Grey Goose vodka has joined forces with Central Saint Martins on the school's largest alumni project to date, the Les Visionnaires scholarship fund. Drawing from the vast pool of creatives who once trained there, they engaged a roster of 21 illustrious participants across multiple industries. Among them are design duo Fredrikson Stallard, interior designer Afroditi Krassa and milliner Stephen Jones.
The alumni were asked to create original artwork in their respective styles, but all reflective of the vodka brand's strapline 'Fly Beyond'. The results have proven to be as fascinating as they are diverse. A handful explored the theme of flight – jewellery designer Hannah Martin, for instance, gave a chiselled, graceful portrayal of a pair of geese soaring in the sky, while Sir Terence Conran reimagined the Grey Goose bottle in the streamlined, iconic form of the Concorde aircraft.
Others took a more whimsical approach – Krassa depicted a fairytale-like figure astride the goose on her bottle, whereas industrial designer Sam Hecht added a simple, cartoonish eye to offer up a playful spin on the brand's mascot. And there were some who sought to reinvent the way in which Grey Goose bottles are presented. Fredrikson Stallard draped a sheet of carefully crumpled aluminium on theirs, and fashion designer Beatrix Ong sealed hers in a bell jar reminiscent of a taxidermy display.
The designs by Martin, fashion designer Jean-Pierre Braganza and writer Iain R Webb have been incorporated into Grey Goose martini gift sets, each in a limited run of ten. These will be sold exclusively at Selfridges from this July. Other artworks will be auctioned off on 2 July 2015, at a special event hosted at the school.
Working with renowned mixologist Ryan Chetiyawardana, Grey Goose also hosted a creative cocktail atelier for the alumni participants in May, whipping up vodka-based concoctions inspired by their artworks. The resulting cocktail menu will be made available at the Rumpus Room in the Mondrian Hotel, in the final component of the fundraising initiative.
Proceeds from the gift set sales, auction and cocktail menu will go towards the Les Visionnaires scholarship, which supports postgraduate students at Central Saint Martins. Just as the makers of Grey Goose have distilled a refined beverage out of modest traditions, the Les Visionnaires project will enable students from humble backgrounds to receive an education at one of the world's finest art and design schools, nurturing the visionaries of tomorrow.