Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Candid Candies


Pop-Up stores, temporary retail outlets that open in random locations, are not new. Pop-Up galleries, however, are. The latest to open is the Flash Projects inaugural space that opens on Thursday (25th November) exhibiting Canned Candies: The Nudes of Jean Clemmer.
The visionary and in hindsight, modern, images explore fantasy, sensuality and haute couture in 1960s Paris and included the iconic collaboration between Clemmer and designer Paco Rabanne from 1969.

This is also a celebratory exhibit, staged to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Canned Candies which was first published in Paris in 1969 under the name Nues, meaning naked. Yet this is the first time in which the UK has hosted an original collaboration between the two legendary names in French artistic and fashion culture plus a wider range of Clemmer's female form studies.

And whilst this exhibit is an event in itself, it coincides with the London Fashion in Film Festival for which the involvement of Rabanne's famed futuristic rhodoid and era fits perfectly. This iconic period explores the Utopian dreams, and dare say hopes, of an aluminum chain-mail realm of science fiction and fantasy. These were styled and captured by Clemmer using nude models 'dressed' in Rabanne's then unwearable fashions which depicted and epitomised the growing freedom of sexuality of the 1960s and it's height in 1969.

The publication Canned Candies was a groundbreaking piece of photographic journalism, using black and Asian models, unheard of across the industry at the time. It was originally launched at the iconic Crazy Horse Saloon in Paris with a flourish of naked dancers and an abundance of cocktails which caused an immediate scandal against morals and sensation.


Clemmer was a photographer who captured the essence of a lost era; the sensuality, the spectacle and the pleasure of human form when the time was about sexual freedom and gratification. This is a must see exhibition, not only to see two of the biggest names in French and contemporary culture, but to see how a woman captures a form traditionally taken by a man.

For further information and to see more images by other photographers, Click Here.

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