Watch: Sofia + Roman Coppola Shorts Introduce Chanel’s New Métiers d’art Collection

Images by Melodie McDaniel

 

 

If you’ve been longing for a few moments of unabashed fabulousness—and who isn’t these days?—a pair of new Chanel videos highlighting its 2019/20 Métiers d’art collection at 31 rue Cambon will momentarily transport you back to more glamorous times. (Meaning, before March 2020.)

For her first Métiers d’art collection, creative director Virginie Viard collaborated with award-winning filmmaker Sophia Coppola and her filmmaking cousin Roman Coppola, the result being these two gorgeously shot shorts. The first pays tribute to a century of fashion history at Chanel’s landmark first arrondissement address, with a collage of archived images of grande dame Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel and her brilliant, and sadly late successor Karl Lagerfeld.

 

 

The film ends as a gaggle of models, including Gigi Hadid, Vittoria Ceretti, Rebecca Leigh Longendyke, Pan Haowen and Blesnya Minher cavort down the boutique’s legendary mirrored staircase, seemingly on their way out for the evening. It’s a party we certainly wish were in attendance for.

The second was filmed as guests of the Chanel 2019/20 runway show, including Hadid, Kristen Stewart, Sébastien Tellier, and Lilly-Rose Depp, come together at Paris’ swanky La Coupole restaurant to celebrate the collection in elaborate pre-social distancing style.

Warning: viewing these videos will likely spark the urge to dress up extravagantly. Don’t resist.

 

 

Kennebunkport Escape: Sperry x Yachtsman is Much Needed ‘Therapy by the Sea’

Image by Garrett Swan

 

 

 

Last fall, we were invited up to Kennebunkport, Maine, and fell in love with its low-key New England vibe, and the region’s abundant natural beauty. So much so, in fact, that earlier this year, we booked a cottage in nearby Dolphin’s Cove for a week in early July. In February, we were already daydreaming of yoga sessions on the deck at sunrise, and sipping evening cocktails while watching glorious sunsets over the marsh.

Of course, that was before COVID-19 wiped the floor with our summer travel dreams.

While lockdowns and travel bans surely made good common sense and have, thankfully, helped to at least contain the virus in the noble Northeast, the inability to freely travel has only exacerbated our wanderlust, in the process making those all-too-infrequent trips now even more meaningful (Every precious moment…). However, when we learned that Maine had lifted travel restrictions on visitors from New York, New Jersey, and its New England neighbors, we tossed our masks in our overnight bags and booked a room at its most seriously buzzed about new hotel, for a desperately needed escape from our too familiar four walls.

 

 

And frankly, Maine’s stillness and sense of simplicity was really just what we needed to tamp down the stress.

What we got was, literally, “Therapy by the Sea.” The Yachtsman Hotel & Marina Club in Kennebunkport, has partnered up with the quintessential New England boating brand Sperry on a hospitality experience (available through October 31) that includes a two-night stay, a pair of playfully plaid (or other choice of color) summer boat shoes per guest, a two-hour canoe or kayak rental (not exactly a yacht, but much more easily navigable for your average nautical novice urbanistas), a locally made candle, and—thank god—complimentary cocktails.

The hotel’s sparkling clean, elegantly stylized waterside rooms featured indoor-outdoor living, with seaside chic but colorful décor, and lush private patio spaces with sloping lawns that lead to the dock. The pool was a floating oasis docked in the Kennebunk River, and made for a refreshing dip before hitting the Yacht Rock Bar by Sperry for a smartly crafted tippled. We opted for a bit of breezy sophistication with the Authentic Original, essentially a fancy gin and tonic, and the more playful Original Prep, a boozy coconut-strawberry concoction, worthy of any Dartmouth Sigma Delta party girl.

