Postcards From The Past by Elena Cremona

02.08.2020 | Art , Blog | BY:

This past week, Elena Cremona , photographer, founder and creative director of The Earth Issue launched a series of black & white images entitled Postcards from the Past. The series, which will be offered in 20 black and white plates is a powerful series of images that document the landscape of Joshua Tree, California. 

“In relativity to human experience, landscapes are static things – their changes are slow, their ecosystems cyclical, and any given  day is likely to unfold within them much the same as the one prior; it is us that moves through landscapes, shapes and colours them with our emotions, and remembers them ‘before, ’ Cremona explained. 

In several ways the twenty black and white images captured showcase the creeping splits of the surfaces and rocks , and the Joshua trees that are most often seen alone. Her journey through the Mojave Desert was paralleled with the ending of her relationship and the images speak of that story. 

The images are currently available for Pre-Order, find out more at Guest Editions.

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Celine Homme SS21 – The Dancing Kid

02.08.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Celine Homme SS21 , entitled “The Dancing Kid,” was centred around the idea of teen spirit as creative director Hedi Slimane drew inspiration from the work he did with Tik Tok star Non Eubanks as one of the faces of his SS20 campaign. This year’s collection, prepared in parallel with the winter collection centred around ideas of youth culture as a sartorial documentary about the e-boys, skate culture and an attempt in capturing the essence of an entire generation that turned boredom and confinement into creativity and innovation.

For the collection, Slimane worked with six artists including Tyson Reeder, Jesse Harris, Gregory Edwards, Ryan Ford, Amy Sillman & Turpentine who all contributed in different ways to shape the final result. Each piece told a different story, which ranged from luminous embroidered leather jackets, to lacerated jeans alla Slimane, as well as new Celine Z trainers that will be available for purchase later this year. View the full “The Dancing Kid” show below.

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Dior Cruise 2021 – An ode to Puglia

02.08.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Just last week Dior’s Maria Grazia Chiuri presented her Cruise 2021 collection with a scenic backdrop of Lecce, Italy. The show was a celebration of the magical beauty of arts and crafts, which was set to the melodic rhythms of a cathartic dance by the La Notte della Taranta Foundation, choreographed by Sharon Eyal to the music of Paolo Buonvino

. Throughout the collection, even the silhouettes pay tribute to the Pugliese region with drawings that celebrate the beauty of nature in the region. They also all bear the motto of the workshops at the Costantine Foundation. Maria Grazia Chiuri collaborated with artist Pietro Ruffo, who paid homage to Chrisitian Dior’s iconic Dior dress from 1949, imagined a field with a constellation of wheat sheaves, while narratives of of untamed nature were transposed onto shirts and shorts. Over three months the duo produced over 250 illustrations with inspiration from the book De Florum Cultura , which was published in 1638 by Giovanni Battista Ferrari. 

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FENDI’S #MeAndMyPeekaboo ft. Chloe x Halle

30.07.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Fendi’s latest episode in their #MeAndMyPeekaboo series features LA based pop culture superstar duo Chloe x Halle. In creation of the campaign, the duo was given complete creative control to conceive the project with the creative team of their choice. 

Shot at their home in LA, the video was created with the Art Direction of Andrew Makadsi, the vision of videographer Derek and photographer Julian Dakdouk, who manage to capture the unbreakable bond between the sisters. 

For the video, they commence with a stylish breakfast accessorised with the FENDI Peekaboo bags, after which we’re treated to shots of the duos divine natural beauty as they take a dive in the pool and enjoy a day by the pool. Following this they preparing for a performance of their lates with some major hair and makeup glam. 

Throughout the video, the wardrobe features pieces of FENDI’s Pre-Fall 2020 collection styled by Zerina Akers , complemented with some of the brand’s latest Peekaboo bags including and edition with an accordion-frame shape & inside pockets offered in smooth leather or precious skins. 

The  #MeAndMyPeekaboo series began last year featuring 10 iconic women across the world which included names like Kim Kardashian, Kris Jenner and North West. Each episode includes versions of the Peekaboo bags which have been seen on the latest runways.  To shop the Peekaboo visit Fendi.

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A chat with Ming Smith – the photographer whose work is soft, intimate & bathed in community through its documentation of the black American experience.

22.07.2020 | Art , Blog , Culture | BY:

Cover image: America Seen Through Stars and Stripes, New York City, NewYork Painted, 1976, by Ming Smith

Ming Smith, not necessarily a name widely known in photography, was the first Black woman to have her photographic work accepted into the Museum of Modern Art, in 1975.

The only female member of the Kamoinge Collective, and a dedicated image maker to capturing the humanity for the Black Experience, Ming Smith’s imagery and life trajectory is due a mighty relook. Currently staging an online exhibition of a selection of Smith’s work, from her image of Grace Jones as a Ballerina, to the playwright August Wilson, Pippy Houldsworth Gallery has moved the exhibition online through Vortic

We caught up with the photographer from her apartment in New York. 

