jeudi 26 février 2009




Dramma per musica in drei Akten, HWV 33 (1735)


In italienischer Sprache mit deutschen Übertiteln

Musikalische Leitung Christophe Rousset

Inszenierung & Bühne Lukas Hemleb

Kostüme Marc Audibet

Choreographie Thomas Stache

Ariodante Caitlin Hulcup

Lurcanio Topi Lehtipuu

Polinesso Vivica Genaux

TänzerInnen Akos Hargitay, Pavel Strasil, Amadeus Berauer

Magali Lesueur, Audrey Aubert, Liza Alpizar Aguilar, Helga Wretman

Les Talens Lyriques

Koproduktion mit dem Théâtre des Champs-Elysées Paris

Le bijou...

Gainsbourg sans filtre Marie-Dominique Lelièvre

Gainsbourg sans filtre « Le meilleur ami de Serge Gainsbourg m'a immédiatement avertie : « Il n'y a rien à raconter. » Rien ? J'ai fait comme si de Rien n'était. Durant trois ans, j'ai visité sa maison, exploré sa bibliothèque, bu son Champagne en compagnie de ses amis, consulté ses archives de famille, ausculté son oeuvre, pisté ses ex-fiancées. Peu à peu, la fumée s'est dissipée. Serge Gainsbourg n'existe pas. C'est une apparition. Un reflet de la société française. Un homme attachant nommé Lucien Ginzburg lui a fait don de son corps. Il en est mort. » M.-D. L.

Hyper-héros hexagonal, Gainsbourg a tout compris de son époque, y compris sa part obscure, et préparé la nôtre. La transgression était sa martingale gagnante. Fruit d'une enquête incisive, ce livre dissèque la star et révèle l'homme. Le mythe en prend un sacré coup mais, ce faisant, l'artiste trouve une vérité masquée jusqu'ici par la gloire médiatique.


I returned from my recent business trip to Paris to find some very passionate comments on an earlier post regarding the recent acquisition of the House of Vionnet by Matteo Marzotto, former CEO of Valentino. To those readers who took the time to leave comments, I would like to say "thank you". Your passionate interest and insights give me tremendous satisfaction and deserve a follow-up post. So, here it is.

In response to your comments, I would simply point out that reviving a fashion house is rarely, if ever, an act of altruism. At it's core, it is premised on the belief that the label's history and archives can appeal to today's consumers. Fashion after all is an industry and the success of any label hinges on achieving the right balance between creativity and commercialism. It takes more than merely bringing back archival pieces and re-editing them to appeal to modern tastes. It requires a business and design team with the sensibility and vision required to infuse the brand with modernity while remaining true to the brand's heritage. No small feat, I readily concede but there is precedent for it: Balenciaga under the creative direction of Nicolas Ghesquiere, Christian Dior under John Galliano and Chanel under Karl Lagerfeld.

Also, I would like to point out that over the past few decades, fashion has become a truly global industry. There is fantastic design, manufacturing and business talent in every corner of the world. For instance, French fashion brand Lanvin in owned by an Asian investor and is designed by Alber Elbaz, an Israeli designer of Moroccan ancestry who learned his trade from American designer Geoffrey Beene. If that isn't proof positive of fashion's global credentials, I don't know what is. While the creations of Madeleine Vionnet were in their day the epitome of Parisian chic and the label still stands for French elegance and sophistication, the fact is that the label was allowed to flounder miserably in recent times and much of the blame (rightly or wrongly) seems to have been laid at the feet of its French C.E.O., Arnaud de Lummen (Mr. Lummen's family purchased the brand in 1988). While financing seems to have been at issue, money alone is not enough to make a fashion brand successful as the troubles at the newly re-launched Halston label can attest. So, I would have to agree with Sandra Ericson, I don't believe that the label requires a French owner or a French designer to remain a French brand in style and spirit.

This said, my hope is that the label will remain based in Paris and manufactured in France by its own petites mains. First, fashion as an industry is being hard hit everywhere and French garment workers like their American and Italian counterparts need the employment. Also, and perhaps more importantly, having just returned from a brief trip to Paris, I can honestly say that there is something about the city and its exquisitely chic residents that infuses even the most mundane elements of daily life with a verve and a flair that is unique. I would think that this vibe would be tremendously useful if not essential to a designer trying to reinterpret the label's quintessentially Gallic DNA. Otherwise, it risks becoming just another cynical marketing ploy.

In any event, I do think that Mr. Marzotto deserves a chance. He has yet to comment publicly on his acquisition and I for one can't wait to hear what his plans are for the label. So, Mr. Marzotto, if you happen to stumble upon this little blog, please know that we wish you the best of luck and that we're rooting for you to succeed.


The Luxe Chronicles

mercredi 25 février 2009

Louise ...

