spots.
Louis Vuitton CEO Yves Carcelle told WWD: 'The number of dots is so obsessive, no one can count them,' while standing next to two models dressed as the artist herself.
Seeing spots: Louis Vuitton unveiled a new collection on Tuesday created in collaboration between dot-obessed artist Yayoi Kusama and creative director Marc Jacobs
Going dotty: New Yorkers who were within a five-block radius of 57th Street and Fifth Avenue in New York City on Tuesday were seeing nothing but spots for the launch
Wrapped in a pattern of dots, the outside of the Louis Vuitton complements the collection's shoes, handbags, sunglasses and apparel also covered in a frenzied series of bold, graphic polka dots.
The artist made a grand entrance via a polka-dotted wheelchair, and emerged from the Louis Vuitton store basking in applause.
The smile-inducing window installation
was void of any merchandise, instead featuring undulating inflatable
tentacles done in red-and-white polka dots, plus a miniature of wax
figure of Kusama herself.
Centre of attention: The artist made a grand entrance via a polka-dotted wheelchair, and emerged from the Louis Vuitton store basking in applause
Optical illusion: Wrapped in a pattern of dots, the outside of the Louis Vuitton complements the collection's shoes, handbags, sunglasses and skirts also covered in a frenzied series of bold, graphic polka dots
Mr Carcelle said: 'When you work with an artist, it’s not a commercial operation. And as somebody once said, the window is the invitation but the store is the party.'
Jacobs, an avid art collector who met Kusama in 2006, started the collection with inspiration of 'obsession and seriality,' according to a company statement.Already a fan of Kusama's sculptures
and paintings, the designer said: 'The obsessive character and the
innocence of her artwork touch me.'
timing of the product launch and building installation coincides with
the Whitney Museum of American Art's new exhibition of Kusama's work.
Covered in dots: Louis Vuitton's collection with Kusama, available starting on Wednesday, July 11, includes an extensive range of shoes, bags, dresses, and scarves, all reflecting Kusamas distinctive aesthetic
Well-heeled: The collection's ballet flats, heels and sandals will prove popular among the fashion set
Inspiration: Both the collaboration. Louis Vuitton’s most extensive with
an artist ever, came out of a meeting of the two obsessive minds back
Pops of dots: For those slightly too timid for full-blown polka dots, the collections bangles are an easier, and cheaper way, to join in on the spotted fun
A decade ago, Jacobs and Louis Vuitton had great success collaborating with Japanese designer Takashi Murakami on a series of pop-art products that became instant must-haves among the fashion crowd and spawned a seemingly infinite number of mass-market items covered in similar-style rainbow-colored monograms and logos.
The second half of the collaboration, featuring Kusama's take on the iconic Louis Vuitton monogram, will launch on August 24th, to coincide with the collection's six-week 'take over' at Selfridges.