18 Wooster Street
Rock on Mars was a retrospective exhibition of the work of Stephen Sprouse, which transformed Deitch Projects’ 18 Wooster Street gallery into a realization of Sprouse’s rock and roll futuristic vision.
Stephen Sprouse (1953-2004) was one of the most influential fashion designers of his time and a key figure in the dynamic mix of punk rock, wild style graffiti, and street influenced fashion that characterized the downtown New York community in the early 1980s. He was one of the first to build on the influence of Andy Warhol to create a fusion of art, music, and fashion. He continued on a course that disavowed any division among these fields throughout his career.
Sprouise collaborated with artists like Keith Haring and musicians like Deborah Harry, helping to invent the visual imagery that we associate with this era. He is widely considered to be the most innovative fashion designer to emerge in New York in the 1980s. His work continues to be an important influence for a younger generation of designers like Marc Jacobs.
The exhibition introduced Sprouse’s extraordinary pop-influenced paintings to the larger art audience. His paintings of iconic rock and roll imagery including stacks of loudspeakers, Sid Vicious with his pants down, and an Iggy Pop crucifixion, had rarely been seen. The show also included a selection of the video works made to accompany his runway shows, examples of his fabric and furniture design for Knoll, and fifty of his most influential fashion looks.
In conjunction with the exhibition project, Marc Jacobs created a new collection for Louis Vuitton, inspired by Sprouse’s famous collaboration with Louis Vuitton in 2001, which featured the classic monogram bag scrawled with Stephen Sprouse graffiti. The limited edition Stephen Sprouse – Louis Vuitton collection was available in Louis Vuitton stores worldwide from January 9, 2009, the opening date of the exhibition.
This exhibition project developed out of Sprouse’s plan for an exhibition of his artworks at Deitch Projects that was never realized because of his premature death in 2004. Sprouse’s good friends Paige Powell and Kim Hastreiter revived the idea of a Sprouse exhibition, which evolved into a retrospective encompassing the full range of his creative achievements. The exhibition was presented in collaboration with the Sprouse family and with the involvement of Sprouse’s wide circle of friends.
The exhibition was curated and designed by Stephen Sprouse’s long time collaborator, Jamie Boud, and co-curated and researched by Jessica Glasscock, a fashion scholar and a member of the faculty at The School of Art and Design History and Theory at Parsons. The mannequins were provided courtesy of Rootstein Display Mannequins.
A major book on the work of Stephen Sprouse, The Stephen Sprouse Book, by Roger and Mauricio Padilha, with a forward by Tama Janowitz, was published by Rizzoli to coincide with the exhibition.
March 8 - 11, 2018
We will present a special solo project by the artist JR.
Image: JR, Migrants, Walking New York City, 2015
April - May 2018
18 Wooster Street
76 Grand Street
New York, NY 10013
Monday – Friday
10 AM – 6 PM
Tuesday – Saturday
Noon – 6 PM
The gallery reopens with People in April 2018.
+1 (212) 343-7300
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