Thursday, November 11, 2010

Back to the Future...with Robert Longo

Robert Longo recounts to W Magazine "Instead of ripping you off, we want to hire you" said Tomas Maier Creative Director of Bettega Veneta to Robert Longo as he sought to work with the artist on a new ad campaign. Working with the Italian fashion house to bring back the graphic style of his 1980's Men in Cities series for their Fall & Winter 2010 line, Longo and Maier's collaboration brings the timeless appeal of Robert Longo's early 1980's work to the forefront of contemporary fashion.

Above on the left is one of Robert Longo's original Men in Cities charcoal and graphite on paper drawings from 1981, on the right is one of the photographs for the Bottega Veneta ad campaign.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Patrick Nagel Illusion...The Magic of David Copperfield

A wonderful segment from David Copperfield's TV special "The Magic of David Copperfield". Appearing along with David Copperfield and CJ the Orangutan from the 1981 remake "Tarzan, the Ape Man", appears a larger than life Nagel woman as a prop for David Copperfield's card trick. Enjoy!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

ACME Studio: CNN Style, 1987

Filmed in 1987 at the New York International Gift Fair / Accent on Design, CNN Styles host, Elsa Klensch interviewed Lesley Bailey and Adrian Olabuenaga, founders of ACME Studios, Inc. The story covers the jewelry that ACME focused on at the time and the design revolutions that inspired them.

Monday, July 5, 2010

She Wore a Black Bustier...Original Patrick Nagel Canvas

The design roots of this original acrylic painting on canvas from 1983 came from a smaller original painting on board that Nagel did for Playboy's September 1983 Playboy Forum. The image from Playboy is posted below.
This image was then later cropped and printed in the 1990s by Playboy under the business name of "Special Edition Limited". An image of the print is seen below.
The canvas painting that we're currently offering features a more limited color palette than the Playboy piece, but is a much more refined painting with a stunning face and contrast in tonal quality, as can be seen in the detail photo of her face below.
The canvas painting measuring 43"x31" is in excellent condition. The canvas is signed and dated "1983" and is stretched over a wooden backer, which is a signature element of Nagel's canvas works.

On the back of the wooden stretcher the painting is marked with the cataloging number "N231" as can be seen in the image posted below.
We have included a photo of Nagel at a show signing with this canvas hanging behind him during the event.
Patrick Nagel
Original Acrylic on Canvas
Signed and Dated 1983

For additional information please email:

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Dorothy Hafner...The Art of Tea

Hand Made Porcelain in Hafner Studios, NYC 1981-1991 this Tea Set titled "Fireflies, Jelly Beans and Arthur Murray Dance Steps" is pictured here with a matching plate. The Tea Pot measures 9" Long by 3.5" Deep by 8.5" Tall with the Handle. The set is in museum quality condition and was secured directly from Dorothy Hafner. Knowing that this was one of the last Tea Sets that she created in the series it is a wonderful addition to any 80s showcase...even if it is signed 1991!
The underside of the Tea Pot is signed 1991 in ink and faintly inscribed in the porcelain. The photo below shows the ink signature on the underside of the Tea Pot.The underside of the Sugar is signed and dated 1991 in ink and is inscribed in the porcelain. The photo below shows both signatures on the underside of the Sugar.
The underside of the Creamer is signed and dated 1990 in ink as can be seen in the photo below.
This set is available for $950. Please email for addition information or purchase requests. Love Living in the 80s!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Dorothy Hafner...Are You Being Served?

While Dorothy Hafner has stayed current as a designer by continually growing and evolving to keep her designs cutting edge, we find the porcelain designs that came out of her New York studio in the 1980's as refreshing today as the day they were fired! We have recently added three original Dorothy Hafner porcelain platters to the gallery that we're very excited to share. The first design shown below is one of Hafner's most acclaimed and sought after designs. This platter is a part of a series titled "Fireflies, Jelly Beans and Arthur Murray Dance Steps."
Originally designed in 1981 this pattern was created from 1981-1991. This particular platter is one of Hafner's earliest pieces from the series as noted by her early block signature and 1981 date on the underside. Featured in countless editorials and design books this pattern can be seen at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York and the Newark Museum in New Jersey. This platter which measures 10.25"x10.25" is in museum quality condition and is available for $350.

