X MARKS THE SPOT: A brand creating exclusives for your store? That’s so 2021.
Getting brands to collaborate with each other at your invitation is where it’s at, and that’s exactly what Le Bon Marché is going for in “X,” its next storewide display, running from Feb. 12 to April 24.
To make sure this idea is writ large in store, the Paris Left Bank institution has invited iconoclastic French artist Philippe Katerine, giving him a “carte rose” to dress the store’s spaces.
Cue giant sculptures in bubblegum pink, a series of artworks that will be for sale, and copies of his book “Mignonisme,” which explains his philosophy of “assembling two objects that shouldn’t be [put together] and it’s already a story — present, past and yet to come.”
Katerine will also lend his voice to the store’s announcements, and will give two performances on March 1 and 2 as part of the “Frères Philippe” group he forms with composer and guitarist Philippe Eveno.
Dozens of brands have paired off for the “X” exhibition, with Baccarat capturing Pokémon character Pikachu as a crystal figurine; Scholl matching one of their sandals to the bright tones of Erès’ Nautic swimwear range, and secondhand specialist Collector Square calling on young French scarf upcycling label Call It by Your Name to create straps, handle wraps and charms for luxury handbags.
For a dose of fashion’s magic, Stella McCartney is teaming with Disney for “Stella Shared Fantasia,” with a pop-up with clothing, accessories and tchotchkes inspired by the 1940 animated film.
Footwear fans will also have plenty to look at, with Puma pairing off with Ami Paris; Loewe dressing the Cloudventure and Cloudrock models of Swiss performance brand On Running, and three drops of the always-sold-out Nike x Sacai kicks.
Gabriela Hearst will revisit models from French heritage label Clergerie with her sustainable vision.
On the ground floor, the Tag Heuer and Porsche collaboration will take the shape of a petrol station offering the latest models cocreated by the Swiss watchmaker and the automotive company, a driving simulator, and a refuel of Paris’ favorite fuel — coffee and pastries by Michelin-starred chef Stéphanie Le Quellec.
Before this collaborative smorgasbord, visitors of the department store can take in the “Su” art installation by avant-garde Turkish artist Mehmet Ali Uysal, who puts the spotlight on the impact of climate crisis on water through colossal icebergs hanging around the Andrée Putman-designed escalators; a giant boat inspired by origami or lights that give the effect of rising waters, all displayed until Feb. 20.
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