PARIS — It’s a twofer of an unusual sort, at least for luxury house Chanel.
Offering a preview of the new edition of the ceramic J12 watch, Chanel also introduced artistic director Arnaud Chastaingt.
Director of the Chanel watch creation studio since 2013, like many people in such positions in the high-end watches and jewelry industry, the design graduate has kept largely in the shadows.
Why didn’t Chanel introduce him before?
“It’s not the tradition of the watch and high-jewelry business to introduce designers — I think that’s often linked to the fact that many houses use a lot of external designers — which is not our case,” Nicolas Beau, director of Chanel’s international business development for watches and fine jewelry, told WWD, speaking from a vast salon overlooking the Place Vendôme.
But even the luxury houses are changing their ways, opening up parts of their businesses as they sharpen their storytelling skills to suit a digital era.
Arnaud Chastaingt of Chanel.
Chastaingt is the creative force behind the house’s recent watch models: the Boy Friend, Code Coco — which borrows the signature, rotating lock of Chanel’s quilted 2.55 handbag — and Monsieur de Chanel, recognized by the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie in Geneva first in 2017 for