How did you first get into photography?

I borrowed my mother’s camera on my first day of school in kindergarten and I took photographs of some of my school mates. The class was predominantly white, and we were about 10% of the class. I had a lot of friends and classmates that I took photographs of. 

Did you feel looking back that there was a central focus for your photographs?

It was just a natural thing. My father was a photographer. He was a hobbyist but he was really artistic: he drew, painted, did films and things like that. However he worked 12 hours a day as a pharmacist, so he didn’t do photography a lot, however I think it then became for me a natural thing to do. 

You trained to be a doctor initially, and then you decided to focus on a career in photography. 

My grandfather would always say that he wanted me to be a doctor. I liked that because he taught bible school, and my grandmother was helping all the neighbours, so I felt that being a doctor was a way of helping people. I know that might sound pretty naive but that was what I wanted to do. I did volunteer work at the children’s hospital when I was young. I saw a lot of pain around me, so I wanted to help.  Being a doctor was a way of trying to help. Then I read something about artists, and they were talking about the system and how your work could help humanity, and you work could be outside of the system, instead focusing and turning ideas into something that would be healing. 

Child Porter, Abidjan, Ivory Coast, 1972 by Ming Smith

There is such a sense of intimacy and connectivity about your images. How do you capture that? What do you look for in your subject matter? 

Well there are stereotypes of the Black community, but there is so much love in the community, from people who were making and doing the best spiritually or going to church. There was just this stereotype of Black people, you know, and I never saw those types of images with the love and the empathy and the humanity with the people that were around me in my community.

You have become renowned for your portraiture for Black cultural figures and icons What did you hope to profess or present in these images of these icons?

I hope that other young people or students will find inspiration in what they are teaching: the struggles and what they went through to get to where we are now. For example, August Wilson, I went to Pittsburgh and photographed his hometown and economically depressed neighbourhoods and shot some of the places he talked about in his plays. He documented the comic and the tragic aspects of the African American experience in the 20th Century. The characters in Pittsburgh were the same characters that I knew in Ohio where I grew up, or Detroit, where I was born. 

Lou Drapper’s Pick, 1973 by Ming Smith

What would you say the main challenges you have faced in your career?

I would say being taken seriously. I am a better photographer than a talker. I am quiet, and I like that with photography you can be by yourself, you don’t have to talk. Being shy, photography was a way of me being in it but out of it at the same time. If you are a quiet person it’s harder to take you seriously.

I went to a gallery seeking representation, and the gallerist didn’t hardly even look at my photographs; it was very disappointing. Just like “ok, thank you”. Just total dismissal.

Did you have a lot of other female counterparts and friends that were experiencing the same in the art industry or the creative industry?

I am sure there was, and I’m sure there is, but I have really continued to be a loner and doing photography was almost like a friend or a companion and was how I spent my time. Being a photographer was a way of expressing yourself and going through your own challenges, and needs, and so I spent my time not really talking to anyone else. 

Ethiopian Crew, 1973 by Ming Smith

What was New York like when you arrived? What were you focussing your photography on?

When I got to New York I was photographing but I came for money, and one of the first jobs I had was as a model. It was like 100 dollars an hour: an Ohio pharmacist back then was making 100 dollars a week. 

Someone told me ‘you should be a model’, and so I tried it for a bit. When I first met Grace Jones, she was an aspiring model also. 

You were part of the Kamoinge Workshop: did you feel like things changed then, that you were a part of a group of like-minded individuals?

Going to the meetings, I was first introduced to photography as an art form. Prior to this I had not committed myself to being an artist.  I didn’t think of myself as a photographer as I was still studying pre-med curriculum. So when I came to Kamoinge, I had first heard about the collective on an assignment, where a photographer was talking about whether photography was an art form. I was invited into Kamoinge by Lou Draper, who also printed for Eugene Smith. He used to tell me stories about Lorraine Hansberry, who I loved. that was when I first learned about the goal of Kamoinge: to own and interpret our own images. Roy Decarava was one of the founders of Kamoinge, which came out of the Black Arts Movement, where they started plays, and there were writers, musicians, painters, artists. That is where I learnt about lighting. I remember one member saying that his neighbourhood grew up in Harlem, and that all the young men that he grew up with were all dead. That opened my eyes to the politics. 

Oolong’s Nightmare,Save The Children (for Marvin Gaye), New York City, New York 1979 by Ming Smith

Tell us about your experience of fashion photography.

In New York I never knew about fashion photographers and advertising: it was a completely new world. I had a chance to go into both of those worlds, as I was modelling. I met people like James Moore who was a beauty photographer, or Arthur Elgort or Deborah Turberville, who I loved. She photographed my lips for a Bloomingdales bag! She did fine art photography besides that; I really liked her. I lived in the Village, so I knew Lisette Model, and I would go eat at this little dinner, the Waverley – the cheapest diner! You could buy a meal for five dollars there, and that was where Lisette Model would eat too! She would tell me stories about Diane Arbus, and she would call her Dion. For the longest time, I didn’t realise she was talking about Diane Arbus as she called her Dion!

