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Veuve Clicquot and Magnum Photos Exhibition at Milan Design Week with photographer Nanna Heitmann

Veuve Clicquot and Magnum Photos Debut “Emotions of the Sun” at Milan Design Week

On view through April 21, the traveling exhibition of photography, gastronomy, and bespoke shopping experience invokes the luminous vision of trailblazing businesswoman Madame Clicquot, as well as the champagne house’s signature yellow, an iconic nod to the sun. That spirited brilliance—a symbol of the label since 1877— is transformed in Milan through the eyes of eight photographers from across the globe: Steve McCurry, Alex Webb, Trent Parke, Olivia Arthur, Lindokuhle Sobekwa, Cristina de Middel, Nanna Heitmann and Newsha Tavakolian.

Erica Silverman

10 April 2024

On April 15 in Milan, during this year’s much-anticipated Design Week, storied champagne house Veuve Clicquot will unveil a dazzling new traveling exhibition, “Emotions of the Sun,” celebrated with an opening event at the Garden Senato.

On view through April 21, the captivating presentation in collaboration with Magnum Photos agency invokes the luminous vision of trailblazing businesswoman Madame Clicquot through the eyes of eight photographers from across the globe: Steve McCurry, Alex Webb, Trent Parke, Olivia Arthur, Lindokuhle Sobekwa, Cristina de Middel, Nanna Heitmann and Newsha Tavakolian. Each artist was given creative carte blanche to develop original artworks energized by the awe-inspiring power of the sun and its ever-evolving influence on the 250-year-old champagne house, Veuve Clicquot.

Veuve Clicquot and Magnum Photos Exhibition at Milan Design Week with photographer Steve McCurry

© Steve McCurry, courtesy of Magnum Photos and Veuve Clicquot.

“Emotions of the Sun” Continues a Stunning Meditation on our Collective Light Source with Magnum Photos Agency

In 2022 and 2023, Veuve Clicquot’s poignant “Solaire Culture” exhibition journeyed to Tokyo, Los Angeles, and London. In continuation of this meditation on our collective light source, “Emotions of the Sun” centers on the evocative medium of photography and its singular illumination of Mother Nature and humanity’s strength and fragility.

In 1947, on the heels of World War II, pioneering photographers and friends Robert Capa, Henri Cartier-Bresson, George Rodger, and David Seymour “Chim” founded Magnum Photos agency over a ceremonious bottle of champagne, and chose its enigmatic title for Capa’s sweeping goals for the endeavor—as well as his adoration of the celebratory libation. To this day, Magnum is recognized for its representation of leading-edge photographers whose creative prowess blurs the lines between artist, storyteller, and documentarian.

Veuve Clicquot and Magnum Photos Exhibition at Milan Design Week with photographer Trent Parke

© Trent Parke, courtesy of Magnum Photos and Veuve Clicquot.

40 New and Diverse Photographic Works by Free-Thinking Photographers are Featured

On the occasion of this project, Magnum unites the imaginations of its most free-thinking and expressive luminaries with Veuve Clicquot’s buoyant and emboldened cultural pursuits.

“Maison Veuve Clicquot is delighted to work with eight internationally renowned Magnum photographers, the lifeblood of that most renowned, photo-graphic institution,” said Jean-Marc Gallot, President of Veuve Clicquot. “The exhibition confirms Veuve Clicquot’s deep-rooted commitment to culture and transmits our message of optimism to the world at large.”

Within the picturesque Garden Senato Milano, a multifaceted and visually arresting exhibition space designed by French visionary Constance Guisset, and presented in partnership with independent curator and photographic historian Pauline Vermare, makes way for a divine and unforgettable presentation.

40 new and diverse photographic works are featured throughout, each overflowing with mesmeric colors, textures, and forms. A serene shade of yellow, which has been placed front and center on the Veuve Clicquot label since 1877, ebbs and flows through imagery of poetic interiors, lush open-air vistas, and across angelic human figures.

Veuve Clicquot and Magnum Photos Exhibition at Milan Design Week with photographer Alex Webb

© Alex Webb, courtesy of Magnum Photos and Veuve Clicquot.

Artists Cristina de Middel and Newsha Tavakolian Illuminate Mother Nature’s Savoir-Faire

Spanish artist Cristina de Middel created her blithesome piece in Brazil, where she currently lives and works, which whisks the viewer away to a sandy oasis under heavenly blue skies. There, a bright lemon-hued balloon dances through the air as if playfully re-enacting the sun’s celestial adventure. “I am always amazed by how the sun can change the mood of a whole scene and impact our emotions,” remarked de Middel on her visceral work.

Iranian photographer Newsha Tavakolian brings her passion for female empowerment and documentary-style artistry to her provocative exploration, which peers with all-knowing tranquility over lemons of all shapes, sizes, and phases sitting atop pure white bedding. A nourishing sunrise glows through translucent curtains over the mellifluous scene. “I see these images as a journey into consciousness,” said Tavakolian. “As you grow closer to nature, you become more self-aware, understanding the importance of living authentically. This is the realization that life is lived only once.”

