Louis Vuitton x Yayoi Kusama Pop-Up To Hit Hong Kong’s Pacific Place
A roundup of news from China’s fashion and luxury market, from a Pacific Place pop-up store showcasing Louis Vuitton’s collaboration with Yayoi Kusama to Marc Jacobs’s new Weibo page and Christian Louboutin (finally) launching in Beijing.
Louis Vuitton x Yayoi Kusama Pop-Up Store To Hit Hong Kong
Part of a global pop-up campaign, next month Louis Vuitton will launch a temporary location spotlighting its collaboration with the polka-dot-loving Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama. Unveiled earlier this year, the “Infinitely Kusama” collection includes a range of dot-festooned accessories, footwear, apparel and handbags, and will become available at the first collaborative pop-up in New York’s Soho district on July 10, two days prior to the launch of a large-scale Kusama retrospective at the Whitney Museum. In following weeks, Hong Kong will be among the cities opening their own LV/Kusama pop-ups, with Hong Kong’s Pacific Place joining Ngee Ann City in Singapore and Isetan’s Shinjuku location in Tokyo in kicking off their own shops. The stores will remain open through August, winding down on August 23 and 24 with an 860 square foot shop kicking off at Printemps Paris and an even bigger 1,375 square foot shop following at Selfridges in London. These themed stores will center around polka dots (Paris) and Kusama’s beloved pumpkin motif (London).
According to Yves Carcelle, Louis Vuitton’s chairman and CEO, the LV/Kusama pop-ups, each of which will be open between four and eight weeks, are designed to function as a “loudspeaker” to globally draw attention to the collaboration. The brand’s tie-up with Yayoi Kusama follows previous LV artist projects, which included Stephen Sprouse, Takashi Murakami, and Richard Price. However, this is the first time LV has promoted and sold its artist collection in dedicated pop-up concept stores.
In addition to the pop-up stores, the Louis Vuitton x Yayoi Kusama collaboration will be available at all of Louis Vuitton’s 463 global stores, with the brand launching a second collection of items, centered around Kusama’s “nerves” theme, on October 1. (Though Selfridges and Printemps will exclusively stock the Monogram Nerves handbags in late August.) The collaboration also extends beyond pop-ups and includes window displays, iPhone apps, a dedicated website, and book.
The launch of the Kusama pop-up comes just on the heels of the launch of her “Hong Kong Blooms in My Mind” exhibition, the inaugural exhibition at the massive 15,000 square foot permanent exhibition space. Taking over the entire fifth floor of One Pacific Place, the massive space is being positioned as a sort of HQ for the global auction house to expand its presence in Asia beyond its current biannual auction series in April and October.
Marc Jacobs Latest Brand To Launch Official Sina Weibo Account
Joining luxury giants like Louis Vuitton and Burberry, and automakers like Audi and Mercedes-Benz, that have operated official Sina Weibo accounts for well over a year, Marc Jacobs has finally delved into the world of Weibo. Currently featuring photos of celebrities and events, the official Marc Jacobs Weibo account (weibo.com/marcjacobsintl) seems to be just finding its feet, with only 27 posts and 207 fans. But the brand apparently has big plans for its presence on the wildly popular, Twitter-like platform. As Daniel Plenge, digital and social master at Marc Jacobs, said of the page, “We strive to use it as a medium to share high-quality images, videos and other stories with our fans…It is a great way to engage with consumers on a personal level, while simultaneously developing and molding the brand image.”
Just launching on Weibo isn’t quite enough. The most successful luxury brands adopting the platform have either gained a strong following via rich features, giveaways and promotions, or live-streaming events (Burberry, Dior, Hugo Boss, Coach) or via a strong and compelling personality (Diane von Furstenberg). We’ll keep a close eye on which strategy Marc Jacobs takes with the page, and whether the brand (and designer) puts enough effort into Weibo engagement to make it worthwhile.
Christian Louboutin (Finally) Opens Beijing Flagship
Delayed nearly a year, and coming after flagship launches in Shanghai and Hong Kong, French luxury shoemaker Christian Louboutin ventured to Beijing for the grand opening of his newest location at Sanlitun North Village.
Home to an ever-expanding list of “advanced-level” high-end brands and boutiques like Balenciaga, Alexander Wang, Lanvin, DSquared2, Maison Martin Margiela, Marni, Hong Huang’s Brand New China and Medium Rare, Sanlitun Village has, over the last few years, established itself as one of China’s best shopping centers, standing in stark contrast to the vast and often empty temples of commerce found in the country’s largest cities.
Fashion-focused blog the Maosuit has photos of the Louboutin Beijing grand opening.