Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Murakami / Louis Vuitton

"This is Not a Sidewalk Bag". Guy Trebay. The New York Times. 04.08.08. 
excerpted text and quotes:

"The baggage in question, made since 2002 in collaboration with Mr. Murakami and Louis Vuitton, has generated sales estimated to be in the hundreds of millions, by far the most successful such venture in the label's history. "

"Vuitton has a long tradition of these collaborations, of relationships with artists, going back to the Impressionists." (Yves Carcelle, Chairman of Louis Vuitton)

"Still, nothing the company ever did hit the jackpot like Mr. Murakami's cherry-ornamented and "Multico" bags, which came about, as Mr. Carcelle explained, after 9/11, when Vuitton designer Marc Jacobs, suggested to his corporate bosses that it was no good to mourn forever: fashion had a responsibility, ahem, to help people past their grief."Marc said," Mr. Carcelle recalled, " ' If I work with Takashi, and we do something colorful, I think it will help make New York strong again.'"

"Like the handbags, the purpose of these editions, Mr. Murakami said later, is to bring art to the hoi polloi, people in no position to lay out the $1.5 million that another Franch billionaire Francois Pinault, paid for a  23-foot Murakami statue of the space alien Mr. Pointy in 2003."

"Anyway, it is not the money that matters to him, he insisted, "I always want art to be accessible," he said at dinner, where the guests included Kristen Davis, Tinsely Mortimer and Julian Schnabel. "The money embarrasses me," he said, not looking embarrassed in the least." 

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