Louis Vuitton’s Volez, Voguez, Voyagez exhibition in Tokyo decodes the brand’s secrets and history. By Vincent Loh
Louis Vuitton has been at the vanguard of fashion and luxury since its founding in 1854, as it offers only the best of the best to its customers. Today, the world- renowned French fashion house remains loyal to its founder’s vision and aesthetics. He was the legendary inventor of “The Art of Travel” and made fashion-forward travel essentials, such as luggage and bags that are elegant, sophisticated yet practical. Its Volez, Voguez, Voyagez exhibition, curated by one of fashion’s premier historians and curators Olivier Saillard, showcases an array of objects and documents that narrate Louis Vuitton’s historical journey, providing visitors with a fresh vision of its past, present, and future.
Each product, carefully handpicked by Saillard, is a testament to the brand’s dedication to fine craftsmanship. “Louis Vuitton has always been at the forefront of creation and innovation, today like over a century ago,” says Michael Burke, CEO of Louis Vuitton. “Constantly taking inspiration from our past, we craft the trends of today. Olivier Saillard has immersed himself in the Louis Vuitton archives to decode its secrets.”
Artistic director and set designer Robert Carsen has laid out the exhibition in such a way that it is separated into 10 chapters, covering a series of informative topics such as The Trunk of 1906 that explains the innovation behind the popular trunk design.
Additionally, it makes a special dedication to Japan in its last chapter, Inspirational Japan. Louis Vuitton has always had a strong connection with the Land of the Rising Sun since the end of the 19th century. This is evident from the ever-famous monogram that is inspired by family crests known as mon, to the list of its prestigious Japanese clients such as political leader Daisuke Itagaki, as well as collaborations with various Japanese contemporary artists. This chapter of the exhibition pays homage to this relationship, telling a story of a common fascination between the two worlds that combine tradition with a strong desire for modernity.
Volez, Voguez, Voyagez exhibition is housed in a bespoke structure in Kioicho, a neighbourhood Tokyo, where Louis Vuitton opened its first Japanese store back in 1978.