WATCH | Courvoisier collaborates with a creative visionary

Maison Courvoisier, the world’s most awarded cognac house, has been shaking things up recently.

First, it helped cognac to shake off its “serious” reputation as a drink to be enjoyed “only after dinner”. Instead, the brand encouraged its fans to reach for their cocktail shakers and mix up refreshing cognac cocktails to be savoured during long, lazy afternoon get-togethers as well as evening soirées.

Next, Courvoisier shook up its look by introducing fresh packaging across its range of expressions that include Courvoisier VS, VSOP and XO. (Nothing changed on the inside, it remains the same award-winning cognac.)

The sophisticated designs of these new bottles and boxes pay homage to the brand’s rich history, which dates back to 1828, when it was established by Félix Courvoisier on the principle of “celebrating the joy in the every day”.

It’s in this spirit of “joie de vivre” that Courvoisier has now appointed Yinka Ilori as its first-ever “ambassador of joy”. This role was devised exclusively for this creative visionary, who’ll be collaborating with the brand to create a series of immersive experiences around the globe.

Ilori, an influential London-based multidisciplinary artist, is best known for fusing his subject matter with his British-Nigerian background to tell memorable stories through contemporary design. 

In 2020, Ilori was awarded the acclaimed Emerging Design Medal at the London Design Festival. The following year, The New York Times named him as one of the 12 artists shaping the global design industry.

Ilori is headlining the brand’s new campaign, “Welcome to Maison Courvoisier”, which stars a host of creatives showcasing their individual interpretation of joy in a series of short films.

They include SA’s very own Betina du Toit, a fashion and beauty photographer based in France, US actress, writer, producer and director Rashida Jones, Russian Michelin star chef Vladimir Mukhin, and award-winning British jazz musician Moses Boyd.

“For me, the essence of joy is through the use of colour. It makes people smile, it brings people together and delivers a natural sense of conviviality,” says Ilori. “Like Courvoisier, each piece of my work is inspired by community, a celebration of the fabric of collective energy.”