You documented some of the greatest spokespeople of the African American experience. 

August Wilson really told our stories through his plays: the comic and the tragic of the African American experience. That is what connected me to him, to go to Pittsburgh and photograph him. Eugene Smith did a famous series on Pittsburgh, but the African American experience wasn’t documented. This is another aspect of my work. We also have Katherine Dunham. She was an anthropologist, choreographer, writer. She was an activist as well: she wouldn’t perform in places unless they de-segregated the audiences. There is always a struggle, that is extremely distressing of the black American community. They simplified the experiences of the black community in the 20th Century. Katherine went to Haiti and Africa and notarised the dance technique. When she won the Kennedy award, she talked about how hip hop came out of her technique, meaning the isolations and different notations of moves and contractions and release. Now we have dance, twerk, afro-latin, west African, Haitian, rumba, Caribbean, west African beats. We have had all these different classes come out of the diaspora. That is what Katherine Dunham did. 

Flying High, Coney Island, 1976, by Ming Smith

How do you get inspired?

I follow mainly instincts and my heart about things. I hope to say these things in my work: that is the intention. 

Would you say your photography is driven by intuition?

Definitely. Intuition, which is also very spiritual. It is like there is a spirit that speaks within me, and I go with that. I trust that more than I trust my brain. 

What changes do you see in the photography industry now? 

There is a lot more inclusion, and participation. There are different avenues for photographers – there are now young black American fashion photographers, and I think a lot of the hip hop generation are participating in that inclusion, you can go into documentaries, they work with the NYT. I think this is not only in America, but globally. 

Beauty, Coney Island, 1976 by Ming Smith

Do you think there are still many racial obstacles that need to be overcome in the art industry?

I think of course, but I am in the middle of it, and sometimes it is harder to see, but of course I think there has been many steps in the right direction. Dr Deborah Willis, she started doing books on black images, she started this in publishing and the School – she has made a life of that. I remember she came to Kamoinge to do a book. It wasn’t easy for her to receive support so I think that we have a voice now greater than before and it is growing. People are conscious of it, and they are trying to make it right, or more honest: the documentation of us, including us. Not just the stereotypes. More human.

Do you see more women photographers being showcased?

Most definitely, but I also think that there is more of an option. Before, it was a question of what could you even do with photography! Photographers and artists now, there are different avenues and you can earn a living from it! I see this more and more. Before, what could you do with it, how could you earn a living? Now, photographers both men and women are like ‘oh I could do photography, portraiture.’ 

There wasn’t any kind of show, exhibitions, talks, creating a book… there wasn’t those options. You did it out of pure love in the beginning. You did photography as an art form.

Self Portrait Nursing (Total), 1986 by Ming Smith

Do you still photograph regularly?

Yes I do! The main obstacle with that is everything is digital now. I am doing a book at the moment for Aperture, and so taking it from film to digitising it, to having to re-edit everything over again… it’s a lot! I need a lot of help with the translating of it. 

What do you hope viewers take away from your works?

I think just the personal struggles, the empathy or the humanity or the altruism or just being supportive. Maybe the humanity, and that being exposed to the people I have photographed, they will know what to do. It was like when I heard my first August Wilson play, or the drum, and I went and took my first dance class and the teacher told me he was a Katherine Dunham dancer. People will get what they get from my photography: hopefully an experience that will inspire them in some kind of way. 

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PRADA Multiple Views SS21 – The Show That Never Happened

22.07.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Last week on the occasion of Milan Digital Fashion Week, Prada put their best virtual feet forward with a presentation entitled “Multiple Views SS21 – The Show That Never Happened.” The digital show — which is allegedly Miuccia Prada’s last solo show before the Raf Simons partnership —  took the form of a 10 minute live video, that showcase the SS21 collection interpreted through the lenses of 5 different creatives, being Terence Nance, Joanna Piotrowska, Martine Syms, Juergen Teller and Willy Vanderperre. Each artist created a film that showcased a different view of the Prada collection and at large , the Prada ideology and identity, which served as a representation of flexibility and multiplicity, in a time where many are not able to commune, a different kind of community is then established. 

Throughout the collection, this season the house opted to focus on simple garments with use, value and longevity as the key themes. The collection is constructed around the quintessence of the house of Prada, its meaning, how clothes are worn , where and why. The meaning of multiplicity and compound uses , as paradoxes through sportswear, formality, classic and futurism are explored. The collection was co-ed and for menswear the silhouette was sharp, narrow and fitted , while for women couture volumes and treatments were explored. Leathers, cottons, taffeta , nylon , and other innovative fabrics are tailored with the flexibility to tell the stories that the wearer wants them to tell. Overall the SS21 collection is a much needed dose of simplicity during a time of chaos, the type of simplicity that can bend to whatever way you choose and embrace complexity yet still avoid chaos.

