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LVMH Moet Henessy - Luxury goods conglomarate
Since this subforum is about Business, I thought this would be the place to post things about LVMH (I might open other threads about PPR/Kering, Gucci Group etc. later ....).
LVMH news is pretty big this year, with the LV Foundation, Nicolas Ghesquiere coming back as the creative/artistic director of Louis Vuitton ....

Here is the latest news ...

Quote:
LVMH Plans to Distribute Hermès Shares Next Month
Billionaire Bernard Arnault Set to End Up With a Direct 8.5% Stake in Hermès

By INTI LANDAURO
Nov. 3, 2014 4:05 a.m. ET

PARIS— LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton plans to distribute the shares it holds in Hermès International on Dec. 17 as part of the peace agreement the rival French luxury goods groups signed in September.

LVMH’s principal shareholders, the investment-holding companies Christian Dior and Financière Jean Goujon, will also distribute the shares to their own shareholders, LVMH said.

As a result, French billionaire Bernard Arnault , who controls LVMH, will end up with a direct stake of 8.5% in the family-controlled Hermès. Mr. Arnault as well as any companies he controls directly or indirectly have committed not to buy any more shares in Hermès over the next five years.

LVMH had agreed to relinquish its 23% stake in its rival, worth €6.4 billion ($8 billion) in September, in exchange for a Hermès commitment to drop legal complaints filed against its bigger rival.

The peace accord ended a corporate fight that pitted LVMH—a conglomerate that owns high-end fashion labels including Louis Vuitton, Fendi, Marc Jacobs , Donna Karan and others—against the Hermès family clan. It also removed speculation that Mr. Arnault—LVMH chairman and CEO and France’s richest man—will attempt to buy Hermès in the coming years.

The dispute between the two groups started in late 2010 when LVMH stunned Hermès by saying it had obtained a 17.1% stake in its smaller rival through the direct purchase of shares and complex derivatives known as equity swaps, which led to speculation Mr. Arnault was planning a takeover of its rival.

In 2013 French stock regulator fined LVMH €8 million for misleading markets by not disclosing information earlier about its stake in Hermès.
wsj

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And here is an extract of a 2011 interview of Bernard Arnault, in HBR (Harvard Business Review)
(I don't have access to all interview, maybe some HBR readers can help) ....

Quote:
The Perfect Paradox of Star Brands: An Interview with Bernard Arnault of LVMH

An Interview with Bernard Arnault by Suzy Wetlaufer

Who would want to run a company that makes and sells products no one needs? Only a fool, right? Unless, of course, the company is LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, the world’s largest and by far most successful purveyor of luxury goods. Each year, LVMH sells billions of dollars—$10 billion in 2000 to be exact—of items that serve little purpose in the lives of consumers except to fulfill dreams. And those dreams don’t come cheap—a magnum of 1985 Dom Pérignon Rosé champagne costs about $925; a Givenchy gown $15,000; and the finest TAG Heuer watch upwards of $58,000. No one needs these items, of course, yet millions desire them.

The executive driving that desire is Bernard Arnault. The 52-year-old chairman of LVMH, he is as shrewd a businessman as they come. Dubbed “the Pope of Fashion” by the global press, Arnault has spent the past 15 years building LVMH from a small, nearly defunct clothing manufacturer to a conglomerate comprising approximately 50 of the world’s most powerful brands. According to the French research group Jacques Chahine, LVMH’s combined revenues are expected to reach $11 billion this year, with a market capitalization of roughly $27 billion.

Without a doubt, Arnault has made missteps along the way—some of his own personal Internet investments have not exactly soared—but he can only be called masterful in his ability to manage creativity for the sake of profit and growth. Each year, new products account for approximately 15% of LVMH sales, and some of them enjoy operating margins of up to 47%. (For a list of the company’s brands, see the exhibit “The House of Arnault.”) What makes these statistics all the more remarkable is that many of these products at first appear utterly outlandish—a kidney-shaped handbag covered with safety pins, for instance, or a pot of green eye shadow named “gangrene.” But somehow, and quite quickly, the LVMH “process” makes these items indispensable to some of the world’s most selective consumers. How? The answers may surprise you.

