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Franco Felice eyes B'wood

Italian Franco Felice Fumagalli, one of the world's biggest makeup artists, is in India laying the rouge and lipstick on Indian models

india Updated: Jul 21, 2003 20:05 IST

He has made up Gwyneth Paltrow, Cindy Crawford and Claudia Schiffer and now has his eyes trained on Bollywood.

Italian Franco Felice Fumagalli, one of the world's biggest makeup artists, is now in India laying the rouge and lipstick at the fourth Indian fashion

"This is my first trip to India, and now I'll make sure that I get to know some Hindi movie stars and do them up next," said Fumagalli.

The 44-year-old, heavily muscular makeup man is here to paint the faces of some of India's biggest models walking the ramp at the Annual Fashion Week that began in Mumbai Friday.

Looking around the glittering Lakme salon-cum-studio at Mumbai's National Centre for Performing Arts, Fumagalli flashed a toothy smile as he talked of his experience.

"It's been a sort of role reversal, you know. In the West, I'm considered a sort of expert for make-up on darker skins and here in India, I was hoping to work on the wonderful dusky complexion.

"But no, they gave me Yana Gupta (India's star Czech model) and she is so, fair," smiled and shrugged Fumagalli.

Gupta is one of the stars of the 48-model fashion week team.

Fumagalli has been a makeup artist for 22 years and his work appears in ace fashion publications like Vogue Italia, Harper's Bazaar and Hollywood Reporter.

Apart from the big models, he has also done up Hollywood stars like UmaThurman and Kim Bassinger.

On the runway, his work has appeared for Armani, Chanel, Fendi, Gucci, Versache and Valentino.

Fumagalli is in India at the invitation of domestic cosmetic giant Lakme, the title sponsor of the fashion week. Lakme has made a record by sponsoring the show for the fourth time.

The company this year has a new range of water-based makeup that they say is
most suited for the humid Indian climate. Nodded Fumagalli: " India is a very warm country, most global makeup just melts."

First Published: Jul 21, 2003 20:05 IST