Antonio Lopez: Off-Duty Disco

Karl Lagerfeld, Grace Jones and Andy Warhol Star in the Fashion Illustrator’s Personal Photo Collection

Antonio Lopez’s candid images of his camped-up entourage basking in St. Tropez and Studio 54-era New York capture the headiness of the 1970s. Born in Puerto Rico and raised in the Bronx, the fashion illustrator is better known for his swirling, Pop Art-infused sketches and psychedelic personality portraits. These rarely seen Instamatic photographs featuring Karl Lagerfeld, Andy Warhol and Anna Piaggi were shot during Lopez’s downtime from assignments for Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar and The New York Times, and coincide with an exhibition of Lopez's work from online gallery East of Mayfair, on show at the Roland Mouret concept store in London. “The photographs actually look like his drawings,” says curator Janina Joffe. “They have the same movements and composition.” While working in Paris with art director Juan Ramos, Lopez notably discovered Jerry Hall and Tina Chow. “I think what people liked about Antonio is his character, his lifestyle and vivacity,” says Joffe of the industry iconoclast, who would have turned 70 this year. “It was a scene but it wasn’t sceney the way it is now. They wanted to be out there, outrageous and very fun—and that’s what you can tell with this project.”

Antonio Lopez runs at East of Mayfair and Roland Mouret, London, from September 14 to October 20 2013.

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  • ON REPLAY
    ON REPLAY

    Shorts on Sundays: Wildcat

    Kahlil Joseph's Film Meditates on the Origins of an All-Black Rodeo in Oklahoma

    A dreamlike narrative binds cowboy and an angelic specter clad in white in director Kahlil Joseph's exploration of a little-known African-American rodeo subculture. Joseph, who is part of the Los Angeles-based What Matters Most film collective, visited the annual August rodeo in the sparsely populated Oklahoma town of Grayson (previously Wildcat), an event that attracts African-American bull riders, barrel racers and cowgirls from all over the Midwest and southern USA. He set out to celebrate the origins of the rodeo by paying respect to the spirit of Aunt Janet, a member of the family who founded the event, passed away last year and is embodied as the young girl in the film. “Black people are light years more advanced than the ideas and images that circulate would have you believe. The spaces we control and exist are my ground zero for filming, at least so far, and there are opportunities for me to tap into the energy,” says Joseph who has also made films for musicians including Shabazz Palaces and Seu Jorge. “So an all-black town with an all-black rodeo in the American heartland was a kind of vortex or portal through which I could actually show this.” Wildcat is scored by experimental musician Flying Lotus, who has previously collaborated with Joseph on a short to accompany his 2012 album Until the Quiet Comes, which is showing during Sundance London this weekend.

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  • MORE KARL LAGERFELD
    MORE KARL LAGERFELD

    Karl Lagerfeld: Zillions

    Malcolm Venville's Crusade to Pose a Single Question to the Illustrious Designer at His Alpine Exhibition

    There aren’t many people who you’d endure several flights, two long train journeys, exceedingly early wake-up calls and a soggy McDonald’s hamburger dinner to spend one minute with—but that’s how powerful the pull of fashion legend Karl Lagerfeld can be. And that pilgrimage is exactly what director Malcolm Venville undertook for a brief encounter with the Chanel and Fendi designer, artist, photographer and one-man cultural phenomenon in St. Moritz in February, where the polymath was revealing an exhibition at Galerie Gmurzynska. The series featured Lagerfeld’s new set of fire etchings on glass—based on portraits of his muses such as Theophilus London, Freja Beha Erichsen and Aymeline Valade—and evolved the Kaiser’s extraordinary photographic legacy, which has yielded not only a multitude of ad campaigns, but also groundbreaking books like The Metamorphosis of an American and The Beauty of Violence, both of which distilled the model-to-muse relationship, focusing respectively on male faces Brad Koenig and Baptiste Giabiconi. Navigating the alpine VIP frenzy, filmmaker Venville came straight up against the unrealistic expectations of the Kaiser’s media and creative schedule. Hence he delivered just one potent question, appealing to Lagerfeld’s savoir faire. “To borrow from Hamlet,” says Venville, “brevity is the soul of wit, and he couldn’t be more interesting in that respect.” The director would know, having helmed the films 44 Inch Chest starring John Hurt and Ray Winstone and Henry’s Crime with Keanu Reeves. “I felt there was a lot of power in his answer,” he says of Lagerfeld. “It’s all about the artistic process being intuitive and spontaneous.”  

    (Read More)

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