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David Lynch and James Gray's set designer unveils his Polaroid

 

The inimitable set designer Happy Massee whose work has been made famous thanks to great masters of movie-making, music and fashion, has released a volume of exclusive Polaroid pictures captured throughout his career.

 

 

 

What links David Lynch, James Gray, Nicolas Winding Refn and Zoe Cassavetes ? Apart from their status as esteemed film directors - some of them already in the pantheon of cinema - they have all worked at least once with production director and set designer Happy Massee. A shadowy figure as discreet as he is prolific, his visionary approach is the secret behind the visual worlds of Two Lovers, Broken English and The Immigrant, music videos for the White Stripes and Madonna, and some of the biggest fashion campaigns of recent years for the likes of Gucci and Salvatore Ferragamo.

The goal of these images was to make “extensions” of the projects I worked on

 

 

 

A true visual compendium, the aptly named Diary of a set designer collates Polaroid photos taken by the artist over 25 years of career. A vertiginous mix of Lynchian, sensual and mysterious ambiances, candid portraits of celebrities resembling ordinary folk and so many other things, this work is key to understanding the American man’s psychology. “I started taking Polaroids on my first ever set, a music video for a singer called Martika that we filmed in Puerto Escondido, Mexico in the early 1990s,” he tells us, “The goal of these images was to make work references or extensions of the projects I worked on. They served only as indications of places we’d been to, as supporting documents to show to the director when he couldn’t be on set.”

Working on The Immigrant with James Gray was a fantastic experience. A historical movie based on Ellis Island where we had to transcribe the grimy depths of 1920s New York ; can you imagine a better visual project than that?

It’s the perfect opportunity to look back at his most memorable experiences, those that forged his vision as a set designer. “Working on The Immigrant with James Gray was a fantastic experience. A historical movie based on Ellis Island where we had to transcribe the grimy depths of 1920s New York; can you imagine a better visual project than that?” He continues, “That said, I also worked with people who are much less known, some really very talented directors like Malcolm Venville and Jake Scott… I’d say that what makes them all so brilliant is the fact that their visual identity and talent are so unique; each one has their own speciality. The only common denominator is their passion for what they do.” A passionate characteristic that perfectly characterises him too…

 

Diary of a set designer, published by Damiani, text by Happy Massee. 21,5 x 26,5, 160 pages, Colour, English.

 

By Marion Ottaviani.
 

At Arles, Ann Ray plunges us into the intimate world of Alexander McQueen
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At Arles, Ann Ray plunges us into the intimate world of Alexander McQueen

Photography At this year’s Rencontres d'Arles, French photographer Ann Ray takes us on an intimate journey into the world of one of fashion’s most iconic designers. A humble and touching exhibition shows Alexander McQueen in a new light. At this year’s Rencontres d'Arles, French photographer Ann Ray takes us on an intimate journey into the world of one of fashion’s most iconic designers. A humble and touching exhibition shows Alexander McQueen in a new light.

Carlo Mollino’s erotic Polaroids inspire Jeremy Scott for Moschino
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Carlo Mollino’s erotic Polaroids inspire Jeremy Scott for Moschino

Photography It was only when he died that Carlo Mollino’s erotic Polaroids came to light at his villa in Turin. Countless images of half-naked anonymous women caught in lascivious poses. For his sublime fall-winter 2018/19 pre-collection, Jeremy Scott drew inspiration from these saucy pictures taken in the Italian architect, designer and photographer’s spare time. It was only when he died that Carlo Mollino’s erotic Polaroids came to light at his villa in Turin. Countless images of half-naked anonymous women caught in lascivious poses. For his sublime fall-winter 2018/19 pre-collection, Jeremy Scott drew inspiration from these saucy pictures taken in the Italian architect, designer and photographer’s spare time.

Robert Frank : The birth of a legend
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Robert Frank : The birth of a legend

Photography Robert Frank’s celebrated portrait of his adopted homeland, the americans, turns 60 this year. To mark the book’s anniversary, les Rencontres d’Arles are organizing a major exhibition tracing Frank’s early career. Numéro art looks back at the photographer’s beginnings up to publication of the book that made his reputation, accompanying them with rare contact sheets from the cult volume. Robert Frank’s celebrated portrait of his adopted homeland, the americans, turns 60 this year. To mark the book’s anniversary, les Rencontres d’Arles are organizing a major exhibition tracing Frank’s early career. Numéro art looks back at the photographer’s beginnings up to publication of the book that made his reputation, accompanying them with rare contact sheets from the cult volume.

The exclusive fashion story of Miles Aldridge and Harland Miller for Numéro art
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The exclusive fashion story of Miles Aldridge and Harland Miller for Numéro art

Photography To end the year on a high note, Numéro Art invited the renowed photographer Miles Alridge to reinterpret the work of artist Harland Miller. Then young phenomenon, who is close to Tracey Emin and Jarvis Cocker, became famous in the noughties for his large-format paintings inspired by paperback covers, an oeuvre of powerful, corrsive irony. To end the year on a high note, Numéro Art invited the renowed photographer Miles Alridge to reinterpret the work of artist Harland Miller. Then young phenomenon, who is close to Tracey Emin and Jarvis Cocker, became famous in the noughties for his large-format paintings inspired by paperback covers, an oeuvre of powerful, corrsive irony.

The Barbican Gallery celebrates counter-culture
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The Barbican Gallery celebrates counter-culture

Photography From London Teddy Boys to transgender prostitutes in Chili, the Barbican Art Gallery in London is honouring counter-cultures from the 1950s to the present day in an exhibition entitled Another Kind of Life: Photography on the Margins, from February 28th to May 27th. From London Teddy Boys to transgender prostitutes in Chili, the Barbican Art Gallery in London is honouring counter-cultures from the 1950s to the present day in an exhibition entitled Another Kind of Life: Photography on the Margins, from February 28th to May 27th.

“Shadows on the Wall”: Peter Lindbergh captures today’s great actresses
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“Shadows on the Wall”: Peter Lindbergh captures today’s great actresses

Photography Nicole Kidman, Penelope Cruz, Julianne Moore and Uma Thurman… Peter Lindbergh presents a previously unseen selection of images from the shooting of the 2016/17 Pirelli calendar. “Shadows on the Wall” immerses us in a primitive and authentic beauty. Nicole Kidman, Penelope Cruz, Julianne Moore and Uma Thurman… Peter Lindbergh presents a previously unseen selection of images from the shooting of the 2016/17 Pirelli calendar. “Shadows on the Wall” immerses us in a primitive and authentic beauty.