Yves Saint Laurent

Dynastie Qing

price realized

price realized


Les 12 symboles du zodiaque chinois désignent l'année de naissance de chacun par le signe respectif des douze animaux qui sont le rat, le boeuf, le tigre, le lièvre, le dragon, le serpent, le cheval, le mouton, le singe, le coq, le chien et le porc.

Pourquoi les douze animaux, et pas onze ou treize ? Parce que depuis l'époque des Zhou (1046-771 av.J.-C.), les Chinois ont utilisé pour la désignation des années un cycle sexagésimal qui est la combinaison des 10 troncs célestes (Jia, Yi, Bing, Ding, Wu, Ji, Geng, Xing, Ren et Gui) avec les 12 branches terrestres (Zi, Chou, Yin, Mao, Chen, Si, Wu, Wei, Shen, You, Xu et Hai). Les 60 années du cycle sexagésimal sont divisées en périodes de 12 ans, correspondant aux 12 branches terrestres traduites par des symboles emblématiques d'animaux. D'où les 12 symboles du zodiaque chinois.

mardi 24 février 2009


PARIS, France —Today, WWD and the International Herald Tribune will announce the acquisition of Vionnet by Matteo Marzotto, scion of the Italian fashion dynasty. The move had been widely speculated upon in fashion circles in recent days, and according to sources, Marzotto is not the only Italian fashion magnate who’s in on the deal. Giovanni Castiglioni, husband of celebrated MARNI designer Consuela Castiglioni and CEO of her brand, is also said to be in the picture, both operationally and financially.

To add to the intrigue, the next question of who would form the final piece of the Italian triumvirate has apparently already been answered. The new Vionnet designer is rumoured to be the little-known Italian, Rodolfo Paglialunga, a former assistant to Miuccia Prada for the ready-to-wear collection at her eponymous label.

Last night, I got the seller’s side of the story. I spoke to Arnaud de Lummen, the outgoing CEO and former primary shareholder in Vionnet, a brand which has been in his family for over twenty years. In an exclusive, in-depth conversation closing, in his own way, this chapter of the Vionnet story, de Lummen showed as much passion for the Vionnet brand as he did when I first met him in October 2007.

At the time, de Lummen described a seemingly impossible task. He aimed to resurrect a brand which had been dormant for more than 60 years, but which at the time of its demise was “at the heart of its artistic peak.” It did not end because it was creatively exhausted, he said, rather because it was a bit of fashion collateral damage from the second world war.

Since then, Vionnet’s bias-cutting techniques have been used by countless designers including John Galliano and Azzedine Alaia. Most recently, design prodigy Jason Wu, better known as the designer of “that dress” worn by Michelle Obama on inauguration night, referenced Vionnet in an interview with Eric Wilson of The New York Times.

With this kind of reverence in the industry, de Lummen draws a line between other recent brand revivals like Halston and Rochas, and that of Vionnet. He maintains that Vionnet was, and still is, different because over the years those other brands were kept on a form of life-support, through ongoing licensing activities between various attempted revivals. Vionnet, he said, had completely disappeared from the map, except to the most fashion-initiated. Only a very limited amount of high-end fragrances and accessories were produced under the Vionnet brand by his father, after he purchased it in 1988.

Stating a desire to set the record straight, De Lummen also spoke of the two celebrated designers, Sophia Kokosalaki and Marc Audibet, who he chose to head Vionnet, one after the other. The first, Kokosalaki, showed her debut collection in an intimate presentation setting and was supported by Julie Gilhart at Barneys from the start. But the low-key nature of the launch presentation did not translate well in the press, who while impressed, largely failed to pick up on the story of the new Vionnet, a point that de Lummen himself acknowledged.

Then when Kokosalaki’s business was purchased by Renzo Rosso’s Staff International, a friction was created between the time Kokosalaki would be able to spend on Vionnet when balanced against the increasing commitments for her own label, including more collections to design and more investor meetings to attend. According to Mr. de Lummen, “it made no sense to continue our partnership with her when her attentions would clearly be elsewhere. We needed a full-time designer.” But this upset the retailers who had bought the collection due to its link with Kokosalaki, who at the time was ascendant on the Paris fashion scene.

Enter Marc Audibet, another former assistant at Prada, who was very highly-respected amongst fashion industry insiders. De Lummen says Audibet’s one and only collection for Vionnet was one of technical mastery, “the closest to Vionnet herself” with a sort-of “fluid architecture.” But while intellectually and technically brilliant, the limited resources to present the collection and the perceived fissure after Kokosalaki’s separation from Vionnet held the brand back.