Veuve Clicquot and Magnum Photos Exhibition at Milan Design Week with photographer Olivia Arthur

© Olivia Arthur, courtesy of Magnum Photos and Veuve Clicquot.

Award-winning Lindokuhle Sobekwa was selected in 2023 as the first documentary photographer to receive the premier FNB Art Prize, and here offers a spiritual artwork exhibiting our intimate relationship with the environment in crisis. “The Sun gives life to the natural world and provides beautiful golden light,” said Sobekwa. “We often say in photography that without light there is no photograph and without the Sun there is no life.

Ever-focused on capturing the many shades of the human condition, distinguished photographer Steve McCurry continues over 40 years of striking exploration with a lustrous series set in Japan, embracing the sun’s glow onto earth and sky, man and mountain. “The colors we perceive in the natural world are influenced by a combination of sunlight, the objects themselves, and atmospheric conditions,” remarked McCurry. “The changing light at sunrise or sunset makes Mount Fuji even more magical.”

Veuve Clicquot and Magnum Photos Exhibition at Milan Design Week with photographer Cristina de Middel.

© Cristina de Middel, courtesy of Magnum Photos and Veuve Clicquot.

A Cinematic Snapshot of Life Under the Sun’s Vital Rays Unfolds in Milan

Australian photographer Trent Parke, who has published seven rapturous monographs, immerses viewers in a sensual and cinematic snapshot of daily life in his homeland, where lithe figures appear to dance across a burnt orange sky. “The sun has always been a symbol of the great clock in the sky,” said Parke. “The sun is the ultimate force of life.”

The award-winning Alex Webb, who has exhibited his prismatic explorations at renowned institutions including the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Whitney Museum of American Art, offers new works of captivating color, form, and texture within Mexico’s spirited communities. “I became increasingly aware of the color of sunlight,” explained Webb. “I started to respond to the mood and atmosphere created by light, and to realize the emotional component of color, how its emotional tenor transforms one’s experience.”

Moscow-based photographer Nanna Heitmann, a revered contributor for the New York Times and the New Yorker, often displays her long-standing investigations of human’s deep-rooted relationship to Mother Earth in global publications such as National Geographic and Time magazine. Conjuring the brightly colored zeal of Veuve Clicquot, the artist traveled to Spain to create photographs that utilize sunlight, sweeping garments, and hypnotic mountain ranges to provide insight into our spectacular natural world. “The sun is the source of light and life for our
planet,” said Heitmann. “It inspires awe and wonder, and reminds us of the vastness and beauty of the universe.”

Olivia Arthur, co-founder of London-based publishing house and photography space Fishbar, skillfully delves into the intimate sensibilities of mind, body, and soul, and new lush works produced in France include a fleeting peek at summertime shadows cascading across sunlit bales of hay. “I wanted to think about the feeling of the last days of summer sun, when we have sunk into this feeling but need to enjoy it as much as we can before it ends,” stated Arthur.

Veuve Clicquot and Magnum Photos Exhibition at Milan Design Week with photographer Lindokuhle Sobekwa

© Lindokuhle Sobekwa, courtesy of Magnum Photos and Veuve Clicquot.

An Inaugural Restaurant and Boutique Invite Visitors to Revel in Shining Artistry

In addition to the photographic presentation, a restaurant and boutique invites visitors to linger in the harmonious “Emotions of the Sun” exhibition. “Designing the space for this exhibition allowed me to bring together two integral elements of Maison Veuve Clicquot’s identity: culture and design,” said Guisset. In this vein, both the rapturous culinary experience and exclusive shop are embellished with the house’s signature shining hues and principles.

The delightful theme of “Sun in your plate,” debuts in Milan with famed Chefs Jean Imbert of Plaza Athénée (Paris), Mory Sacko of MoSuke Paris, Valentina Rizzo of Farmacia dei Sani in Ruffano (Lecce), and Michelin-star icon Karime Lopez of Gucci Osteria (Florence). During Milan Design Week, guests will be transported by dishes conjuring the luscious flavors of summer with vibrant seasonal produce—the sun’s blossoming offerings for all—paired with the brand’s unparalleled cuvées.

The bespoke store will display premier cuvées as well as mesmerizing objects, including La Grande Dame by Paola Paronetto (an original bottle holder created in collaboration with Stella McCartney), a limited-edition vessel of 8 photographic prints from the exhibition, and a myriad of wondrous treasures from the shimmering Veuve Clicquot universe.

Veuve Clicquot and Magnum Photos Exhibition at Milan Design Week with photographer Newsha Tavakolian

© Newsha Tavakolian, courtesy of Magnum Photos and Veuve Clicquot.

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Ahead of the week of Milan Design Week, we’re introducing new collections and immersive exhibitions by internationally renowned design brands.
Milan Design Week is about to debut its latest chapter, and within it, a spotlight on the novel and the next—including the young designers.
Veuve Clicquot and Magnum Photos unveiled “Emotions of the Sun” at Milan Design Week, a traveling exhibition on view through April 21.

SUBSCRIBE TO NEWSLETTER

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of Art, Fashion, Design,
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