Italian video and conceptual artist Francesco Vezzoli has turned the Palais de l’Iéna in Paris into a 24-hour museum of classical Greco-Roman statues, celebrities, and a neon lit disco party.
The “24h Museum” is a collaboration between the artist and Rem Koolhaas OMA, sponsored by Prada in the occasion of their new flagship store. It opened last night at 9pm Paris time with a private dinner before turning into a nightclub and then the following day morphing into a museum, complete with school trips and a press conference. The last three hours will be a public party, before the museum closes its doors forever and the Palais returns to its daily duties as the seat of France’s Economic, Social, and Environmental Council. “It’s the idea that we are recreating, in full, a social ritual…then we pull the red carpet from under everybody’s feet, saying that it’s just an illusion.” “It could be seen as a tacky show-off or it could be seen as a deep political analysis of the role of institutions as social hubs,” says Vezzoli. Celebrities who attended included were Diane Kruger, Roman Polanski, Carsten Hoeller, Almine Rech and Audrey Tautou among others. It is surely his most extravagant project yet – and this is the artist who orchestrated a LACMA gala where Lady Gaga performed on a Damien Hirst embellished piano as members of the Bolshoi ballet danced alongside.