London Art Fair 2012

The London Art Fair opens its doors today at the Business Design Centre in Islington, with the participation of 100 galleries and 1000 artists. The premier art fair is for once more showcasing the best from modern art in the 20,000 sq ft location fo BDC in two sections:

Twelve Calendar

Berlin Fashion Week is starting today, so i suppose we are all anticipating for the great avant-garde capital city to reveal its new gems for next winter. One of the week's hottest projects is the Twelve Calendar, a collaboration between Derzeit Magazine and photographer Lena Emery, showcasing 12 of the best new models and labels from Berlin.

Born Sleepy by J.W. Anderson

J.W. Anderson's menswear collection for next fall is called Born Sleepy, and has big retro vibe with amazing knits, graphic prints, flared pants made out of tech materials and a bright colour palette. I just love the brand's spooky, ironic campaign, shot by Alex Sainsbury, featuring model Oliver Greenall from Elite London.

Taste.IT

Milan's Men Fashion Week is ending today. Have a look at its coolest boys posing for Luca Finotti's camera during the castings.

The Empire of Death

For three years Dr Paul Koudounaris, a specialist in Baroque culture and lector at major universities in Los Angeles, travelled the world to document various religious shrines decorated with human bones, crypts and remains from the sixteenth and seventienth centuries.


Conceived by Kris Van Assche, the new short film for Dior Homme collection is inspired by horror movies like Jeepers Creepers, Larry Clark and the rural outskirts of Tulsa.

Directed by Willy Vanderperre

Enjoy:

Dior Homme's The Wanderer from Hintmag.com on Vimeo.


"PonPonPon" single performed by Kyary Pamyu Pamyu, the high-school girl and blogger that's rocking the japanese fashion world lately with her really special style, from the debut mini album "Moshi Moshi Harajuku".An uplifting, addictive electronic tune and an unbelievable video.

Enjoy:




Sonia Rykiel
 After the latest terribles moments in Japan, the Asia Mix Culture Association along with Minimix web-zine present a new great project to help japanese children. 100 hygienic masks decorated by some of the most famous artists, fashion creators and graphic designers will be exhibited and sold at the museum of Les Arts Decoratifs  with all the funds donated to the KNK Japan/Children Without Borders organization, one of the most important ones worldwide. Sonia Rykiel, Lucien Pellat-Finet, Yohji Yamamoto, Christian Lacroix, Philippe Starck, Yazbukey and Victoire de Castellane are some of the creators who support this great effort.

20th and 21st of September 2011




Clockwise from left: Jean Colonna, Victoire de Castellane, Philippe Starck, Inga Sempe




Pascal Colrat




From left: Adeline Andre, Ronan & Erwan Bouroullec, Lucien Pellat-Finet




Stephane Manel

All images courtesy of Les Arts Decoratifs


Dreamy, captivating, haunting..These are the first words that came up to my mind when i first saw Ellen Rogers' images.The London-based photographer has a unique talent in creating amazing images of enchanting witches and mythical female creatures that seem to have escaped from Celtic stories or Occult rituals. Ellen is a true lover of analogue photography, spending millions of hours experimenting in her darkroom giving to her pictures an antique feeling and faded colours, turning them to past-century-like visual masterpieces. Inspired by psychology, religion, history and retro horror stories, Ellen is one of those artists that keep being faithfull to their vision, with a personal taste that is difficult to be found in the works of more commercial artists, a true diamond in the contemporary world of photoshopping. She has also released some very interesting films and a new great book called Aberrant Necropolis.  I don't want to say more about her work, as images speak for themselves. Just visit her cool website and get blown-away by her gorgeous portfolio.






Switch from Ellen Rogers on Vimeo.









Video excerpt of Ivan Civic's recent marathon performance in Haus der Kulturen der Welt in Berlin. Inspired by the 1854 book of David Thoreau titled "Walden or life in the woods", the performance dealt with our lost memories of where we come from through the signs sent from our ancestors. Without the purpose of a spectacular performance, the artist stayed on stage for 101 uninterrupted hours, drinking only water, communicating with his audience through sign language, with lights on for night and day. Stage access was only permitted to blind people who could touch and feel everything during the entire duration of the performance. Just great.

Enjoy:

"WELCOME HOME" - IVAN CIVIC performance from IVAN CIVIC on Vimeo.


A rather different classical music video for Dmitri Shostakovich's String Quartet No 3 in F Major, Op. 73, IV Adagio "In Memory of a Dead", performed by Nightingale String Quartet. The short video features strong scenes worthy to the divine music, with superb direction, amazing costumes and extravagant set design. One of the best films i've seen lately.

Directed by M. Nygaard Hemmingsen

Enjoy:

NIGHTINGALE STRING QUARTET (Classical Music Video) from M. Nygaard Hemmingsen on Vimeo.



