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9 Sep

Gagosian Show Spotlights Andy Warhol’s Ties to Paris and Fashion

Gagosian Show Spotlights Andy Warhol’s Ties to Paris and Fashion

PARIS — Fashion and fame were two of Andy Warhol’s principal obsessions — and in Paris, the king of Pop Art found a fertile breeding ground for each.

Warhol could also be endlessly identified with Recent York City and his Factory studio, but he was equally celebrated within the French capital, where he was a frequent visitor. The American artist at one point kept an apartment within the Left Bank neighborhood of Saint-Germain-des-Près, and even enlisted Karl Lagerfeld to seem in his locally filmed underground movie “L’Amour.”

A latest exhibition on the Gagosian gallery near Place Vendôme spotlights Warhol’s tackle Paris and his ties with fashion, with portraits of celebrated designers including Hubert de Givenchy, Sonia Rykiel and Azzedine Alaïa.

“Andy Warhol: Paris and Fashion,” which runs until Oct. 12, presents 40 photographs starting from his signature Polaroid portraits of celebrities, which he used as the premise for silkscreen paintings, to off-the-cuff black-and-white photographs of Paris landmarks, often taken from the back of a automobile.

Like a time capsule, they supply a snapshot of his life on either side of the Atlantic, capturing events like a dinner with Diane de Beauvau-Craon, the socialite referred to as the “punk princess,” or a visit to Hubert de Givenchy’s atelier with art patron São Schlumberger.

“Warhol had a really acute perception of Parisian fashion, having maintained close ties with fashion throughout his profession,” said Serena Cattaneo Adorno, director of Gagosian’s Paris galleries.

“His vision was obviously influenced by his friendship with famous designers with whom he shared intimate moments,” she said, singling out a Polaroid he took on vacation in Morocco with Yves Saint Laurent and his partner Pierre Bergé.

“Having said that, he was also excited by emerging designers,” Cattaneo Adorno added, noting that the exhibit features images of Diane von Furstenberg, Jean Paul Gaultier and Stephen Sprouse where they were of their early 30s. “He was already near all these designers well before they became hugely famous.”

The photographs are drawn from a personal collection. “What is phenomenal is to collect so many emblematic snapshots of Paris and of fashion personalities in a single exhibition,” she opined.

While the Polaroids seize iconic designers like Giorgio Armani and Carolina Herrera in fascinating poses, much of Warhol’s photography has a throwaway quality, explained by his documentary approach. “An image means I do know where I used to be every minute. That’s why I take pictures. It’s a visible diary,” he once said.

“Cafe de Flore,” 1981 by Andy Warhol.

Courtesy of Gagosian Paris

Cattaneo Adorno noted he applied the identical method to famous monuments as he did to celebrities. “It’s really an American in Paris,” she said. “The concept is at all times to take something iconic and reuse it.” Indeed, Warhol would go on to feature the Eiffel Tower in certainly one of the paintings he made with Jean-Michel Basquiat in 1985.

The Gagosian team was able to this point the photographs and discover other significant details because of Warhol’s diaries, which were originally published in 1989 but have gained latest relevance because of a recent Netflix series. “This has revived interest in his life and who he frolicked with,” Cattaneo Adorno said.

The exhibition includes black-and-white images of a young Carole Bouquet in a sleeveless sweater and jeans; Loulou de la Falaise smoking, and Jack Nicholson sharing a meal with Italian model and longtime Saint Laurent muse Marina Schiano. There are Polaroids of Paris nightlife queen Régine and American model and jewellery designer Tina Chow.

“Nowadays, because of web, you may be in contact with anyone on the earth. On the time, you needed to be in Paris, on the Café de Flore, waiting for somebody to walk in or walk out to have that sort of exchange,” the gallery director remarked.

In an interview with the Gagosian Quarterly magazine, von Furstenberg described how Warhol would socialize.

“He was a voyeur. He allow you to speak and he didn’t speak very much and when he did it was at all times something short and he would say it to make you say more. He desired to know all the things about you, he desired to take your picture, he had a recorder in his pocket, he desired to paint you. He was all-absorbing,” she recalled.

“But looking back, he had such an incredible sense of branding. He had a vision of what the world was going to be that none of us realized until it was here. In a way, he did social media before social media. He would have gone insane with Instagram. He was the unique influencer,” von Furstenberg said.

“Self-Portrait in Fright Wig,” 1986 by Andy Warhol.

Courtesy of Gagosian Paris

Meanwhile, Warhol’s business work, including Polaroids of a topless man in Levi’s jeans, and a pile of Halston-branded shoes, illustrates his enduring influence on the aesthetics of fashion and promoting today. At the middle of a wall of Polaroids is “Self-Portrait in Fright Wig” taken in 1986, a number of months before his death, suggesting that the star of the show stays Warhol himself.

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