It begins with radical innovation—an unpredictable, messy, highly emotional activity that the company wholly endorses. Indeed, unlike many executives who oversee the work of creative types—be they engineers, writers, or designers—Arnault does not believe in managerial limit setting. Artists must be completely unfettered by financial and commercial concerns, he insists, to do their best work. You don’t “manage” John Galliano, the wildly iconoclastic head of the House of Dior, just as no one could have “managed” Leonardo da Vinci or Frank Lloyd Wright. That is why, two years ago, Arnault did not flinch when Galliano sent models down the haute couture runways wearing dresses made of newspaper. To have blocked the plan—noting, perhaps, that paper dresses were dumb—would have crushed the designer’s spirit. Soon after, when Dior manufactured the dresses in news-type-printed fabric, they sold at a clip. “So you see, with certain techniques, everyone can win,” Arnault notes, “the company, the designer, and the customer.”

In a series of recent interviews with HBR, conducted in Paris and New York, Arnault spoke in depth about the other techniques he uses to bolster profitable creativity. The company listens to focus groups with “one ear,” for instance, and only hires managers so respectful of the creative process that they will endure its necessary chaos. Yet when it comes to getting its creativity onto shelves, chaos is banished. The company imposes strict discipline on its manufacturing processes, meticulously planning, for instance, all 1,000 tasks in the construction of one purse.

The LVMH process has one goal: star brands. According to Arnault, star brands are born only when a company manages to make products that “speak to the ages” but feel intensely modern. Such products sell fast and furiously, all while raking in profits. “Mastering the paradox of star brands is very difficult and rare,” Arnault notes dryly, “fortunately.”

What was your reaction when you first saw John Galliano’s newspaper dresses?

I was shocked, which is good, of course. A new product is not creative—it is not important—if it does not shock when you first see it.

And after the shock wore off, did your managerial alarm bells start ringing?

I don’t have alarm bells when it comes to creativity. If you think and act like a typical manager around creative people—with rules, policies, data on customer preferences, and so forth—you will quickly kill their talent. Our whole business is based on giving our artists and designers complete freedom to invent without limits.

Our philosophy is quite simple, really. If you look over a creative person’s shoulder, he will stop doing great work. Wouldn’t you, if some manager were watching your every move, clutching a calculator in his hand? So that is why LVMH is, as a company, so decentralized. Each brand very much runs itself, headed by its own artistic director. Central headquarters in Paris is very small, especially for a company with 54,000 employees and 1,300 stores around the world. There are only 250 of us, and I assure you, we do not lurk around every corner, questioning every creative decision.

So no one in the company asked Galliano, “Who in the world will actually wear a newspaper dress?”

Absolutely not, and we did not need to. The most successful creative people—and you would have to say that John Galliano is one of these—want to see their creations in the street. They don’t invent just to invent. Yes, they come up with many exciting ideas, and many of these ideas shock; they look crazy at first, completely crazy. But the true artists that make LVMH a success, they don’t want the process to end there. They want people to wear their dresses, or spray their perfume, or carry the luggage they have designed.

The responsibility of the manager in a company dependent on innovation, then, very much becomes picking the right creative people—the ones who want to see their designs on the street. And that desire inside them is something that you, as a leader of a company, can only sense. After all, most artists don’t go around proclaiming, “I want to be a commercial success.” They would actually hate to say that. And frankly, if you asked them, they would say they don’t actually care one way or another if people buy their products. But they do care. It’s just buried in their DNA, and as a manager, you have to be able to see it there. I know you are going to ask, “How can I see into a person’s DNA, to know if he is an artist with commercial instincts?” So I will answer, it just takes experience. Years of practice—trial and error—and you learn.

And just as important, to allow creativity to happen, a company has to be filled with managers who have a certain love of artists and designers—or whatever kind of creative person you have in your company. If you deeply appreciate and love what creative people do and how they think, which is usually in unpredictable and irrational ways, then you can start to understand them. And finally, you can see inside their minds and DNA.

Dior didn’t actually end up selling Galliano’s newspaper dresses, right?

No, there was never any intention to sell them. I am absolutely convinced it was excellent to send them down the runway, because it put the idea out there. It was a new concept—edgy, ahead of anyone’s thinking. It made everyone talk. When the dresses came out, you could hear the whole audience gasp. There was a buzz—an excitement. Galliano was thrilled, the audience was thrilled.

But once the idea was out there, we had no problem reproducing the dresses in fabric and selling them, and they did very well. The important point is, you cannot compromise creativity at its birth. The dresses had to start in newspaper. We did not begin the creative process by talking about the bottom line.

