Dress by Flora Cervantes, MFA Fashion Design and Lori Solem, MFA Textile Design. Necklace by Elizabeth Prost, BFA Fashion Design.
180 ISSUE Nยบ 7
A Letter from Our President
2 Alumni 2 Coasts
Credit Where Credit is Due
Californiaâ€™s Hall of Fame, Shame, and Fashion
Infusing Tradition with Innovation
This is Not Project Runway
Growing to Extremes
The Devaux Ranch
Family Within Fashion
Sex, Subversion, and Style
A Letter from Our President The whole is greater than the sum of its parts. The many—drawing on different resources, backgrounds and skills—can collaboratively create something greater than the few, while still leaving room for individual inspiration. Collaborations are incorporated into the classroom to prepare students for the industry they are about to enter; they are taught to work together on design teams, with photographers and stylists, and generally with those from other professions. 180 Magazine is an example of collaboration among students in different areas of studies at Academy of Art University, as well as with alumni and professionals from various fields. In “Growing to Extremes,’’ a group of Architecture students collaborated with a Fashion Merchandising class on a project that dealt with “nomadism and identity,” exploring ways that nature can provide inspiration for architecture and changes in urban life – and even in our own bodies. Profiles on MFA Fashion Design graduates Maria Korovilas, Kara Laricks, and Shoshana Pinedo illustrate the international nature of our student body, with roots in Greece, the Midwest, and the Netherlands, respectively. Drawing inspiration from the 1950s, MFA Fashion Design students and Chinese nationals Jianxia Ji and Wei Bai created a collection for the working woman with an active lifestyle. The University hosted a presentation to debut the collection at The Cannery near Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco, and it will eventually retail in the designers’ home country. Even the building that the School of Fashion calls home, our Polk Street headquarters, is made more interesting by its diverse history. Incoming students may be surprised to learn of the building’s storied past. From its original incarnation as a German social club, to its role as a gathering point for San Francisco’s growing gay rights movement in the early 1960s, to its short-lived period as California Hall, where rock performances from the likes of Janis Joplin and the Jefferson Airplane took place in the same Atrium more recently visited by famed French designer Jean Paul Gaultier— in this issue we explore how the building itself becomes more compelling when the sum of its unique historical parts are combined. Additionally, the University is pleased to announce the accreditation of the new Jewelry and Metal Arts program, the MA and BA Fashion Journalism programs, and the BFA Fashion Styling program. The latter being the first accredited Bachelor’s degree in Fashion Styling in the United States. My wish is that reading the stories of these artists and designers and viewing the images of their adventures will inspire our readers to seek out collaborative opportunities to express their artistic talents.
Dr. Elisa Stephens, President Academy of Art University
180 Editor in Chief: Simon Ungless Design Director: Kate Nakamura Features Editor: Paul Wilner Fashion Editor: Flore Morton Copy Editors: Joan Bergholt, Ian MacKintosh, Jeanette Peach and Chloe Preussker
Contributing Writers: Alexa Palacios, BFA Fashion Journalism, Sarah Lemp, BFA Fashion Merchandising, Ashley Castanos, MFA Fashion Journalism, and Tonislava Docheva, BFA Fashion Journalism
Special Thanks: The Devaux Ranch, Napa, CA, Rebecca Rowan, Mary Rowan and Dorothy Hageman, Cherrie Chen and Jean Shein from Uniqlo, