In 2006, wishing to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary
of the Chanel 2.55 quilted purse, the French fashion house Chanel decided to stage a touring exhibition
of artworks inspired by this vintage style handbag.
An opportunistic exercise in brand awareness and promotion for Chanel, this exhibition was to feature photographs, films, sculpture, drawings, paintings and installations by twenty well-established contemporary artists from around the world. Chanel’s Creative Director, Karl Lagerfeld, believed that instead of touring international art galleries, the exhibition, like the handbag, should itself be mobile, contained in its own recognisable structure, which would travel from city to city.
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