2:12 is an amazing street artist from Houston with a passion for urban decay, as he says in his bio. He has the gift to give life and colour to underground, abandonded places with a spray can and an x-acto knife creating beautiful images of mysterious heroines in the form of a stencil. He usually uses his stencils on the streets before painting them in limited editions for galleries, using special techniques and textures that make each piece look as if it was cut from the wall.

Below you can enjoy a short video about the painting process of his works and don't miss to visit his blog for more exciting pieces:









Lupe timelapse from two twelve on Vimeo.


After the succesful exhibition for Shiro Kuramata's and Ettore Sottsass' work, 21_21 Design Sight museum in Tokyo is dynamically entering the new season with an exciting new exhibition, featuring two of the biggest names in the history of fashion, Irving Penn and Issey Miyake, opening to the public on September 16th, 2011.The exhibition will focus to the close collaborative work of the two legendary artists that lasted many years.


(Image above: From the original cartoons created for the animated film by Michael Crawford)




Exhibition Poster. Design: Taku Satoh.
Photo top: Irving Penn. Poppy: Glowing Embers, New York, 1968.
Photo bottom: Flower Pleats (Issey Miyake Design), New York, 1990

Issey Miyake's first encounter with Irving Penn was in 1983, when the second photographed his clothes for an editorial feature for American Vogue. Since then, the two men worked closely, with Penn shooting exclusively all Miyake's collections, until 1999. Miyake never attended the photo sessions, deeply trusting Penn's vision, offering him complete freedom for the final visual result. In the end, Penn made over 250 photographs of Miyake’s designs, many of which appear in collection posters, were published in art books, or exhibited in museums and cultural institutions.





Irving Penn, Vegetable Face (B), New York 1995

Issey Miyake himself says about this great collaboration: “I was looking for the one person who could look at my clothing, hear my voice, and answer me back through his own creation. I searched long for such a person and found in Penn-san. […] Through his eyes Penn-san reinterprets the clothes, gives them new breath, and presents them to me from a new vantage point — one that I may not have been aware of, but had been subconsciously trying to capture. Without Penn-san’s guidance, I probably could not have continued to find new themes with which to challenge myself, nor could I have arrived at new solutions.”(From Irving Penn: A Career in Photography, The Art Institute of Chicago, 1997).





Irving Penn, Issey Miyake Staircase Dress, New York 1994




Book Jacket. Irving Penn regards the work of Issey Miyake.
Photograph, jacket design, and typography by Irving Penn

Among the individual and collaborative work of Irving Penn and Issey Miyake, the exhibition also features an animated film by Pascal Roulin with original drawings by Michael Crawford, Miyake's collection posters exhibited for the first time, original fine art prints by Penn, as well as his preliminary drawings for photographing Miyake's designs.




Installation image by Shigeru Ban

The exhibition will last until April 8th, 2012.

All images courtesy of 21_21 Design Sight


                                                             Installation images by Shigeru Ban


Berlin-based fashion label UMASAN explores the poetry and evolution of human form and movement with this beautiful short fashion film. An excellent piece of art.

Enjoy:

UMASAN - IN TRANSITION 2012 from UMASAN on Vimeo.


Thakoon is launching the limited-edition Masai scarf to support the relief efforts for the famine and devastation in the Horn of Africa. 100% of the proceeds are being donated to an international children's relief organization working in the Horn of Africa. For this special project, Thakoon worked with Ruby Aldridge who models the scarf in images and the following video. You can purchase the scarf online here.


Enjoy:





Vintage magazine covers
 Fetish glamour and BDSM style has conquered the fashion world for this winter appearing everywhere: from catwalks, to glossy magazines like LOVE and Vogue, to dazzling celebrity parties. We have to admit that, although this style has started from underground communities and is considered as a no-no social behaviour by most people, is still quite appealing to all of us. Many major fashion houses like Louis Vuitton, Alexander McQueen, Givenchy, even soft-style Michael Kors featured kinky accessories and styles that made many blush. Handcuffs, stiletto heels, leather collars and harnesses, officer caps, long gloves and stockings and a high dose of PVC styled with extravagant gowns, chic bags and “see-how-rich-I am” fur coats have been running in the world fashion market longing to become a part of every wannabe mistress’ wardrobe. We really love this style, we buy it, we wear it. But, do we know what it means?




Louis Vuitton F/W 2011-12
 BDSM is an erotic practice and expression involving the use of restraint and fantasy role playing, with the roles of master and slave as the most common. Originated from the rituals performed in ancient Sparta and by Etruscans, the Kama Sutra and the notorious books of Marquis de Sade, to the stories of naughty Bettie Page and the erotic pictures of Helmut Newton, BDSM has been one of the most controversial subjects in human sexual behaviour. Its name derives from the terms bondage and discipline, dominance and submission and sadism and masochism, involving interpersonal activities where the persons involved are divided in two categories, tops or dominants and bottoms or submissives, depending on their role in these peculiar relationships.