 

 

We found it fairly easy to socially distance along miles of Kennebunkport’s exquisitely upmarket beaches. It should be noted that parking can be a drag; but the Yachtsman offers complimentary bikes, so we eagerly took advantage, especially as the two-wheeled ride comes with non-stop scenery. Kennebunk Beach on Ocean Avenue is the largest and most well-known—but we checked out several smaller, hidden gems like Colony Beach, which is tucked into a cove about a half-mile from the Yachtsman; and Goose Rocks Beach, which offers powder-soft sand and an opportunity to explore a remote island during low tide.

But after tense months stuck inside, we also couldn’t resist the serenity and shade of the New England forest. So we headed for Rachel Carson Wildlife Refuge’s Carson Trail in Wells, a one-mile loop with a wide path and sweeping salt marsh views. There’s also the Smith Trail, which brings you deeper into the woods for an eight-mile hike (do arm yourself with bug spray, and conduct a tick-check after). The most challenging hike is Bradbury Mountain State Park in Pownal, one of the five original state parks, with breathtaking views from its summit and a network of trails.

 

 

While KPT has a wealth of dockside restaurants (and lobster everywhere), an obligatory post-beach stop is the Pilot House, for ice-cold brews, sizzling baskets of fried shrimp and live classic rock. But we ventured out to explore the area’s notable farm-to-table options: Bandaloop (located in Arundel), a bistro-in-a-barn, offered organic Asian-inspired cuisine, innovatively prepared with hyper-local ingredients—we had the crispy fried-tofu and Maine-style Palusumi, a vegan Samoan stew. At Earth at Hidden Pond, much of the produce is grown on-site and artfully prepared, with standouts being the local cod served with bacon, creamed corn, crab, and stuffed squash blossom, as well as the gnocchi with pancetta, mushrooms, pork cheek and crispy shallots.

But, as a reward for diligently sheltering-in all these months, we made sure to save some room for dessert—and Rococo Ice Cream’s crazy good gourmet flavors, including goat cheese blackberry Chambord and coconut Mezcal hibiscus—were well worth the splurge and the wait.

 

Gotham’s Latest ‘It’ Girl is PhoebeNewYork – And She’s Trying to Help

 

 

 

From Betty Boop to Blair Waldorf, New York City has inspired an ever-evolving history of fictional “It” Girls. Although the latest fille to make the list hasn’t been defying social distancing guidelines in covert downtown speakeasies or igniting Page Six scandals; she has been—much to our delight—regularly spotted around town.

Meet PhoebeNewYork, the charming and très fashionable alter ego of NYC-based artist Libby Schoettle. Phoebe has been popping up on boarded up storefronts and bus shelters throughout New York and across the globe, and stirring up quite a buzz. More than just a street-art phenomenon, she’s amassed over thirty-two thousand Instagram followers, collaborated with brands like Victoria Beckham Beauty, lululemon, and Rag & Bone, and will be the subject of a Canobie Films docuseries next year.

 

 

Phoebe may come to life as a collage, but she’s no paper doll. She grapples with the questions we all ask (“What the fu*k” is happening?”) about sexual politics, and the stark realities of living in an increasingly unstable and divisive global society. But she does it in a way that makes us feel a little less alone in it.

Notably, Schoettle is also one of many street artists participating in the Yourban2030 Color 4 Action Campaign in support of the coronavirus emergency. Yourban is a not-for-profit group working for a more sustainable future, and a donation of $25 or more to any of the COVID-19 related charities on the site will earn donors access to over 60 street artists’ drawings to download and color.

In the midst of such a busy schedule, we caught up with Schoettle to learn what inspired her and why Phoebe is everything we need right now.


What or who inspired Phoebe, and when did you begin creating her?

Phoebe came about completely organically, as in, I had no plans to make her, she just appeared. It’s hard to identify the exact moment, because my art went through various stages that eventually brought Phoebe to life and, poof, one day she was there, a small face on a pink record album cover. I instantaneously felt connected to her, and saw her as something very important, something for years I kept repeating over and over again…this pink head with a small mouth and a large eye in profile. Over time, Phoebe’s voice became clearer and clearer as I began to add words and phrases to the collages in order to let that voice be heard.

