Here’s every photo of the Man Ray for Nars makeup collection

Makeup in Technicolor

Text: Angelyn Kwek

Who is Man Ray, and why is his makeup collab with Nars slated to be the hottest thing this holiday season?

If you're a Nars fanatic through and through, you would know the brand has had many a collab with legendary artists and photographers — collections that are currently sitting in your makeup storage even as you read this line (Sarah Moon and Steven Klein, anyone?). And the latest luminary in the Nars hotseat is Man Ray, the award-winning American artist whose work was widely seen to be ahead of his time, pioneering 'rayograph' images that played with lighting and solarisation that would totally score a bevy of hashtags on Insta.

Inspired by the artist's electrifying visuals, the collection is exactly that: Richly pigmented shades and artful sets that sit on the side of surreal, dreamed by up François Nars, and embellished with a molten gold lip imprint to boot. Sharing a synergistic flow between them that includes their strong roots in fashion, photography and art, here's Monsieur Nars on what makes this collaborative effort a perfect match made in makeup heaven:

How did you first discover Man Ray and his work? What was your first memory or introduction to Man Ray?
As a child I remember seeing Man Ray's photographs, but it wasn't until I moved to Paris at 19 that I really discovered his work. I was fascinated by the art and culture of Montparnasse in the 1930s. I spent quite a bit of time visiting the places where the legendary artists of the period, like Man and Picasso, used to go: Brasseries like La Closerie des Lilas, the streets of Montparnasse and Saint-Germain-des-Prés. The endless hours I explored the Paris of Man Ray really gave me an entrée into his world and art.

Man Ray for Nars holiday collection

What was the inspiration behind using the gold lips throughout the collection?
I asked Fabien Baron if he could incorporate a particular image into the collection and he came back with the golden lips and the Man Ray logo. With Man Ray, especially, he did a really great job. I'm lucky to work with him, as he is an incredible art director whom I trust completely.

Why did you decide to dedicate an entire collection to Man Ray?
For the past five years, we have done collaborations with different artists from Andy Warhol and Guy Bourdin, to Steven Klein and Sarah Moon. These are artists whom I love, admire, and whose work influenced me as both a makeup artist and as a photographer. I also have great respect for Man Ray; he inspired all the former artists we collaborated with at one time or another. So, it was an obvious choice to do this collection with the Man Ray Trust. We are now paying homage to the original artist whose work influenced us all.

Man Ray for Nars holiday collection

How would you describe Man Ray's aesthetic/vision and how does it fit with the Nars world?
I was always blown away by the modernity of his photography. Man Ray was drawn to the unconventional, which is something I can relate to especially for the Nars brand. He liked edginess and strangeness. He also had an incredible sense of lighting. His photographic processes — solarisation, rayographs — were revolutionary for his time and still look incredible today.

How did you create a color collection based on Man Ray's black and white photographs?
For me, part of the fun of looking at old black and white photographs is imagining what makeup colors and textures were used. Of course the models are wearing color-probably black eyeliner, powder, dark lip color — only we can't see it. I also like to imagine what colors Man Ray might have been drawn to if he was working today. And, almost as important, is the aesthetic and vision of beauty that Man Ray represented — it is bold and moody, and a little irreverent and edgy. That's what we have tried to capture in the shades of this collection.

Man Ray for Nars holiday collection

Which products in the Man Ray collaboration are your favorites?
I love them all, so it is hard to pick favorites. If I had to choose, the Glass Tears eyeshadow palette featuring Man Ray's iconic photograph is definitely one. The image alone is so beautiful — it is perfection. And, of course, the colors of the palette are great. They can either be worn alone or in combinations.

I love lips, so I would also choose Les Amoureux Audacious Lipstick Coffret. It houses four neutral shades in a keepsake shaped like a photographer's loupes (a small magnification device). There's another classic Man Ray image, L'Heure de L'observetoire: Les Amoureux, layered between the glass and the four lipsticks. It is amazing. Lastly, I love the Gold Highlighter. It is a fantastic new formula that gives the skin the appearance of a natural glow. And the shade is so universal, it looks great on everyone!

Man Ray for Nars holiday collection

The Man Ray for Nars collection will be available from 1 November at the Nars boutique and counters, $36 - $90


Related articles

Buro 24/7 Selection