During Paris fashion week MADE gave a salon inside the stunning Hotel Salomon de Rothschild to each of the young designers in which to present their collection. Ligia Dias is a jewelry designer who works with precious metals. This season however people visiting each of the salons were greeted by a lone perspex box on a pillar containing a pink cigarette lighter entitled ‘Kurt Cobain’s Lighter’. We asked everybody in the room to explain what was going on.

Ligia Dias: This season is a bit special because I’m pregnant, a young mum so I decided not to present a new collection but still I was offered this great opportunity by MADE fashion week to present something here. I decided to ask an artist to create a project for me. The artist is called Scott King and he’d been talking about this art project to a curator at Palais de Tokyo. For me it was obvious that this art piece would be the piece to show. As you can see, the object is a standard, disposable lighter. For me this installation is really about fetishism of an object that’s an every day object.

MM: Hi there, you look as if you’re in charge of this installation

Man with beard: Yes I’m Julien Fronsacq, a curator from Palais de Tokyo.

MM: Why did you choose to feature a piece by Scott King?

Man with beard: Scott King was lucky enough to find himself, by chance in 1989 in Birmingham (UK) in a pub, just next to Kurt Cobain who left his lighter, Scott thought it might be nice to keep it. Some years after, finally, he decided to show it again as a nice treasure.

MM: It’s not actually Kurt Cobain’s lighter is it?

Man with beard: Yes it is, it says so on the plaque, ‘Kurt Cobain’s Lighter’. There is perspex protecting the lighter, it has been used, there are some scratches on it. Why here, in this building, that’s the question. It’s fetishism, it’s rock’n’roll, there’s a lot of protection around this object as it needs. This environment is an eighteenth century, very chic place and so this object is like the Buckingham Palace treasure.

MM: Is the artist around?

Man with beard: I just sent him a text, he’s on his way. Here he is.

MM: Scott, this isn’t really Kurt Cobain’s lighter is it?

Scott King: Oh yeah, it’s his lighter.

MM: Go on then, tell me the story

SK: I was in a pub in Birmingham in 1989, it was thrown out into the crowd and I caught it.

MM: Nirvana were playing a gig?

SK: One of the very first tours of Britain. It was a tiny little pub called Edward’s Number Eight. A really stinking, rotten little venue, I was there by complete accident.

MM: I suppose if I ask you questions about what this installation means to you, you’re going to say that the meaning is up to the audience, right? I can just tell from the look in your eye.

SK: possibly, give it a go

MM: You know what, we could talk about Situationism and Duchamp and being an agent provocateur or making statements about celebrity culture but let’s not go down this route, people can make up their own minds

SK: Completely

MM: Well there you go, Kurt Cobain’s Lighter everyone.

SK: Exactly.

British artist Scott King has recently completed two sculptures for Arena Homme Plus called ‘The Folks From Accounts’ – "Life sized resin casts of the men you see going berserk during happy hour in The City, (London’s Wall Street) in their suits." He was also part of a group show in New York called Merci Mercy curated by Christine Messineo and Vladimir Restoin Roitfeld. In May a record titled ‘You’re My Favorite Artist’ will be released on Vinyl Factory and accompanied by a video that will launch in New York during Frieze Art Fair.

Photography by Leandro Justen/

Related Stories

New Stories

Load More


Like Us On Facebook