Vuitton publishes Louis Vuitton: L’Audacieux, on the life of its founder
The name Louis Vuitton is instantly recognizable to the majority of people as one of the most successful luxury brands in the world. But what about Louis Vuitton, the person?
Two hundred years after Louis Vuitton’s birth, just across the river from his first shop, the luxury brand hosted a cocktail party Wednesday evening in its Saint-Germain-des-Prés flagship on the Left Bank in Paris to celebrate Louis and the literary work inspired by him.
“It certainly wasn’t very easy to write,” confessed Caroline Bongrand, the author of the brand founder’s biography Louis Vuitton: L'Audacieux,at a book signing in the boutique.
Bongrand revealed nearly all of the records of Mr. Vuitton's personal life were burned when Prussian forces set fire to the house's main atelier in 1870, after they had invaded France in the Franco-Prussian War. Bongrand had to dig deep, requiring her to gather the majority of precious information from other sources – notably personal descriptions of people who knew the entrepreneur and artisan.
The result was an inspiring tale few are acquainted with which recounts the extravagant life of the brand’s creator, published by Les Editions Gallimard.
The French luxury brand is a publisher of dozens of travel books and catalogs in its own right. The art of travel has been the cornerstone of Louis Vuitton since Monsieur Louis Vuitton first founded the legendary brand in 1854. At the beginning, the travel trunk was the first product sold by the brand. Since then, enriched with Monsieur Vuitton's zealous wanderlust, Louis Vuitton has grown into one of the world's largest and most influential fashion and luxury marques.
Rather like a classic Disney movie or a novel by Charles Dickens, the story starts when a young, poor boy with a wicked stepmother flees his provincial town in the mountainous region of France for the energetic city of Paris. Bongrand recounts how the artisan's bold ambition and revolutionary craftsmanship of trunk-making led him to construct the brand we know today, Louis Vuitton.
Despite the challenge, Bongrand has managed to create a vivacious novel now available in Louis Vuitton stores and on the brand's website for 20 euros. A translated version will be available from the 15th of November for those who prefer to read in English.
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