To coincide with the release of his book, Little Black Jacket: Chanel‘s Classic Revisited, Karl Lagerfeld is putting the pages of the book on display. In late March, the exhibit opened in Tokyo. Then for eight days the exhibit was housed at New York’s Swiss Institute. Its next destination is Taipei, China, and after that, even more cities, which have not yet been announced. The book features 113 images of industry tastemakers from Coco Chanel herself, Anna Wintour, Yoko Ono, Daphne Guinness, designer Olivier Theyskens, wild child model Alice Dellal, models Aymeline Valade and Mariacarla Boscono, and more. All of the subjects wore similar iconic black Chanel jackets but were styled by ex-editor in chief of French Vogue, Carine Roitfeld, to reflect their own personalities. For instance: Alice Dellal, wore her jacket under a studded leather vest; designer, Alexander Wang, wore his in addition to his usual all black ensemble; Daphne Guinness wore hers while dripping in diamonds; Jane Birkin wore hers while holding, what else? An Hermes Birkin bag.
The exhibit itself consisted of more than 100 black and white photos lining four walls. In addition, there were several larger images that were color tinted. These included photos of actress Sarah Jessica Parker, who wears the jacket as a headpiece), and Georgia May Jagger, who wore her jacket open over a black bra, among others. However, the most striking images were the two enormous side by side photos: one of classic Coco and the other of Ana Wintour’s torso from behind, who’s perfect bob haircut was a dead giveaway.
The one person missing from the photos: Karl, himself. Of his absence he said: “I’m able to say to those who ask why they weren’t asked to be in it, ‘I am not in it, either.’”