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Roy Lichtenstein: when Pop Art influences fashion

The American artist on display @ MUDEC has always been a favorite of great designers

Roy Lichtenstein: when Pop Art influences fashion  The American artist on display @ MUDEC has always been a favorite of great designers

From May 1 until September 8, 2019 the Museum of Cultures in Milan (MUDEC) hosts the exhibition Roy Lichtenstein. Multiple VisionsAn event that confirms the great quality of the exhibitions brought to Milan in recent years by the Museo delle Culture.
It is undeniable: there is a symbiotic, visceral relationship between art and fashion. Since the end of the 1920s, when Elsa Schiaparelli began to collaborate with legendary visual artists such as Dalì, Giacometti and Magritte, these two worlds have increasingly intertwined their destinies, creating collections and often iconic garments. Among all the artistic currents, the one most loved and celebrated by designers is certainly Pop Art. Emerging in England in the mid-1950s, but fully exploded in New York in the early 1960s, it has made media and advertising its favorite subjects, merging elements of everyday objects, portraits of famous people, comics. If Andy Warhol remains its most important exponent, inspiring dozens and dozens of creations from the dress with prints of the famous Campbells Soups produced by America in 1966 to the one with portraits of Marilyn Monroe designed by Gianni Versace in 1991, many other talents have been equally immortal thanks to the world of fashion. Think about Keith Haring's works in the Witches collection by Vivienne Westwood, but also Lacoste, Coach, adidas or Basquiat's graffiti art celebrated by Supreme and Comme des Garçons or the collaboration between Yayoi Kusama and Louis Vuitton

There is something about Pop Art that makes it direct, easy to understand and relevant. The reason for this is perhaps its modern trait, its roots in street subcultures (now increasingly embodied in fashion, even luxury), the aura of coolness and the continuing universal language. That is why not only the capsule collections but also the exhibitions dedicated to artists of this current are multiplying. About 100 works retrace the themes that have shaped one of the most influential talents of contemporary art.

Gianni Mercurio, the curator of the event, explains the importance of "the most sophisticated interpreter of this print-making activity", born in New York in 1923, who together with Andy Warhol, is the most representative and best-known figure of Pop Art. Even many years after his death in 1997, his unique style borrowed from typography, his pop reinterpretations of masterpieces of the past, the reworking of the comic boards and his famous pixelated girls continue to be an inspiration, especially for the world of fashion. From Supreme in 2006 and later together with Trasher to Tom Ford, from Vivienne Westwood to adidas, from Moschino to Converse, designers and brands have chosen from his most iconic works such as Crying Girl (1963) and Sweet Dreams, Baby! (1965) within their collections. Prints, small details or chromatic palettes continue to preserve the memory of the American artist in a game of direct or indirect quotations that we still love. 

Roy Lichtenstein, Head with blue shadows - adidas Originals by Rita Ora SS 2015

Roy Lichtenstein, Good morning…darling! – Moschino SS91

Roy Lichtenstein, Frightened girl – Moschino FW18

Roy Lichtenstein, Drowning girl - Supreme x Thrasher

Roy Lichtenstein, Pop girl talking on the phone  - Converse 

Roy Lichtenstein, Girl with the hair ribbon – Charlotte Olympia

Roy Lichtenstein, Wall explosion – Tom Ford

Roy Lichtenstein, Sweet dreams – 3.1. Phillip Lim pre-fall 2013

Roy Lichtenstein, In the car - Jean-Charles de Castelbajac

Roy Lichtenstein, Baked potato - Vivienne Westwood Red Label