Nicolas Pol On His New Show "Neverlodge"
It’s not big statements. It’s not meant to be boring. It’s heavy but not boring.
The beautiful people from the fashion, modeling and art world flocked to the Upper East Side last week for the opening of French artist Nicolas Pol’s new exhibit “Neverlodge” curated by Vladamir Restoin Roitfeld. Carine Roitfeld, Julia Restoin-Roitfeld, Giovanna Battaglia, Stavros Niarchos, Jessica Hart, Alexandra Richards, Fabiola Beracasa, Larry Gagosian, Simon de Pury, Stacey Bendet Eisner and more were all in attendance.
On one wall, a bright red painting showing a number of figures hunched, including a man kneeling backward with what looks to be a dildo being shoved up his more tender parts, a skeleton hovering above. In the middle of one room, a Frankestein-like creature in an old dentist chair and in another, a taxidermy leopard, either art or a piece that came with the mansion, wears a painted riding hat.
Dark and twisted and billed as part amusement park and part brothel, it’s also strangely comical, like a joke you missed the beginning of but were present for the punch line. “Yes, it’s funny and wise and a life visual. It’s not big statements. It’s not meant to be boring. It’s heavy but not boring,” Pol told us as beach music and nature sounds play throughout the giant $50 million townhouse, giving the whole experience an even stranger, absurdist vibe.
“You know it’s not a clever story,” said Pol of the shows genesis. “I had a creepy more gloomy vision. It’s not a true idea. It’s the kind of idea you want to have and base something on and then destroy the original idea because it’s not a clever one. You could feel the place. Anyway, it was a strange place where you could do anything you want and have everything exhausted, evil-oriented. I try to reach fascination, fascinate people, where you don’t know, you have no...I don’t know the name in English. It's like a compass that goes mad, that’s fascination.”
Guests dressed in fur and high heels climbed the marble staircase to take in three floors of art and marvel at the chandaliers and giant rooms. “Vlad took me here and said lets do a show here. I said yeah and then later realized the show’s idea and place were connected, not only in my fiction fantasies but also of the facts of what happened here,” Pol said, alluding perhaps to the spaces former owner, Lawrence B. Salander, an art dealer who was indicted on charges that he stole $88 million from investors and collectors. “It was the core that I circled around and made bigger and bigger circles around. It’s both something and absolutely nothing, the Neverlodge thing.”