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Dior SS21 Menswear – Portrait of An Artist

20.07.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

For Men’s SS21 , Dior’s menswear artistic director Kim Jones shared his mic with Ghanian-Born Vienna trained artist Amoako Boafo for a collaboration which presented the fruit of a cultural conversation between the two artisans. The conversation initially began in 2019, when they met at the Robell Museum in Miami and ever since, the two have been in discussion about their love and admiration for each other’s work.

Kim Jones personally has a special love for African work as he considers the continent as home having spent years of childhood travelling across Botswana, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Kenya & Ghana which allowed him to feel a genuine connection to Boafo’s work that speaks to a contemporary African lifestyle . The artist is known for work like his Black Diaspora portraits which are an exploration of his identity and perceptions of Blackness and Black Masculinity. Aspects of these paintings are transposed onto garments with haute couture techniques. The collection used the artist’s work as base, which essentially was not only evident in the techniques used to reproduce his paintings but also through the colour palette used in the collection.  Shades of fluorescent yellow, blue, coral and green create  a delicate colour scheme while other pieces acted as a canvas for embroideries , knitwear and intarsia. The collection , as described by the house as “a reinvention of its passion for excellence through captivating dialogues between fashion and creation in all its forms, from painting to film .”

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Atomic Punk by Berber Theunissen

20.07.2020 | Art , Blog | BY:

Images courtesy of Berber Theunissen

Dutch photographer Berber Theunissen’s project Atomic Punk offers a rare and intimate perspective on the North American road trip. Having experienced an unexpected pregnancy, a miscarriage, a marriage and a honeymoon, Theunissen and her partner took to the road to “capture the moments, emotions and memories in which these intense situations were revolving around [her].”

Theunissen addresses personal experiences in this body of work. Women often carry the burden of miscarriages – they are rarely spoken about in public or in the media, and women feel bound by the ‘13 week rule’ leaving many people isolated and alone. Atomic Punk captures this period of isolation and anxiety through the lens of the classic North American road trip. Theunissen’s work is often based on things that affect her personally: “things that I love, but things that make me feel vulnerable.” In one image, we see Theunissen slumped over a chair in her underwear. An intimate scene full of raw emotion, one that could only be captured behind closed doors. 

I could never have imagined the possible impact of a miscarriage until I’d experienced it myself. One out of four women will experience a miscarriage in their life, and there is still a big taboo on the subject. So yes I’m also sharing my story so that you’re not alone, and that you are allowed to feel whatever it is you feel. 

The project is full of contradictions. It is on one hand a cathartic journey to process feelings of loss. And on the other hand, a time for celebration. Wide expansive landscapes, stretching across California, contradict with private scenes in motel rooms. As Theunissen has said, “It’s all about the vibes and the mood. I think the landscapes and the portraits reinforce each other. They enhance the emotion of the story.” The camera gives Theunissen a sense of security, allowing her to “observe [her] life in a more objective way,” and so photographing these moments was the obvious reaction for her.  There is a disconnect between taking images during a moment of intimacy and then publishing them after for the world to see, this takes courage as emotions are laid bare. Theunissen and her partner have a coping mechanism for this, a way of protecting themselves: “some photographs are just for us and some will be published. Sometimes it takes a while before we share the photo, when the quiet has returned.”

In another image, Theunissen and her partner are on a bed, light streaming through the window, but neither of them are looking at the camera. We wonder what has just been said, what is going to be said and by who? Sometimes these are recreations of events that have already happened, but most of the time, Theunissen is capturing it as it happens. “Before I was a mother and there was no toddler with chubby grasping hands, my camera was almost always on standby on a tripod.” This reveals how a project like this can exist, how the camera can become the third member, recording moments of intimacy, tension and vulnerability. 

The romance of the North American road trip has lured photographers for years, inspired by some of the greats like Robert Frank and Stephen Shore. But these experiences are usually seen through the eyes of male photographers. The intimate approach to Atomic Punk, that explores intimacy, loss and love, shines a new angle on this type of photography. The motel rooms become places of privacy, the roads places for discussion and healing. Theunissen’s images provide a glimpse into a moment in time, allowing the camera to record and save the journey, and while it is a personal story, it has resonance for other people going through similar experiences. And as always, a Californian road trip provides a fitting backdrop for a cathartic journey to unfold. 

