Publication Date: November 1, 2005
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"Maripol's portraits represent an intimate and glamorously blurry love letter..."
—The Village Voice
During the early 80s, New York’s Lower East Side was a hotbed of creative activity. Unknown artists were synthesizing the fertile ground at the legendary New York nightclubs Studio 54, the Mudd Club, Club 57, Palladium, and Danceteria while on their way to international fame and acclaim.
Among those emerging were Madonna, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Grace Jones, Keith Haring, Kenny Scharf, Vincent Gallo, Anna Sui, Exene Cervenka, Kid Creole, and Diego Cortez. Maripol was part of a collective of artists, graffiti writers, street dancers, and performers who all thrived together in the explosive downtown eccentricity. As an image maker and stylist for Madonna during her “Like a Virgin” days, jewelry designer, art director, and producer Maripol relentlessly documented the movers and shakers of the early 80s scene through the lens of her instant Polaroid SX-70.
Collected for the first time in Maripolarama, Maripol’s photographs vividly depict the extraordinary personalities that inhabited the “forever” hip, arty Manhattan clubland during the post-punk era when hip hop was in its earliest stages and graffiti covered the landscape. Whether it’s Andy Warhol, Debbie Harry, Basquiat, or Madonna modeling a bright pink wig, Maripolarama provides lively and inspiring insight into a time long gone.
Maripol’s work as an art director and designer has influenced popular movements in music, fashion, and art since the early 1980s. She was the founder of Maripolitan Popular Objects Ltd., a fashion accessories company that also designed merchandising for Madonna’s “Like a Virgin” tour. Maripol has art directed films by Marcus Nispel and Abel Ferrara; and music videos for Cher, D’Angelo, Elton John, and Luther Vandross. Her work has been exhibited at P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, Deitch Projects, and the Robert Miller Gallery, New York; and Musée Maillol, Paris. Maripol has produced films including Downtown 81, which she also art directed, Just an American Boy by Amos Poe, and Dated by Edo Bertoglio. She has been published in The New York Times Magazine, WWD, Time Out New York, ELLE, and i-D. Maripol lives in New York with her teenage son Lino.