The Real Reason Why Karl Lagerfeld Brought 10 Security Guards to Art Basel in Miami Beach

Karl Lagerfeld during Art Basel Miami 2002.
Photo: via Page Six.


Seth Browarnik, a Miami-based nightlife photographer, is celebrating his company’s fifth anniversary by dishing out on a few celebrity details, according to the New York Post‘s Page Six.

The celebrity photographer writes about its founding in 2010: “The photographer became another character in the nightlife story.” He continues to wax philosophical on the website for World Red Eye: “It was Miami and it was always sexy.”

However, things weren’t always so sexy for Browarnik, or his subjects. His 2002 photo of Karl Lagerfeld (above), taken during Art Basel Miami Beach, has a peculiar story.

“This was just five years after Gianni Versace died, and Lagerfeld was on lockdown in his hotel room because he was afraid he was going to be murdered like Versace was,” Browarnik tells the New York Post. “He arrived at the event 90 minutes late with 10 security guards.”

In 1997, the shooting of designer Gianni Versace at his Miami residence shook the fashion, entertainment, and art worlds. The alleged killer, Andrew Cunanan, committed suicide before he could be questioned.

In 2011, Brownarik launched an exhibit titled “Art of Night” in conjunction with the unveiling of the new Shelborne South Beach Resort. Here, his images of Yoko Ono, Jay Z, Michael Jackson, and Karl Lagerfeld were on display for anyone who wanted to look, or buy, a piece of Miami nightlife. The show’s online page described the pictures as exposing “moments of debauchery, of excess, of frantic backstage preparation, of pure unadulterated elation, of undeniable adoration.”

And maybe some paranoia, too.

Gianni Versace at his Miami residence. Photo: AP.

Gianni Versace at his Miami residence.
Photo: AP.

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