The Woman of 50 Faces
I’m still thinking about John Galliano‘s muse. This season he dedicated his spring collection, which was shown in Paris last week, to Maria Lani, a Polish émigrée who in the late 1920s enthralled Paris’s painters and sculptors from Mogdiliani to Matisse to Soutine to Chagall and on, posing for each of 50 important artists under the pretext that she would use their work to make a horror film about a painting come to life. Then, without warning, she sold off all her accumulated artworks and ran away to America. (Read my review of the Galliano collection here.)
Of Lani Jean Cocteau said, “Every time I look away she changes… what a hypnotic force the woman has.”
I just found out that later, during World War II, Lani became a hostess at the Stage Door Canteen in New York. This sounds like a story for Encyclopedia of the Exquisite. I love a good hunt.
She’s exquisitely fabulous. Loved Galliano’s show.
Thanks for writing in,
i am not sure how this works, it is the first time i have commented on a blog. i too am interested in maria lani. it is just such an intriguing story. i have been trying to do some research on her but have found it very difficult to discover anything. did you know that a film called the woman of a hundred faces, was written about her, by her husband maximillian ilyin, thomas mann, and leon bromfield. it was never produced, however, there were rumours that none other than katherine hepburn wanted to play maria lani. have you discovered anything interesting? i hope we can correspond.
caroline (email firstname.lastname@example.org)
That’s fascinating. You know much more about Maria Lani than I do! I would have loved to have seen Katherine Hepburn in the role.
Best of luck with your search and thanks for writing in.
[…] de todos”. En la Ópera Comique de París el genial diseñador ha tomado como referencia a María Lani, musa de numerosos pintores como Chagall o […]
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