Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Gucci: Cruise 2023 Review
Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Gucci: the globe-trotting fashion shows of the 2023 cruise
As a new season of cruise shows unfolds, Wallpaper’s ongoing report takes you from San Diego to Puglia with the world’s biggest brands
A new season of Cruise shows – far-flung shows that take place in some of the world’s most breathtaking locations – has begun, coming back strong after a two-year hiatus. From a waterfront in Monaco to a 13th-century castle in Puglia, this globe-trotting report takes you around the world for the most extravagant fashion presentations of the year.
The best shows of Cruise 2023
Located on Avenue Princesse Grace – named after Monaco’s most famous royal export – the Monte-Carlo Beach Hotel has long been a playground for the rich and famous, the kind of jet-set guests for whom the Cruise collections have a unique appeal. Chanel creative director Virginie Viard chose the hotel’s beachfront promenade as the runway for the house’s cruise return, as guests watched from huts along the shore. Viard’s collection drew on the principality’s glamorous history with a playful collection referencing Formula 1 (all-in-ones, Chanel helmets, checkerboard prints), casinos (handbags in the shape of slot miniature coins, gambling token earrings) and famous photographer Helmut Newton. Monegasque images of women in swimsuits by the beach. The late Karl Lagerfeld, Viard’s ancestor at home, was not entirely absent from the proceedings: the sprawling Villa La Vigie, his beloved residence in the city, could be seen in the distance as the show unfolded. below, later providing the venue for a lavish after-party.
Louis Vuitton, San Diego, USA
Nicolas Ghesquière has long embellished his Cruise collections for Louis Vuitton with gems of modernist architecture, from John Lautner’s Bob Hope Estate in Palm Springs, California, to the saucer-shaped Museu de Arte Contemporânea de Niterói by Oscar Niemeyer, which overlooks Guanabara in Rio de Janeiro. Bay. For Cruise 2023, attendees were flown to the California city of San Diego for a show that took place at the Salk Institute, a science research center built in 1960. Founder Jonas Salk reportedly asked architect Louis Kahn a “installation worthy of a visit”. by Picasso’; his response, a large travertine thoroughfare leading out to the ocean with two angular concrete buildings on either side, through which a picture-perfect California sunset can be seen. It was at this time that Ghesquière chose to hold her show, which oscillated in a typical time-warping style between vast, tight-fitting dresses like those worn by the ancient inhabitants of the desert – “goddesses”, the designer proposed – and stylish riffs on sportswear (the prints referencing colorful graphics on jet skis). Other elements took advantage of the venue’s unique light, with high-shine fabrics in gold and silver, metal studs and rivets, and strands of twinkling tinsel. “I wanted the clothes to be like reflections, a point of contact between light and people,” he said.
Gucci, Puglia, Italy
Gucci “Cosmogony” collection
Alessandro Michele has long been drawn to the mystical; Zodiac symbols, ancient mythology, magic and metamorphosis have been referenced in various forms in its idiosyncratic collections. For his latest, Michele traveled to the Puglia region of southern Italy, hosting the show in the historic 13th-century Castel del Monte, unique for its octagonal inner courtyard and the octagonal symbolism repeated in the design of the building (the reasons for this remain a mystery; some have argued that it was a mystical spiritual retreat site, no doubt appealing to Michele’s sensibility). The collection itself, entitled “Cosmogony”, is inspired by the legacy of a more contemporary thinker: the German philosopher Walter Benjamin. A profound treatise by the designer that accompanied the show spoke of Benjamin’s conception of “constellation thinking,” his ability to weave connections between disparate lines of thought. “It is not that what is past sheds light on what is present, or that what is present sheds light on what is past; rather, the image is where what has been comes together in a flash with the now to form a constellation,’ Benjamin said as quoted by Michele. This idea of constellations spilled over into a collection that grandly combined the medieval with the modern, showcasing the designer’s own ability to connect a chorus of inspirations across time and space. Finally, a moment of astral projection: images of star constellations were illuminated on the walls of the old castle. §