The first shop is set to open inside the Louis Vuitton boutique in New York on July 10, two days before Kusama’s touring retrospective opens at the Whitney Museum of American Art. Next, polka dots — Kusama’s signature motif — will spring up in Asia, at Pacific Place in Hong Kong, Ngee Ann City in Singapore, and Isetan’s Shinjuku branch in Tokyo.
Following those launches, Tokyo, the city Kusama calls home, will get a second location in Dover Street Market in Ginza. Then the two largest Kusama concept stores will open at two department stores: an 860-square-feet shop in Printemps in Paris on August 23; and a 1,375-square-feet boutique in Selfridges in London on August 24. The Paris location will be centered around polka dots, while the London shop will revolve around Kusama’s famous pumpkin sculptures.
The pop-up outlets will be open for one to two months, offering a range of spotted trench coats, handbags, and other accessories created with the artist for Louis Vuitton. The European branches will also exclusively offer tentacle-festooned handbags two months ahead of their scheduled October launch date.
Louis Vuitton creative director Marc Jacobs must have been so taken with Kusama when she presented him with a customized a Louis Vuitton Ellipse bag during his first visit to her studio in 2006 that she should get special treatment. Out of the three other artists — Stephen Sprouse, Takashi Murakami, and Richard Prince — Jacobs selected to partner with the brand, Kusama is the only one to have multiple pop-up shops in her line’s honor.