Prints of the series are available to buy at Open Doors Gallery in London

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Dior launches the Dior Bobby Bag

17.07.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

This week, on the occasion of the launch of their Fall 2020 collection by Maria Grazia Chiuri , Dior officially released their new Dior Bobby Bag — a brand new accessory that carries attributes of modernity and elegance and is also the name of the late Chrisitan Dior’s beloved dog. Bobby’s name has been used as a constant source of inspiration for the house as he was one of Monsieur Dior’s muses. The Bobby bag is a subtle tribute to Bobby and features the initials “CD”, and a  delicate buckle and is available in three sizes and four colours being black, cream, camel and blue. It also features matching straps that are offered in leather or Dior Oblique canvas. The Dior Bobby Bag is currently available in London boutiques and online Dior.com 

See an exclusive savior-faire video below documenting the making of the bag.

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Alexander McQueen Pre-AW20 – Sharp Lines & A Strong Heritage

16.07.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Pre-Autumn Winter 20 Menswear was the season Sarah Burton opted to hone the heritage of the house of McQueen with the use of sharp lines and signature shoulders. The collection includes 5 looks that explore the signature features of the house’s standard menswear and womenswear , through the use of several techniques for each look . One presents the use of a different method including cut and splice tailoring , while another sees the a perfect suit with slashed seams and another sees the reinvention of signature blown up floral embroideries and delicate white work that were derived from an inspirational trip to Scotland. Discover more of the collection via AlexanderMcQueen.com 

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Looking Through Lockdown with Jessica Madavo

16.07.2020 | Art , Blog | BY:

All images courtesy of Jessica Madava

Exploring the self during London’s lockdown, photographer Jessica Madavo took the time she found herself immersed in to turn her photography on her own form. Being granted this time to explore her own representation, Jessica shared her images captured and spoke to us about her own motivations and artistic drive.  

Tell us a little about your book you have just created

Its a book full of self portraits I took during lockdown. 

What compelled you to create this book?

I’ve been alone during lockdown, and that that meant no people around me to shoot. I then started experimenting more with different ways I could capture myself and really loved the process. I did find it strange to begin with, as I don’t see as being in front of the camera. 

How did you get into photography?

I moved from Johannesburg when I was 15 years old, five years ago and had the most amazing photography teacher Mr Wallace. He really encouraged me to spend as much time taking analogue photographs, building small light box cameras and working on the images in the darkroom and it kind of kept on going from there. 

What subjects and themes do you explore in your photography?

I’m super interested in people, and faces specifically. It’s interesting to me, how I am able to convey how that person is making me feel in an image and that’s the collaboration that keeps me going. 

What power has photography proved in the last few months for you?

Photography really has become a tool for me to look at the world, and in a sense respond visually to issues I see as important. That, and really just being able to almost have a document for each of the periods in my life. 

What photographers have you taken inspiration from?

I always find this a hard question because I have a lot of love and appreciation for a few photographers, for a lot of different reasons. Someone who jumps to mind immediately because of his dreamy use of light is Paolo Roversi, while Leo Colombo’s colour images constantly catch my eye. Other favourites are include Malick Sidibé, and probably Vivanne Sassen. 

What inspires you in a broader sense?

Since leaving South Africa, I’ve really loved relearning parts about my heritage that I pervious hadn’t really thought about. Music too is something that I truly love. 

What is on your horizon?

I’m still studying, so I’m hoping to go back to university in October, but apart from that I’m just collaborating as much as possible and keeping an open mind to my work. 

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LIMBO Magazine – A Lockdown Cultural Time Capsule

13.07.2020 | Art , Blog , Fashion | BY:

This week a new zine model entitled LIMBO made its debut which was created out of a lack of government support for the arts and creative industries during these difficult times. The LIMBO model , launched by publisher Nick Chapin (Frieze, Vice) is a community drive model with the aim of supporting out-of-work creative minds. The first issue edited by Francesca Gavin, Art Editor for Twin, Kaleidoscope, Dazed & NTS, with creative direction by David Lane of The Gourmand, features a myriad of almost 100 artists including Wolfgang Tillmans, Peaches, Collier Schorr, Tyler Mitchell, Brain Dead, Paul Noble , Georgina Johnson , Carol Bove, Honey Dijon among others who have contributed their art, ideas and humour born out of the global lockdown.

The zine is seen as somewhat of a time capsule , offering creative insight, hope , humour and vision during a time where everything seems so unsure. The publication is a 176 page book that recalls DIY magazines with a method of patchwork , created with expressive work with lo-fi techniques. The magazine also offers a non-traditional approach to publishing as all profits from advertising and issue sales will be distributed directly to the contributors and the staff who need it most. Some of whom have opted to waive their fees and agreed to allow their portions of the profits to be donated to those in need like Vivienne Westwood, Wolfgang Tillmans, Tyler Mitchell and others.  

The book is now available for purchase online limbomagazine.com 

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GUCCI x Bruce Gilden Beaten & Blown by the Wind

11.07.2020 | Art , Blog , Fashion | BY:

Gucci’s latest venture is a limited edition hardcover art book shot in Rome by photographer Bruce Gilden and entitled “Beaten & Blown by The Wind”. The book features a portfolio of street portraits and imagery of the house’s pre-fall 2020 collection with faces like advocate Bethann Hardison, Singer Achille Lauro and actress/model Benedetta Barzini. 

