Art on Ice

by Susan Redstone, Time Out Staff Writer
This past weekend as I chatted with Aspen Peak Publisher Alex Halperin at the Ice Garden cocktail party she was hosting to open the ArtAspen show, it got me thinking again about the inseparable combination of fashion and art and also about art show attendees or “galleristas” (in my mind separate species) from “gallerinas” who run them.   

Halperin was appropriately fluttering around in a stand-out Marc Jacobs dress adorned with butterflies, artist Christopher Martin’s wife Stacie wore an Elie Tahari dress that could have camouflaged right into her husband’s oversized canvases of swirling blue and white, but with vertical strokes (he picked it out) and a tech-inspired blue dress on guest Jackie Carasocchi – the perfect marriage to the neon art. In jest, private chef Velvet Valentine “wore” a cupcake decorated with the typeface of Aspen Peak magazine fittingly, in her mouth, and although I’m no Jurgen Teller (he’s the German photog known for the sometimes off-kilter, slightly disturbing ads for fashion house Marc Jacobs featuring influencers, party girls and edgy Hollywood actresses), I took the photo. I created my own art! I love Teller and own a photo of his (purchased at the very bottom end of the price range of silent auction items at artCrush some years back), but that’s another story.

Next I stopped at the Kavachnina Contemporary booth featuring a solo show by artist Nadaleena Brettmann and the show titled “Rags to Riches” gave me a eureka moment. Did I see right? A Diane Von Furstenburg dress worked into a canvas? A cashmere Chanel on another? And, eegats! Actual Hermes scarves in others? They were unmistakable, albeit covered in gallons of acrylic charcoal and house paint. Initially aghast, the concept absolutely thrilled me. It was so fresh. Turns out the series earned Nadaleena the Leonardo da Vinci Art Award as Inventor of the Year 2015. Her take, “it’s preservation,” and “everything starts as rags and eventually turns to rags.” For me the paintings brought up internal chatter about designer fashion value.

My favorite was a piece featuring a Playboy Magazine photo of ‘90s supermodel Linda Evangelista taken by legendary celebrity photog Stephen Wayda.  And then boom -- he magically appeared. (He’d been there all along, I’d been diverted.)

Standing next to his photo reworked by Nadaleena, decked out in an un-ironic outfit of Chanel jacket, Herve Leger skirt and red-soled Louboutins to pose for my picture, it was what we’d call at New York fashion week “a fashion moment.” Fashion on ice.

Susan Redstone is a fashion, shopping, beauty and style writer and broadcaster. Her work has been featured in The London Times, The New York Post, In Style, The New York Times Sunday Styles. She appears regularly as a Style Commentator on CNN’s HLN Network.

“Somebody’s gotta bring the chic”

– Susan Redstone