We love a good fashion collaboration as we do a significant reunion. The next pair of hands who are coming together for a cosmic mash-up? Louis Vuitton and avant-garde Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama. Only it’s not their first time. The artist-in-question has dipped her toes into the universe of the maison before—ten years ago, if we’re going to be exact. Known for her offbeat perspectives rendered in a myriad of forms, Kusama’s art ranges from illusory paintings, to mirage-like installations and sculptures, to even filmmaking.
As part of their dedication to nurture alternative spaces for artistic expression, the house’s initial collaboration with Kusama in 2012 had flourished through a diverse variety of styles that embodied the artist’s vision. From exhibitions to unique window installations and an entire collection that mirrored her surrealistic spots, the maison’s collaborative spirit shone through as they delivered Kusama’s mysterious mind scape to the rest of the world.
To celebrate their 10-year anniversary, they premiered little teasers of what to expect from their upcoming collaboration — during the Cruise 2023 show at the Salk Institute in San Diego. Displaying their shared penchant for artistic wit and rewriting the limits of interdisciplinary work, was a series of exclusive bags that debuted on the runway, all of which were quintessentially Kusama.
Performing as blank canvases for the artist, the maison’s signature shapes had been reinterpreted and given the Kusama treatment: obsessively splashed with colourful, amorphous dots. Others were instead embellished with light-catching baubles that harmoniously took to the theme of reflection that was cinematically captured at the Salk Institute. Likewise, the bags remained reminiscent of Kusama’s own iconic exhibition—Infinity Mirror Rooms—where the use of mirrors conveyed an endless universe within a confined space.
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As an initial seductive peek into what we might expect from the rest of the transversal collaboration between the two, we think it’s safe to say we’ll be waiting on the true charm of their combined effort to radiate through: intersecting art, design, and meticulous craftsmanship all in one. Here’s your first look at the Louis Vuitton x Yayoi Kusama collection, below.
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The full collection of Louis Vuitton x Yayoi Kusama will debut in stores and online come January 2023.