Topolino, Artist with Make-up

10 Mar
Guido Mocafico for Citizen K
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Topolino is very petite, smokes like a chimney, and has the thickest french accent. His name is Italian for Mickey Mouse, and the name of one of the most extraordinary make up artists around. Actually he is more an artist who uses make-up. Topolino is continually introducing new perspectives to the standards of beauty. Using feathers, flowers, paint and even metal, he is a perfectionist, as well as a visionary, who has turned the rules of professional make-up upside down. And not to forget, he has my favorite character trait: humour!
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 Topolino came fresh from Marseilles and an apprenticeship at L’Atelier Paralelle, where he had mastered the basics of his trade: hairstyling, fashion, make-up, manicure, etc. Just at the age of 19 he moved to Paris, to carve out a career as a make-up artist. The 1980s was a booming time in fashion, a time for showing off, for cheap and chic, for mixing cultures and eras.
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Topolino
ph. Éric Traoré for Vogue france
ph. Éric Traoré
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Topolino’s work was free from historical references. His inspiration comes purely out of his own imagination and his own imagination is his childhood world. He thrives on fantasy, fairy tales and legends. Topolino adores clowns and cartoons and has retained spontaneity and innocence.
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Topolino
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All these ingredients make him a true original and original is also his use of modest means. He has the tiniest kit ever, basically the size of a handkerchief and out of this kit Topolino creates the quirkiest characters. He doesn’t care what brand the tools and products he uses are, with the exception of Vaseline-it must be American (the consistency is better for glitter adhesion. To achieve a glitter princess Topolino rubbed Vaseline all over her face, neck and chest, then poured large particle glitter into his hands and blew!).
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ph. Alek & Inaki for Jalouse
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He draws tattoos with a ballpoint pen directly on the skin, uses fake tan to draw a bikini on a torso and covers a body with stars using only a black eye pencil. Self-taught, Topolino creates looks that haven’t been seen before and changes the way people look and work with make-up. However strange his concepts sometimes may sound, they still manage to be undeniable beautiful.
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For more than twenty-five years, he has worked with the greatest fashion crowd such as Alexander McQueen and Philip Treacy, photographers of our time, from Mondino to Nick Knight, and magazines like Vogue, The Face & I-D. In 1995 he was honored with a show at the Musée de la Mode.

In Topolino’s case: pictures speak louder than words…

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Topolino

topolino

ph. Les Cyclopes

Iph. Jean Baptiste Mondino

ph. Nick Knight

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In 2001 Assouline Publishing tributed Topolino with the book Topolino,  make-up games, which contains some of his most brilliant work.

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bookcover, ph. satoshi Sakusa 1987

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http://www.amazon.com/Topolino-Make-Up-Games/dp/2843233712

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ph. Annett Aurel

ph. Mario Testino

Topolino

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ph. Guido Mocafico

Topolino

most pictures downloaded from:  http://www.callisteparis.com/topolino

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