LEEUWIN ESTATE
MUSEUM ON THE
LABEL
I have mentioned earlier about the annual Mouton Rothschild's tradition to introduce the new masterpiece of art on their label.

Being the most well known pioneers in connecting the wine and art, Mouton Rothschild created the phenomenon, which allows us to witness how the empty Mouton Rothschild bottles are being sold on eBay.

Today this idea attracts many producers. As it still looks like the pretty simple mental association, and pretty useful and easy way to promote wine, speculating on the concept of art. But it's not so simple as one can think, and the answer to the question can this marketing tool multiply the sales' lies much deeper in the paradigm of modern philosophy and social sciences rather marketing studies.

The answer is contradictive as the modern art can be. As the most primitive forms and color combinations splattered on the canvas become suddenly the most important symbols of the epoch.
Andy Warhol Dollar Signs (1982)
Only some succeed, others just stay in the range of low art…It gives us the only one answer, the internal energy and authors charisma, is much more important than just the forms we can observe.

It seems to be simpler when speaking about wine, as consumers interact with the materialistic sense of taste. But as usual things are just much more complicated, as wine is a commercial product, first of all. Money and art are really bad neighbours.

Winemaking being of course an art itself, slowly exits the shade, giving the shy trials to shift in to world of fine art. To say it simply, it is a real challenge to enter the other edge of Art. If you dare, you should have had deserved it.

I think combining wine with other spheres of art is extremely important, as it reveals the real nature of this product, still in shades - open for luxury products. But still such big steps from famous ones, simple understandable for the world, highly discussed. It creates the right vector the hole wine consumption should move. That we want to observe and share it.

One of the great examples, I want to tell about, is one of the best known Australian family owned estates – The Leeuwin Estate.
Located in the Margaret River region, the team at Leeuwin Estate have earned an international reputation for making the world's finest wines.

Leeuwin Estate was established in 1974 by the Horgan family, and today, after 40 years of prominent management, it is now under the direction of the second Horgan generation, still by the supervision of the founders.

The Famous estate grows the wide variety of wines, producing the wine in different price segments under four labels, but the most iconic series which brought the world fame to Horgan family are the Art Series mainly presented in mainly 6 grape varieties:

Chardonnay (probably the headliner), Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz and Pinot Noir (only some vintages)
In 1972, legendary Napa Valley winemaker, Robert Mondavi, first identified the future site of the Leeuwin vineyard as being ideal for the production of premium wine and provided early mentorship to Denis and Tricia Horgan. The initial vineyards were planted by hand over a five year period from 1975.

The Art Series is known as a very complex wine, with the ability to aging. 'Art Series' Chardonnay became the star of Leeuwin Estate providing 28 outstanding vintages and has firmly established the concept and image of Leeuwin's wine overlapping with the edge of art.

The first vintage of the Art Series Chardonnay was from 1980, with the first vintage of the wine receiving a recommendation as the best Chardonnay in the world by Decanter in 1982.

After, the first painting was commissioned. It was The Caves Road by Robert Juniper for the 1980 Art Series Chardonnay.
The Caves Road (1980)
Today Leeuwin's owns the unique collection of contemporary Australian Art and the collection now comprises over one hundred paintings and artworks from artists. Many of them are demonstrated in the winery museum, free for entrance to every visitor.
Leeuwin Museum
Many of the paintings and sculptures were specifically commissioned. Others were discovered in exhibitions around Australia and the artists approached for copyright permission to be reproduced as part of the label series. Some works have been lent from time to time but most are on display in the Leeuwin Estate Art Gallery.

Leeuwin Estate has already recreated a solemn heritage on their labels. Definitely it is not a topic for one post. To complete the introduction with the great lowers of art, I want to concentrate on some ethnic Australian authors, who were honored by Leeuwin.
Minnie Pwerle

Minnie Pwerle is one of the most famous Australian aboriginal artists. She began painting in 2000 at about the age of 80, and her pictures soon became popular and sought-after works of contemporary Indigenous Australian art. Because of her growing popularity she was once "kidnapped" to paint for her abductors.

Alangkura Napanangka

Alangkura Napanangka the Indigenous Western Desert Artist was born in 1946 in the family of artists, having the very difficult life. In 1956 her family walked hundreds of kilometres through the desert to gain access to the food and water. Now her works are represented in many important Australian museums.

Tjunkaya Tapaya

Tjunkaya Tapaya (born 1947) is one of the most well-known batik artists in Australia. Her works also include acrylic paintings, weaving, ceramics, wood carving and printmaking. Most of Tapaya's paintings depict places and events from her family's dreaming stories.

As the same story with Chateau Mouton Rothschild, it is no longer a challenge for Leeuwin's to convince the leading artists to be part of this collection. Year to year the noble cause made by the estate grew together with Leeuwin's name. I wish them the long and prominent history, and will be happy to discover the diverse Australian art together with the taste of rich Australian wine, on the next pages of my blog.
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