With the annual FNB JoburgArtFair just around the corner, there’s a lot to be excited about.
This year’s fair looks set to offer another outstanding showcase of new artworks, talks, special projects and more, including work by the 2017 Featured Artist Robin Rhode and curated programmes by London-based Dr Zoe Whitely. Of course, events like the FNB JoburgArtFair require a tremendous amount of artistic, economic and physical input from a number of different people and organisations in order to get off of the ground. To do what they do on such a scale, they rely on several mutually beneficial partnerships, and one of those partnerships is Pernod Ricard’s Perrier-Jouët. While Pernod Ricard itself is no stranger to the arts, its world-renowned champagne, Perrier-Jouët has come to be one of the number one brands behind art fairs and events the world over. To date, they have partnered with Design Miami, London Art Week and more, offering an exclusive and luxurious experience to artists, gallery owners and art lovers alike. Beyond offering up a unique experience to art fair patrons, the Perrier-Jouët brand is one that’s always found its home in the arts.
Prestige Channel Director Vika Shipalana and Business Development Manager Mandla Holomisa explain that the origins of the brand itself can be traced back to a love of art. ‘The story goes back to the two founders, Pierre-Nicolas Perrier and Rose-Adélaїde Jouët,’ the two explain. ‘They were a young couple who were in love, and they had a mutual love for art – particularly Art Nouveau – and a passion for nature, so a lot of the work we do with Perrier-Jouët is always relating to the arts in some shape or form.’ The very look and feel of Perrier-Jouët is a testament to good taste and fine art, too. On the bottle, swirls of Japanese anemone flowers blossom across the glass, wreathed in a rich gold. This is a nod to the story of Perrier and Jouët and their mutual love for nature, as well as a subtle homage to the arts itself. But how does one of the leading names in champagne find itself in a partnership with one of South Africa’s most well-known art fairs? It was a natural progression, says Shipalana.
‘We’ve partnered with some of the most exciting and esteemed art fairs in the world, so when we decided to introduce Perrier-Jouët to South Africa, it was only fitting that we should partner with what we consider to be one of the biggest art events on the continent,’ she explains. ‘Pernod Ricard as a whole has had a longstanding relationship with the FNB JoburgArtFair through our other brand, Absolute Vodka. But we soon realised that a brand like Perrier-Jouët would be a better fit with the FNB JoburgArtFair because of the nature of the festival. Individuals like art lovers, gallery owners, collectors, and more are able to attend the fair and enjoy a VIP experience with our champagne.’ With a bar situated at the centre of the art fair, Perrier-Jouët will ensure that FNB JoburgArtFair patrons are treated to a truly luxurious experience. The goal, says Shipalana, is for everyone to create lasting memories at the FNB JoburgArtFair and for Perrier-Jouët to form a part of those memories.
‘The FNB JoburgArtFair is one of the most looked-forward-to events on the cultural calendar and every year, people come away with a whole range of stories from their time at the art fair. What we want to do is to form a part of those stories. We want people to remember the art and the people, and we want them to remember that it all started with a glass of Perrier-Jouët champagne,’ she enthuses. And what are the team at Perrier-Jouët looking forward to at this year’s FNB JoburgArtFair themselves? ‘The VIP programme is always fantastic,’ says Holomisa. ‘There are dinners and discussions and a whole lot of networking with some of the art world’s most passionate people.’ Shipalana adds that the opportunity to invest in the African art scene is just as exciting. ‘For us, Africa is at the forefront of the world’s art scene, and to be a part of that means you’re a part of something great.’ Indeed, the FNB JoburgArtFair looks like it’s shaping up to be another truly inspiring and innovative fair. If you’re headed through this year, be sure to keep an eye out for the Perrier-Jouët bar. Fine art and stimulating conversation always go down better with a glass of something good.