David LaChapellePaul Kasmin Gallery – 11.27.12
Written and Photographed by Kyria Abrahams
Destroyed celebrity. In the hands of a lesser artist, the topic could seem clichéd. Shot by David LaChapelle, however, the subject takes on a dark and personal meaning. LaChapelle's photos of celebrities have made him a celebrity in his own right. And on the walls: stars vandalized and forgotten; the result of a 2007 break-in at the National Wax Museum in Dublin. Meanwhile, a film crew roamed the gallery, dangling a microphone in front of New York socialites like Amanda Lepore — who, herself, is not entirely composed of human flesh. While LaChapelle's last series — Earth Laughs in Flowers — was quite literally an homage to the "still life", this exhibit covered the metaphorical side of the art form. That is, the empty shell that is left once the media and public are done with their stars. "I have followed him for years, and this is his best work yet," said Rafael Fuchs, founder of the Fuchs Project in Williamsburg. "It's like he has come full circle."
David LaChapelle Still Life 293 Tenth Avenue & 515 West 27th Street November 26, 2012 – January 19, 2013