Maripol could easily be considered the gatekeeper of ’80s club culture. The French-born artist
documented goings-on at The Factory, Max’s Kansas City, and The Mudd Club using her Polaroid — not without incident, of course. “My camera would be stolen and I’d get a bit discouraged,” she recalls, mentioning other casualties of New York City’s grit. “It was like my bicycles; whenever my bicycle was stolen, I would stop biking. So, when my Polaroid was stolen, I would stop taking pictures.” (Though, never for long.) And, she had a hand in mode of the moment, first as an accessories designer — ultimately for Fiorucci; then, as the creator Madonna’s Like a Virgin
-era look. Here, she discusses chronicling the scene for the soon-to-be-re-released film Downtown 81
, the evolution of both fashion and photography, her upcoming clothing collection, and what the future holds.