More than a mere store: a contemporary art gallery. A cheerful, luminous, playful, cool place in which to spend an entire day, immersed in fashion, art and design. Louis Vuitton has unveiled the updated point of sale in New Bond Street for Londoners and international visitors in Mayfair.
The project of great visual impact was presented after 14 months of work: on the facade, the multicolored explosion of the Louis Vuitton monogram; inside, a mixture of art, design and fashion, with 43 works by 25 artists and many site-specific installations.
Peter Marino has completely revised the interiors, eliminating columns and creating a totally open, airy space on three communicating levels.
“In terms of volume, we wanted to expand the existing space,” says the architect, who has worked with the company for over 20 years. “We have discovered that people spend more time in such majestic spaces, so we removed the barriers and created double-volume spaces in the women’s area. There are three double volumes in the store, measuring about 8 meters each, and a triple volume in correspondence to the staircase, of 12 meters. These big volumes are possible only when you work with a brand that is so confident in its design, that can remove areas to convey a sensation of wonder and luxury to visitors.”
At the entrance, crossing a damier checkered floor, a citation of the iconic motif of Louis Vuitton handbags in stone and marble, visitors are greeted by a gallery in progress, where the shop windows on New Bond Street are drawn into the store itself. The facings in pale wood and natural stone are lit up by touches of color: the sculptural double helical staircase in pale oak that incorporates totems in wood, resin and LEDs commissioned to the artist Matt Gagnon creates a dizzying movement, accentuated by the orange spiral on the wall, a work by Josh Sperling. Among the other cheerful and very colorful creations, the luminous message “Love is what you want” by Tracey Emin is framed by a big hear, while the female silhouette on a yellow background by Farhad Moshiri is made with glass beads, borrowing a traditional technique from Iranian women and projecting it into a larger scale.
And more still: the pink and orange maxi-totem with human features by Aaron Curry, or the optical staircase by Jim Lambie, specifically created for Louis Vuitton, a cascade of vinyl strips in vivid hues.
The new Louis Vuitton store is also a destination for design lovers: the pieces of the Objets Nomades family are on view, like the Cocoon seats by the Campana Brothers that descend from the ceiling, or the Origami flowers by Atelier Oï gathered in bouquets, with stool lined up in a row. The Concertina Shade lamps by Raw Edges create an impalpable, delicate ‘roof.’ Not to mention the doors by Gaetano Pesce, many signature tables like the Wom model by Martino Gamper, a table by Angelo Mangiarotti from the 1970s, the La Basilica Table by Mario Bellini for Cassina, the sideboard by Charlotte Perriand from 1958.
A space to experience, a new travel and shopping destination, which reflects the DNA of the brand and the passions of Peter Marino. Passions expressed in many citations, like the books on display about the works of the architect and designer Mario Bellini, published by Phaidon, and the volume by Rizzoli on the artist Tracey Emin.