Now, that does not mean that you shouldn’t make suggestions during the creative process. Not long ago, I said to one of our designers, “Why don’t you take a trip to Japan and see what the teenage girls are wearing on the streets at night?” These girls are very leading edge in fashion; they create trends years before they hit the mainstream, like with those very high shoes, and it makes very good sense to watch them. I did not say to the designer, “Go and see what kinds of shoes they are wearing and copy them,” although I was hoping he would notice their shoes. I just suggested, “Go look.” And in fact, he came home very inspired. That’s all a manager can hope to do, or should do, in my opinion.

What if the marketplace is screaming for one kind of product or another—should that factor into the creative process?

That is one mind-set, but it is not consistent with true creativity. Some companies are very marketing driven; they follow the consumer. And they succeed with that strategy. They go out, they test what people want, and then they make it. But that approach has nothing to do with innovation, which is the ultimate driver, we believe, of growth and profitability. You can’t charge a premium price for giving people what they expect, and you won’t ever have break-out products that way—the kinds of products that people line up around the block for. We have those, but only because we give our artists freedom.

Are you saying you shouldn’t conduct market tests, such as focus groups, before you release a product?

You should, but you will never be able to predict the success of a product that way. What a test shows you is limited: whether the product has a potential problem, such as with its name. You may discover that the name of a product is good in English, say, but it means something else in Japanese. Or you can test a perfume and find out that in some part of the world, one part of its formula carries a bad connotation that you have not thought of. But these tests will never tell you if a product is going to be a worldwide success. Take J’adore, the fragrance we released in 1999. Nothing in the tests suggested what would happen; the people in the focus groups said it was fine, just that. But look what happened—according to our estimates, it was among the top three best selling perfumes in the world last year.

Obviously, we won’t launch a product if the tests clearly show it is going to be a failure, but we won’t use tests to modify products, either. I just heard that many movie studios now show the endings of films to audiences, and they change them according to the audiences’ reactions. So movies end up being a marketer’s dream, not an artist’s.

Our strategy is to trust the creators. You have to give them leeway. When a creative team believes in a product, you have to trust the team’s gut instinct. That is the case with a perfume we launched this year: Flower, by Kenzo. We put it forward not because of the tests but because the team believed in it. It’s a very special creation. In the tests, people did not know what to make of it—the shape of the bottle is different, and its signature flower is a poppy, which has no scent. It’s not like anything else. But it’s a fantastic product, and it’s been an unbelievable success for the company: The Kenzo Fragrance Group’s sales rose 75% in the first six months of 2001, based largely on the success of Flower. That’s why you should listen to focus groups with only one ear.

When you give creative people as much freedom and control as LVMH does, do you have to be prepared to accept some failures?

Well, we don’t like failures. We try to avoid them. That is why, with many of our new products, we make a limited number. We do not put the entire company at risk by introducing all new products all the time. In any given year, in fact, only 15% of our business comes from the new; the rest comes from traditional, proven products—the classics.

Vuitton is a perfect example. This year, Marc Jacobs came up with the graffiti design, and it was a big departure for the line. Did you see it? It is beautiful and crazy, right? It does not look like Vuitton at first glance; who would have thought of that on suitcases? But we only had that on several items—for which, by the way, there is now a waiting list worldwide. The rest of the products were Vuitton that you could have bought last year, or five years ago, or ten years from now. They are legacy pieces.

We will use the same approach with the new Dior handbag. It is very exciting, very expensive. You will see it in all the ads and want to buy it. I assure you we will be out of stock fast. But it is very expensive: $1,800. We will make only several thousand of them. The rest of the line will reflect some ideas of that new purse—the same shape—but will be less radical in terms of fabrics and design. We will make more of those and sell them for less. That way, we can have our creativity but also minimize risk.

Of course, with some businesses, you cannot avoid risk, and sometimes you do not succeed. And so you learn. (For Arnault’s thinking on his Internet ventures, see the side-bar “Stars on the Net? Be Patient.”) With still other businesses, you cannot say they are outright failures or learning experiences, just that their success is taking time. That is the case with Christian Lacroix.

Stars on the Net? Be Patient
LVMH launched that fashion house ten years ago, and while many consider it to be one of the most creative of your entire portfolio, it has yet to turn a profit. Why not close shop?

Because we have learned so much from Lacroix. It has been like a laboratory for us where we have learned how to start a brand from scratch. I mean, at the beginning, we thought, “Okay, we have a genius here with Christian Lacroix,” but we learned that genius is not enough to succeed. It was something of a shock, to be honest, to discover that even great talent could not launch a brand from zero. A brand must have a heritage; there are no shortcuts.

