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In 1992, Zahm founded Purple Prose magazine (1992–1998) with Elein Fleiss—the publication has also evolved spin-offs like Purple Fiction (1992–1998), Purple Sexe (1998–2001), Purple magazine (1998–2003), Purple Journal (2004–present), Purple Fashion (1995–1998, 2004–present), and Purple Books, a publishing house. The Purple Anthology was published by Rizzoli in 2008, encompassing the first 15 years of Purple.
The "realistic", sometimes dubbed "anti-fashion"-, aesthetics of Purple was a reaction against the glamour of the 80’s, and can be linked with the global counterculture of that time, with the work of Juergen Teller, Terry Richardson, Wolfgang Tillmans, and Mario Sorrenti.
Since 2004, Zahm has been editor-in-chief of Purple Fashion, a biannual magazine attempting to bridge the worlds of art and fashion. Zahm also runs the Paris-based think tank Purple Institute, an art direction society and consulting company aimed at creating links between the art world and industry. He also created "La communauté des amants".
Zahm presented at Semi-Permanent Los Angeles in 2013.
- purple DIARY
- Olivier’s MySpace Profile
- Purple’s website
- Olivier Zahm's profile at Jed Root
- Olivier Zahm on Sgustok Magazine
- Riding Around Paris With Olivier Zahm, Fashion’s Most Libidinal Editor
- Olivier Zahm: For Fashion’s Bad Boy, No Secrets in New York Times
- Style.com's The Future of Fashion Part Four: Olivier Zahm
- Gawker – Meet Olivier Zahm: Either the Best or Worst Human Being in New York
- Black Book – Olivier Zahm Incarnates Magazine, Has Five Friends
- T Magazine – Asked & Answered | Olivier Zahm
- GQ – 10 Essentials | Olivier Zahm
- The Sunday Times – People Like Them | Olivier Zahm
- Artnet – ZAHM BAM!
- Reardon, Ben (2010): Purple Reign. In: i-D, Pre-Spring 2010