A Trunk Show
Luggage connoisseurs will have a field day at Louis Vuitton’s exhibition, “Volez, Voguez, Voyagez,” which opened Friday at 86 Trinity Place in Lower Manhattan. Previously mounted in Seoul, Paris and Tokyo, the show traces the history of the fashion house, founded in 1854, through letters, photographs, sales ledgers, advertising cards and trunks. Many, many trunks.
Spread across 10 rooms, the trunks are filled with shoes, clothes from the 19th and 20th centuries, hats, books, tea sets, picnic essentials and, in one case, an expandable bed. They offer a leather-trimmed primer on the evolution of travel, from yachting to road trips.
Olivier Saillard, the curator, spent months poring over the Louis Vuitton archives. “I didn’t know he left his family when he was 14 years old,” he said. “He spent two years walking by foot to Paris.”
The brand’s humble beginnings seem remarkable against the backdrop of the Hollywood room, where Louis Vuitton luggage belonging to Katharine Hepburn, Elizabeth Taylor and Greta Garbo are on display. An adjacent room is devoted to fanciful collaborations, including an oval-shape bag dreamed up by Rei Kawakubo, a twisted box-clutch from Frank Gehry and a monogrammed skateboard trunk stamped with the red Supreme logo.
There are no suitcases in the final room. Instead, there are dresses worn by celebrities such as Alicia Vikander, Taylor Swift and Madonna, a nod to the house’s shorter history of haute couture.
The exhibition, which is open free to the public through Jan. 8, had a preview party on Thursday with a boldface crowd that included Michelle Williams, Ruth Negga and Zendaya. — VALERIYA SAFRONOVA
Architectural Artworks With Crafty Origins
“Wide Wake,” the artist Sam Moyer’s first exhibition with Sean Kelly gallery in New York features paintings, sculpture and drawings in oil on paper — but my favorite pieces are the large-scale paintings composed of repurposed marble, slate and stone — and fabric that Moyer dyed at her home on the North Fork of Long Island. While the materials are organic and hand-crafted, the resulting works are graphic and architectural. Moyer was inspired by artists like Robert Smithson and Agnes Martin, whose influence she compares to the wake of a boat on the water in the show’s title. “Wide Wake” by Sam Moyer is on view at Sean Kelly, New York through Dec. 9, 2017. – JAMIE SIMS
Bengt Thornefors and Christoffer Svensson met as designers at Acne Studios in Stockholm in 2006. Later they both spent time in Paris, Thornefors working for Hedi Slimane at Saint Laurent, and Svensson at Givenchy. Over the years, they had discussed bedding at length — specifically as they had observed the way friends invested in their homes. “Everyone put so much money into their apartments, and we thought if you buy all these beautiful chairs, kitchens, televisions and put art on the walls, why don’t you invest that kind of luxury into your bedding?” said Thornefors. “The bed is such a large object and we saw so much potential for it to be used differently and with more spirit.”
They began to look at bedding as a fashion piece, with the idea that a bed could be well-dressed, and in the summer of 2016 Magniberg launched their first range. The collection combines unexpected textures and colors with a focus on fabrics — an area in which they are self-confessed super geeks. “We want to give the customer an opportunity to combine textiles such as poplin, mesh, silk, sateen,” said Svensson. “The worst thing in the world is to change your bed sheets, but with our bedding, when you put it together you have something interesting.” $60 – $700, magniberg.com — ELLIE HAY
Geoffrey Chadsey’s Elaborate Drawings
Men in Geoffrey Chadsey’s watercolor pencil drawings are hybrids of fleshy humans and curious beings — all emanating from his imagination. “I’ve been collecting photos of men performing their masculinity for the camera, mostly a stoic kind, often awkward because there is a glimpse of self-consciousness going on,” says the Brooklyn-based artist. “These men are performing selves for an online audience — images of being that are presented to be desired.”
His new show, “Heroes and Secondaries,” at the Boston University Art Galleries marks Chadsey’s first institutional exhibition in a decade. Each element his figures clutch — such as an airplane pillow or an iPhone — contributes to ambiguous narratives Chadsey concocts with meticulous artistry and an unabashed ardor for oddity. “Geoffrey Chadsey: Heroes and Secondaries” is on view through December 10th, Faye G., Jo, and James Stone Gallery at Boston University Art Galleries, College of Fine Arts, www.bu.edu. — OSMAN CAN YEREBAKAN
Missoni Teams Up With Jonas Mekas
Jonas Mekas, the avant-garde filmmaker and founder of Anthology Film Archive, is drawn to unexpected environments. At last year’s Venice Bienniale, for instance, he made enlargements of 32 film stills and exhibited them on the windows of a Burger King. “I prefer people’s places to galleries,” he says. So when Angela Missoni — who is celebrating 20 years as creative director of her family’s label — approached Mekas about collaborating on an installation for Missoni’s Madison Avenue store, he jumped at the opportunity. “Why not?” says Mekas, who is 94 this year. “It’s a challenge.”
For the third year of Missoni’s “Surface Conversion” series, Mekas presents “Blue,Yellow, Red, Purple.” The project, curated by the duo Francesco Urbano Ragazzi, includes a video installation visible through the shop windows, enlarged film stills displayed on light boxes throughout the space, and a special, split-screen version of Mekas’s seminal 1969 film “Walden,” which documents moments from his daily life in New York. “The audio runs simultaneously on both,” says Mekas. “So it becomes a very rich collage of sound and image.”
Much of the footage and many of the stills feature flowers and references to the changing seasons. “It’s very colorful,” Mekas says of Missoni’s clothing. “So the theme of flowers immediately came to mind.” A childhood memory of gathering flowers as a farm boy in Lithuania as well as his observations of flowers in New York were points of reference. “The flowers don’t challenge you, they talk to you,” he says. “It’s all for fun.” 1009 Madison Ave., New York. — MERRELL HAMBLETON
A Book That Takes You Behind New York’s Closed Doors
I have a confession: I love to walk New York’s residential streets at night, and look into the illuminated parlor-level windows of beautiful apartments and townhouses. In a glance, you can tell a lot about an anonymous person’s living room — and their world. A new book, “New York Behind Closed Doors,” by Polly Devlin and the photographer Annie Schlechter, takes my curiosity to a whole new level. It invites you into the homes of more than two dozen New Yorkers who live all over the city. There are maximalists and traditionalists, a Memphis mecca in Chelsea — even a Baptist church-cum-home in Harlem.$27, amazon.com — ISABEL WILKINSON