Paloma Picasso - Fashion Designer Encyclopedia



French designer

Born: Paris, France, 19 April 1949, daughter of Pablo Picasso and Françoise Gilot. Education: Attended University of Paris, Sorbonne, and University of Nanterre; studied jewelry design and fabrication. Family: Married Rafael Lopez-Cambil (aka Lopez-Sanchez), 1978. Career: Fashion jewelry designer for Yves Saint Laurent, 1969; designed jewelry for Zolotas, 1971; designed costumes and sets for Lopez-Cambil's Parisian productions L'Interprétation, 1975 and Success, 1978; teamed with Lopez-Cambil to create Paloma Picasso brand, including jewelry for Tiffany & Company, from 1980; introduced fragrance and cosmetics line, 1984; designed men's and women's accessories for Lopez-Cambil, Ltd., 1987; began designing fabrics and wall coverings for Motif, 1993; celebrated 20 years with Tiffany, 2000; designed hosiery for Grupo Synkro; eyewear for Carrera; bone china, crystal, silverware, and tiles for Villeroy & Boch; household linens for KBC; Paloma Picasso boutiques throughout Europe, and in Japan and Hong Kong; fragrances include: Paloma, 1984; Minataure, 1992; Tentations, 1996. Award: MODA award for design excellence, 1988. Address: Lopez-Cambil Ltd., 37 West 57th Street, New York, NY 10019 USA.

Publications

By PICASSO:

Books

Paloma Picasso: Galleria d'Arte Cavour, with Roberto Sanesi, Milan, 1972.

Paloma Picasso in 1985. © Bettmann/CORBIS.
Paloma Picasso in 1985.
© Bettmann/CORBIS.

Designwelt Paloma Picasso (The Design World of Paloma Picasso), with Wilhelm Siemen, Hoccheim, Germany, 1997.

On PICASSO:

Books

Mulvagh, Jane, Costume Jewelry in Vogue, London, 1988.

Stegemeyer, Anne, Who's Who in Fashion, Third Edition, New York, 1996.

Loring, John, Tiffany's 20th Century: A Portrait of American Style, New York, 1997.

Articles

Irvine, Susan, "Paloma's Pink Period," in the Sunday Express magazine (London), 7 August 1988.

Fusco, Ann Castronovo, "Paloma's Classic Touch," in House Beautiful (London), February 1989.

Samuel, Kathryn, "The Look That Says Picasso," in the Daily Telegraph (London), 7 September 1989.

Beckett-Young, Kathleen, "Design for Living," in Working Woman (New York), October 1990.

Gandee, Charles, "Paloma Picasso Has Mass Appeal," in House & Garden, November 1990.

Stern, Ellen, "The Prolific Paloma," in House Beautiful (London), March 1992.

Landis, Dylan, "Paloma Picasso's Signature Style," in Metropolitan Home (New York), September/October 1993.

Gendel, Debra, "With a Red Kiss, Picasso Tours," in the Los Angeles Times, 13 August 1993.

Jolis, Alan, "Matisse, Picasso, Disney, and Paloma: Paloma Picasso Talks About Life With—and Without—Her Father," in ARTnews, November 1996.

Nightengale, Cyndi Y., "Wall Falls," in the Los Angeles Times, 2 May 1998.

"Paloma Picasso," in the Los Angeles Times, November 1998.

Ceballos, Chris, "Focus: Orange County Community News," in the Los Angeles Times, 26 August 1999.

Musselman, Faye, "The Softer Side of Paloma Picasso," in HFN (Home Furnishings Network), 20 March 2000.

Hessen, Wendy, "Tiffany Celebrates 20 Paloma Years," in WWD, 2 October 2000.

"Charles Tiffany's 'Fancy Goods' Shop and How It Grew," from the Biography Resource Center, the Gale Group, 2001.

"Paloma Picasso," from the Biography Resource Center, the Gale Group, 2001.

***

With such a name, one could hardly fail to be noticed. And since her marriage, her name has an even more exotic ring—Paloma Picasso Lopez-Sanchez. The daughter of Pablo Picasso, however, is undoubtedly a personality and exciting talent in her own right. Visually arresting with striking features, she always wore bright red lipstick to emphasize her white skin and thick, black hair; when she reached her fifties, however, she no longer cared for such scrutiny and wore less noticable cosmetics. "For 20 years, I put it on every day," Picasso told Faye Musselman of the Home Furnishings Network's weekly newspaper, HFN, in March 2000. "When I was younger, I wanted to make an impression, to look older. But now that I've turned 50, I obviously don't want to look older anymore."

Picasso has, however, continued to be a newsworthy and photogenic participator in the world's fashion circuit—and not because she is the daughter of Pablo Picasso. Picasso fille has earned her reputation through a myriad of creations, from fragrances, bath and body products, and cosmetics to sought-after jewelry and home furnishings.

Picasso was born and educated in Paris. Formally trained as a jewelry designer, her interest was possibly kindled by childhood memories of the glass beads seen on the island of Murano in Venice and an early fascination with sparkling colors. Initially, she was involved in costume design for the theater, where her originality and exotic pieces attracted much attention. An invitation from Yves Saint Laurent to create a collection of jewelry for his couture house ensured that her work was widely seen, and in 1972 her gold designs for the Greek company Zolotas achieved further recognition and acclaim.

In 1980 Picasso began designing jewelry for Tiffany & Company of New York, the legendary jeweler. Her early creations mixed color and varying gemstones in bold designs, demonstrating a modernity and panache that singled them out as something special. Her name (meaning "dove") and the color red were long used as essential ingredients of her work. Picasso's also began experimenting with fragrance, creating the very successful and distinctive Paloma, with its dynamic red and black packaging and strikingly shaped bottle. Described by its creator as "jewelry for the senses," the floral, wood, and amber scent was formulated in 1984 along with a cosmetics and bath line including body lotion, powder, shower gel, and soap.

The year 2000 marked a time for commemoration and change for Picasso. She had stopped wearing her trademark red lipstick, and underwent an artistic transformation as well. Her home furnishings collections, consisting of wallpaper and fabrics, had always been awash in bold, vibrant colors. But the new patterns and colors available in 2000 were softened and subtle, especially in a shimmering silk collection awash in silvery-grays, blues and greens. Moreover, there was more emphasis on texture and less on pattern.

While Picasso's jewelry has been available in the U.S. since the 1980s, her home accessories collections (except for a stint in linens) were sold in Europe. In the new millenium, however, the designer considered broadening both her product line and market. Style for the home, she commented to HFN's Musselman, "has become the new fashion statement. People are spending [much] more time thinking about their surroundings." Like a true connoisseur, though, she eschewed trends. "I don't like fashion that changes every six months. It's like the icing on the cake—but you still have to have a very good cake." Picasso's designs, whether for the body or its environment, continue to evolve.

—Margo Seaman;

updated by Kimbally A. Medeiros

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