The Art Foundations of Luxury Fashion Brands: An Exploratory Investigation

Alessia Grassi, Stephen Swindells, Stephen Wigley

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract

During the past 30 years, several Western European luxury fashion brands have invested resources in cultural initiatives distinctive from their core commercial activities. In particular, this has involved the brands establishing organisations (typically identified as ‘foundations’) dedicated to collecting and commissioning contemporary art by established and emerging artists. The suggested motives for these activities range from indulging the personal interest of the brands’ owners and managers, to a desire to invest their brands with cultural capital or creative heritage. This chapter is the first to explicitly investigate the phenomenon of luxury fashion brands’ ownership of contemporary art foundations, with the aim of understanding its nature, scope, and purpose. These will be considered in the context of the contradiction between the apparent desire for public engagement with the art foundations and the perceived exclusivity of the patron brands’ products and retail venues. The chapter investigates the phenomenon in two phases. First, an insight into specific cases of art foundations owned by luxury fashion brands is offered. This explores the internal structures of the relevant foundations and examines their programmes, communications, initiatives and connections with the patron brands. Secondly, expert interviews with relevant professionals will contextualise the role of the art foundations as a presumed meeting point between the inclusivity of public engagement and the exclusivity of fashion branding. This is an exploratory study representing the first stage of an on going project. It is informed by secondary research and primary qualitative research aimed at establishing a clearer understanding of the phenomenon under investigation. The chapter will provide insight into the contemporary nature of both luxury fashion branding and public engagement in an art exhibition.
LanguageEnglish
Title of host publicationEngaging with Fashion
Subtitle of host publicationPerspectives on Communication, Education and Business
EditorsFederica Carlotto, Natalie C. McCreesh
Place of PublicationLeiden
PublisherBrill
Chapter3
Pages60-74
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9789004382435
ISBN (Print)9789004382428, 9004382429
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 26 Nov 2018

Publication series

NameAt the Interface/Probing the Boundaries
PublisherBrill

Fingerprint

Art
Fashion Brand
Luxury
Public Engagement
Exclusivity
Patron
Branding
Ownership
Communication
Heritage
Inclusivity
Artist
Cultural Capital
Managers
Retail
Resources
Venues
Qualitative Research
Art Exhibitions

Cite this

Grassi, A., Swindells, S., & Wigley, S. (2018). The Art Foundations of Luxury Fashion Brands: An Exploratory Investigation. In F. Carlotto, & N. C. McCreesh (Eds.), Engaging with Fashion: Perspectives on Communication, Education and Business (pp. 60-74). (At the Interface/Probing the Boundaries). Leiden: Brill. https://doi.org/10.1163/9789004382435
Grassi, Alessia ; Swindells, Stephen ; Wigley, Stephen. / The Art Foundations of Luxury Fashion Brands : An Exploratory Investigation. Engaging with Fashion: Perspectives on Communication, Education and Business. editor / Federica Carlotto ; Natalie C. McCreesh. Leiden : Brill, 2018. pp. 60-74 (At the Interface/Probing the Boundaries).
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Grassi, A, Swindells, S & Wigley, S 2018, The Art Foundations of Luxury Fashion Brands: An Exploratory Investigation. in F Carlotto & NC McCreesh (eds), Engaging with Fashion: Perspectives on Communication, Education and Business. At the Interface/Probing the Boundaries, Brill, Leiden, pp. 60-74. https://doi.org/10.1163/9789004382435

The Art Foundations of Luxury Fashion Brands : An Exploratory Investigation. / Grassi, Alessia; Swindells, Stephen; Wigley, Stephen.

Engaging with Fashion: Perspectives on Communication, Education and Business. ed. / Federica Carlotto; Natalie C. McCreesh. Leiden : Brill, 2018. p. 60-74 (At the Interface/Probing the Boundaries).

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

TY - CHAP

T1 - The Art Foundations of Luxury Fashion Brands

T2 - An Exploratory Investigation

AU - Grassi, Alessia

AU - Swindells, Stephen

AU - Wigley, Stephen

PY - 2018/11/26

Y1 - 2018/11/26

N2 - During the past 30 years, several Western European luxury fashion brands have invested resources in cultural initiatives distinctive from their core commercial activities. In particular, this has involved the brands establishing organisations (typically identified as ‘foundations’) dedicated to collecting and commissioning contemporary art by established and emerging artists. The suggested motives for these activities range from indulging the personal interest of the brands’ owners and managers, to a desire to invest their brands with cultural capital or creative heritage. This chapter is the first to explicitly investigate the phenomenon of luxury fashion brands’ ownership of contemporary art foundations, with the aim of understanding its nature, scope, and purpose. These will be considered in the context of the contradiction between the apparent desire for public engagement with the art foundations and the perceived exclusivity of the patron brands’ products and retail venues. The chapter investigates the phenomenon in two phases. First, an insight into specific cases of art foundations owned by luxury fashion brands is offered. This explores the internal structures of the relevant foundations and examines their programmes, communications, initiatives and connections with the patron brands. Secondly, expert interviews with relevant professionals will contextualise the role of the art foundations as a presumed meeting point between the inclusivity of public engagement and the exclusivity of fashion branding. This is an exploratory study representing the first stage of an on going project. It is informed by secondary research and primary qualitative research aimed at establishing a clearer understanding of the phenomenon under investigation. The chapter will provide insight into the contemporary nature of both luxury fashion branding and public engagement in an art exhibition.

AB - During the past 30 years, several Western European luxury fashion brands have invested resources in cultural initiatives distinctive from their core commercial activities. In particular, this has involved the brands establishing organisations (typically identified as ‘foundations’) dedicated to collecting and commissioning contemporary art by established and emerging artists. The suggested motives for these activities range from indulging the personal interest of the brands’ owners and managers, to a desire to invest their brands with cultural capital or creative heritage. This chapter is the first to explicitly investigate the phenomenon of luxury fashion brands’ ownership of contemporary art foundations, with the aim of understanding its nature, scope, and purpose. These will be considered in the context of the contradiction between the apparent desire for public engagement with the art foundations and the perceived exclusivity of the patron brands’ products and retail venues. The chapter investigates the phenomenon in two phases. First, an insight into specific cases of art foundations owned by luxury fashion brands is offered. This explores the internal structures of the relevant foundations and examines their programmes, communications, initiatives and connections with the patron brands. Secondly, expert interviews with relevant professionals will contextualise the role of the art foundations as a presumed meeting point between the inclusivity of public engagement and the exclusivity of fashion branding. This is an exploratory study representing the first stage of an on going project. It is informed by secondary research and primary qualitative research aimed at establishing a clearer understanding of the phenomenon under investigation. The chapter will provide insight into the contemporary nature of both luxury fashion branding and public engagement in an art exhibition.

U2 - 10.1163/9789004382435

DO - 10.1163/9789004382435

M3 - Chapter

SN - 9789004382428

SN - 9004382429

T3 - At the Interface/Probing the Boundaries

SP - 60

EP - 74

BT - Engaging with Fashion

A2 - Carlotto, Federica

A2 - McCreesh, Natalie C.

PB - Brill

CY - Leiden

ER -

Grassi A, Swindells S, Wigley S. The Art Foundations of Luxury Fashion Brands: An Exploratory Investigation. In Carlotto F, McCreesh NC, editors, Engaging with Fashion: Perspectives on Communication, Education and Business. Leiden: Brill. 2018. p. 60-74. (At the Interface/Probing the Boundaries). https://doi.org/10.1163/9789004382435