PARIS — Naomi Campbell and Isabelle Huppert brought some holiday spirit to the city of lights when they opened the Christmas window displays at Printemps department store in Paris. The duo appeared alongside Loewe designer Jonathan Anderson, LVMH CEO Sidney Toledano and Printemps CEO Jean-Marc Bellaiche to open the official curtain.
The dancing puppets lent an old-fashioned air to the exhibits. In Loewe’s window, trapeze artists swooped from the ceiling amidst gold stars and Santa Claus, while other windows celebrated a circus theme with swaying dolls and animated animals.
After cutting the ribbon in style, Campbell bravely posed for selfies with fans and wished them a Merry Christmas, before heading off to an exclusive cocktail party where she chatted with Toledano and discussed the African fashion scene.
Huppert said he had just finished two back-to-back movies, “My Crime” in Paris and “Sidonie in Japan,” in Tokyo. He said that although he loves Christmas, he doesn’t like the turkey and all the trimmings.
“I like to betray the traditional food program,” he said, preferring to change the menu every year. “I’m a little more random. I don’t have anything planned beforehand, so you have to try to be creative at the last minute.” Snowy mountains are a must for his vacation, he said, but he likes to try new places and also leaves decision-making to the last minute.
The season will be dedicated to making an updated version of The Glass Menagerie at the Odeon in Paris. The play was originally set for September 2021, but went through a series of ups and downs due to pandemic-related closures. That he finally has a full career is “a really happy moment,” Huppert said. The work is presented from November 26 to December 22.
I was hoping that the Christmas season and the exhibit would bring some light to people this season. “I hope that Christmas is a bit comforting because the world is not going very well. At times like this, you can’t go on without thinking about others. Hopefully this celebration will bring some joy to people,” she reflected.
Huppert and Anderson bonded over their shared love for American artist Robert Wilson. “We have a great connection and you can see that he is very, very attracted to other representations of creativity, such as art, painting and theater,” she said. “It is always nice to meet someone who is not only focused on what to do, but also on different sources of inspiration. What he does is like no one else – so creative and so powerful.”
Anderson chose to celebrate craftsmanship for the Christmas installation, focusing on a new collection of iconic bags rendered in the same colors as monochrome Chinese pottery. They informed the look of the atrium installation, and some of the leather goods were camouflaged by color-matched shelves.
The clean shapes and distinctive colors of Chinese ceramics, dating back to the 15th century, have long captivated Anderson, who has often seen them in the British Museum. “Looks like they were made yesterday,” he marveled.
To shed more light on these rare objects, the designer commissioned British art historian Dr. James Fox to make a mini-documentary that premiered Wednesday on Loewe’s Instagram account.
Loewe also plans to sponsor an educational ceramics program at Jingdezhen Ceramics University in the Chinese city of the same name, cherished as the porcelain capital for a millennium.
“What I love about crafting or making things is that there is always something you didn’t know. And there is always something to learn,” she said. “It’s very personal to me. It’s like an ambition that one day I’ll buy a yellow bowl from that period.”
While she admits it’s unlikely she’ll find museum-quality Chinese ceramics under her Christmas tree, Anderson said she appreciates the holiday period — a time to unplug, overeat, “reset” and spend quality time with your loved one. family and friends from high school in Northern Ireland.
Cherished memories of the designer’s childhood holidays include visiting London with his father and strolling through the Christmas windows of Harrods, Selfridges and Bond Street, each with their own story to tell.
One of Anderson’s first jobs in fashion was window dressing at Prada, so he is sensitive to its purpose, mixing products with a whimsical look. For the Loewe boutiques, “we’ve done these amazing trees that light up and then we have a snail crawling on top of them, which is very bright and fun,” she recounted. “For me, the windows are, in a way, the jacket of the book.”
The holiday season is looking positive for Printemps, said Bellaiche, who was “a little excited” as he held his first window display since taking over as CEO during the pandemic.
He acknowledged the multiple macro issues of the energy crisis, inflation, and geopolitical tension as we head into the holiday season. Summer sales increased significantly with the return of tourists, while October fell due to fuel shortages that affected transport in smaller cities in France. “We’ve been penalized a little bit for that,” he said. “But overall, we’re optimistic because we see that what we’ve done with our new brand and new spaces, and making the stores much more experiential and omnichannel, is paying off.”
He also cited the strength of the dollar heading into the holiday season as drawing Americans to the store.
In a nod to the nation’s “energy sobriety” efforts to reduce electricity use, this year the lights will go out at 11 p.m. He said the shorter hours will save 20 percent on home energy use. last year.
“We still want kids to come and see the animated windows,” he said. “It is a kind of signal that the COVID[-19] the crisis is over. Welcoming big brands and big celebrities has been a tradition. Now, in order to do it again, we wanted to bring the magic.”