LOT L6 FRANCESCO VEZZOLI / NEO-ROCOCO PORTRAIT OF NICKI MINAJ AS MADAME BARBE DE RIMSKY-KORSAKOV, 2011
Inkjet print on photo rag ultra smooth paper mounted on Dibond
43-1/8 x 31-1/2 inches (109.5 x 80 cm), framed
Auction estimate: $100,000
© Francesco Vezzoli. Courtesy of the artist and Gagosian Gallery
Over the last decade, in a series of provocative works that have explored the
undisputed power of contemporary media culture, Francesco Vezzoli points to the
societal worship of figures from the fashion and celebrity industries.
This artwork originates from a special project Vezzoli produced in 2011 for the
September issue of W Magazine where he conceived and produced four exclusive
photographic portraits of the hip-hop queen and charts sensation Nicki Minaj, in
the garb of the four most iconic European courtesans of the 18th and 19th
centuries. In this portrait, Nicki Minaj poses as Madame Barbe de Rimsky-Korsakov,
also known as "La Venus Tartare", lover of Napoleon III. The frame is an original 18th
century Rococo antique.
Francesco Vezzoli was born in 1971, in Brescia, Italy. Exhibitions include: The New
Museum of Contemporary Art, New York; Castello di Rivoli Museo d'Arte
Contemporanea, Turin; Fondazione Prada, Milan; Tate Modern, London; and the
Garage Center for Contemporary Culture, Moscow. Vezzoli's next project is a
trilogy of fantastical exhibitions under the umbrella title "The Trinity", beginning at
the Maxxi in Rome and traveling to MoMA PS1, and MOCA, Los Angeles.
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