Maripol Was Always Candid

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Published May 11, 2011

 

Before Facebook-style party snaps, candid photos were actually, well, candid. Couple nostalgia for the natural (and naughty) with familiar faces of Manhattan’s downtown scene of the early 1980s and you’ve got Clic Gallery’s latest exhibit, “Riding the Hoods with Maripol.” Running May 17 through June 19, the exhibit showcases a series of Polaroid prints taken by French-born stylist Maripol. Known best for masterminding Madonna’s “Like a Virgin” look, Maripol began casually documenting the likes of Keith Haring, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Andy Warhol, and Debbie Harry in their hazy nighttime finest after being given a leather-clad SX70 by her boyfriend. “I never calculated,” she says.

Aside from presenting a kind of art-scene hall of fame that’s also featured in her books Maripolarama and Little Red Riding Hood, what the photos capture above all else is the off-the-cuff vibrancy of nightlife at the time. “I was so amazed by the culture in the city,” she says. “Studio 54, Mudd Club, Peppermint Lounge, Gigi Nicker Bocker… Nightlife [today] is a joke, no? Except very few underground clubs like Madame Wong, getting charged thousands of dollars for vodka at the Boom Boom Room only makes me run away from the corporate world!” Featured most prominently, of course, is Madonna, who is photographed in iconic just about everything (think flopsy hats, red lips, one-eared earrings and cigarettes). “She was best as young Madonna. [She was] so free spirited and full of love,” says the stylist. “When she just started to be famous, the trick was to go to the Roxy and have her wear a wig, so she you could dance with no problem in the middle of the dance floor!”

“RIDING THE HOODS WITH MARIPOL” WILL HAVE AN OPENING PARTY WEDNESDAY, MAY 18, FROM 6-8 PM AT CLIC GALLERY, 424 BROOME STREET.