Thursday, November 3, 2011

Gallery of Rococo Portraits: Hip-Hop Star meets 18th-century Courtesans

Powerful female figures have always been a source of inspiration for the 40-year-old Italian artist Francesco Vezzoli. Through film, performance, and images often enhanced with lavish embroidered garments, Vezzoli links contemporary icons to historic representations of women in art. He transformed actress Eva Mendes into Bernini's masterpiece The Ecstasy of Saint Teresa for his Prada Foundation installation this year's Venice Biennale and, for MOCA's 30th anniversary gala in 2009, he remained Lady Gaga as a latter-day Ballets Russes star.
For the November issue of W Magazine, Vezzoli has remade hip-hop star Nicki Minaj (known as Lil Wayne protégée) as an 18th-century courtesan.

Nicki Minaj as Francoise Athenais de Rochechouart de Mortemart, Marquise de Montespan
in Dior Haute Couture
Nicki Minaj as Jeanne Becu, Comtesse du Barry
in Dior Haute Couture
Nicki Minaj as Jeanne Antoinette Poisson, Marquise de Pompadour
in Western Costume Company
Nicki Minaj as Madame Barbe de Rimsky-Korsakov
in Vera Wang
Courtesy W Magazine

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