The musée des Arts décoratifs – MAD celebrates the 1980s with a major exhibition in the nave. This historic decade resonates in France as a political and artistic turning point in the fields of fashion, design, and graphics, from the election of François Mitterrand in 1981 to the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989.
700 artworks – objects, furniture, fashion silhouettes, posters, photographs, music videos, record sleeves, and fanzines – retrace this frenetic period synonymous with eclecticism, where postmodernism opened up all artistic possibilities.
From Jean Paul Gaultier‘s dress “Seins Obus” to the first posters advocating the use of condoms to prevent AIDS, to Philippe Starck‘s furniture: the exhibition “Années 80. Fashion, design, and graphics in France” is a must-see exhibition once in Paris as it is as wide and eclectic as its 700 works which are jostled in a joyful confusion of colors and contrasting aesthetics.
Good to mention that fashion in the 80s was seized by the phenomenon of revival with looks dating back to ancient times right through to the 1930s. Thierry Mugler and Claude Montana drew inspiration from historic silhouettes while Jean Paul Gaultier, Vivienne Westwood and Chantal Thomass parodied the same looks.
Martin Margiela and Rei Kawakubo for Comme des Garçons took things in the opposite direction as they attempted to deconstruct the notion of clothing. Azzedine Alaïa and Marc Audibet created designs that hugged the athletic bodies of supermodels while the ample shapes of Issey Miyake and Anne-Marie Beretta were more architectural and became a genuine medium of expression for Elisabeth de Senneville and Jean-Charles de Castelbajac.
It was also in the 80s that we discovered a whole flock of talented designers: Olivier Gagnère, Elizabeth Garouste and Mattia Bonetti, Philippe Starck, Martin Szekely, who exploded at that time in all freedom. And when it comes to advertising, graphic design, and audiovisual industries, they enjoyed great years with Jean-Paul Goude, Jean-Baptiste Mondino and Étienne Robial. From new-wave music to post-punk and hip-hop, a whole history of partying was written in the legendary places frequented by Parisian night owls.
From 13 October 2022 to 16 April 2023
Musée des Arts Décoratifs 107, rue de Rivoli 75001 Paris