And to make matters worse, having grown up at Prada, Mr. Audibet was accustomed to a more elaborate set-up than the one offered by the entreprenurial de Lummen. And, Audibet reportedly felt that he deserved a richer financial package. In a sudden twist, Mr Audibet announced his resignation from Vionnet in a statement to the press, attributing his departure to management’s “incapacity” to create the “material and financial conditions” necessary to re-launch Vionnet properly. According to de Lummen, this destabilised ongoing discussions with a new set of investors.

Who would want to invest in a label where the perceived star designer had just left?

In the end, de Lummen seems to have realised that this wasn’t his story to finish. However, he says, this chapter was a necessary part of the Vionnet revival which will continue to play out in the years to come. Upon the closure of his deal with Marzotto, de Lummen no longer has any financial or operational involvement in Vionnet. In the next 6 months, he expects to announce his next brand revival project, where he will make the best of the “learning experience” from Vionnet.

As for Mr Marzotto, you can be sure we will be hearing from him soon. After master-minding a behind-the-scenes coup to sell Valentino to the Permira Group after a tussle with another private equity powerhouse, the Carlyle Group, Marzotto resigned from Valentino. It seems he has been cooking up this Vionnet deal ever since.

For a man of his stature and success in the industry to relaunch Vionnet in the midst of an economic downturn speaks volumes about the special place this brand holds within the fashion industry. In the minds of designers at least, the brand is virtually untarnished. When asked who they respect the most in fashion history, the name of Madame Vionnet comes up over and over again. Mr. Paglialunga has landed many designers’ dream job.

De Lummen wished Marzotto the best of luck, saying he wanted nothing but for the brand to be successful. He also noted that Marzotto’s success may prove that his own slow-but-steady strategy for the relaunch of Vionnet, which brought this exquisite brand to lukewarm from completely frozen, was the right decision all along.

Now it’s up to Mr. Marzotto to bring it to a full-on boil.

Imran Amed is Editor of The Business of Fashion.

Eté 2009 Vivre en blanc Les khadis d’été par Bess Nielsen

Eté 2009
Vivre en blanc
Les khadis d’été
par Bess Nielsen
Le blanc optique, celui des neiges de l’Himalaya, du marbre du Taj Mahal ou du lait
de chaux domine. Les blancs, cassé des balles de coton brut, bistre des bottes de lin
séchées au soleil ou écru des cocons de soie avant d’être filés, le relaient doucement.
Ce blanc qui rend silencieux, à l’instar de Gandhi, qui, tous les lundis, tout au long de
la journée, filait sans parler. Vêtu d’un seul dhôti de khadi, il transmettait sa vision en
faisant son ouvrage. Bataille des textiles conduisant à la liberté des hommes.
Depuis, Bess Nielsen illustre les préceptes du Mahatma en récoltant les tissages indiens
pour donner force et… poésie aux quotidiens d’occident.
Cet été, elle propose de vivre en textile, en khadi, en blanc.
de khadi léger et transparents transformés en pyjamas, khurtas, pantalons, cache-pous-
sière, ou sentir autour de soi l’étoffe des jupons de jamdani du Bengale, plus opaques
dont le bruissement familier assure chaque pas,
les rideaux en voile de coton et les regarder voleter lorsque la brise emplit la chambre,
les tables de l’été de khadis brodés ou de khadi sauvage des tribus d’Assam, les
superposer, en jouer, arranger les serviettes autour de légers bols de papier mâché du
des sets de table ou des tapis de papier de chiffons. Tapis de sols ou tapis de murs, la
matière se joue des blancs. Bess a trouvé au Rajasthan des tapis brosse où les lanières
de papier sont nouées à la façon des brins de laine ou des tapis dont le relief plat est
texturé par des bandelettes entrecroisées.
des pensées légères, un amour profond, une amitié heureuse ou le temps, celui qui
passe, revient parfois, se perd peut-être mais est toujours là sur un carnet de papier de
chiffons… de khadi !
Khadi and Co Emporium - Bess Nielsen.
37, rue Debelleyme – 75003 Paris. tél. +33 1 42 74 71 32 -
Presse - Christine Blanc - tél/fax +33 1 48 04 93 57 -

Yves et Pierre

Le Grand Palais

lundi 23 février 2009

HENRI MATISSE (1869-1954) Les coucous, tapis bleu et rose

Price Realized

* €35,905,000
* ($45,264,579)

FERNAND LEGER (1881-1955) La tasse de thé

Price Realized

* €11,489,000
* ($14,483,909)


Lot 42, Sale 1209, Paris
PIET MONDRIAN (1872-1944)Composition avec bleu, rouge, jaune et noir
price realized

Madame LR

Lot 35, Sale 1209, Paris
CONSTANTIN BRANCUSI (1876-1957)Madame LR (Portrait de Mme LR)
price realized

Cristobal ...




Andy ...

Jerry Hall, Andy Warhol, Debbie Harry, Truman Capote, and Paloma Picasso 1979