How do your own thoughts and personality come through in her character?

She is inspired by the things I am inspired by. I pour my own feelings into each PhoebeNewYork piece, using a combination of fashion imagery, found objects, colors, and words. Each element reflects whatever I’m drawn to at that moment, often things that make me feel reminiscent. She also does the things I cannot do. Such as, I need to constantly remind myself to “never quit” and “to just keep going,” “be confident” and “believe in myself.” Through Phoebe I do keep going, she gives me a reason to wake up in the morning—and by placing her on the street, I find that other people find reflection in her the same way I do.

 

 

What makes Phoebe so relatable?

What I’ve realized is that many of us feel what she feels and appreciate the messages she offers. I think she’s braver than I am and she’s confident enough to expose her insecurities and vulnerabilities, and to express optimism at times, too.
The fact that she’s been pasted on to walls in other countries, and that people in other parts of the world say they relate to her, tells me that her words and messages can resonate with people, no matter where or who we are. It makes me very happy to be able to send out messages and connect with others about love, loneliness, woman-power, insecurity, self-image, and hope.

And she’s unexpected.

People have told me that they’ve come across PhoebeNewYork at just the right time: they’ve turned a corner and seen a message like, “Don’t panic” at the very moment they needed to. I actually know what that feels like, because she has brightened my days, and I do tend to feel better whenever I happen across a PhoebeNewYork art piece on the street.

How have recent events like COVID-19 and the Black Lives Matter protests shaped Phoebe’s worldview?

These are both such major events, and I’m still taking it all in. [As always] I am inspired and challenged to express myself in my art.

 

Images: Scottish Black Lives Matter Mural Trail Confronts a Colonial History

Ryan Buchanan, Hub

 

 

Throughout history, monumental shifts in society have often led to revolutions in art. This moment is no different. The worldwide response to the murder of George Floyd, and countless other innocent Black people, taken alongside the growing global Black Lives Matter movement, has awakened the spirit of artists in the U.S. and abroad.

While the Black Lives Matter installations in New York City (with one mural brilliantly positioned directly across from Trump Tower) are among the most talked about, creators across the continents are producing powerful work to foster solidarity and spur conversation in their own countries.

Indeed, Scotland’s reckoning with its own deeply-rooted history of slavery, colonialism, and imperialism propelled Edinburgh-based creative producer Wezi Mhura, a specialist in large-scale events, to organize its artistic talent to realize the country’s first Black Lives Matter Mural Trail.

Mhura worked with a wide range of Scotland’s Black, Asian, and minority ethnic artists, and partnered with venues and arts organizations across the country to launch the exhibition within a week. Currently, displays are featured on more than a dozen spaces and sites across Edinburgh, Glasgow and Inverness, with more planned to follow.

 

Dode Allen, Neon Requiem – The Teacher

 

The artworks, colorful, challenging, moving, powerful, and diverse, were inspired by the themes of “I Can’t Breathe” and BLM, and crossed mediums from painting to photography, video to digital art and beyond. The Scotland-based artists, all with unique frames of reference, represent a global perspective, and diverse origins such as Cape Verde, Nigeria, Zimbabwe, Pakistan, and even the U.S.

Through its creation, Mhura intends to create a dialogue and debate about Scotland’s history and how it should be represented in the future—something America is viscerally grappling with via its own controversial and still standing monuments of oppression.

“The Scottish government says it recognizes the strength in its aspirations to a more equal and more diverse society going forward,” she explains with a sense of guarded optimism, “and we hope this Mural Trail will help to start the conversations that need to be happening now. It’s been amazing to connect with so many talented artists, with roots in so many different places, who have been so enthusiastic about getting behind this project.”

The Scottish BLM Mural Trail demonstrates how art can still be at the forefront of change—stimulating dialogue while also adding a new dynamic to currently dormant venues across the nation.

