French photographer, entrepreneur and art collector Jean “Johnny” Pigozzi will stage a solo show of his images at the Galerie Gmurzynska in St. Moritz, Switzerland. Running Feb. 19 to March 26, the “Pool Party in the Snow” exhibit will showcase over 30 black-and-white images shot in the Eighties and Nineties around Pigozzi’s kidney-shaped pool at his family’s Villa Dorane in Cap d’Antibes, in Southern France.
The photographs offer a rare glimpse into the glamorous world of Pigozzi’s celebrity guests gathered at the location. These included fashion, music, movie and photography’s A-listers such as Calvin Klein, Elle Macpherson, Mick and Bianca Jagger, Bono, Jack Nicholson, Sharon Stone, Elizabeth Taylor and Helmut Newton, to name a few.
Born in Paris in 1952, Pigozzi was passionate about photography ever since his teenage years and developed this art attending Harvard University, where he studied film and photography. During his studies, he often traveled to New York, where he became part of the local social scene. Influenced by photography masters such as Helmut Newton and William Klein, as well as Pop icons Andy Warhol and Mick Jagger, he developed a unique and candid way of portraying his friends and travel companions.
Pigozzi’s first solo exhibition was held at the Musée d’Art Moderne in Paris in 1974. Since then, other shows included “Pigozzi and the Paparazzi” staged at Berlin’s Helmut Newton Foundation in 2008 and “My world, Jean Pigozzi” showcased at Beijing’s Ullens Center of Contemporary Art in 2014. Pigozzi was also drawn to fashion and created a men’s wear clothing line named Limoland in 2007. He collaborated with photographer Juergen Teller and Barneys’ creative director Dennis Freedman for the store’s “The Window” in 2016.
A renowned art collector, Pigozzi assembled the world’s largest collection of contemporary African art and based it in Geneva. This has traveled to venues such as London’s Tate Modern museum, Bilbao’s Guggenheim Museum and the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art in Washington D.C. The Fondation Louis Vuitton in Paris is expected to stage an African art exhibit featuring Pigozzi’s collection this fall.