A pioneer in Travel Art, Orient Express is showing its first series of Manifest Pieces, evocative of an art of living and travelling born nearly 140 years ago.
As a partner to the 2016 FIAC, Orient Express will be infusing a special exhibition area in the Grand Palais with its unique spirit, and invite visitors to find out all about this new page in its history by going down an initiatory pathway, For the unveiling of its contemporary artistic universe, Orient Express chose Paris, an emblematic cultural capital and the departure point of its very first train, and specifically the FIAC, a cross-roads for emerging, cosmopolitan and multi-disciplinary creation, and collectors from the world over.
As a tribute to the multiple forms of know-how it carries on-board, Orient Express chose to conjure up all the diversity and excellence of its incipient days, and which have made its identity since 1883, all the while casting this unique travel experience in a resolutely contemporary light.
By exploring its own rich legacy and weaving a contemporary approach all at once, it will reinvent what the Orient Express was in its day - an avant-garde experience entirely apart from anything in existence until then - and dream up what travel luxury means in our age.
The fruit of more than two years analysing and interpreting the legacy and values of the train that became a legend, the Orient Express Manifest Pieces series was designed by Pierre-Alain Cornaz, Artistic Director of Orient Express, and produced in cooperation with artists selected for their exceptional talent. Rare and precious materials, stirring colours, ornamental details and exceptional know-how come together in an all- encompassing architectural concept.
As remarkable as they are emblematic, the Travel Bag, Writing Set, Lanterns, Coffee Set, Tapestry and Writing Desk, each conjure up different facets of the Orient Express legend: the connection with the arts and cultures, the almost-unreal, acutely sensory experience and the utterly precious environment.
Set along a pathway that is an allegory all its own, each object tells of a powerful time in the Orient Express’ history: the Travel Bag suggests a departure just ahead, the lanterns are an invitation to discover and marvel, while the coffee set is an illustration of ritual and sharing. The final scene, composed of the roll-top desk and matching bench, offers a reminder of the trip inward and self-discovery that come with each trip. The resulting dreamy atmosphere echoes each passenger’s own inspiration as new landscapes and cities crossed enrich their personal history.
￼Image: The Orient Express Manifest Pieces series, Limited Editions Orient Express by Pierre-Alain Cornaz
© Maud Remy Lonvis