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Pentimenti - (02/06/07)

The party we gave for John Chamberlain. 600 in our loft. The floors were moving. The doorbell continued to ring. Arman went down with his son Yves to let people know that we couldn’t let anyone else up. There was a group of people insisting they be let in. Arman asked, “Who invited you?” They replied, “Arman, of course.” Arman asked, “Do you know Arman?” “Yes,” was the reply. Arman replied, “Well, I am Arman and I do not know you!” They went off in a huff…

…At another party we gave, the artist Miralda prepared the food. Miralda’s art consisted of making food in an array of colors, using food coloring: blue rice, red bread, green pasta, etc. We gave the party. It was fun. After all the guests had left, Arman and I went to clean up and noticed the cans that the food coloring came in. To our horror, the can read “pigment color, not for consumption.” Horrified, Arman and I looked at each other and tried to contact Miralda. Unable to reach him—cell phones didn’t exist then—we did not sleep all night. We finally reached Miralda and Arman let him have it: “We are going to be sued for everything we own because of you.” “Why?” was Miralda’s response. “Why? Why? Because you used pigment color for the food and everyone is going to get sick or even worse, die!!!” Miralda began to laugh on the on the other end of the telephone. He explained to us that by law, he was not allowed to bring any food stuffs to the United States, and so he had to put the colors into the pigment color cans to get the food color into the country. That was quite a scare…

…My good friend Josephine Premice Fales had separated from her husband. Arman and I were on our way to Paris and Josephine insisted on us meeting her estranged husband who had moved Paris. We made an appointment to meet at the Hotel de Crillion where we met Timothy with his new friend—who was not a petite woman like Josephine but was big in stature—for drinks. We exchanged niceties for about an hour, then went our separate ways. When we reached the elevator, Arman said to me: “Well, I guess he traded quality for quantity…”

…While in the hospital in 2004 after his near-fatal accident, I was trying to move into the new house in Connecticut all the while he was hospitalized. I mentioned that I had to count all the windows of the house to order the window treatments. “I counted 54 windows,” I said. Arman’s commented, “But it’s Versailles!”…

…I was terribly chagrined by the death of my eldest brother, who passed away in March 2005. Arman summoned me, said he needed to talk to me and asked me to sit down. He then proceeded with the following discourse: “Corice, you just lost your brother, your mother has diabetes, your brother André has diabetes, your paternal grandmother died of complications from diabetes… I love you, I need you, and Yasmine and Philippe need you. We all need you, so you have to lose 20 pounds and the double chin.” I passed my hand under my chin and blurted, “But… but… I don’t have a double chin!”…

…His final days in the hospital: Two days before he passed away, he was in the hospital and the nurse wanted to administer his breathing treatment, which consisted of a steam inhaler. He never liked this treatment, but he would take it at my request. This time, however, he violently refused, and I was holding his hand when the nurse arrived in the room to administer the treatment. He became irate and agitated, and wanted to remove the breathing apparatus from his nose. At which point I tried wrestling his arm down. He pulled away, made a fist and said to the nurse, “If you touch me, I punch you!”…

…Again, just days before he passed away in the hospital, I had arranged for a private nurse to attend to Arman when I had to leave the hospital. When she walked in, I introduced her to Arman, and he greeted her with a smile and he said to her, “Please forgive me for my appearance.” On Thursday, October 20th, our good friend Patrick Pacheco came to visit and Arman looked at him and shrugged his shoulders as if to say “What can I do?”...

…1970: Works in concrete: In bed late at night, he was anguished. “I’m concerned these works will not sell, we will have to “freiner dans les tournants”—or “watch our spending”—as there will be hard times for us financially, because these works will not sell right away. But I must do them!”…

Copyright Arman Studio 2008 - All right reserved - photo credits : François Fernandez, Jean Ferrero - Legal mention - Arman