 

Rudy Kanhye, All Lies Matter; Steven Khan, The Theater

‘Inside CHANEL’ Explores the Designer’s Iconic Collaborations w/ Art + Film

 

 

If you’re seeking a binge-worthy alternative to sociopathic big cat collectors or soulless Ozark-based money launderers, take a peek at the House of Chanel’s Inside CHANEL collection of micro-documentaries. The series, which began in 2013, explores the world of legendary founder/designer Coco Chanel from every imaginable angle.

The newest additions to the series explore the special relationship that (real name) Gabrielle Chanel maintained with the creative world. The first episode, Chapter 27: Gabrielle Chanel and the Arts, sketches a portrait of a woman who was both an observer and a collaborator, and who played an integral part in an incredible cultural revolution. The documentary highlights her relationships with Cocteau, Dali and Picasso, amongst other artists, and how they influenced her perspective, and ultimately her work.

The second episode in the arts series, Chapter 28: Gabrielle Chanel and Cinema, illuminates her contributions to film as both a costume designer, muse, and champion of some of the era’s most notable filmmakers. From Hollywood’s golden age to the French New Wave and on to the edges of the avant-garde (and including Jean Renoir’s exalted 1939 masterpiece The Rules of the Game), Gabrielle Chanel’s imprint has stamped modern cinema icons with the indelible mark of modernity. And thusly, the Chanel aesthetic and philosophy remain forever imprinted in the credits of women’s lives, both onstage and in the streets.

Upcoming episodes will discuss contributions to the worlds of dance, literature, and music. Start binging at inside.chanel.com.

 

 

Kunsthal Rotterdam is Reopening With the ‘Extra Large’ Exhibition – Featuring Rare Tapestries by Louise Bourgeois, Miró + Corbusier

Pablo Picasso, Women at Their Toilette, 1971 – 1977

 

 

We’ve been reporting on virtual touring opportunities at European museums. But cities and towns are now beginning to open up in earnest, so we will shift our focus to physical museum experiences…cautiously.

Now, all but the most devoted art enthusiasts are likely to regard tapestry as an ancient art form, most often found gathering dust on the walls of drafty medieval castles or “classical” European museums. But a delayed exhibition, scheduled to open March 8, now opening June 1 at the Kunsthal Rotterdam, is intending to upend those stereotypes, and demonstrate how tapestry is still absolutely relevant.

Indeed, the new exhibition Extra Large presents a large-scale retrospective of imposing tapestries based on designs by Picasso, Le Corbusier, Miró, Vasarely, Alain Séchas and Louise Bourgeois. Created post-World War I, these little-known masterpieces represent a virtually unknown aspect in the bodies of work of these giants of modern and contemporary art.

Joan Miró, Composition No. 1 Woman at the Mirror, 1966

 

It turns out that since the beginning of the seventeenth century, the French State has been commissioning renowned artists to design tapestries that are brought to life in national weaving workshops. While the art itself originated for decorative purposes, the works often conveyed a sociopolitical message, or represented a historical revolution.

Although the French government may have been motivated to create these works to preserve the history and art of weaving, the complex designs of modern-day artists have resulted in technical innovation in technique and craft. For example, Picasso’s design, Les Femmes a leur toilette, was shelved for thirty years until weavers became experienced enough to begin working on the tapestry, which then took six years to complete.

 

Le Corbusier, Canapé II, 1963

 

The majority of the sixty-showcased works was produced at the historical institute Manufacture des Gobelins in Paris, and demonstrate the multi-dimensional aspects of the craft through the eyes of some of history’s most revered avant-garde masters.

Extra Large will be on view from June 1 through January 3, 2021 at the Kunsthal Rotterdam (just an hour by rail from Amsterdam), a museum which has in recent years gained international acclaim for its high-profile fashion exhibitions, including the recent Thierry Mugler: Couturissime.

