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Greetings from KENZO

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For its Fall-Winter 2019 advertising campaign, French fashion house KENZO embarks on a journey on the road less travelled. The artistic collaboration between the French fashion house and the storied pop photographer David LaChapelle shifts into a dramatic new focus. The results of this second creative partnership (KENZO and LaChapelle first collaborated for the house’s Spring-Summer 2019 campaign) are less like a traditional campaign and more like what might best be described as a series of postcards sent from the edge of imagination. Blurring the lines between high art, luxury advertising and the unavoidable wanderlust incited by modern social-media photography, KENZO’s Fall-Winter campaign asks its audience to take a double or even triple look before drawing conclusions.

At first glance, the unorthodox, densely layered images (and accompanying videos) echo the important cross-cultural conversations that are imprinted into KENZO’s roots since its foundation. In classic LaChapelle form, there is more to these photos than what meets the eye. One-of-a-kind works of “collage art”, the dichotomous images feature original fashion photography by LaChapelle superimposed over his rarely seen personal archive of vintage travel slides he has sourced for decades from his globetrotting adventures all over the world. It’s a provocative and intergenerational approach to image making that speaks to KENZO’s global sensibilities and conveys a new modern community of people traveling all over the world.
br>Highlights include the actress Logan Browning clad in Fall- Winter’s statement bright-pink tactical pieces happily showing off the resin bijoux “eye” clasp from the season’s Tali double flap bag. The figure of Browning is overlaid on top of a vintage image from the 1960s depicting an elderly woman sunbathing on retro outdoor lounge furniture. The striking image feels unplaceable, surreal, and new in startlingly camp ways. Another composite postcard-esque image depicts the young musician and model Selah Marley in a loosely constructed oxidized-green jumpsuit with a camera around her neck and one hand clutching the exaggerated bright orange shoulder straps of this season’s Tali bag. Placed seamlessly into a vignette composed from one of LaChapelle’s found archived photos depicting breathtaking natural splendour, Marley flashes a knowing grin that appears to celebrate the juxtaposition between artifice and luxury, and the real and the staged.

This postmodern sense of ambiguity is something LaChapelle has helped define since the salad days of his legendary career. Here, this method is employed to break from convention and disrupt the status quo. “I think that crossing cultures is a sensitive conversation because it’s often led by the one in power” Marley says. “Although I am one that finds traveling to be a spiritual experience, I also find it necessary to be sensitive to the culture that I choose to include myself in and be mindful that I am not invading spaces.”

The Fall-Winter 2019 campaign’s open dialogue between LaChapelle’s photography in 2019 and the treasure trove of his found images from bygone eras speaks to today’s era where nothing is quite what it seems, and the need for new spaces for shared communality. “We don’t exist in a vacuum; therefore, we must welcome in and seek out the beauty and strife of all people. Celebrating the intersections of cultures progresses us into a truly global community which we need in order to leave the world better than we found it” says Browning.


About David LaChapelle

David LaChapelle was born in Connecticut in 1963 and attended high school at North Carolina School of The Arts. Originally enrolled as a painter, he developed an analogue technique by hand-painting his own negatives to achieve a sublime spectrum of color before processing his film. At age 17, LaChapelle moved to New York City. Following his first photography show at Gallery 303, he was hired by Andy Warhol to work at Interview Magazine. Through his mastery of color, unique composition, and imaginative narratives, LaChapelle began to expand the genre of photography. His staged tableau, portrait and still life works challenged devices of traditional photography and his work quickly gained international interest. By 1991,The New York Times predicted, “LaChapelle is certain to influence the work of a new generation [...] in the same way that Mr. Avedon pioneered so much of what is familiar today.”

In the decades since, LaChapelle has become one of the most published photographers throughout the world with an anthology of books including LaChapelle Land (1996), Hotel LaChapelle (1999), Heaven to Hell (2006), Lost & Found, and Good News (2017). Simultaneously, his work has expanded into music video, film and stage projects. His 2005 feature film Rize was released theatrically in 17 countries. Many of his still and film works have become iconic archetypes of America in the 21st Century.

In The past 30 years, LaChapelle has exhibited internationally in galleries and museums including the National Portrait Gallery (London), La Monnaie (Paris), Barbican Centre (London), Victoria and Albert Museum (London), Tel Aviv Museum of Art, le Muse?e d’Orsay (Paris), Groninger Museum (The Netherlands), Palazzo delle Esposizioni (Rome), National Portrait Gallery (Washington D.C.) and Casa dei Tre Oci (Venice). 2019 includes a major solo exhibition at La Venaria Reale (Turin).

About Logan Browning

Logan stars in Netflix’s critically acclaimed series, Dear White People, from director Justin Simien. The show dropped to rave reviews, a 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and has released Season 3. Logan can currently be seen starring in the Netflix film, The Perfection, opposite Allison Williams and directed by Richard Shepard. The film premiered at Fantastic Fest to rave reviews. A native of Atlanta, Logan studied at Vanderbilt University and resides in Los Angeles. She is recognized off-camera for her dedicated activism work.

About Selah Marley

Selah Marley is the daughter of artist and musician Ms. Lauryn Hill and Rohan Marley (son of reggae legend Bob Marley). She’s one of six siblings who grew up in a unique household. Selah thrived in school, is an avid reader and multi-layered thinker and conceptual artist. After attending NYU for a brief period she left to pursue modeling and has worked on projects from Yeezy to Chanel to Armani. She donned the covers of a number of prominent industry magazines. As an adolescent, she called many different places home – New Jersey, Miami, Los Angeles even a tour bus and hotel. She became very comfortable with the ability to make a home in any space. Selah considers herself an artistic multi-disciplinarian, her interests span multiple mediums from film to music and soundscapes to transforming physical spaces and curating experiences amongst a number of other interests. While still in the process of discovering herself she knows that what she does enjoy is working on projects that allow her to express her wide range and bandwidth and encompass the entirety of her interests. She considers her self-discovery a work in progress and beautiful, organized chaos.

Photographer & director David LaChapelle
Director of photography Ben Carey
Tali Ambassadors Logan Browning, Selah Marley
Models Kiko Arai, Geron Nord, Jabali Sandiford, Hunter Schafer, Lindsey Wixson
Casting for models Noah Shelley for 1979 Services
Styling Anna Trevelyan
Hair Styling Laurent Philippon
Make Up Kabuki
Nail Art Naomi Yasuda
Set Design Arnaud Roth
Behind-the-scenes images Lucie Rox, Mathieu Vilasco
Behind-the-scenes videos Shota Sakami
Campaign videos music Storyblocks
Behind-the-scenes videos music Trait sound
Executive Producers Michael Scheideler & Steven Pranica for Creative Exchange Agency, Thomas Geffrier for Mynagement