The latest edition of the Journées Particulières de LVMH, when the group opens the doors of its luxury houses to the public, takes place from October 14 to 16. And one house in particular is a real highlight.
LVMH’s most iconic site is Asnières-sur-Seine northwest of Paris, both the location of the family home of Louis Vuitton’s eponymous founder and the original workshop he opened in 1859. .
Visitors to the Journées Particulières will have the chance to go behind the scenes of both and preview a new immersive exhibition on the theme of Louis Vuitton’s “Louis: The Game” social game application.
The Louis Vuitton workshops were built of steel and glass, in the futuristic style popularized by Gustave Eiffel while the Art Nouveau family home was built in its present form towards the end of the 19th century.
It is a replica of this Art Nouveau house that Nicolas Ghesquière sent to the Louis Vuitton spring 2023 show – shaped like a miniature trunk.
Louis Vuitton has its origins as a trunk maker and the Asnières workshop is the place where this heritage lives on in a contemporary form. The 300 craftsmen who work there build the trunks or trunks that the house makes to order, by hand, using both traditional processes and the fabrications of the originals.
In addition to visiting the aforementioned Art Nouveau house, visitors to the Journées Particulières will be introduced to this skill.
The skeleton and drawers are constructed of poplar wood by carpenters which are lined with fabric for protection before the draws and interiors are covered in leather and the exterior in this monogrammed coated canvas. The protective edging or “lozine” is nailed in place and the hardware and locks are installed. Each lock is engraved with a unique serial number, so if you lose your key it can be easily replaced.
While the biggest trunk this writer saw on her during the Journées Particulières preview tour was a giant cocktail cabinet – involving a team of five craftsmen and three weeks of work – there’s a whole lot more. of orders for private clients which take place in secrecy. We were talking about a trunk built to house around forty pairs of ballet flats and another for sneakers.
The Special Days are also an opportunity to encourage new talents. Beyond its learning systems, the LVMH group recruits and trains people at all stages of life.
“Maroquinier Malletier”, Clémence de Kersauzon was a former real estate agent. She wanted to change careers and learn a trade. Her local Pôle Emploi sent her to Louis Vuitton while he was recruiting. After passing an initial test, she was enrolled in a month-long introductory program – partly for training and partly to assess people’s abilities.
She has been in Asnières for two years and is currently wrapping wooden prints in leather – “it’s like dressing them in their clothes”, she says, explaining that although, from a logistical point of view, some of the trunks are a multi-person affair, smaller parts can be made by a single craftsman from carpentry to siding.
After tours of the house and studio, visitors to the Journées Particulières will also be able to preview a new immersive exhibition unveiled in the space of the adjacent gallery. The show will be themed “Louis: The Game,” the in-game video game based on Louis Vuitton’s story, first released in 2021 to celebrate its 200th anniversary.
Proof that the house’s know-how encompasses both traditional craftsmanship and digital innovation. And, more importantly, that the two can happily coexist.
Although launched on the occasion of the Special Days, this the exhibition runs independently.
The previous show, created in Asnières in December 2021 – “200 trunks, 200 visionaries” with reinterpretations of the famous Vuitton trunk by various creatives such as K-pop outfit BTS, Supreme, Marc Jacobs, architect Peter Marino and cognitive scientist Scott Barry Kaufman — has been around the world and just arrived in New York.
This year, the tenth anniversary of the initiative, 57 houses and 93 places are taking part around the world. When Les Journées Particulières tickets went live in September, the quota for most participating venues sold out in five minutes, however, some seats were reserved for everyone, available on days, on a first-come basis. , first served. . LesJourneesParticulieres.com/2022