This past weekend at Art Basel in Miami Beach, Louis Vuitton presented a selection of Canadian-American Frank Gehry’s works while unveiling his latest collaboration with the maison. Wood and cardboard models, central to the architect’s design process, were on full display during the event showing off his trademark aesthetic and constant experimentation with forms.
Organized into four themes that are very important to Gehry, the display included handbags, trunks, perfume bottles, original artworks, preparatory sketches, and architectural models. The themes—Architecture and Form, Material Exploration, Animals, and his Twisted Box creation for “Celebrating Monogram”—notably showcased the limited-edition Louis Vuitton x Frank Gehry handbag collection. Based on these themes, the handbags exemplified a combination of Gehry’s design process with the French house’s savoir-faire and extraordinary craft. One of the pieces for the collaboration is the Capucines Mini Blossom with glass-like resin petals inspired by perfume bottles and the hammered LV logo he designed for the Fondation Louis Vuitton building in Paris. Another is the Capucines MM Floating Fish with intricate and delicately made leather marquetry inspired by the piscine lamps on display at the Fondation Louis Vuitton as well as the Capucines MM Concrete Pockets that has a 3D cement-effect screen-printing giving the bag’s calfskin exterior a big resemblance to Frank Gehry’s constructions.
Louis Vuitton also has a stand dedicated to the “A Tea Party for Louis” trunk that the architect designed for Louis Vuitton’s 200th birthday, based upon Alice in Wonderland. The trunks included eight inventive figurines resembling characters in Lewis Caroll’s book, which resemble a tea party for the founder of the maison.
Frank Gehry presented other works and projects, including his Les Extraits perfume bottles and their unique stoppers made in Murano, and the Flaconnier Les Extraits designed to transport them. Multiple sketches and models of his work with the fashion house showed the process behind the collaborations, tied together by videos illustrating the buzzy pieces.