Not to be over shadowed by the "Fireflies" piece above, the "Kyoto Homage" pattern, designed in 1980, toured nationally in shows by the American Craft Museum and the Smithsonian American Art Museum in 1980. This design pattern can also be found at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York, the Brooklyn Museum in New York, the Newark Museum in New Jersey, and other nationally recognized museums and collections.
Measuring 10.25"x10.25" this "Kyoto Homage" platter from 1982 is hand signed in ink and in the porcelain on the underside as pictured above. This platter is in very good condition with only very light crazing in the white ares. This piece is available for $300

The third platter that we're introducing is Dorothy Hafner's "Chevron" pattern. This pattern was made exclusively for Tiffany & Co. from 1982-1991. With such exclusive distribution, this is a very rare pattern and is wonderful to find in such great condition 27 years later.
Measuring 10.25"x10.25" this "Chevron" platter from 1983 is hand signed in ink and in the porcelain on the underside as pictured above. This platter is in very good condition with only very light crazing in the white areas. The piece is available for $300. Please feel free to email us at with any questions about these unique Dorothy Hafner platters.

Fireflies, Jelly Beans and Arthur Murray Dance Steps $350
Kyoto Homage $300
Chevron $300

Sunday, March 21, 2010

The 80s Gallery is on Facebook!

As a way of keeping our friends and collectors updated on the items we showcase, The 80s Gallery has joined Facebook. We will be posting images, information and updates regularly about our featured designers and pieces from our favorite decade. Our fans can post images and comments relating to 1980's art and design. To become a fan, simply search The 80s Gallery on Facebook or visit our page here

Sunday, March 7, 2010

A Mountain Climbers Fantasy

Appearing in the 1981 Playboy Forum was Patrick Nagel's adaptation of a mountain climbers oasis!
Resting in her hanging bivouac sack, or bivy sack, is the alluring Nagel Woman. This original ink on board measures 14.5"x9.5" The piece is hand signed in pencil along the right side, as pictured below.
As is consistent with the Nagel originals that appeared in Playboy magazine, the backside of the original is stamped with "PLAYBOY'S ARTWORK REPRODUCTION PROHIBITED WITHOUT PLAYBOY'S PERMISSION". This identification stamp can be seen in the photo below.
This piece was purchased from the collection of Charles Martignette by collector and American mystery writer Max Allan Collins, who wrote the graphic novel "Road to Perdition" and took over the writing of the Dick Tracy comic strip in 1977 from creator Chester Gould. This original was recently acquired from Max Allan Collins and has recently been placed into one of our collectors homes!

For additional information please email: or visit

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Imitation is the Sincerest Form of Flattery

Lindsey B's unique ability to combine the styles of cubism, art deco, and new wave into a single sculpture make her designs unmistakable. More difficult is spotting a Lindsey B copy. As artists achieve notoriety and collectability, forgers will recreate or copy the original artist's work. Often times these forgeries can be spotted as there are inconsistencies with the composition, color, texture or size. But in the case of Lindsey B's work, the knock offs are taken directly from her original work, which makes them slightly more difficult to spot. We have found a number of examples where it is clear that a mould was taken from an authentic piece and then recast. Because these copies were cast directly from the originals, they can be difficult to distinguish as they are the same size and striking imagery as the original sculptures. Below we are posting a couple examples of fakes.

The fake seen above is a copy of Lindsey B's "Rachel". Cast from an original piece this fake looks nice and shows well, but there are a few indicators that this is not an authentic piece. The first aspect to note is the finish, this glossy black finish stands apart from the majority of her matte finished pieces. Lindsey used a unique material to make her sculptures known as "crystacal," a very dense ceramic. The knockoffs are a cheap ceramic, lighter in weight and hollow. The second aspect to note is the hand painted line work, while Lindsey B did rework her pieces with added color, they were typically executed with an airbrush for a much softer make-up effect. The third and most important note is the signature, in the case of this fake there is no signature in the cast. The signature is frequently the easiest way to distinguish an authentic piece from a copy. The absence of a signature in the above piece is an immediate give away, but more common is the shallow signature as we found with the piece below.
The signature seen above comes from this fake "Rick". Because the majority of fake Lindsey B's are cast from a real piece, they are in effect "a copy of a copy" and just as with photocopies, the secondary piece is never quite as crisp and clear as the original. This is precisely the case for this copy. Where Lindsey B's sculptures showcase crisp clean cubist lines, the copy's edges are much softer and smoother than the original designs. The signature is also softer in the copy, it's not as crisp and cut as her authentic works.
To view authentic availabe pieces please visit

