Judith Davidsen -- Interior Design, 3/1/2007 12:00:00 AM
The lip shape entered the design pantheon in 1934, when Man Ray's lover, Lee Miller, left her lipstick on his collar, inspiring him to paint A l'Heure de l'Observatoire—Les Amoureux, a huge rendering of her lips floating over Paris. (He went on to photograph the piece, which now appears on posters and postcards around the world.) Two years later, Salvador Dalí designed a sofa based on Mae West's mouth and upholstered the piece in Elsa Schiaparelli's shocking pink. He kept the original and made two slightly different versions for a patron.
Mass production didn't enter the picture until 1971, with the Bocca, a love seat manufactured in polyurethane foam covered in lipstick-red nylon. If Man Ray and Dalí were the obvious godparents, Studio 65 and Gufram were the proud parents. The following year, the 10th anniversary of the death of Marilyn Monroe, Stendig imported the Italian design, and Eleanor Stendig renamed it Marilyn.
Three years ago, Heller released an indoor-outdoor version in soft resin. Something similar called Lolita came out more recently, but it seems to have disappeared. And then there's lipstore.com, online source for all things lips.