PARIS — Mobile Art — the otherworldly exhibition pavilion Chanel christened in March 2008 and sidelined only nine months into its two-year global tour — has come to rest permanently in the French capital.
Chanel has donated the Zaha Hadid-designed structure to the Arab World Institute, the Jean Nouvel-designed museum here, which plans to make it a showcase for contemporary art exhibitions.
“We’ll have a strong visibility in Paris with this building,” Bruno Pavlovsky, president of Chanel fashion, told WWD. “It will give people an opportunity to see something new.”
Workers will soon begin mounting the gleaming white 7,500-square-foot structure in the plaza in front of the metal-and-glass Nouvel building, uniting the works of two winners of the prestigious Pritzker Architecture Prize. Iraqi-born Hadid was the laureate in 2004; Nouvel, a Frenchman, in 2008.
The first exhibition — dedicated to Hadid’s oeuvre — is slated to open in late March 2011, with Chanel and the museum co-hosting an event. Pavlovsky declined to comment on the value of its gift.
Hadid said the donation “offers many exciting possibilities for groundbreaking exhibitions in the center of Paris; a truly unique opportunity for the unknown and untested, and for new technologies and media to be explored — a catalyst for the instigation and exchange of ideas.”
Conceived by Karl Lagerfeld with Hadid, the Mobile Art “contemporary art container” debuted in Hong Kong and traveled to Tokyo and New York, showcasing 15 contemporary artists — from Daniel Buren to Yoko Ono — who created works inspired by Chanel’s iconic 2.55 handbag. The toroidal building, while reminiscent of the Starship Enterprise or a UFO, has a gridlike surface that vaguely evokes the bag’s quilted surface.
The project was mothballed after its Manhattan leg amid the spiraling economic crisis — and sharp criticism of its splashy nature. It had been meant to travel to Los Angeles, London, Moscow and Paris.
Chanel estimates about 100,000 people toured the Hadid pavilion in 2008.
Pavlovsky said a plaque would denote the Chanel donation, but that art programming would be in the hands of the Arab World Institute, which mounts a variety of exhibitions about Arabic culture and civilization.
The popular site, located on the Seine River just upstream from Notre Dame, also boasts a library, auditorium and rooftop restaurant. It welcomes roughly a million visitors a year.
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews
“Stranger Things” is getting a new cast member for season 2. Meet @sadiesink_, the 15-year-old who will be joining the Netflix series for its new season. You may recognize her from “The Glass Castle” with Brie Larson and Woody Harrelson, but the Texas native’s next role goes in an entirely different direction. She describes her character, Max, as “a rough and tumble skater girl [who] becomes friends with the boys at school.” The second season debuts on October 27. (📷: @jgreenery) #wwdeye
Amid the Harvey Weinstein controversy, there’s another sector that’s being put under the spotlight for sexual abuse: the modeling industry. While rumors about abuse and sexual harassment of female and male models — and the photographers, agents and others who perpetrated it — have circulated within the fashion world for years, model @cameronrussell started posting stories from models on Instagram last week about abusive situations they’ve encountered — from sexual harassment and molestation to attempted rape. Over 75 have weighed in so far. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdnews
To celebrate its 16th anniversary, @dylanscandybar tapped designers and celebrities to create mosaics out of candy. The mosaics will be auctioned off to support the philanthropic cause of each participant’s choice. Pictured here is the mural created by @aliceandolivia's Stacey Bendet. For a first look at some of the other artwork being unveiled tonight, go to WWD.com. #wwdeye
The annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in Pacific Palisades this weekend drew Kate Hudson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Laura Dern and more. See pictures of the star-studded event on WWD.com. (📷: @chelsealaurenla) #wwdeye
In his new book “Hollywood Royale,” Andy Warhol’s Protégé Matthew Rolston celebrates the Eighties revival of Hollywood glamour. Featuring more than 100 portraits taken by Rolston from 1977 to 1993, the book contains photos of icons like Michael Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, and @drewbarrymore, pictured here in 1991. “Hollywood Royale,” out today, will be accompanied by an exhibition opening at Los Angeles’ Fahey/Klein Gallery on March 1. #wwdeye
"Nowadays when life is not so happy with everything going on in the world, I think people come to me for a little bit of whimsy and color and fun." - Designer Rebecca De Ravenel on her cult-favorite jewelry line. (📸 : @vsteves) #wwd40
“Everyone is talking about how the retail industry is struggling, but I think it’s an incredible time because brands who are doing something different and innovative are setting themselves up for the future,” said @adamgoldston, who founded the luxury athletic brand @apl with his brother @ryangoldsten. The Goldston’s are part of WWD’s 40 under 40: a group of industry notables. See the rest of the list on WWD.com. (📷: @vsteves) #wwd40
@eyeswoon blogger Athena Calderone debuted her first-ever cookbook, “Cook Beautiful,” which is heavily centered on the presentation and visual expression of food. Pictured here are her miso glazed carrots from the book. Get the recipe on WWD.com. (📷: @johnny_miller_) #wwdeye