The fact is, star brands take time to grow. Take some of the small makeup companies we have acquired recently, like Bliss and Urban Decay. When we bought them, they were little start-ups run by their founders—very simple businesses, but with a lot of originality in the products. So now we know we must nurture them until they have some history. But even if it takes ten or 15 years for them to become stars, that has been an amazing investment, right?

(to be continued - if someone has access to it)
hbr.org
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The House of Arnault
- according to wikipedia

Quote:
Subsidiaries
A partial list including some of LVMH's most well known brands and subsidiaries:

Wines and Spirits
10 Cane
Ardbeg
Belvedere
Château d'Yquem
Dom Pérignon
Domaine Chandon California
Hennessy
Glenmorangie
Krug
Mercier
Moët & Chandon
Ruinart
Veuve Clicquot
Wenjun

Fashion and Leather Goods
Berluti
Céline
Dior
Donna Karan
EDUN
Emilio Pucci
Fendi
Givenchy
Kenzo
Marc Jacobs
Moynat
Loewe
Loro Piana
Louis Vuitton
Nicholas Kirkwood
Thomas Pink
R. M. Williams

Perfumes and Cosmetics
Parfums Christian Dior
Guerlain
Parfums Givenchy
Kenzo Parfums
BeneFit Cosmetics LLC
Fresh Inc.
Make Up For Ever
Acqua di Parma
Perfumes Loewe S.A.
Fendi Perfumes
NUDE

Watches and Jewelry
Bulgari
Chaumet
De Beers Diamond Jewellers
FRED
Hublot
TAG Heuer
Zenith

Specialist retailing
DFS
Le Bon Marché
Sephora
And their "patronage"
Quote:
LVMH is a major patron of art in France. The group supported about ten exhibitions as "Le grand monde d’Andy Warhol"[22] and "Picasso et les maîtres"[23] at le Grand Palais in Paris. LVMH also endorsed the patronage of "l’atelier d’Alberto Giacometti" and "Yves Klein" at Centre Georges Pompidou.

In addition, LVMH foundation created the "young creators LVMH award", an international competition opened to French and international beaux-arts students.[24] Each year, six grants are allocated to the winners.

In November 2013, LVMH created the LVMH Young Fashion Designer Prize, which comes with a € 300,000 grant with a year of mentoring and is the brainchild of Delphine Arnault.[25] The first winner will be chosen in 2014.[25] In February 2014, 20 finalist for the prize were shown in London, such as Simone Rocha, Thomas Tait, Meadham Kirchhoff, Marques’ Almeida, J JS Lee, and others.[26]

LVMH underwrites other fashion competitions, including the Andam prize in France, the International Festival of Fashion and Photography in Hyères,France, an investment fund for young designers created by the French Ministry of Culture and Communication, and a scholarship program and sponsored lecture theater at Central Saint Martins in London.[25]

The group also lends Stradivarius violins to young talented musicians. Maxim Vengerov and Laurent Korcia have used the instruments.
and let's not forget the LV Foundation

[QUOTE]

Gehry’s Paris Coup
Despite its echoes of Paris’s architectural past, Frank Gehry’s latest museum project—the Fondation Louis Vuitton, opening this fall in the Bois de Boulogne—is like nothing the city has seen before: muscular and delicate, utilitarian and fantastic, a marriage of cultural ambition and private enterprise. Paul Goldberger looks at the genesis of LVMH chairman Bernard Arnault’s partnership with Gehry, and the triumphant result.

Your first instinct, when you see an extraordinary new building that looks like nothing you have ever seen before, is to try to understand it by connecting it to what you know. And so Frank Gehry’s new Fondation Louis Vuitton, in Paris, looks like sails, and it looks like a boat, and it looks like a whale, and it looks like a crystal palace that is in the middle of an explosion. Some of the innards make you think of Piranesi, and as you look up the stair tower, monuments of Russian Constructivism, such as Vladimir Tatlin’s fantastic spiral tower, might flash through your mind, just as you could stand in front and from one angle the façade could make you think of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Beth Sholom Synagogue, his great “Mount Sinai in glass.”

