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Fashion, Arts

Nicola Formichetti became one of the most influential person in fashion and design today. Multi-facetted artist, he works for fashion brands, is friend with celebrities and develop personal projects like Nicopanda. He is all over the place and some people tend to compare him with Andy Warhol. Is Nicola Formichetti the new Warhol?

A Cultural melting pot as origins

Nicola Formichetti is a culture mix. Her mother was Japanese and his father Italian. He was born in Tokyo and moved to London for his studies. Andy Warhol was born in Pittsburg (USA) but his parents came from today’s Slovakia. So this background definitely brought a wider vision of things, making the 2 men to recreate the rules established. Mr. Formichetti’s japanese and italian origins definitely make him an unique person raised in the 2 cultures.

Artistic Director for Fashion magazines

Nicola Formichetti worked and still collaborate with several fashion magazines. From his start at Dazed&Confused towards V, Harper’s Bazaar USA and Vogue homme Japan, now GQ Styles, he brings his contribution as Artistic director. Working with fashion designers and photographers in order to shape today’s fashion. Andy Warhol founded in 1969 Interview magazine. Considered as the Crystal ball of Pop, it was the most important reference at that time, advertising all the talented generations of artists.

Dazed_Interview magazines
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Pop Art culture freak

Pop art is considered not only as one of the biggest artistic movement of the 20th century but it is still one of the major inspiration and influence of today’s fashion and design. Founded in the mid-1950’s in the UK thanks to artist like Richard Hamilton and Eduardo Paolozzi. But it was 10 later that Pop Art bursted into the world thanks to the work of artists like Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Robert Rauschenberg or Jasper Johns. By definition, Pop Art tends to use visual elements of popular culture in order to remix it, blend it with other elements in order to generate an artistic contemplation. So the subject itself is not so important, it is the attitude of the work that matters. Andy Warhol took strong symbols of his time, like Marilyn Monroe and generated a deep artwork by highlighting some society criticism.


Nicola Formichetti is a true heir of this artistic trend. By using, blending, extracting current popular symbols, elements and objects, he transforms the culture of today. He is also very true to his origins as Tokyo culture became very influent in the world of arts and fashion. He creates with his brother, the character of Nicopanda. Being his nickname when he was young (reference to his asian origins), Nicola Formichetti developed a small character, a Panda bear, that could possible blend to many styles and situations. As the Warhol Marilyn, the Formichetti’s Panda is a symbol of today’s society evolving between childhood nostalgia and a fast moving world.


The way the 2 artists show themselves is also quite comparable as they cultivate a sort of coherence between their art, what they represent and their lifestyles.

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Inspiring the Stars

Andy Warhol lived during exciting moments. The 50’s and the 60’s were really exciting times to be in New York and Los Angeles. Hollywood was at its best and the New york artistic scene was amazingly rich. Andy Warhol was an inspiration for many artists, singers and performers. From Liza Minelli, Mick Jaeger, Truman Capote or Bob Dylan.


Nicola Formichetti is since 2009 a closer friend of many stars and especially the phenomenal Lady Gaga. Acting as her personal Fashion designer and director. They became closer friends and collaborate at many levels.


A “Factory” vs a “Haus”

Andy Warhol founded The Factory in 1962. It was the name of his studio in mid-town Manhattan. It was a place for work but also to meet different influent artists of that time, as well as amphetamine users, Drag queens such as Holly Woodlawn or Jacky Curtis, and the Warhol superstars. It was also very famous for its jetset parties. It represented a foundation for freedom of creation. Warhol took a lot of his inspiration from the Factory.

Nicola Formichetti did not create The Haus of Gaga, as according to the story, it was Lady Gaga herself who decided to create a group of artistic and creative people acting and investing their time around Lady Gaga. Most of them acting as punctual freelancers. Openly inspired by Warhol’s factory, Several members work together in order to create clothing, props, stage sets, make up and accessories for live performances. Nicola Formichetti is the Fashion director.

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Fashion Icon

Andy Warhol is definitely a fashion icon for the past 50 years and Nicola Formichetti for the past 5 years. We have the feeling that everything he touches, becomes “gold”. In November 2010 he was considered as the “most influential creative forces working in fashion today”. Either under his own Brand or for others like Lady Gaga since 2009 and Mugler since september 2010, his creativity has literally invaded the fashion world.


His collaboration with Mugler as Fashion Artist director for men and women, brought a new twist for the french brand. Collaborations with Lady Gaga and other fashion icons such as Zombie boy, gave a new future for the fashion house, very successful with fragrances and now back with fashion too. Here is the latest AW13-14 for Women:


Is Nicola Formichetti the new Warhol? Not an easy question to answer and not even sure if we could make this comparison. The 2 artists are though very different and we are living completely different times. What is sure is that what Hedi Slimane did in the years 2000, Nicola Formichetti is doing it now, which means, being a master influencer.



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