UPTOWN GOES DOWNTOWN: Hermès will make another big Los Angeles splash on March 9 with its “Dwntwnmen” event, a celebration of artistic collaborations inspired by the City of Angels. The company will contruct an entire “world of Hermès” on Downtown L.A.’s Spring Street, in an empty lot adjacent to the train tracks and inside a 60,000-square-foot warehouse.
Hosted by Hermès president Axel Dumas and Hermès North America president and chief executive officer Robert Chavez, the event will take its several hundred guests on “a journey through the spring-summer 2017 collections for men.” That means a full-on outdoor runway show, natch, which will feature several new pieces just for the event, modeled by a crew of Paris catwalkers and also local “real” people (albeit extremely handsome ones), from chefs to surfers to skateboarders.
However, the runway show is only part of the draw. In the vein of the Louis Vuitton “Series 5” exhibit in Los Angeles a few years ago, Dwntwnmen will feature an immersive, multiroom, multisensory experience that conveys how the product and the collection were created. One such room will be dedicated to the house’s iconic silk foulard, imagined as record covers, which guests can select to play different types of music relating to its creation and theme.
Hermès men’s artistic director Véronique Nichanian will be art-directing the entire affair, which was heralded with a giant poster-as-invitation last week, promising a fashion show, cocktails and dinner, music and performances “and more wonders.”
Hermès put on a big production in L.A. a few years ago to celebrate its reopened and redesigned Rodeo Drive flagship. The dual-location event started on Rodeo Drive and led guests to another custom environment created on a soundstage at Smashbox Studios in Culver City.
This one sounds bigger. Approximately 1,200 guests are expected. One can probably expect something different from the populist “Tommyland” experience created by Tommy Hilfiger for his see-now-buy-now Los Angeles takeover, but there are likely to be models, musicians and merrymaking all the same.