But none of these comparisons matter in the slightest. They’re all correct as far as they go, but they are really only ways of postponing coming to terms with the fact that this building is a whole new thing, a new work of monumental public architecture that is not precisely like anything that anyone, including Frank Gehry, has done before. You could call it a 21st-century take on the Grand Palais, the wildly extravagant Beaux-Arts exhibition hall off the Champs-Élysées, and you could also say that it’s Gehry’s attempt to render his own Guggenheim Bilbao in glass. But even these, which get closer, miss a lot of what makes this building remarkable, just as calling it a descendant of Gehry’s IAC office building, in New York, which is made up of billowing white glass that also always reminds people of sails, only begins to explain what Gehry has wrought on this unlikely site within the Bois de Boulogne at the western edge of Paris.

Gehry, who is now 85, continues to push himself forward, as Picasso and Wright did late in their careers, relentlessly determined that, however important his past work may be, it must serve for him as the foundation for something more than a mere dénouement. He has been experimenting with curving glass for years, twisting and torquing it into lyrical, dancing shapes, and here the long quest that began with the glass panels decorating the cafeteria he designed for the Condé Nast Building in 1999 culminates in enormous glass sails that are pieces of architecture in themselves, sumptuous forms that give shape to an entire building.

Gehry loves the form of the fish as much as he loves sailing and boats, and it is not hard to see this building as the moment when these preoccupations come together into one gargantuan and complex object. Yet another longtime theme in Gehry’s work has been his desire to tear away the façades of his buildings, making the structure—what he calls “the bones”—visible as a way of celebrating the aesthetic hidden within it, and what began decades ago when he started revealing the wooden framing inside the walls of small houses has grown here into exhibiting vast and monumental curves of steel and timber, a framework that seems at once to evoke the Eiffel Tower and an ancient church. This building is muscular, and it is delicate: it is a linebacker with the moves of a ballerina or, if you prefer, it is Moby-Dick with the athleticism of a sailfish.

The reported $143 million Fondation Louis Vuitton, which opens to the public in October, was commissioned by Bernard Arnault, the chairman and C.E.O. of the luxury-goods conglomerate LVMH Moët Hennessey Louis Vuitton, as a contemporary-art museum and cultural center, and it is not only its architecture that is unusual. There are relatively few private museums in France, and in building this one Arnault—himself a major collector—was obviously hoping to reinforce a connection between his company and advanced art and design. But it has the potential to develop a brand even more potent than that of LVMH: that of France itself, and of Paris, where more creative energy surrounded modern art, architecture, and design in the first half of the 20th century than anywhere else. Paris long ago ceded its leadership as a creative center to New York and other cities, and not even the vast investment of the French government in such architecturally ambitious projects as the Centre Pompidou, by Richard Rogers and Renzo Piano, the expanded Louvre, with its glass pyramid, by I. M. Pei, and the Cité de la Musique, by Christian de Portzamparc, has been enough to get it back.

But not until now has there been a significant private investment in a cultural institution, a new entity conceived, designed, constructed, and managed without the heavy hand of French bureaucracy. Gehry’s building—which is his first project in Paris since he completed the American Center, now the Cinémathèque Française, in 1994—is the most compelling work of new architecture the city has seen since the Centre Pompidou opened, almost 40 years ago, and the new museum and cultural center it houses represent the unbridled zeal of the private sector. Paris has never experienced a marriage of cultural ambition and private enterprise of this magnitude, and it may have a shot at making something happen that extends way beyond Gehry’s glass doors.

Its roots go back to 2001, when Jean-Paul Claverie, who joined LVMH as a special adviser to Arnault after working under Jack Lang in the French Ministry of Culture, became so excited about Gehry’s Guggenheim Museum, in Bilbao, that he insisted that Arnault make a trip to Spain to see it. “I wanted him to discover it and share with me the feeling I had standing in front of it,” Claverie said to me. “It wasn’t easy—he canceled twice, but finally we succeeded in November of 2001,” when Arnault, face-to-face with Gehry’s building, Claverie recalls, could say only, “How can a person imagine this architecture?”

Arnault said he had to meet Gehry, who is based in Los Angeles, and the two arranged to have lunch a month later in New York. Arnault told Gehry that he envisioned a building in Paris that would embody his Louis Vuitton Foundation for Creation’s mission to support the arts and education and that he wanted it to be a significant work of architecture.

“The building was to be the first artistic act of the foundation,” Claverie, who was put in charge of the project, said to me. He and Arnault took Gehry to the site, which is at the Jardin d’Acclimatation, a children’s park toward the northern end of the Bois de Boulogne. The location might seem to make little sense: the cultural energy of Paris has been shifting to the east for years.

