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Sunday mornings are for hammocks and haberdasheries in the hills

One man reclines on a chair while the other stands next to a pingpong table. Both are wearing Louis Vuitton.
Carlisle Aikens, left, and Ish Cepeda at Louis Vuitton‘s “Crafting Dreams Los Angeles.” Aikens wears Louis Vuitton Pre-Fall 2023 DB Pont Neuf jacket, Pont Neuf pants. Cepeda wears Louis Vuitton Pre-Fall 2023 Vuitton Flower jacket, MNG S/S shirt, MNG short. Objects include Louis Vuitton Ping-Pong Table in Monogram Turquoise, Louis Vuitton Objets Nomades Belt Lounge Chair by Atelier Oï in Milk, Louis Vuitton Cotteville 16 Montres.
(Sam Muller / For The Times)
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The scenario: You have virtually unlimited access to a mansion in Bel-Air for the afternoon. The question: What do you do? Go through the red carpet gowns in the closet, maybe. Play pool, definitely. Big chill in the hammock, overlooking most of the Westside (and what is possibly the Weeknd’s backyard)? Absolutely. And what if we told you the mansion was home to an exclusive exhibition from Louis Vuitton — that the leather hammock was designer, that the gowns were worn by Ana de Armas, Cynthia Erivo and Gemma Chan, and that the pool balls and sticks were branded with “LV”?

Two people laugh and play ping pong.
Carlisle Aikens, left, and Ish Cepeda enjoy virtually unlimited access to a mansion in Bel-Air for the afternoon.
(Sam Muller / For The Times)
A man in a suit jacket stands in front of a pool table and holds a pool cue.
Louis Vuitton Billiard Monogram Eclipse MM, one of the featured items at the pop-up exhibition.
(Sam Muller / For The Times)
A pool cue aims at a white billiards ball.
Louis Vuitton’s “Crafting Dreams Los Angeles” was an appointment-only experience for its top clientele featuring the house’s most coveted and singularly luxurious items.
(Sam Muller / For The Times)
A hand gripping a cue stick
Carlisle Aikens holds the cue stick from Louis Vuitton‘s Billiard Monogram Eclipse MM.
(Sam Muller / For The Times)
Two men stand wearing Louis Vuitton stand at the head of a pool table holding cues.
On a spring weekend, skaters Ish Cepeda, left, and Carlisle Aikens explored leisure on their own terms.
(Sam Muller / For The Times)

This was the scene for Louis Vuitton’s “Crafting Dreams Los Angeles,” an appointment-only experience for its top clientele featuring the house’s most coveted and singularly luxurious items throughout that ran from April 12 to May 3. It was also the place where, on a spring weekend, skaters Ish Cepeda and Carlisle Aikens explored leisure on their own terms.

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April 28, 2023

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A man wearing denim leans against a mirror, holding a silver bag.
Cepeda wears Louis Vuitton Pre-Fall 2023 MNG denim jacket, Racing Intarsia S/S shirt, MNG carpenter pants, Sac Plat.
(Sam Muller / For The Times)
Two men wearing denim pose in a hallway with skateboards on the wall.
Aikens, left, and Cepeda took their time in the hallway showcasing a collection of Louis Vuitton skateboards as pieces of art.
(Sam Muller / For The Times)
Man in denim stands in a hallway with skateboards on the wall.
Aikens wears Louis Vuitton Pre-Fall 2023 MNG denim shirt, MNG tank top, MNG carpenter shorts, LV Trainer sneaker.
(Sam Muller / For The Times)

“Crafting Dreams” was like walking into a Louis Vuitton fever dream, each room dedicated to a different experience. An entire gallery housed megawatt fine jewelry. The foyer featured a trunk sculpture that shot up into the residency’s incredibly high ceiling. There was an entire baby room, complete with statuettes of the brand’s mascot, Vivienne. True to Louis Vuitton’s heritage, trunks were a centerpiece of the exhibition. L.A. clients got a chance to preview the Cabinet of Curiosities, a special trunk by industrial designer Marc Newson that made its debut at Milan Design Week in April. A designer was also on-site to create custom hard-sided trunks with select clients. Highlights included the Infinity Party Trunk, featuring Yayoi Kusama’s whimsical dots and complete with a full Champagne service.

Two men lounge on orange and red Louis Vuitton poufs.
Cepeda, right, and Aikens lounge in a room with Louis Vuitton Objets Nomades Merengues by Campana in safran, light blue and corail, and Louis Vuitton Objets Nomades Cocoon by Campana in sunrise.
(Sam Muller / For The Times)
A detail of patterned Louis Vuitton jeans.
Detail of the MNG carpenter pants.
(Sam Muller / For The Times)
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A man sits in a hanging lounge chair with a skateboard next to him.
Aikens sits in the Louis Vuitton Objets Nomades Cocoon by Campana in sunrise.
(Sam Muller / For The Times)
A man wearing denim sits on a blue pouf.
“Crafting Dreams” was like walking into a Louis Vuitton fever dream, with each room dedicated to a different experience.
(Sam Muller / For The Times)

In front of photographer Sam Muller’s delicate lens, Cepeda and Aikens sipped on bubby while languidly exploring the massive house. They played Louis Vuitton-branded pingpong (luxe paddles and balls included). They took their time in the hallway showcasing a collection of Louis Vuitton skateboards as pieces of art and walked through “White Canvas” — the exhibition within the exhibition celebrating the brand’s classic LV Trainer and its many artistic reinterpretations.

Two people sit on a blue couch in a room with Louis Vuitton suitcases.
Aikens, left, and Cepeda in a room with Louis Vuitton Objets Nomades Bomboca Sofa by Campana in electric blue and a Louis Vuitton LV X YK Cotteville 40; on the wall behind: Louis Vuitton Objets Nomades Aguacate by Campana.
(Sam Muller / For The Times)

In other words, they were out here.

A paddle and pingpong balls lie on a L.V pingpong table.
Detail of Louis Vuitton Ping-Pong Table in Monogram Turquoise (luxe paddles and balls included).
(Sam Muller / For The Times)
A person lies on a hammock drinking Champagne.
Cepeda wears Louis Vuitton Pre-Fall 2023 MNG Resort S/S shirt, LVSE mini short on the Louis Vuitton Objets Nomades Hammock by Atelier Oï in caramel.
(Sam Muller / For The Times)
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Sam Muller is a Los Angeles-based photographer. He is the founder of 2001 Magazine, and his work has appeared in Ssense, Thrasher Magazine, 032c, and more.

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