“I have never made a book in this way before, which I viewed as a photographic challenge, and the end result is a creative collaboration with Alessandro Michele. Having Rome as the backdrop was great, the city really inspires me—the beauty of the architecture and its age and watching how the Roman people move around their unique surroundings, as well as discovering the statues in the park high above Rome that mix with beautiful clouds, and the panorama of the city below… it all lent itself for some good pictures,” explained photographer Bruce Gilden.

The images are all featured in black and white and give insight into the city of Rome and all its wonders through Gilden’s lens. It is presented in a format that takes inspiration from vintage tomes with a luxurious feel that create an interesting contrast with the earthy reality of its contents. ‘Beaten & Blown by the Wind’ is currently distributed by IDEA Books and will also be available at Gucci Garden in Florence and the Gucci Wooster Bookstore in New York.

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Aries x Hillier Bartley Capsule Collection Partnership

11.07.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

London streetwear brand Aries recently launched their partnership with British luxury brand Hillier Bartley on the creation of a one-of-a-kind charm jewellery collection released earlier this week. The capsule collection is composed of 7 different charms to be worn on Hillier Bartley’s 14K gold plated paper clip earring or co-branded necklace. References from both brands are featured in the collection like an Aries Roman Column, pentagram, ket, throwing star among others . For the partnership the two brands took the opportunity to invite students from City and Islington College for a 3 day multidisciplinary arts workshop in February which spoke to branding, product development, fashion communication, art and photography and each student presented their creation in a variety of formats including film , painting, graphics , clothing, accessories and more. Throughout the process, the sessions were filmed and the students captured in their creative elements by photographer and Aries collaborator Clare Shilland. All of the imagery from the workshop is also set to  be included in a book designed by Art Director Jonny Lu and made into a short film directed by Jeremy Pollard. 

“This will be our second collaboration with Aries. What we love about collaborating with Sofia is the community that gets involved.. Our last collaboration really was both teams exploring and making and creating.. both HB and Aries teams have played a huge part in the collaboration process .. I think the work with the students was a really special part of this project, and has inspired us all.. The act of collaboration is often simplified, but pared back it’s what business is all about.. co-ordinating together to create new ideas, trust and an appreciation of a diversity of ideas.. we are really proud of this wonderful project…” commented Katie Hillier, Co-Founder, Hillier Bartley. 

The collection and merchandise is now  readily available for purchase at www.ariesarise.com & www.hillierbartley.com as well as a few select global stores. 

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Browns Fashion “A Family Affair” – guest edited by Ib Kamara

03.07.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Not long ago London based boutique Browns Fashion launched an initiative entitled “A Family Affair” that celebrates different types of family like bonds. Their latest installation of this series was released today and guest edited by London based stylist extraordinaire Ib Kamara who documented his local network by exploring notions of future and community through his own lens and that of his contributors during these key moments of pause throughout the quarantine. 

For the project, Kamara tapped key figures from all corners of the creative worlds including fashion, beauty, film, music, art and gaming. Namely Musician Misha Notcutt who explores the possibility for change with her ‘Mix it Up’ playlist that also features singer-songwriter Nadiah Adulting-Gyamfi in part two. In more visually impactful explorations photographers Justin French and Elliot Jerome Brown Jr share their thoughts through photography, while Rafael Pavarotti discusses his spiritual collaboration with Ib in a video interview. Filmmaker Stephen Isaac Wilson presents a number of films inspired by collections from his favourite designers at Browns while make up maverick Daniel Sallstrom does a video makeup tutorial also made into an instagram filter. Hair Guru Virginie Moreira explores the paths towards liberation in a shoot styled by Gareth Wrighton while curator critic, and art historian Osei Bonsu is interviewed by Ib on “The Power of The Editing” in the luxury space. For the project Ib shot and styled each one of the London based contributors listed above. 

“When Browns approached me to work on a community project I immediately said yes as I wanted to celebrate some of the amazing talent that I am very humble to know and collaborate with, there are so many that I am blessed to know so it was incredibly hard to get to this list. For us to progress as people we need community as with community we can start to understand each other better, we can love each other better and we can work to build each other up – that’s the family I am part of in London. For this series, you can expect to see amazing heartfelt work from everyone contributing. I am very happy to see a body of work come together that speaks to them individually – to be able to put this out into the world is beautiful. It’s the perfect time to showcase what beauty can be cultivated when we come together and work in an equal space, a space where the colour of our skin is not determined by our brilliance, a space where everyone feels equal and able to be part of a community,” Ib commented. To view the full collaboration visit Brownsfashion.com

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Honour Underwear : The Comfort Series

30.06.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Images by Vic Lentaigne

Emerging underwear brand Honour helmed by designer Samantha Crossley recently teamed up with her director girlfriend Emily McDonald for a campaign/ video series entitled “The Comfort Series” in light of pride celebrations. The series is a three part film project where LGBTQIA+ families and couples were asked to reflect on love, comfort, growth, and what might be next in the fight for equality for all. Part one of the series sees a sweet portrayal of newlyweds Jadah Dale & Reva Gauntlett which was shot by an almost entirely queer crew during lockdown.

