Antonio Lopez

Biography

 

Danziger Gallery is pleased to announce our representation of the photographic estate of Antonio Lopez. The foremost fashion illustrator of the 1970s and 80s,  Antonio (as he signed his work) was and remains one of the most highly regarded and influential figures in the fashion world.  While not initially known as a photographer, Antonio was rarely without his favorite Instamatic camera, and as his career progressed he turned increasingly to photography to create fashion stories, portraits, and elaborate mise-en-scènes.

Our first showing of Antonio’s photographs will be in November at Paris Photo 2017 followed by a gallery exhibition in the spring of 2018.  Featuring a selection of the unique Instamatic prints (processed by Kodak) from the 1970s that were his form, these unique and original works are presented in the grids and pairs that Antonio liked to assemble.

A serial Svengali, as the writer Karin Nelson noted: “Lopez brilliantly transformed the women in his world. Under his tutelage, Jerry Hall, a long tall Texan he met at Paris’s Club Sept, evolved into a golden goddess.  He put Jessica Lange in gold lamé evening dresses after discovering her in Paris studying mime, and gave aspiring model Tina Lutz her start (and an introduction to future husband Michael Chow); and, by spotlighting Pat Cleveland, a mixed-race model with a theatrical streak, he helped break down the color barrier in high fashion.”  Other favorite subjects were the young Grace Coddington, Grace Jones, and Paloma Picasso.

Antonio Lopez was born in Utuado, Puerto Rico in 1943. His family moved to Spanish Harlem in 1950 where he showed early promise as an artist making drawings for his mother who was a seamstress and dressmaker. In the early 1960s he enrolled on a course at the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) in New York where he met Juan Ramos who became his life long collaborator. He joined The New York Times in 1963 but was soon freelancing for Harper’s Bazaar, British Vogue and French Elle.  In 1969 he moved to Paris with Ramos where he was commissioned by all the leading fashion magazines.  He returned to New York in 1975 creating numerous covers and picture stories for Andy Warhol’s Interview Magazine.

Antonio died in Los Angeles 1987. He was forty four years old. 

A documentary “Antonio Lopez 1970: Sex, Fashion, and Disco” is slated for release in early 2018. Written, produced and directed by James Crump, the film covers his colorful and often outrageous milieu and features Jessica Lange, Jerry Hall, Grace Jones, Grace Coddington, Bob Colacello, Patti D’Arbanville, Karl Lagerfeld, Juan Ramos, Bill Cunningham, Yves Saint Laurent, Donna Jordan, Michael Chow, and Paul Caranicas, among others.