Life Imitates Art Backstage At Chanel Pre-Fall
“The theme of the collection, Paris-Byzance, is a great inspiration on its own,” Chanel global creative director of makeup Peter Philips said of Karl Lagerfeld’s Empress Theodora pre-fall show. But it was the famous mosaic rendering of Theodora that resides in Ravenna’s Basilica of San Vitale that played specific muse to both Philips and coiffing star Sam McKnight. From the tiled portrait, the face painter drew out a single focal point: “I re-created the red eye shadow/liner that she wears on the arch of her eyebrows by drawing the shape with Le Crayon Lèvres in Rouge,” Philips explains. Next, it was all about dusting lids with “a game of luminous golds and bronzes.” To do so, he mixed the gilded pigments in Chanel’s as-yet-unreleased Les 4 Ombres eye shadow quad in Topkapi with the brand’s Joues Contraste blush in Or and Mocha. Then he added two more lines—both in black—along the outer edge of the upper and lower lash lines to create a “choreography between gold, bronze, black, and red.” Philips left lips nude, adding a touch of healthy shine courtesy of Chanel’s Soin Tendre Lèvres, a clear hydrating balm. Staying true to his penchant for head-to-toe detail, he worked in a red pedicure using Chanel’s Le Vernis in Coromandel, which echoed the crimson lines drawn along the models’ brows. The Courtesan of Constantinople would no doubt be proud.
Photo: Vincent Lappartient