Jadah who is a hairstylist and Reva who’s a musician have been spending their time in lockdown playing badminton, reading books aloud to each other and hanging out with their cat Cowboy. During the video they explain how they’re looking forward to sitting out the usual partying and focusing on the true meaning of pride and how it can better serve everyone in the LGBTQIA+ community. Follow Honour to keep up with the next videos in the upcoming series. 

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Meet Nuda: the independent publication from Stockholm that looks beyond the meaning of spiritual for its latest edition

30.06.2020 | Art , Blog | BY:

We spoke to the co-founders Nora and Frida about the embryo for Nuda, whether artists should go to space, and looking within the self for definition. 

Tell us about the ethos behind Nuda, and how it came to be founded.

Nora Arrhenius Hagdahl: Nuda is foremost a space for us to create without interruption, a platform where you can make what you want to make because you enjoy making it. What we love to make most is books, probably because it’s a way to combine so many elements – art, design, text, ideas, photography, fashion, people and philosophy – and create a context and visual world for them. A Gesamtkunstwerk contained between cover and back. 

Frida Vega Salomonsson: The embryo for Nuda was originally founded when we were in high school. We were young, naive and wanted to spread our ideas and aesthetics with the world. Now we’re semi-young and semi-naive. We want to make books that are both thought provoking as well as nice looking. We never claim to have the answer, rather we like to ask questions and display different and sometimes opposite views on a topic. 

Your issues work on themes: how are these decided? 

N: We don’t decide on a theme, the theme decides on us. We exist in a fluxus of ideas and you just have to reach out and grab it. 


F: For this issue, Beyond, it came down to topics we’ve discussed and noticed in our own lives. I found myself at a tantra wedding and Nora had been freaking bothered by all her friends taking life advice from apps like Co-Star. When did that become a reasonable source to find direction for intellectual people?

N: It felt like people around us were searching for new spiritual and profound experiences. Sweden is a very secular and a country of sceptics, and all of a sudden everyone we knew were looking for answers in the stars, tarot cards, meditation and psychedelics. People are fascinated, need and want more to life than what reality can offer – so that became the world we wanted to explore. 

With the culling and closure of many publishing houses in light of C19, will we see a sort of Darwinistic evolution of magazines? What does its future look like to you?

F: I don’t know? Are people still stupid enough to start print publications? It’s a trap, heaps of work – small payout (but a lot of fun, at least that’s what we tell ourselves). Hopefully other people are not as naive as we are, but you have to finish what you started right? Hopefully Covid-times will at least make people more interested in reading, because what else can you do when in lockdown?

N: It’s a great time to feed your intellect and indulge in imagery, concepts, thoughts and reflection. In history, dark times prove to be very constructive for creativity and often become a time when people can explore outside of the set framework, a source of originality one can say maybe? Change can be a good ground to explore new ideas. 

F: Being on the edge on survival may serve as a profound source of inspiration? I hope so. Future looks dark from over here, but even more reason to continue. Fingers crossed.

Nuda is based in Stockholm: has this influenced the magazine at all?

N: Have you ever been in Stockholm? It’s clean and in winter it’s quiet and dark as fuck – maybe that has influenced our aesthetic.

F: Stockholm is also a very small city, there isn’t one isolated fashion scene, one isolated art scene and one isolated design scene. All these scenes are merged together and influence each other, perhaps more than in most cities, because it’s a necessity. That’s an approach we have for the magazine as well. Mixing ideas and people from various fields. 

N: Rather than only looking at what’s around us and picking up inspiration from what we see, for this issue at least, we wanted to look at what’s within us, look at what we can’t see but feel. Aiming to touch on those experiences that are of a more universal character.

What can we expect from your third issue, Beyond, that has just been released?

F: Beyond is a guided journey through the immaterial aspects of life. We humans, and all species, have very limited ways to experience the world, we have to rely on our senses, our eyes, our nose. But there is so much out there that we can’t see or register with our senses. What if all humans were born with eyes that would only allow x-ray vision, that would dramatically affect our conception of the world around us.

N: In the book Marina Abramović tells us about her belief in parallel realities and Michael Pollan argues for the benefits of psychedelics. The astronaut Christer Fuglesang speaks about whether we should have artists in space and Jemima Kirke says the only spirituality that exists is love. Jeremy Shaw speaks about the multiple views of transcendence, Roy Andersson don’t believe in a life after this. Johnny Johansson says that god, for all he knows, could be a rabbit. The artist Cecilia Edefalk holds a séance to make contact with Hilma af Klint and the famous spoon bender Uri Geller speaks about his encounters with extra-terrestrials – it’s a march of different perspectives on the immaterial and the world beyond! 

