Johnnie Walker Blue Label Lunar New Year Limited Edition Design with James Jean | SENATUS



Johnnie Walker Blue Label Lunar New Year Limited Edition Design with James Jean

10 January 2024

By Tricia Oliviera

TUMI has merged its world-class design with cutting-edge innovation in its Spring 2023 collection, with new additions to the iconic Alpha Bravo Collection, a relaunch of the bestselling Voyageur Collection, the minimalist Harrison Collection and the TUMI | McLaren 60th Anniversary Collection.

Johnnie Walker has partnered with one of the most influential visual artists in the world, Asian-American artist James Jean, to launch the Johnnie Walker Blue Label Lunar New Year Limited Edition Design.

In James’ layered visuals for the limited edition offering, the evergreen Wood Dragon - the Zodiac sign for the upcoming Lunar New Year - springs from bountiful flora and fauna, and bursts to life with auspicious ambition.

"Many consider the dragon the most powerful animal in the Chinese Zodiac and the Wood Dragon felt remarkably close to me because of the natural elements prevalent in my work," explains Jean.

James adds, “Evolved from traditional depictions of Chinese dragons, my dragon is composed of flowers and organic elements, from which emerge tendrils and arcing lines, evoking the idea of roots and connection. With Johnnie Walker Blue Label Lunar New Year, we wanted to create a dragon that felt different, new and innovative - respect for the past but also looking into the future with optimism; in the same way that Johnnie Walker stands for progress through that incredible Keep Walking spirit.”

Born in Taipei and raised in New Jersey, James attended the School of Visual Arts in New York and worked closely with a number of Hollywood directors on promotional posters for several award-winning high-profile films. Renowned for his ability to work across different genres with an imaginative and multifaceted approach to image making, James fuses contemporary subjects with aesthetic techniques inspired by traditional Chinese scroll paintings, Japanese woodblock prints, and Renaissance portraiture.

He draws inspiration for his designs from the layers of incredible flavour that Johnnie Walker Master Blender Emma Walker and her team bring to Johnnie Walker Blue Label – a whisky made using some of the rarest whiskies from the unparalleled Johnnie Walker reserves of maturing Scotch, including some irreplaceable casks sourced from long-closed ‘ghost’ distilleries.

Jean concludes, “There are hidden elements in the picture as well – layers to be discovered, just like the layers in this incredible whisky. I included chrysanthemums, from which flow liquid gold - inspired by Johnnie Walker whiskies - and hummingbirds sipping on the precious nectar. I want the viewer to peel back the layers and discover more about the image. I want my work to function from far away but reveal more details the more closely you explore the imagery.”

James Jean also designed incredible illustrations for the Lunar New Year John Walker & Sons XR 21 Limited Edition Design. All Johnnie Walker Lunar New Year Limited Edition Designs are available in selected markets globally.

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