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The Salamatina Gallery paid tribute to the thrill and glamour of Fashion Week with an exhibition of FASHION ICONS by Laurent Elie Badessi and Andres Serrano. This was a magical pairing of two creative geniuses: the French-born photographer, Badessi, with the American photographic artist, Serrano.

Featured were iconic black-and-white images which Badessi took when he was the exclusive photographer in 2004 for the Charles Jourdan luxury shoe brand. Shot in the Californian desert, they fuse mythology with Surrealism, depicting subjects such as Diana, Goddess of the Hunt, or Ganymede, being abducted by Zeus in the guise of an eagle. Badessi presents his models as emblems of fantasy and sexuality, dressed merely in masks and expensive shoes. Also in the show were color images from the photographer’s Ethnik series, where he introduced nomadic tribes in Africa to the allure of Western couture … as well as the notion of having their likeness captured on camera. Serrano’s bold, large-scale pictures were from his America series. In response to the 9/11 tragedy, he took more than 100 singular photographic portraits of citizens young and old, rich and poor, known and unknown, heroes and anti-heroes, from all ethnic backgrounds and walks of life. Direct, honest and devoid of editorial embellishment, these faces represent in the artist’s words, “My America. Without apology or prejudice. One flag over all.” Highlighting the exhibition at Salamatina were portraits of an American Eagle flight captain, an NYU undergraduate, and a buxom Playboy bunny, each of whom exudes a strong spirit and identity.

FASHION ICONS opened with a preview party on Friday, September 10, 2010 from 6 – 9 p.m. and remained on view until September 29, 2010.