What can we expect from Nuda in the future?

F: Don’t expect so much from us. To quote the legend Stephen Hawking: “My expectations were reduced to zero when I was 21. Everything since then has been a bonus.”

N: Or as Sylvia Plath says: “If you expect nothing from somebody you are never disappointed.”

F: Perhaps Bruce Lee said it best, “I’m not in this world to live up to your expectations and you’re not in this world to live up to mine.”

Follow nuda on: @nudapaper

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Alexander McQueen Pre-AW20 – British art nouveau & a restrained elegance of modernism

26.06.2020 | Fashion | BY:

This week British fashion house Alexander McQueen unveiled their Pre-AW20 collection crafted by Creative Director Sarah Burton under themes of British art nouveau and arts and crafts paired with a restrained elegance of modernism. The collection features 41 looks with a refined colour palette of silver, gold, copper and reds throughout as they tell a story of the earth’s core and the treasure hidden beneath them. With this collection Burton comes bearing gifts of the team’s expert tailoring with sharply cut hems, tightly closed seams and even some draping. A simple black leather asymmetric drape coat speaks for itself with accents of gold metal staple detailing,  so does a gold double-faced metallic rib knit dress, as it’s paired with a crochet mesh skirt, an amethyst silk satin dress with a fluid cape back and gold are nouveau twisted iris embroidery gives a subtle yet power effect.

As always each piece from the collection is a testament to the power of womanhood as they are crafted with the level of dexterity that creates silhouettes demands the attention of a room while adding touches of delicacy with soft colour palettes, embroidery and draping. To discover more about the Alexander McQueen Pre-AW20 collection visit AlexanderMcQueen.com 

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“My Queer Blackness, My Black Queerness” – The Project / Fundraiser highlighting the beauty of Black Queerness

24.06.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Cover image: Black Dolls by Campbell Addy & William Ndatira

“My Queer Blackness, My Black Queerness” is an ongoing digital initiative launched by Twin’s online editor Jordan Anderson as a celebration and exploration of black queer identity. “It is a protest , a celebration that frames blackness as a polyphony, a genre or melody with a vast variety of notes & textures, denouncing both white queer racism and black queer antagonism by way art , film and literature.” The initative launched yesterday is an initiative that holds 3 aspects, the primary being a limited edition  print sale / fundraiser featuring the works of 12 photographers Tim Walker, Campbell Addy, Michael Bailey Gates, Sackitey Tesa, Hao Zeng, Daniel Obasi, Florian Joahn, Kennedi Carter, David Uzochukwu, Emmanuel Sanchez-Monsalve, Justin French & Myles Loftin who have given their interpretations of black queer identity through imagery — 100% of proceeds of which will be split between two charities centred around Black Trans Lives. The second aspect of the is a weekly updated journal, shot by photographer Damien Frost, who documents and trans / non binary people of colour from all around the world as the site provides a virtual space for them to exist and be celebrated in all their glory.

The latter aspect of the project , is a weekly film screening of filmmaker the late Marlon Riggs’ films who document the history of the Black Queer Identity within American society. The project will run for three weeks and will carry weekly updates and reminders on the MQBMBQ instagram . To discover more information, visit MQBMBQ.COM  

Gully Queens by Tim Walker

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FENDI’S Pre-fall 2020 California Sky Collection

24.06.2020 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Following their collaboration with visual artist Joshua Vides last July , FENDI once again taps the LA- based creative in collaboration for a spree spirited Californian vibe for its Prefall 2020 collection design by creative director Silvia Venturini Fendi. For the collection Vides used his signature contemporary black and white marker style and interprets this in the form of womenswear, menswear, kid’s ready-to-wear and accessories pieces. The artist created 3D trompe-l’oeil effect by mapping the seams and edges of a range of urban and resort styles , while also giving his twist on a vibrant, whimsical floral allover motif & reworking the FENDI Stamps and the iconic FF logo.

The collection carries a wide variety of interchangeable separates including nylon windbreaker, embossed cycling shorts, satin blousons, embossed leather outerwear, sweatshirts, denim pants compact knits, printed denim pants , to even luxurious featherweight fur coats and cardigans and perforated leather jackets, all given that special splash of a tropical Californian vibe. For the accessory department , the collection did not disappoint as it includes a new version of the house’s bestseller Fendirama Women’s Sunglasses, featuring a silver metal frame and a graphic interpretation of the FENDI Stamps on the silver mirror lenses and also a new Men’s Botanical Fendi Sunglasses with an extra light white shield with the FF logo mirrored. You can find the collection in Fendi Boutiques, on  Fendi.com  or from July 1st at the California Sky Pop-Up, Harrods Men’s Piazza.

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