Arnault had his reasons, however. Although the Jardin d’Acclimatation was inside a public park, its concessions were owned by LVMH. And since Arnault had always wanted a striking piece of architecture—“a haute couture building,” in Claverie’s words—he hoped that erecting it in the Bois de Boulogne (construction began in 2008) would free him and Gehry from the inevitable battles that ensue whenever anyone tries to insert a strong piece of modernist architecture into the Parisian streetscape. They hardly had carte blanche, however. The city government first insisted that the building not be taller than the low, boxy one that had previously occupied the site, and later, after Gehry’s final design was approved, there were objections from a NIMBY group that protested with the zeal of people for whom the notion of backyard meant the entire Bois de Boulogne. (The nearest residents were actually a couple of blocks away.)

Gehry, for his part, had to relate his design mainly to trees and lawn, which for him was almost too easy. Gehry likes his buildings to play off their surroundings, not by mimicking them but by shifting shapes, focusing vistas, or raising their heads high at a particular moment, such as the way the tower of the Guggenheim in Bilbao acknowledges a nearby bridge and the industrial heritage of the adjacent river. The 126,000-square-foot Fondation Louis Vuitton is surrounded mainly by open space and trees, and Gehry’s sculptural instincts could run freer here than in many of his buildings.

Paradoxically, this probably made designing the building all the harder, because there was no clear starting point other than the foundation’s desire for lots of gallery space, an auditorium, and the usual public amenities such as a café, a bookstore, and a large central lobby. Gehry designed the building from the inside, starting not with the final shape but with three piles of boxes containing art galleries, and three circulation towers, containing stairs and elevators. “You can’t hang art on glass,” he said to me. It is the way Gehry usually works—for all he is identified with striking sculptural shapes, he almost never starts with them, because he wants to be sure that the functions of a building are taken care of before he starts letting his sculptural instincts run free. The gallery sections—which will house a corporate collection featuring works by Jeff Koons, Richard Prince, and others—are covered in a white fiber-reinforced concrete called Ductal, which led Gehry to name them “the icebergs.” He then began to arrange an array of curving glass pieces over the icebergs and towers, precisely composed to serve as both façade and roof, as well as to enclose the lobby and to cover the roof terraces. “I could do neutral galleries, and I could do me at the same time,” Gehry said.

Here, too, Gehry is referencing his earlier work, since one of the things he did a lot of before he started creating unusual, curving shapes was to make buildings that consisted of unevenly stacked boxes. In Paris, he has taken that old idea and re-invigorated it by connecting it to his most assertive structural leap, the huge glass sails. It is a hint of early Gehry wrapped in late Gehry, but without a whiff of nostalgia—this is less a case of looking back than of reaching back and grabbing a piece of the past and pulling it along into the future. (The building also features an auditorium facing a waterfall that tumbles down a series of steps and helps bring natural light down into the space, which will be used for LVMH fashion shows.)

Gehry has often been accused, mostly unfairly, of making architecture that overwhelms art, but it will be harder to level such charges at the Fondation Louis Vuitton, because the icebergs make for relatively neutral galleries—not plain white boxes, which Gehry is probably incapable of producing, but rooms that for the most part are shaped like rectangles with straight, flat walls. When there is no art in the building, it feels incomplete, which is arguably the most important test of whether the architecture is too assertive. “It makes me crazy when people say, ‘Oh, Frank, your architecture is too complicated—it’s overpowering the art,’ ” Gehry said to me. “I’ve talked to artists, and they’re willing to play.” In Paris, Gehry has come closer than ever before to having it both ways—to showing art in straightforward rooms that just happen to be part of an utterly spectacular building, one that only heightens the intensity of the art within.

More than 50 years ago, when his career was just beginning, Gehry spent a year in Paris working in an architect’s office, and he discovered European architecture for the first time. He was struck by everything he saw, but most of all by the powerful, heavy forms of Romanesque churches and the lyrical lines of late buildings of Le Corbusier, particularly his great chapel at Ronchamp. You can see all of this in the Fondation Louis Vuitton: the strong structure, the soft curves, the whole idea that a building is a sensuous experience. Gehry has been exploring these ideas for a long time, but they have a particular resonance here, as if he knows how deep his debt to French architecture is, and he saw this building, most of all, as a chance to pay it back.

[QUOTE]

vanity fair - sept. 2014


Last edited by BerlinRocks; 05-11-2014 at 11:56 AM.
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Thank you for this thread, i find how these big companies work very interesting.

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Thank you!

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Thank you for starting this thread! I'm incredibly fascinated by the business side of fashion, and especially by LVMH.

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