November 10, 2009By Madeleine CziglerWhat's New Art & Culture




Memphis designer Peter Shire’s “Bel Air” armchair, at the Galerie Azzedine Alaïa.

Paris’s reclusive fashion designer Azzedine Alaïa has a magical glass-ceilinged exhibition space in the Marais, which he sometimes opens for special exhibitions. The Galerie Azzedine Alaïa (18, rue de la Verrerie, 75004 Paris) is now showing “Memphis Blues (through Dec. 4), an extravagant, provocative exhibition of the work of the Memphis design movement, the last one of the 20th century. Started by a group of young (mostly under 30) Italian architects and designers in 1980, Memphis’s whimsical “Nouveau Design” furniture and decorative objects, with their wacky combinations of colors and shapes, were meant to be used in any way one chose, with the operative words being irreverence and exuberance. Philippe Starck is a fan. Madeleine Czigler


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