Veuve Clicquot, famously known for its luxurious champagne, has embarked on a world tour to celebrate its 250th anniversary, and to honour the brand’s matriarch and namesake—Madame Clicquot.
The champagne house brought together French curator Camille Morineau and designer Constance Guisset to create a fully immersive cultural exhibition to mark the momentous anniversary.
Entitled “SOLAIRE CULTURE,” aptly named to pay homage to both the sun and the brand’s signature yellow label, the exhibition gives visitors a unique opportunity to experience the house’s heritage, savoir faire, and cultural imprint from its founding in 1772 through to the present day.
“This exhibition is an unprecedented event for Veuve Clicquot and the symbol of our capacity to dream big and constantly innovate,” says Jean-Marc Gallot, the brand’s President and CEO.
The travelling exhibition, which debuted in Los Angeles, opens with a space dedicated to Madame Clicquot, the entrepreneur also known as the “Grande Dame of Champagne,” who took over her husband’s champagne company in 1805 at the age of 27 and became one of the first businesswomen of modern times.
“Madame Clicquot showed us the way. Guided by her, the House is committed to supporting bold and creative women who forge a path for generations to come,” says Chief Marketing and Communications Officer, Carole Bildé.
In order to create the exhibition, Morineau commissioned the works of alluring artists from around the world, including renowned Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama; self-taught, London-based painter Cece Philips; and manga artist Moyoco Anno. Morineau tasked them with reinterpreting brand milestones and modernizing the female founder through artworks such as portraits, illustrations, and sculptures.
“I’m drawn to painting women specifically, which is why this commission felt like a really great fit,” says Philips about her art. “As someone who was quite a trailblazer for her time,… being able to read and delve into Madame Clicquot’s letters was really interesting. It reflected the harder elements of growing a business in that period, and those letters were kind of the inspiration behind my piece,” she explains.
The result is an immersive history lesson as each guest is encouraged to dive into the more than 2,000 archival pieces on display, including Madame Clicquot’s personal journals and letters.
Following this, visitors explore the evolution of Veuve Clicquot through a beautiful experiential display of its most iconic and innovative label designs.
On the top floor, the remaining three artists—Tacita Dean, Sheila Hicks, and Monique Frydman—conveyed the emotional power of the sun through their own imaginative artistic interpretations, including analogue film and threaded sculptures.
In order to continue honouring Clicquot’s heritage of female entrepreneurship, “SOLAIRE CULTURE” also features “The Yellow Cafe,” an eatery where guests can purchase a glass of champagne and expertly paired food options. All proceeds from the cafe will be donated to RE:Her, a non-profit on a mission to empower women of colour, indigenous women, LGBTQ+ identifying women, and non-binary food and beverage entrepreneurs.
“SOLAIRE CULTURE” is on view at Piccadilly Circus in London from May 12th to June 6th.
Photos courtesy of Veuve Clicquot.