Colette, 2010 (Installation of wall fragments from Living Environment, 1978)
"Colette is the most imitated artist of our time , first Lady Gaga in the windows of Barneys and now Tilda Swinton at the MOMA."
(Anton Perich.1814 Magazine-2013. "Notes on Baroque Living"-the multiple personalities of Colette Lumiere.)
215 East 5th Street (off Bowery)
New York, NY 10003
Thus. - Sun.( Thurs- till 5pm/Friday & Saturday 6pm/Sunday till 3 pm)
"Colette is a gauze-draped pillar of the New York art world, a maker of installations, a painter and a performance artist.”
- Anthony Hayden-Guest for The Art Newspaper
Undercurrent Projects (formerly Peanut Underground) is excited to announce our premier exhibition, an installation of new works by the artist Colette.
Colette has long been recognized for creating, adopting and fully inhabiting various personas, with her current “muse” being Lumière. In this exhibition, the artist has " Colettesized" Undercurrent's East Village hideaway into a "jewel box" . The artist will sometimes be present, in her" incubation space " an installation within the installation where the public is not allowed .. and will continue to transform new works, as well as the project space during the run of the show.
Colette’s"Metaphysical Portraits' reinterpret the classical art of portraiture and present "constellations," or "inner maps," of the individuals represented. " They are my interpretation of the subjects ever changing inner life ", their identity may not easily be deciphered and I sometimes transform them if they are in near proximity".
Unless comissioned Colette 's portraits usually are of friends.
Observing the increasing blurred line between Art and Pop culture , and wishing to explore it through her work, Colette has embarked on a new series : Artists and the Silver Screen" . Some of these new portraits are in the exhibition , and others are still in the process of completion. They focus on artists, movie stars, pop icons and other celebrities who are part of this current phenomenon, not necessarily friends.
In BOMB Magazine, she explains, “My art began in the streets and it began anonymously. Even though it soon found its way to galleries and museums, I continued to explore unorthodox and alternative spaces. Art does not have to be displayed in a museum or a major gallery to be significant, to speak to people and influence art and culture.”
Beginning her career as a painter, Colette is internationally acclaimed for her pioneering work in street art, performance art, tableaux vivants and the constructed photograph, which brought her avant-garde work to the public eye in the 1970s and was influential to generations of artists to follow. Often addressing issues of gender roles, her contributions have been recycled in pop culture; yet, she continues to reinvent herself.
Colette’s work has been exhibited in MoMA, Whitney, the Guggenheim, New Museum, MoMA PS1, Palais de Tokyo, MoCA, Houston Museum of Contemporary Art, Musée d’Art Moderne Montreal, the Ludwig Museum (Cologne), and others.
Colette is also in group exhibition " Japonism in Contemporary Art " at Nippon Club till March 6th curated by Emil Memon and Kyoko Ono. 145 West 57 th st.
"Homage to Colette " an exhibition featuring her" Reverse Pop " series(78-83) was on view Nov.24 till February 2sd. curated by IFAC on Delancey St- for their inaugural exhibtion
"Colette fascinates us not only because she is a pioneer of being a living art piece- Before Cindy Sherman, Madonna or Lady Gaga ever interrogated the constructed nature of identity she made a name "Colettesizing " her world- but also because she is a true New York eccentric who never veers from her wild and unique vision..."
(Peter Davis for Vs magazine, September 2012)
"...until the seventies artists only painted the landscape... Colette instead of painting the landscape created the landscape and became part of it...
What we have in Colette is the depiction of the female body, the gaze of the female body...that historically only men have done...suddenly done by a woman artist...who seizes her own body....She really is a source, she used her person, her body and the use of persona historically long before Cindy Sherman, for ex... If we look from Jeff Koons to Madonna for ex...we see that she is a very important artist and has not received the recognition she deserves..." (excerpts by Peter Selz speaking on Colette's historical contribution; Colette the Artist, Documentary by Paul Tschinkel, 1993)
"She has taken the arena of assemblage and taken it to public spaces - from museums to galleries to the streets, shop windows, discos, restaurants...if you could think of it Colette has probably done it." (excerpt by Alanna Heiss, Colette the Artist, Documentary by Paul Tschinkel, 1993)
"...the geisha of feminism...(that is prior to "lipstick feminism".)" (excerpt by Bill Arning, Colette the Artist, Documentary by Paul Tschinkel, 1993)
"Colette is a young artist who has already made a serious contribution to two significant areas of contemporary art: the creation of a total environment; and the use of the artist's own body as an instrument of expression. In her work, these two areas, while they may be analyzed separately, are in fact integrated...an achievement worth noting in itself." (Sarah Faunce, Brooklyn Museum, 1976)