For the 10th annual Hennessy Very Special Limited Edition, the Maison Hennessy is proud to announce its collaboration with the street-turned-studio artist Faith XLVII.
In 2020, the Hennessy Very Special Limited Edition by Faith XLVII opens an exciting new chapter in the Maison’s tradition of fostering partnerships with artists who are part of a global movement. In extending its platform to commiteed, visionary talents who strive to affect positive change on a community level, Hennessy reinforces its commitment to supporting emerging artists.
As the guest artist for the 10th annual Hennessy Very Special Limited Edition, Faith XLVII is the first female voice to join the Limited Editions series, a formidable artistic lineage that features internationally acclaimed talents such as Felipe Pantone, Vhils, JonOne, Shepard Fairey, Os Gemeos, Futura and Kaws.
Faith XLVII: Alchemist of Nature and Art
A the root of Faith XLVII’s artistic journey from graffiti artist and muralist to studio artist, is a desire to foster healing and awareness about the interconnected nature of the universe.
“It’s an energetic phenomenon,” the artist explains. “We’re seeing a shift in perspective toward protecting nature, the earth, animals and the environment.”
“There weren’t a lot of women in the space at that time, so I felt the need to challenge the kind of the status quo in a masculine environment,’ the artist recalls. In her work, she addressed her homeland’s complex social dynamic through a female perspective, and notably in a series based on the country’s Freedom Charter.
In 2017, Faith XLVII relocated from Cape Town to LA, where she continued to expand and redefine her practice. Today, she is a leading player on the international art scene, yet she sees herself as “a citizen of the earth”, part of a wider community of ‘woke’ artists. Through her site-specific works in urban spaces, she seeks to connect with local communities: jer monumental black-and-white murals depict animals and mystical creatures as well as symbols of human commonality like maps, hands, and interlaced figures.
A fearless multidisciplinary artist whose visual language spans found and reclaimed objects, collages, painting, video installations and printmaking, Faith XLVII addresses universal issues by highlighting the female perspective.
“My roots run deep,” the artist explains. “What I learn when I create is the cumulative result of an entire life experience.” For her, this 10th anniversary collaboration with Hennessy is part of a fresh new cycle of creation that begins with Hennessy Very Special. It also opens a fresh chapter. Collaborating with Hennessy “dovetails perfectly with things I am always thinking about: the cycles of nature, the phases of the moon, the seasons and circle-like cyclical time- and just how all of these things make us alive.”
Hennessy Very Special 2020: Blending the Elements
Hennessy’s artistic partnership with the South African-born, Los Angeles-based artist Faith XLVII for its 2020 Hennessy Very Special Limited Edition series represents an auspicious meeting of minds.
For Faith XLVII, the artistic journey is “a form of alchemy”, a description that naturally chimes with Hennessy’s process.
Upon her first visit to the Château de Bagnolet, the Maison’s historic seat in Cognac, France, one of the first things Faith XLVII sensed was the luxury of time that goes into crafting Hennessy Blends. In her eyes, the complex process of selecting eaux-de-vie – a process that relies on centuries of savoir-faire – offered a soothing antidote to the high-speed digital age.
“Hennessy is rooted in very simple principles, which seem the same as they were when they started more than 250 years ago,” the artist observes. “To me, it’s really beautiful to be connected with a completely natural process.” The bridge between Hennessy’s universe and her own immerdiately became self-evident.
“In my work, I take tthe time to seek out form and be considerate of raw materials. There’s a kind of organic alchemy to the process, which is also true of the way Hennessy works. In a way we are both taking basic substances and creating someting new,” says Faith XLVII. “My process is similar to the Master Blender’s selection of eaux-de-vie, in that you take basic elements and use them over time to craft something extraordinary.”
For the 2020 Hennessy Very Special Limited Edition, Faith XLVII has created a powerful work of art representing Hennessy through the elements, earth and the cycles of nature. With the sun and time as central elements, intricate detail pays tribute to nature via references to the moon, rain, clouds and grapevines accentuated in precious gold leaf.
A palette inspired by natural colors combines gold elements with peachy, sunset tones to convey, while striking graphic lettering pays tribute to the chalk inscriptions on age-old barrels stores in the Founder’s Cellar in Cognac.