Champagne house Ruinart has collaborated with Chinese artist Liu Bolin for the 2018 instalment of its yearly art project and has unveiled a new collection of limited edition coffrets (wooden Champagne boxes) for their flagship Blanc de Blancs cuvée. To compliment the project, a series of photographic works were also released that centre around the camouflage of the artist.
Take a closer look at these vines and you’ll see Chinese artist Liu Bolin and Ruinart’s cellar master Frédéric Panaïotis emerge out of the foliage. Founded in 1729, Ruinart is the oldest Champagne’s house and boasts an impressive labyrinth of UNESCO protected crayères, underground chalk tunnels where their wine is aged. Every year, an artist or a designer is invited to offer up their own interpretation of the history, the cuvées and the terroir of this renowned Champagne house.
It all started in 1896, when Ruinart commissioned the Czech artist Alphonse Mucha to design an advertising poster. Since then, the Champagne house has maintained a longstanding relationship with the art world, every year giving one artist carte blanche and sponsoring various contemporary art events. In keeping with this tradition, the 2018 edition of their yearly art instalment showcases a series of photographic works by Chinese artist Liu Bolin, known for his experimentation with camouflage in urban and rural landscapes. Bolin photographed himself, the Ruinart cellar master and other employees camouflaged in a variety of settings. Look closely and you’ll see them hidden amongst the Chardonnay vines and the gyropalettes. Long body painting sessions and hours of standing completely still to capture the perfect photo made this no easy feat but Bolin and Panaïotis’ mutual respect for one another’s work made this project not only possible but a huge success. Reflected within these images is the team work between artist and subject but also their experiences, their knowledge and their passion. Ruinart has once again produced a collaboration that evokes its identity perfectly.
At the unveiling of these works last week at the Grand Palais in Paris, Bolin painted himself to blend in with a reproduction of Jean-François de Troy’s 18th century painting, Le Déjeuner d’Huîtres, a painting that famously features the distinctive Ruinart shaped bottles.
Angélique de Lencquesaing (iDealwine), artist Liu Bolin and Frédéric Panaiotis (Cellar master of Maison Ruinart)
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