Lauren Finney Harden | January 7, 2021 | Food & Drink
Veuve Clicquot’s latest collaboration is a match made in creativity.
A special limited-edition Yayoi Kusama-designed gift box of La Grande Dame Champagne ($195)
Veuve Clicquot’s story is one of boldness, creativity and entrepreneurial spirit,” says its president and CEO, Jean-Marc Gallot. “In 1805, Madame Clicquot took the reins of the house after the death of her husband—at a time when women could neither work nor hold a bank account. Over the years, she revolutionized the field,” he says. So, when searching for an artist collaborator, it only made sense to call on Yayoi Kusama, known the world over for her trailblazing paintings, sculpture and performance art. “It was essential to partner with an iconic and committed personality, much like the one who made Veuve Clicquot an emblematic Champagne house all those years ago,” Gallot continues. “She ultimately was respected and called la grande dame of Champagne.”
An extremely rare selection of Kusama sculptures that fit a magnum of La Grande Dame ($36,000)
Now, in homage to Madame Clicquot, La Grande Dame—a prestige cuvée first launched in 1972—is considered one of the world’s most excellent Champagnes. At 90% pinot noir, “La Grande Dame 2012’s blend is all about the grape, magnified by 10% chardonnay to achieve harmony through strength and delicacy,” he adds.
Kusama reimagined a portrait of Madame Clicquot herself.
The partnership with Kusama, in fact, is not new: In 2006, the artist used her iconic polka-dot pattern to “reimagine a traditional painting of Madame Clicquot,” Gallot explains. “But in many ways, the shared history goes deeper. Though living different lives in very different places and moments in time, Yayoi Kusama and Madame Clicquot are both remarkably bold women and there are fascinating parallels between their destinies. Kusama’s artistic expression is both generous and deeply optimistic. This resonates with Veuve Clicquot, a house that has always sparkled with optimism and a hopeful sense of joie de vivre.”
Photography by: Artwork by Yayoi Kusama; photos courtesy of Veuve Clicquot