At this year's Miami Art Basel, dessert-loving artist Will Cotton will be releasing a new piece of work. Although he frequently uses edible sweets in this work to explore consumer longing, Will Cotton and Ladurée are partnering in a collaboration they hope will drive literal consumer longing.
Their collaboration will be a new printed box featuring one of Cotton's favorite models, Hannah Cohen, wearing a whipped-cream dress, and it will sell at Ladurée's new Lincoln Road store. This is not the first time that Ladurée and Cotton have worked together. In 2005, Cotton went to Paris to learn about macaron baking directly from Philippe Andrieu, Ladurée's pastry chef, for a landscape he was creating featuring macaron trees. At the time, Andrieu and Cotton had bonded over "the fact that neither professional nor amateur has figured out how to get their ginger macarons to taste like real ginger." It appears they conquered the challenge since their limited-edition flavor will be ginger-infused whipped cream. Elisabeth Holder, Ladurée's owner, in talking about their first artist collaboration, calls it naturally sweet, describing macarons as "art éphémère. Read on for Will Cotton's take on why he sees macarons as quintessential and his favorite Halloween candy.
We know from a Times article that you came to Paris in 2005 to study pastry with Ladurée — how did that experience inspire your current collaboration?
I've become interested recently in having a two-way dialogue with those cultural points of reference that have been an influence on my work. I've looked at Ladurée's design and packaging for the last fifteen years and often made use of their particular aesthetic of opulence and beauty in my paintings. My discussion with Ladurée's head chef in 2005 was motivated by my desire to make an entire garden of macaron "trees," but in the intervening years I've introduced more figures and recently fashion into my paintings. So when Elisabeth asked me to suggest a new macaron flavor, to be accompanied by an image for the box, I thought of the whipped-cream dress. Probably the right thing to wear in a macaron garden.
Artistically, how do you see macarons compared to other sweets you have worked with?
Macarons are the quintessential confectionery delight. In the macaron, the color, texture, and flavor become so much more than the sum of their parts. And since the flavors aren't dictated by the cookies' form, each one becomes a vessel of endless possibility for the most fantastic flavor imaginable.
What is your favorite macaron flavor?
Pistachio, the perfect color and flavor combination.
You’re known for examining the interplay between sweet and cloying, using pastry. Did you explore this in your work with Ladurée, and how so?
Since I've been using pastry as a metaphor for everything pleasurable, I'm really only interested in the most extreme level of sweetness. I think the girl in the whipped-cream dress qualifies on that level.
What is your favorite type of Halloween candy?
I still love candy corn the best.
What type of candy are you giving out this year?
It's more about what I'm getting! I'm going to a costume party where I know there will be all kinds of candy.
Most Viewed Stories
It’s Harder to Be Thin Than It Was in the ’80s
Why Do I Jerk Awake Right As I’m Falling Asleep?
From Up Close, Raf Simons’s Vision for Dior Is Clear
Michelle Obama: No Boy Is Cute Enough to Keep You From Getting an Education
The World’s Easiest Way to Highlight Your Face
A Pregnant Supermodel Explains What She Eats
Meet the Prom Queen of Instagram
Selfie Sorority Uses Media Frenzy for Good Cause
‘Truly Ugly Guy With Glasses’ Is Europe’s Most Virile Man
Guess Who Renovated This Grand Upper West Side Penthouse
From Our Partners
Thrillist: Things No Self-Respecting Adult Should Be Doing on Facebook
Why You Should Never Wear These Two Items Two Days In A Row
Tinder is Trash
5 Must-Have Products for Your Makeup Bag
powered by PubExchange
The Cut’s Latest Beauty FeaturesEven Barbie Wants Kim Kardashian’s Makeup Artist
Life in plastic, it's fantastic.This Is How You Should Smell for Fall
Hint: not like a pumpkin.A Lesson in Beauty Grammar at Dior
What "past future perfect" means in terms of hair and makeup.Why Does My Heart Feel Like It’s Exploding?
A girl's guide to chest pain.The World’s Easiest Way to Highlight Your Face
How to strobe like a pro.A Pregnant Supermodel Explains What She Eats
"Don't be afraid of the fat."It’s Harder to Be Thin Than It Was in the ’80s
Hate you, boomers.Inside a Beauty Editor’s Insane Skin-Care Routine
A minimum of 12 products.Pat McGrath Wants You Dipped in Gold
The legendary makeup artist launches an exclusive product.Let’s All Get High on Cold-Pressed Juice!
Juice Crawls just killed nightlife.
"A modern-day romantic comedy."3 Fall Polishes to Express Your Inner Angst
For the #FallGoth inside you.Margiela Did Crazy Beauty, Again
Glam rock meets geisha meets nestlike hair.Dump Someone If You Hate Their Smell
And other revelations from the Hermès perfumers.All You’re Going to Want for Christmas Is Mariah’s M.A.C Collaboration
A Dreamlover of a beauty collection.Do I Make This Quesadilla Look Fat?
A new study suggests that weight bias affects how we perceive food info online.Want Soft Hands? The Olsen Twins Can Help.
Their latest beauty launch is surprisingly effective.The Angelina Jolie of China on Fame and Power
A rare interview with activist actress Yao Chen.Mindy Kaling’s Book Is Full of Beauty Wisdom
Six of our favorite insights.How to Look Amazing in Under 10 Minutes
A makeup artist's everyday skin routine.