A must visit
A vast space containing multiple rooms and levels, across 466M² the location bridges Slimane’s ready-to-wear collections with his artistic projects, offering a different atmosphere and aesthetic through each door. The ground floor contains is devoted to womenswear and is articulated around the idea of “French elegance and vintage sensibilities.” Folding mirrors create unusual lighting angles across an antique marble floor, while vintage furniture sourced by Slimane create inviting seating areas that toy with ideas of the private and public, complete with coffee table reading spanning the works of Peter Lindbergh, Rodin, Helmut Newton, de Vinci and Jean-Michel Basquiat. A wooden totem sculpture by Ugandan-born NYC-based artist Leilah Babirye stands alongside.
This ground level is decorated by twelve artworks, including commissions from The Celine Art Project, an ongoing initative that sees Slimane spotlight talented artists from across the world; via social media, in-store installations and integrated within his collections. Meanwhile, an octagonal room – an existing feature in the historical building – houses the Celine Haute Parfumerie line, designed as a gateway between a “cabinet de curiosities and a jewellery box.”
Head downstairs, past the black marble staff counter-slash-library (yes, more reading material), to the menswear floor. Offering the appeal of a minimalist art gallery space, the ceiling is lower and walls starker, complimented by concrete flooring. Another seating area offers a moment of comfort and contemplation as a polished cast bronze bell by US artist Davina Semo hangs from the ceiling above modernist seating; a fur-upholstered chair alongside a de stijl-inspired wooden option and a more brutalist stainless steel shape. Open the door to one of the menswear changing rooms and you’ll come face to face with a 17th century Flemish School oil painting of a young man in regal attire. Titled Portrait of Maximilien de Bethune Duc de Sully, this image of youth chimes with Slimane’s own dedicated documentation of youth. And placing this exquisite image in a room many won’t even see is very Hedi; unassuming in its grandeur.
Celine’s new London flagship opens 11th November and is located at 40 New Bond Street.