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LOOK: Asian-American contemporary visual artist James Jean reinterprets the Johnnie Walker bottle

LOOK: Asian-American contemporary visual artist James Jean reinterprets the Johnnie Walker bottle

The Lunar New Year limited-edition bottle is now available in the Philippines

Scotch whisky brand Johnnie Walker has launched an intricate new Blue Label Lunar New Year Limited Edition Design, created by one of today’s most influential visual artists in the world, Asian-American artist James Jean.

The vivid design for the Year of the Dragon features an innovative and dynamic interpretation of 2024’s Zodiac animal – the noble Wood Dragon. Regarded by many as the mightiest of all the Zodiac animals, the Wood Dragon is symbolic of life and creativity, as well as a sign of future prosperity in traditional Asian culture, echoing the defiant optimism of the Johnnie Walker motto, “Keep Walking.”

James shares, “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.” In the design’s layered visuals, the evergreen Wood Dragon springs from bountiful flora and fauna, bursting to life with auspicious ambition.

The limited-edition Lunar New Year Johnnie Walker Blue Label and John Walker & Sons XR 21 designed James Jean is now available in the Philippines

Born in Taipei and raised in New Jersey, James, who attended the School of Visual Arts in New York, shares the creative vision of this limited edition design: “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.”

James Jean has 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 adds, “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.”

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The arrival of the 2024 Lunar New Year Limited Edition designs was celebrated in Bangkok, Thailand, on January 17 in an exclusive event that took place at Johnnie Walker’s stunning Depth of Blue Room at the 35th Floor of the luxurious Park Hyatt in Bangkok.

It was an exclusive celebration graced by distinguished guests from across Southeast Asia, including celebrities from Vietnam, Singapore, Thailand, and the Philippines such as Sunnies co-founders Bea Soriano and Eric Dee Jr., and featured eclectic DJ sets against a backdrop of live electric violin, creating a vibrant atmosphere that perfectly complemented Johnnie Walker’s progressiveness and James Jean’s visionary artistry.

The Johnnie Walker Blue Label Lunar New Year Limited Edition is an ideal way to celebrate the start of a prosperous year, making it a sought-after gift for the 2024 Lunar New Year. It is now available in the Philippines in all S&R branches, online through Singlemalt.PH, and through Diageo Private Sales channels.

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