Walking down the streets of Paris, you would never think that you are in a country renowned for its sexual freedom. Denim on denim, oversize coats, Stan Smiths– androgyny, if anything, is the national uniform, and any parlay into stilettos or mini skirts is generally regarded as vulgaire. And yet, the French culture is swarming with historical and cinematographic references that convey an exceptionally liberal sexual identity, from Marquis de Sade (from whose name is derived the term “sadism”), to cult classic films like Les Amants (The Lovers), to notorious politician Dominique Strauss-Kahn (“DSK”), now internationally infamous for his sexual exploits. But it’s not that Paris hides its relationship to experimental sexuality: It’s less “seedy underbelly,” more “open secret.” This is a world open to anybody who is willing to give it a try, starting with the various libertine clubs scattered all over the city, the most famous one being Les Chandelles, a Parisian institution known as the regular haunt of numerous celebrities, writers, and politicians. It’s a mysterious and compelling subculture, complete with its own behavioral and sartorial codes, and I’ll admit it: I’m curious.
It would be an understatement to say that Airan Kang is fixated on the book as a form—the South Korean artist’s exhibitions have bibliophilic titles, almost to a one: there’s “The Only Book,” for instance, plus “Hello Gutenberg,” “Light Reading,” “The Bookshelf Enlightened,” and “Luminous Words.” Continue reading “The Luminous Poem” »
When I died, there was no one around to see it. I died all alone. It’s fine. Some people think it’s a great tragedy to die all alone, with no one around to see it.
My high-school boyfriend wanted to marry me, because he thought the most important thing to have in life was a witness.
To marry your high-school girlfriend, and have her with you all through life—that is a lot of witnessing.
Everything important would be witnessed by one woman. I didn’t like his idea of what a wife was for—someone to just hang around and watch your life unfold.
But I understand him better now.
It is no small thing to have someone who loves you see your life, and discuss it with you every night.
Instead of marrying him, I married no one. We broke up. I lived alone. I had no children.
In September 1992, I published my third book of photographs, “Immediate Family.” The book contained 60 photographs from a decade-long series of more than 200 pictures of my children, Emmett, Jessie and Virginia, who were about 6, 4 and 1 when I started the project. Continue reading “Sally Mann’s Exposure: In Her Own Words” »
Woman with Walt Whitman blue in her eyes
Comes like tempest through the narrow path of night,
Like the sudden rush of wings from the fruit bats in flight,
She shatters the quiet of your perfect alibi. Continue reading “Sheer, Sexy and Delightful” »
At first glance, Olya Thompson seems straight out of a Konstantin Makovsky painting. The textile designer perches on a chair in the Moscow showroom of her friend and fine jewelry designer Petr Axenoff, and the space is a scene ripped from pre-Russian Revolution grandeur: a warm tea room, lavishly enchanted by Thompson’s interiors (cascading French drapes printed with eighteenth century Italian etchings, chairs upholstered with a percale print inspired by the cover of an émigré art journal from the twenties). Continue reading “From Moscow with Style: Olya Thompson.” »
Thomas Jefferson supposedly said once or maybe twice that “good wine is a necessity of life.” Somehow, I don’t think bathing in his happy hour drink was quite what he had in mind. But it feels even more essential if it’s not only part of our diets, but also our beauty routines, right? Continue reading “Soaking in Sake: Japan’s Answer to the Red Wine Bath” »
Prepare to be dazzled. Adele Bloch-Bauer, the Viennese beauty who was immortalized Byzantine mosaic–style in gold by the painter Gustav Klimt, is the subject of a new exhibition at the Neue Galerie and a movie of the same name,The Woman in Gold, starring Helen Mirren. Continue reading “Golden Lady” »
I want to live in a lighthouse:
Be a beacon for ships in the night;
The glow from your eyes:
To the rest of the world unknown;
To me essence of life, Continue reading “Alone” »
Regardless of whether one sexual orientation has anything to do with his or her social and political views, it seems that the latest comment by the dynamic and alway restless duo of Italian Fashion, Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana, has fanned the flame of outrage in the gay community at large. Continue reading “The Dolce & Gabbana Faux Pas” »
Just over there, on a banquette beneath an oil painting depicting the racehorses Man o’ War and Citation in bookend profile, Rihanna and Naomi Campbell sit huddled like sleek and improbably beautiful fillies after a sudden storm. Continue reading “Ol’ New York Charm at the Polo Bar” »
The Frank Gehry geodesic domes of the Fondation Louis Vuitton were the best part of the show this morning. They capture the future in an organic and elegant manner, one that the collection unfortunately was not able to achieve. What struck you most was just how complacent Ghesquière seems to be with this gig….and considering the kind of clothes that he keeps putting forth it has become one of the great mysteries of the Fashion World….The collection must be selling well however in Estonia, Russia and China…and Mars…where people are brand crazy regardless of whether something is elegant or not… Continue reading “Louis Vuitton AW 2015: Very Star Trekkie…” »