UNIVERSE: selfridges corner shop

An amazing new multi-layered cultural collaboration between Vasarely Foundation, Paco Rabanne and Selfridges. Over the next three months, ‘Universe’ will explore the work of ground-breaking artist Victor Vasarely, his influence on contemporaries such as Paco Rabanne as well as today’s tastemakers, and how he continues to shape the future, in this extraordinary exhibition-meets-retail space at The Selfridges Corner Shop.

The Exhibition runs: 13 January – 27 March at Selfridges Corner Shop: London.

As part of this pioneering initiative in The Corner Shop at Selfridges London – and a first for us here at Selfridges – you can shop original Vasarely art works and sculptures within our very own curated, climate-controlled gallery space (complete with a hypnotic Vasarely-printed floor).

In addition, you can shop collectible works of art in the form of exclusive Vasarely-inspired products, available in store and online. From standout skateboards with mesmeric geometric-print decks to cushions cloaked in myriad colourful squares.

Paco Rabanne S/S 2022

Celebrating the influence of Victor Vasarely on his contemporary, Paco Rabanne, and future designers at the fashion house, iconic pieces from both the archive – including Paco’s signature metallic disc dresses from his 1969 collection – and the new season are also on display. Paco Rabanne’s current Creative Director, Julien Dossena, was inspired by Vasarely’s expressive art style for his Spring/Summer 22 collection, utilising the artist’s celebrated optical illusion prints across co-ordinated outfit combinations. 

Victor Vasarely

You can also learn more about the past, present and future of ‘op art’ and Victor Vasarely

Hungarian-French artist Victor Vasarely pioneered the Op Art movement – short for “optical art” – in the 1960s with his undulating, hypnotic forms that appeared to shimmer, bend and swell before the viewer’s eyes. While artists have long used varying techniques to create illusory effects that mimic depth, movement and light (the prominent artistic technique trompe l’oeil literally means “trick the eye”), it wasn’t until the emergence of Op Art that the mechanics of the gaze were given priority over the image itself. This was largely influenced by developments in science and technology, but also by wider cultural shifts and the dawn of the modern digital world.

Over the course of his career, he designed several public murals and, in 1976, he established the Fondation Vasarely in Aix-en-Provence. Working alongside architects, Vasarely designed the facade as a monumental optical artwork, comprising huge anodised aluminium plates decorated with geometrical motifs in black and white that are reflected on the surface of a large pond. He hoped the foundation would become a hub of innovation and creativity, a “laboratory of ideas”. While this ambition was never realised during his lifetime, today the foundation serves as both a public museum and an important site of reference for many artists.

Information and images from https://www.selfridges.com/GB/en/

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