A Transatlantic Muse: Virginie Viard Welcomes Vivienne Rohner As The Face Of Chanel’s New Collection

An abstract Swiss muse pours her visionary perspective through the allure of Chanel.

Virginie Viard swaps out landmark muses to welcome the phantom of Swiss model Vivienne Rohner for Chanel’s latest Spring Summer 2023 Pre-Collection. In tandem with the house’s release of the 2022-2023 M├ętiers d’art collection, which dissected a new genre of Viard through creative effervescence and sustainable know-how, for this season, Chanel is taking this exploration one step further with Rohner steering the ship. Following in the footsteps of women like Caroline de Maigret, Amanda Sanchez, and Charlotte Casiraghi, Vivienne Rohner embodies both in photographs and as the primary source of the season’s inspirations. As this collection’s veritable muse, Rohner’s unwavering character, independence, and visionary mind pours through the collection in style and allure chosen by Chanel.

Set in stone. Having spent her formative years in Zurich, Switzerland, Rohner began her modeling career at age 16 in Paris. Known for her signature middle-parted, brunette hair and piercing gaze, Viard didn’t take long to notice her. First modeling for Chanel in March 2020, Rohner and Viard began developing a rapport, growing closer as she walked for the house. After walking the runway to modeling in campaigns by Inez & Vinoodh, and Ready-to-Wear to Haute Couture, the model muse has developed a habit of exploring herself through self-portraitures as a personal practice. She even shot behind-the-scenes of the Fall-Winter 2022/23 Haute Couture collection inside the Chanel ateliers on the rue Cambon in Paris this past July.

There is something about this girl. After leaving the fashion-esque of Paris and introducing herself to the concrete jungle that is New York City, Rohner wanted to offer intimate perspectives of herself in her home. Shot through the lens of Rohner’s boyfriend, the American photographer Theo Wenner – a New York native – Wenner offers an intimate and authentic perspective of Rohner, his hometown, and Chanel, in a series of images that reveal the collection in some of Vivienne’s favorite haunts in the city that never sleeps.

“Virginie wanted us to capture the downtown energy, which is completely different,” reflects Vivienne. “That is why we shot a lot around Washington Square Park, a place where all types of New Yorkers meet.”

Reinterpreted and awakened through a tailored spirit and a carefree American edge, Chanel’s Rohner-inspired collection acutely adapts the inherent duality of Gabrielle Chanel’s design vocabulary re-imagined and evolved by Virginie Viard. For this collection, monochromatic separates are paired with crisp, banker’s stripe shirts, double C denim jeans are worn with a candy-checkered tweed waistcoat, and a pink skirt suit is cut with the ease of a denim jacket. Further touches of New York City attitude encourage the collection, from fine baseball stripes in graphic ensembles to the sophistication of silvered lace, a liquid satin dress, and pastel Chanel letters.

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