Many aspire; few achieve. World domination, that is. The livinglegend of Karl Lagerfeld at Chanel continues to grow, ever fascinatingand in constant motion. We can’t keep up. We see it in the obviousglobal reach of the brand and in smaller, unexpected manifestations: inLoïc Prigent’s “Karl Lagerfeld se dessine,” currently running on theArte station here, in which the designer tells his life story (or “partsof it,” he said during a preview) by doing on-the-spot illustrations atthe filmmaker’s request; in the gaggle of Chanel-clad ladies — young,old, celebrity and merely rich — who on Tuesday morning exited theMeurice en route to the show like a tribe of transfixed pilgrims; in themost frenetic show entrance in Paris. And on the vast steps of theGrand Palais, there’s ample room for frenzy.


The odds are that at some point Lagerfeld will disappoint —right? Not now; not yet. Arriving under the vast glass dome, guestsfound a huge globe of the world, illuminated with countless points oflight, 300 of which bore CC markers indicating the brand’s points offashion distribution around the world. “You see how many flags there arein Japan and China and all those countries,” Lagerfeld said. “And whatwould be the luxury industry if we had not all those new fortunes in therest of the world? That is why you should never compare today with1929. In 1929 there was America, there was a little money in Argentinaand the rest of Europe, and India had none, the Middle East did notexist, communist Russia had none. The problem is not the same now. Therethey have more money than us, and it’s up to us to help them spendtheir money, to seduce them.”

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