Fifteen years in the making, Antonio Lopez – Future Funk Fashion opens today in Harlem. An extensive exhibition, it features more than 400 of the influential artist’s illustrations and creative projects.
Alongside editorial work for WWD, The New York Times and Interview, Lopez’s illustrations were also commissioned by major fashion brands of the 70s and 80s including YSL, Versace, Valentino and Chloé. Chloé’s then head designer Karl Lagerfeld was part of the Lopez inner fashion circle; as anyone familiar with Lopez’s expressive illustrations and Polaroids knows, his work was extremely collaborative. Also part of his circle were his model friends Pat Cleveland, Grace Jones and Tina Chow, diverse beauties immortalised in the cult book ‘Antonio’s Girls’.
Lopez’s illustrations epitomised the good times, they were energetic and vibrant and rooted in New York and Paris nightlife. So the exhibition is accompanied by a wall of records from his private disco collection and a playlist compiled by his regular DJ, Bill Corderjo. Fashion illustration is enjoying a revival right now but I think Lopez communicates something bigger. He was famous for representing ethnic beauty in a modern, high fashion way, not to mention the unapologetic gay lifestyle that allowed for creative expression to flourish. In light of what’s happened in Orlando, I think today is a good day to celebrate him.
Antonio Lopez – Future Funk Fashion is at El Museo del Barrio, Harlem, New York until November 26th 2016.
WORDS: Disneyrollergirl/Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGES: WWD; Antonio Lopez
NOTE: Some posts use affiliate links and PR samples. Please read my cookies policy here.