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

You Belong to the City, You Belong to the Night

So you want to live in the 80's? Adjust those shoulder pads, grab your Wayfarers, and turn on your Empire State Building Lamp! We're excited to share this unique 1980's prop from the 1988 Eddie Murphy film "Coming to America", the 1988 Tom Hanks film "Big", and the 1986 Sylvester Stallone film "Cobra".
Shown above is the actual lamp that appeared in both 1988 feature films "Coming to America" & "Big". This lamp is constructed with a translucent white plastic shell in the form of the Empire State Building. Within the building's shell is a fluorescent tube light that illuminates the building from within. This architectural lamp shows incredibly well on a raised pedestal or table as can be seen in the screen shots from "Coming to America" below.
To find this scene in the film look for it around the 1 hour 12 minute mark with the following dialog.
Arsenio Hall (Semmi): Akeem!
Eddie Murphy (Akeem): What have you done?
Arsenio Hall (Semmi): You told me to fix up the place.
Eddie Murphy (Akeem): I should kill you!
Arsenio Hall (Semmi): Why?
Eddie Murphy (Akeem): I'm supposed to be a poor man.
Below is a screen shot from "Big" with Tom Hanks and Elizabeth Perkins. To find this scene in the film look for it with the following dialog.
Elizabeth Perkins (Susan): I'm not so sure we should do this.
Tom Hanks (Josh): Do what?
Elizabeth Perkins (Susan): Well, I like you, and I want to spend the night with you.
Tom Hanks (Josh): Do you mean sleep over?
Elizabeth Perkins (Susan): Well...yeah.
Tom Hanks (Josh): Well, okay... but I get to be on top.
Below is a screen shot from "Cobra" with Sylvester Stallone. To find this scene in the film look for it around the 16 minute mark.
Spiring to a height of 38.5" tall with the base measuring 10.25"x8.75" this piece of interior design is iconic for the 1980's in how it uses a symbolic art deco building to create drama with lighting and sculpture. Little is known about the manufacturing or distribution of this lamp, other than that they originated from Japan. We recently sold the lamp featured in the movies, but have an identical piece available.
For additional information please email: or visit

Thursday, January 21, 2010

"Closet Found" Original Patrick Nagel Canvas

Just as vintage Ferrari collectors dream of finding a 1963 250 GT Berlinetta Lusso tucked away in a forgotten barn, Nagel collectors fantasize about finding an original Nagel canvas that was pulled off of the wall years ago and stored in the closet. We're proud to show one of these "Closet Found" Nagel's. Measuring 52"x31", this original acrylic painting on canvas has been referenced with the title of "Lisa" bearing the name of the actual model. Painted in 1982, the same year as the famed painting for Duran Duran's chart topping album "Rio", this painting was originally showcased and sold by Galerie Michael in Los Angeles. Having been protected from the light of day for the past 20 years since 1990, this piece is in wonderful condition and is an exceptional example of Nagel's balance of color juxtaposed with the stark contrast of the figure.
The full frontal view of the face is a rare find among Nagel canvas paintings as many of them show a profile or angled view. The full frontal face became so desirable as images like "Texas" (image for Duran Duran Rio) & "Palm Springs Life" became the epitome for Nagel collectors with those striking squared off eyes.The painting is stretched with a wooden backer, which is a signature element for Nagel's original paintings on canvas, and is identified on the wooden stretchers as "N. 412 Sep 10th, 82 52by31"
"Lisa" Original Acrylic on Canvas by Patrick Nagel
For additional information please email: or visit