“I actually have two houses. This house here, it’s only for sleeping and sketching, and I have another house two-and-a-half meters away for lunch and dinner and to see people, and where the cook is and all that.”—Karl Lagerfeld
Being an art buyer these days is comprehensively and indisputably vulgar. It is the sport of the Eurotrashy, Hedge-fundy, Hamptonites; of trendy oligarchs and oiligarchs; and of art dealers with masturbatory levels of self-regard. They were found nestling together in their super yachts in Venice for this year’s spectacular art biennale. Venice is now firmly on the calendar of this new art world, alongside St Barts at Christmas and St Tropez in August, in a giddy round of glamour-filled socialising, from one swanky party to another.
Artistic credentials are au courant in the important business of being seen as cultured, elegant and, of course, stupendously rich.
Do any of these people actually enjoy looking at art? Or do they simply enjoy having easily recognised, big-brand name pictures, bought ostentatiously in auction rooms at eye-catching prices, to decorate their several homes, floating and otherwise, in an instant demonstration of drop-dead coolth and wealth. Their pleasure is to be found in having their lovely friends measuring the weight of their baubles, and being awestruck.
“I still have all my clothes from 10 years ago from Dior, but I think I will give them back to Dior for the museum. I have pieces that are unique pieces that I will never wear again, because life is different now, you know. I used to fax a lot, but people don’t have faxes anymore.”—Karl Lagerfeld
“I don’t hate anything in fashion. Everything is okay as long as you do it with enough conviction. Hating on stuff is what causes mediocrity and conformism. It makes people nervous and cautious and they start reining in their flamboyant impulses. So you could say ‘I hate hating.’”—Simon Doonan