Making Up and Selling Out: Kenny Scharf and Jean-Michel Othoniel Collaborate with Kiehl’s and Dior

Kenny Scharf in his studio.  Photo: Danny Ghitis for The New York Times

In the NY Times today, Bee-Shyuan Chang reports on the collaboration between the artist Kenny Scharf and the cosmetics company, Kiehl’s.  Following Andy Warhol’s example of embracing mass culture and markets in his art, Scharf is one of many artists who are blurring the lines between the unique art object and the dissemination of mass produced consumer goods.  In November, Dior will be releasing J’Adore l’Absolu, a new fragrance whose bottle is designed by the French artist Jean-Michel Othoniel, who recently had an exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum of Art.  The bottle is made by hand of Murano glass, and will be selling for a price tag of $3,500.  Seems like a lot of money for a perfume, but it’s relatively cheap considering an original work by Othoniel would cost considerably more.  In the Wall Street Journal, Othoniel says this about the project:

“It’s really an artwork, it’s such a small edition,” he went on. “But this way you can enter the life of the people. Sometimes, when you work mostly out of galleries and museums, you never know what people will think of your work. But this way you can connect with real people, not just art lovers.”

Jean-Michel Othoniel’s bottle for Dior J’adore l’absolu

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: