From shadows on a wall to bulletin boards and even fish scales—Chanel’s Lucia Pica translates the beauty of Asia into a painterly smorgasbord of earthly delights.

Portrait of Tammy Strobel

From shadows on a wall to bulletin boards and even fish scales—Chanel’s Lucia Pica translates the beauty of Asia into a painterly smorgasbord of earthly delights.

Clockwise from top left: Soaked tarp. The cruise 2019 beauty look. A close-up of a wall mural. The Ombre Premiere Eye Gloss on a photograph of fish scales. The gold of the Ombre Premiere Eye Gloss in Solaire was inspired by the metallic hue of fish. Rouge Coco Gloss on a pastel wall

Asia has been long been rich ground to search for creative inspiration, whether you’re talking about fashion, art or beauty. A place of fascinating contrasts, of unending richness, refinement and mystery, it’s no wonder artists and creators continually cast their eye east. This season, Chanel beauty offers a poetic encapsulation of the everyday. The brand’s Global Creative Makeup and Colour Designer, Lucia Pica created a makeup collection divided into two parts: Vision D’Asie: L’Art Du Détail for spring/summer 2019; and Vision D’Asie: Lumière et Contraste for cruise 2019. Both are different but complementary “Visions of Asia”— the former focuses on the art of detail while the latter emphasises light and contrasts. 

The inspiration for this started from photographs, taken on Pica’s travels through Japan and South Korea. For her, each snapshot held up a magnifying glass to the not-so-ordinary but often overlooked intricacies that form the fabric of vibrant cities like Tokyo and Seoul. “It was only once I got the photos developed that I had a true sense of the collection. And it is so obvious which elements of each image inspired a particular product,” shares Pica. “I didn’t want to just document. We were exploring real life, capturing fleeting colour and textures and then elevating them into something precious. I wanted to capture the sensation of being in East Asia; the atmosphere there practically makes you vibrate.” 

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Shadows on wood.

Zooming in and out for photographs is like applying makeup. I go in close to apply, take a step back and then zoom in again for more. The layering of light and colour makes things so much more impactful.

—Lucia Pica

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The Duo Bronze et Lumière.


In contrast to heavy contouring and streaky shimmer, the Duo Bronze et Lumière is a set of two silky powders that mattify and highlight, subtly sculpting a softer and more diffused sun-kissed face.

Inspiration: Natural light and shadows cast upon a wooden structure.

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Rouge Coco Flash lipstick on images of plastic bags and fallen florals.


Delicate rosy beige and dusty pink lips are made striking with dewy lustre. Think two layers: The Rouge Coco Flash lipstick for a pop of healthy colour and radiance, and over that, a slick of Rouge Coco Gloss in gold-green Fraîcheur or vivid pink Aurora. “With a lipstick and a gloss, you can create a special effect very quickly. You feel glamorous, without needing to make much effort. This is easy glamour,” Pica adds. 

Inspiration: A plastic bag, fallen flowers, pastel bulletin boards. 

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A photo of flower buds in the sunlight with the Baume Essential.


Rapidly carving out a niche in many makeup bags is the transparent balm Baume Essentiel. This glide-on gel stick veils skin in a luminous, glassy finish and comes in either a light rosy Transparent hue or satiny peach Sculpting shade. “It’s a light, sculptural effect for the face without any trace of heaviness,” explains Pica, who uses it to accentuate the cheekbones and brow bone, or illuminate the cheeks and eyelids.

Inspiration: Sunrays streaming through blooming trees during the first flush of spring. 

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Les 4 Ombres Lumières Naturelles. Ombre Premiere Gloss


Dimensional eye contouring is a focal point of the collection, fusing flashes of high gloss with creamy colours for depth. This is achieved with the Stylo Ombre Ey Contour crayon or the Les 4 Ombres Lumières Naturelles eye shadow palette. A touch of gloss on the centre of the lid, or smoothed over the entire eye socket, maximises colour-layering intensity, creating an architectural modern eye. “I’m very fond of gloss for the eyes,” says Pica. “And the translucency of Ombre Premiere Gloss creates an incredibly sophisticated result—I adore textures merging with one another.”

Inspiration: Soaked tarp, a hole in the wall and silvery-gold fish.