Making Out with Desigual at Art Basel

Published December 12, 2019

“Going Out” is a column celebrating the legacy of our founder, Andy Warhol. Long ago, in the disco ball-refracted days of The Factory, Warhol’s Interview chronicled the comings and goings of the downtown scene, spotlighting its ever-eccentric populace in their favorite dimly-lit haunts. For this edition of “Going Out,” Ernest Macias got up close and intimate with the Spanish clothing brand Desigual during Art Basel Miami. 

There are many paths to explore intimacy, whatever that may mean in 2019. For Desigual (which literally translates to “not the same” in Spanish), a Spain-based brand founded on the basis of building a denim jacket from vintage jean scraps, intimacy is about unity in difference. This year at Art Basel, with the help of Catalan multi-hyphenate Carlota Guerrero, who served as the art director for Solange‘s A Seat at the Table, as well as artist Miranda Makaroff, Desigual took over some of Miami’s most iconic spaces like the Nautilus by Arlo and The Temple House for a series of events that encouraged party-goers to get naked and embrace all forms of love. For the weekend’s kick-off, Makaroff unveiled her capsule collection with Desigual during her Sexhibition honoring the OG sinner, Eve (yes, that one), who the brand describes as “the ultimate savior of a world of dullness.” Alongside the artist’s colorful pieces stood a giant inflatable vagina, which influencers and press alike giddily entered. Cocktails were flowing all night as DJ Pascal Moscheni set fire to the dance floor—which was literally the entire pool area—with reggaeton classics like Daddy Yankee’s “Gasolina” and none other than La Rosalía.

The second part of Desigual’s activations at Art Basel was presented as a regular-schmegular F/W2020 fashion show, but it ended up being much, much more. The night promptly began with an exclusive cocktail hour sensually titled “Seduccion” (Seduction) followed by an art performance called “Beso.” Curated by Guerrero, “Beso,” which has been described as an “art orgy,” featured Lourdes Maria Ciccone Leon, Madonna‘s daughter, front and center. She was soon joined by 30 performers in the space; upon the lights dimming, love blossomed as the dancers and models took off their clothes, leaving very little to the imagination. Even though the focal point was a diverse mass of naked bodies merging into one, the show wasn’t about sex, but rather intimacy. It was a night to express yourself—to touch, feel, and as Guerrero put it, “to connect with their vulnerability. I want it to be something intense and memorable.” And what a memorable night it was—the type of butterfly-inducing memorability of a make-out session with a beautiful stranger.

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Photo by Aran Martinez.

Naomi Shimada, Carlota Guerrero