Michèle Lamy has lived many lives. The 77-year-old icon started off her career at an experimental psychiatric clinic, where she worked and studied with the philosopher Gilles Deleuze. From there came stints as a defense lawyer, cabaret dancer, and restaurant owner, as well as, of course, a marriage to Rick Owens. Together, the pair design clothing, jewelry, and furniture, and in her spare time, Lamy boxes. Oh—and she also raps. (Including, on one occasion, with A$AP Rocky and Mos Def.)
Between all that, nothing on Lamy’s résumé should come as a surprise. And yet, to the consternation of their extremely disparate fanbases, Lamy is also a close friend and collaborator of Kim Kardashian. The pair, who first met in 2013, even recently spent a maskless day together.
The end result of that hang was Irreversible, a short film that premiered on Monday as part of Intersect 21, a virtual art fair featuring galleries from California, North Africa, and the Middle East. For those who’ve been fantasizing about a post-pandemic bacchanal, it’s a fantasy come true. The five-minute short finds Lamy, Kardashian, and the electronic musician Yves Tumor (Sean Bowie) in the midst of a feast-like tea party, raucously laughing without the slightest worry of germ transmission. No one looks more joyous than Kardashian.
Irreversible came together shockingly quickly. Upon arriving to Los Angeles, on her 77th birthday, Lamy and the artist and director Amanda Demme came up with a concept: Alice in Wonderland, reimagined as Kim Kardashian in L.A. (Lamy, who cast herself as the White Rabbit, knows the story well; she was studying with Deleuze when he wrote about Lewis Carroll in his 1969 book The Logic of Sense.) The shoot took place the next day, and within 48 hours, editing was complete. There was no need for agents, managers, or any outside parties; all it took to find a filming location, for example, was a few texts to the artist Thomas Houseago, who offered up his studio.
As for the soundtrack, which features the poetry of Etel Adnan, Lamy already had that covered. Yet another one of the multihyphenate’s projects is Lavascar, a spoken-word, electronic band with the artist Nico Vascarelli and Lamy’s daughter, Scarlett Rouge.