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Louis Vuitton’s exhibit of celeb-designed trunks lands in NYC

Last stop, New York!

After 10 months on the road, Louis Vuitton’s traveling exhibition celebrating the French founder’s bicentennial birthday has finally arrived in Manhattan.

Called “200 Trunks, 200 Visionaries,” the immersive show is open to the public in the former Barneys building, along with the iconic restaurant Freds.

The roving project features 200 trunks imagined by luminaries and friends of the house, ranging from artists, singers and thinkers to iconic brands.

Each was asked to customize a metaphorical blank canvas measuring 50 x 50 x 100 centimeters — approximately the size of founder Louis Vuitton’s first trunk from the 1850s. And since “LV200” was conceived as a philanthropic endeavor, all of the talent donated their $2 million in fees to one of 15 charitable organizations across 13 countries benefiting young people.

Designer Marc Jacobs, actor Robin Wright, makeup artist Pat McGrath, activist and author Gloria Steinem, trend forecaster Lidewij Edelkoort, toy maker Lego and K-pop boy band BTS are just a few of the boldfaced names who got creative. Architect Frank Gehry’s masterpiece is displayed in a room with walls festooned with crumpled paper — a nod to his set design for opera “Don Giovanni” — while Brooklyn-born artist Francesca Sorrenti covered her work with signature collage. There’s even a 200-track jukebox trunk by British DJ and radio presenter Benji B. 

Guests can also swing by the ground-floor gift shop, which carries exhibition collectibles, small leather goods, accessories and books, or visit “The Residency,” a basement space where visionaries host interactive workshops and an in-house team prepares Louis Vuitton’s holiday windows for the building.

While the show is free to the public, nostalgic New Yorkers will want to reserve a table at Freds, the lunch hot spot famous for fine food and people-watching that closed in 2020. Louis Vuitton has revived the ninth-floor restaurant, now dubbed Freds x Louis, for the duration of the exhibit.

All in all, it’s a moveable feast.    

Open through Dec. 31 (closed Dec. 25) at 660 Madison Ave.; more information 

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