 

From top: Alain Jean Messagier, The Uniformity of the Beautiful Weather, 1969 – 1971; Jean Lurçat, The Seasons, Summer, 1940-1941

‘Fendi Icons’ Short Film Fêtes the Peekaboo + Baguette Bags

 

 

 

With travel, nightlife and fashion having been particularly interrupted by the pandemic, we’ve been relegated to dreaming of future jaunts to Paris, Milan and Rome. In fact, there are few things we’d rather be doing right now than window shopping along the Via Condotti in the Italian capital.

 

 

But while a less glamorous reality has found many of us passing the time by stress-baking sourdough loaves, our friends at the storied Roma fashion house Fendi have been busy filming an ode to some of their truly iconic accessories. Indeed, in this 34-second homage to the Peekaboo and Baguette handbags, curvaceous Colibri heels, and punky FF Boots, bellicose-but-beauteous, fishnet-clad models (who, apparently, haven’t nibbled even a crumb of those aforementioned baked goods) strike yoga poses, while showing off footwear and tightly gripping bags.

And, who can blame them, really? The handbags are pretty fabulous.

 

First Images: New Dior Men Boutique in Soho, NYC

Images by Kristen Pelou

 

 

If the fate of fashion is a confusing muddle these days, New Yorkers now at least have more Dior to adore—which is never a bad thing.

Indeed, the exalted fashion house has just unveiled a new Dior Men boutique adjacent to its women’s SoHo location. In addition to its ready-to-wear line, the shop offers an assortment of Dior Men’s leather goods and accessories—and we’re all-in on the reimagined iconic Saddle Bag that can be worn over the shoulder or around the waist as a suddenly-chic-again fanny pack. (Man bag!)

 

 

The boutique’s modern open floor environment is outfitted in off-white textured walls and decorated with white onyx panels and sleek brushed metal blade shelving. In contrast to the shop’s soothing interior, a bold line and dot work commissioned by the brand, Sound of Friday 6, by Seoul-born artist, Yoon Hyup, provides a colorful focal point and backdrop to the interior environment.

While the inviting storefront is sure to lure in NYC fashion fiends and style-aware tourists alike, those with enough cachet (or cash) can access a luxurious VIP suite complete with a personalized concierge experience. And these days, we do need every opportunity to feel special.

Visit the Dior Men shop at 107 Greene Street, Monday to Saturday 11am to 7pm, and Sunday 12pm-6pm.

 

 

Harley Weir Hots Up the Winter w/ New Ferragamo S/S 2020 Campaign

 

 

 

Fashion has long been rightly criticized for perpetuating narrow beauty ideals—though in response, encouragingly, we’ve seen an increasingly more inclusive approach being taken both on the runway and in advertising campaigns. And in an ode to the glories of individuality, Ferragamo has tapped beautifully into the diversity zeitgeist with its stunningly shot Spring/Summer 2020 campaign.

Under the watchful eye of newly installed, Berkshire born Creative Director Paul Andrew (his dad, btw, was a royal upholsterer to Windsor Castle), photographer Harley Weir captured the wild freedom of unfettered self-expression against the sun-drenched hues of an unidentified—to us at least—desert landscape.

“We showed this collection outdoors in Milan last September,” Andrew recalls, “as a way to emphasize that these are clothes designed to be worn for pleasure, during the summer, and with friends.”

 

 

And indeed, models Malgosia Bela, Abby Champion, Sora Choi, Alpha Dia and David Kammenos do seem to be genuinely chumming it up, as Weir snaps them strikingly against the dusty landscape.

Andrew continues, “We used the campaign to highlight certain items, including the new Viva pump and some of the gorgeous hand-kit crochet work—as complements to a summer spent roaming free in the company of people you love.”

While your summer may actually involve more time spent in an overly-air conditioned office than throwing shapes against enigmatic rock formations (with a coterie of astonishingly good-looking friends), you may just find the campaign’s evocative images whisking you away to there…even if just for a few blissfully delicious moments.