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Dec 19, 2008
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Chanel closing handbag tour due to meltdown

By
AFP
Published
Dec 19, 2008

PARIS, Dec 19, 2008 (AFP) - Chanel is calling a halt to a mobile art exhibition featuring its iconic quilted handbag and chain in order to refocus on more strategic investments in these troubled times, the company said Friday.


Mobile Art Chanel

The handbag show, recently in New York's Central Park and due to have travelled on to London, was housed in a snow-white spaceship-like mobile art gallery designed by Iraqi-born British architect Zaha Hadid, and included works by 15 artists inspired by the purse created in 1955.

"In the current context we have to arbitrate. We prefer to refocus on our strategic investments in terms of development," a company spokeswoman told AFP.

Given the financial meltdown, the company instead would concentrate on opening boutiques and developing products rather than continuing with an operation "where we weren't selling anything," she added.

The Chanel Mobile Art exhibition began on February 27 in Hong Kong and then went on to Tokyo and New York. Due to have lasted two years, it was scheduled to travel to London and Moscow next year before ending in Paris in 2010.

The 180-tonne pavilion made of 700 pieces originally was built in Yorkshire in northern England and shipped piece by piece in more than 50 cargo containers.

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