Clockwise from left: Surgery collar, bondage cuffs, slave mask, leather bondage harness
As in most subcultures, BDSM has its own special dressing style and accessorizing with very specific definitions and symbolisms. One of its most known accessories is the slave collar, usually made of leather with a ring attached, used by bottoms as a symbol of ownership to their tops indicating that they are in a steady relationship. This kind of relationships usually have a contract, a written agreement between the two parts, referring not only to their erotic life, but everyday life as well. Other accessories like handcuffs, whips or asphyxia masks are used in the power exchange game, too. Another widely used accessory, very popular in the German BDSM scene,  is the ring of O, named after the well-known novel and film Story of O heroine. People indicate by wearing such rings that they are interested in BDSM and by the hand they are wearing it on whether they are a top or a bottom.




Alexander McQueen F/W 2011-12



Left: AtomAge magazine. Right: Bettie Page
 Dominatrix is a word that has so much been written in fashion spreads with concepts of powerful, ultra sexy women, mostly wearing black killer outfits. The word dates back to at least 1561, however the term Dominatrix is first portrayed in the 1870 novel Venus in Furs. In BDSM culture, a Dominatrix has the leading role in a masochistic relationship, with outfits that mostly refer to strong female archetypes, including the goddess, the superheroine, the femme fatale, the secret agent, the priestess, the empress or the queen. However the most famous Dominatrix outfit is the catsuit, first seen during the 50’s in the pages of notorious AtomAge magazine, inspiring various TV series like the Avengers and comic characters like the Catwoman. The look is complimented with long opera gloves, suspender belts, sky-high stiletto heels and fishnet stockings, all intended to elongate the silhouette, reinforcing the game “look by do not touch”.




Michael Kors F/W 2011-12
 Last but not least, the Bondage  has been the talk of the fashion world lately, with What Lies Beneath shooting by Mert& Marcus for LOVE magazine and the amazing collaboration of Nobuyoshi Araki with Japanese magazine Reality Show, featuring bound models, as the latest examples of this special technique that tends to become mainstream. But bondage has also inspired many other art fields, paintings, cartoons, poems, music, films and theatrical plays, like Rembrandt’s “Andromeda Chained to the Rocks”, Bizarre magazine published by bondage artist John Willie from 1946 to 1959 and Madonna’s book “Sex”, just to name a few. Studies have shown that bondage is the second most common human erotic fantasy involving the restraint subject in situations like rape, abduction or humiliation. Except rope that is mostly preferred for its flexibility, other garments that are used in bondage are leather harnesses, chains, gags, straps, cuffs or even special sleepsacks, wraps or cling film for mummification. Of course, all is based on the Master-Slave game mentioned above, with the bottom subject been restrained in various locations like beds, tables, ceilings or public areas.




Givenchy F/W 2011-12




From left: Slave collar, ring of O, BDSM mask

 Sex has always been a great way for selling products and designers know and use this very well. The BDSM movement has been mythical and tabu to most people, so after the indications of big fashion houses, a woman with an ordinary or even no sexual life sees her fantasies of becoming an erotic heroine or a slave become true, even by holding just a clutchbag. Mr Jacobs says that he attached handcuffs to Louis Vuitton’s clutches to indicate the close relationship of a woman with her bags, but would you like to express that you are a bottom or a top when you are actually not? Or is it the personal mind game that evokes thoughts and choices like that? That’s up to you.




Left: Emanuel Ungaro F/W 2011-12. Right: Giles F/W 2011-12

 Image selection from: Style.com, leatheretc.com, givenchy.com


A short film about the making of the Prada Candy commercial, giving interesting information about the featured Apache Dance of Lea Seydoux.

Directed by Jean Paul Goude.

Enjoy:

Prada Candy - The Making of the Commercial from Know Wear on Vimeo.


A new hot project combining fashion with art is taking over Berlin. Alternative fashion label I Like Bunnies presents its F/W 2011 collection titled Patchwork Family in collaboration with lightwriting artist Tofa in an extravagant photo installation.

The collection is a happy mixture of traditionally patchworked pieces like sweater fabric cardigans, unisex trousers, sweater blazers and hooded or tube scarves transformed into showpieces, all handcrafted in Berlin.

Berlin-based artist and photographer Tofa aka Chris Noelle started his practice in lightwriting in 2003 and since then has worked with numerous brands and editions like Sony, Carlsberg, Lacoste, Red Bull, Page Magazine, Art Magazine and many more.