Go inside the worlds of art, fashion, design, and lifestyle.
Lisa Perry is best-known for her eponymous sixties and seventies-inspired clothing collection, equally loved by the uptown and downtown woman. For the past few years she’s added special artist collections to her line, transforming works by Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Jeff Koons, and most recently Robert Indiana into wearable art.
Perry grew up around art and has gone on to turn that passion into an amazing art collection with her husband Richard. We spoke with Perry as part of our series of interviews with women in the arts during Art Basel Miami Beach last week at the Riviera South Beach. She told us about what she had her eye out for at the Miami fairs.
WHITEWALL: It seems like fashion and art for you have always gone hand in hand. Is that true?
LISA PERRY: Absolutely. I think that my love for art and design started early on because of my parents. My dad was down in the basement of our Chicago home doing his drip paintings and my mom opened an art gallery. I was around art all the time. I remember what we would work on as a family would be a Jackson Pollock puzzle. And then it crossed over when my husband and I started collecting.
WW: You’ve said that some of the things you’ll see at a gallery or museum often make it into your designs.
LP: Just from my own collection that I have, it’s enough for about 50 collections! Because we have so many different styles, we have Pop art, and then we have at my house in Long Island with more Minimalism and color fields. It’s just endless with what I’m surrounded with. I could take one painting and do an entire collection from that one painting.
WW: And you have done artist collections, with for instance, Robert Indiana. How did that start?
LP: Before I even had my own business, I had one of the Murakami bags that Marc Jacobs did for Louis Vuitton. But for myself , I really didn’t know how to get into it. There was a show that I saw of Warhol photographs in a museum in Tucson, AZ. I was like, “Wow, these would be incredible,” and then I spoke to the owner of the gallery and he said he was involved in the estate of one photographer and he could just go and ask permission. That’s the first time it came to me was when we did the Warhol collaboration. We went on to do Lichtenstein, Koons, and Indiana.
WW: And at the art fair today, are you looking out for any future collaborations?
LP: It’s interesting, it’s one of the reasons I want to walk around, to see who is out there…maybe younger, up-and-coming artists who could be interesting. The thing about those artists is I don’t think they’d be ready to put their art onto fashion. Others might really embrace it and think it’s a fantastic opportunity to collaborate, so we’ll see. I’ll be jotting down some names.
WW: What’s the dynamic between you and your husband when looking at artwork for your collection?
LP: I think the Pop art is something that really has become an investment. That doesn’t as much interest me, but very much interests my husband. He does a lot of research in that area. The other collections that we have whether it’s the minimalism, they are less known, less expensive, and so I kind of introduced him into that world. That’s something that I’ve kind of brought to him and he loves it. He loves my taste and my aesthetic. I could say tomorrow we’re collecting whatever, and he’d be like, “Great! Let’s take a look at it!”