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A Magical Journey with Louis Vuitton

Journey – the physical act and course of travel from one place to another, in a romantic sense, embodies more than just moving from point A to point B. For Louis Vuitton who started out making suitcases that accompany men on their spiritual and physical metamorphosis, ‘journey’ is a hefty word laden with experience, meaning and growth– it is an emotional experience that can and often lead to self discovery.

Francis Ford Coppola and Sofia Coppolla on a mystical journey

For a few years now Louis Vuitton been working on a magical, travel focused and ethically driven campaign – their Core Values “Journey”, engaging renowned photographer Annie Leibovitz to bring it to life.

Their latest is ‘The Heart of Africa’ featuring Ali Hewson and her husband, U2-vocalist Bono, in their capacity as founders of Edun, a for-profit fashion company founded on the premise of trade for aid as a means to alleviate poverty through sustainable employment and growth. Launched in 2007, Edun Live is a blank T-shirt division that is 100% “grow to sew” African produced. In 2009, LVMH took a substantial stake in the company. Edun is sold in leading department and specialty stores worldwide, and is available at the Merci store in Paris.

Antoine Arnault, head of communications at Louis Vuitton says, “We are delighted that both Ali and Bono, who have never before participated in an advertising campaign, agreed to be photographed for Core Values. We are very proud of our association with Edun.” Both Ali and Bono agree. “We want Edun to be a success because the more it grows, the more we can do on the ground,” says Edun founder Ali Hewson.

Bono, Hewson, Edun, LV

The beautifully shot ad captures Bono and Hewson strolling through Africa, wearing Edun clothing. Ali is carrying the collaboration bag, a brown Keepall 45 in Louis Vuitton’s embossed Monogram Révélation leather and a Monogram charm hand-crafted in Kenya by Made, a fair-trade fashion accessory company which strives to provide employment and promote ethical trade in Africa.

A second 2010 Journeys Campaign captures soccer legends Zinedine Zidane, Pele and Diego Maradona.

Foosball a la Zidane, Pele, Maradona & LV

The photography is classic and a panoramic video hosted on the Journeys website depicts an epic ‘foosball’ battle between the three greats whom after their competitive careers, have seemed to acquire a sense of composure and tranquillity, and easier put, have matured with age, just like Louis Vuitton’s elegant suitcases.

Connery encapsulates ‘Journeys born into legend

For the Louis Vuitton Journeys campaign, Anne Leibowitz has also shot some of the world’s leading personalities including the man who brought the former Soviet Union Perestroika, Mikahail Gorbachev, actor Sean Connery and Keith Richards of The Rolling Stones.

A hotel room’s never looked so archetypal as with Keith Richards in it

She’s also brought to life man’s journey to the stars, commemorating the 40th anniversary of man’s conquest of the Moon.

She captures the theme of travel as a personal journey to a “celebration of a voyage of unsurpassed significance for all mankind”, in her photo of astronaut Buzz Aldrin – the second man to set foot upon the Moon; Jim Lovell – commander of the ill-fated Apollo 13 mission in 1970 who heroically guided his crew back to the safety of Earth; and Sally Ride – the first American woman to venture into space in 1983 as a crew member on Space Shuttle Challenger.

A celebration of a voyage of unsurpassed significance for all mankind

Overall ‘Journeys’ is a fantastic campaign that really gels the Louis Vuitton brand name to the art of stylish travel. It goes hand in hand with the rest of this luxury designer conglomerate (part of the LVMH Moet Hennessy family) and designer Marc Jacobs has been instrumental in extending LVs expertise; combining traditional craftsmanship with flair and innovation to create a complete lifestyle experience that’s impossible to ignore.

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