Fragrances and cosmetics are the fast moving goods of the luxury world so this move from Guerlain is on the unusual side. The French luxury perfume and cosmetics house has joined forces with a famous American street artist for a one-off collection, combining olfactory and sensory expertise with art. The fruit of this rare partnership goes on sale on January 4 so you won’t have to wait long for it.
Such partnerships are not beyond the pale of course, as Bulgari and others have demonstrated, but in that example in particular, Bulgari was using its jewelry heritage to make a statement in fragrances. Clearly, Guerlain has no need for such tactics and does not have the same resources anyway. Honestly, such collaborations are far more commonplace in the drinks business, where Martell, Johnnie Walker and The Macallan all have such special projects. Like those special projects, this one will have a very special price: US$9,900 per bottle, approximately.
This odd pairing between the New York artist and the French perfume house at the Guerlain Exclusive Collections creative laboratory has resulted in three limited edition bottles, which will hit the shelves in January 2016. Each one is a reinterpretation of the iconic bee-patterned bottle, designed by Pierre-François-Pascal Guerlain in 1853 as part of a special order for the marriage of Eugénie de Montijo and Napoleon III.
The 1-litre bottle was entrusted to JonOne as a blank canvas, to allow him to express himself freely with his “colored language.” The result is an explosion of colors in three different shades: blue for “Shalimar, Extract”, pink for “La Petite Robe Noire, Extract” and orange for “Rose Barbare, Eau de Parfum”.
All the bottles were created at the JonOne workshop in Paris. They were reworked and signed one by one by the artist, making each bottle unique. These “bee bottles” also retain the Guerlain touch in the form of a satin ribbon which sits on the neck.
As part of this exclusive partnership, Guerlain will hold an exhibition of JonOne’s work in its legendary store on the Champs-Elysées in Paris from January 4 to February 28, 2016.
This is not the first collaboration between the street artist and the fashion and beauty world, as he recently teamed up with the Lacoste brand to create a capsule clothing collection.
The Guerlain x JonOne collection will go on sale on January 4. Each “bee bottle” will be numbered and signed: 34 units for “Shalimar” and 32 units for “La Petite Robe Noire” and “Rose Barbare”.
The collection price is set at €9,000 (approx. £6567).