Carla Acevedo-Yates, Myriam Ben Salah, Emily Smith, and More Join 'CULTURED' in a Toast to Martien Mulder's Lafayette 148 Exhibition

Martien Mulder, Emily Smith, Carla Acevedo-Yates, and Sarah Harrelson, wearing Lafayette 148, at the "SEEING MARFA" opening. 

"Marfa has always pulled me, ever since I became interested in art," Danish-born, Brooklyn-based photographer Martien Mulder told CULTURED in the magazine's latest issue.

Last night, at Lafayette 148’s Oak Street boutique in Chicago, guests gathered to celebrate the opening of “SEEING MARFA,” an exhibition by the artist, exploring that mythical Texan locale. Presented by the brand’s creative director, Emily Smith; the MCA Chicago's Marilyn and Larry Fields Curator Carla Acevedo-Yates; and CULTURED Editor-in-Chief Sarah Harrelson, the evening brought together a crowd devoted to both photography and fashion, which was all the more ready to see the Pre-Fall 2024 collection shown throughout the space, inspired in part by Mulder's work. 

It was easy to gather the muted yet powerful expression Smith drew from Mulder’s photography of the Texas art hub: Polished pewter and copper tones are made rough-hewn in plissé fabric, while dusty pink blouses and skirts in simple, sloping cuts evoke the natural blush of the Chihuahuan Desert at twilight. “It feels more natural and feminine,” Smith told CULTURED, of Mulder's interpretation of Marfa and its natural landscape. “It’s not the Texas that everybody thinks of, and it’s not the desert that everybody thinks of.” 

Guests were treated to cocktails and stirring conversation amongst the photographs, which were gracefully hung around the reimagined boutique. Amongst the attendees were attorney Blake Gifford and Myriam Ben Salah, chief curator of the Renaissance Society. Emma Mckee, the director of Mariane Ibrahim’s Chicago gallery, was already outfitted in a top from the line as she chatted up Kate Sierzputowski, artistic director of EXPO Chicago, as well as the fair's director and president, Tony Karman. Artist Edra Soto, writer Camille Bacon, Document's Sibylle Friche, and photographer Natasha Stanglmayr could also be spotted in the crowd.

Mulder’s photography on view at the Lafayette 148 store.

"I’m all over the place when it comes to people who inspire me," Smith told CULTURED, when reflecting on her discovery of Mulder's peaceful snapshots. "We’re working on our spring concept for next year, and I’m diving into the idea of handicraft and the time it takes to make things. It’s so beautiful just to see that stroke of a hand, that nervousness of a line from an Agnes Martin. When things aren’t so perfect, you see the maker. I find that so inspiring."