At long last I can fill you in on the most exciting project I just completed for the Barneys NY 2010 Holiday Windows! (scroll down for 2 pages of pics) It’s been my dream to create artwork for Barneys window displays and to work with their legendary Creative Director, Simon Doonan, ever since 1996 as a student at Parsons I assisted artist Josh Gosfield with his amazing window displays. When the call came in from Lindsay, the kick-ass Manager of Display Production at Barneys, to sculpt 11 life sized caricatures of famous chefs in 7 weeks for their foodie themed holiday windows sponsored by the Food Network, Cooking Channel and illycaffe, I said “YESSSS!”… although I’d never sculpted anything quite so large before. How could I say no? I thought ‘what would my hero artist Niki de Saint Phalle do?’ So, after a couple of mini melt-downs and tons of self-doubt I consulted with a few of my super talented sculptor friends (Bill Nelson, David O’Keefe, Bob Grossman, Bob Causey, David Bell) and the helpful staff at the Compleat Sculptor and got busy sculpting Martha Stewart as a sample head to prove that I would be able to do the job. After seeing the finished Martha head, Simon said to make the remaining ten heads much larger. My next head was the gorgeous Paula Deen and after sculpting her I realized that under such a time crunch this was no longer a one-woman job. I flew my fabulous former Parsons student-turned assistant-turned BFF, Amy Grant (not to be confused with the Christian singer of the same name), up from Texas to help me. Thank GOD and baby Jesus for Amy Grant! She helped me around the clock for an entire month to create the heads of super star chefs Mario Batali, Daniel Boulud, Anthony Bourdain, Guy Fieri, Bobby Flay, Ina Garten aka “the Barefoot Contessa”, Sandra Lee, Emeril Lagasse and Wolfgang Puck. Throughout the intense seven weeks of sculpting for Barneys, I barely slept or ate and practically lived in the studio but still managed to have the best time! I stepped outside of my comfort zone and learned to work with completely different materials. This job is something I’ll never forget and am extremely grateful for.
Enormous thanks to Simon Doonan, the creative genius behind everything cool, lovely Lindsay, marvelous Mark and the mind-blowing Barneys Window Display crew! Love, love, LOVE!
I couldn’t have done it without the support and help from my family and friends. Thank you Mum, Dad, my precious sister and brother Charlotte & Paul, my friends/assistants Amy Grant, Margot Miller, Victor Leon, Michael De Brito, David Friend, Kira Shaimanova, Chris Walsh, my stellar studio mate Harris Damashek (Bird, Boo & Cheese) and all of the other countless friends (too many to name here but please know I am talking about YOU) who believed I could do it! Extra sparkly thanks to Melissa Pastore at Swarovski for the crystals in Sandra Lee’s tiara!
I hope you enjoy some of these behind-the-scenes ‘making of’ the chef heads for Barneys NY 2010 Holiday Windows and stay tuned for “Liz Lomax The Movie” (a working title for now… YES, of course the project was captured on film and I can’t wait for you to see it!)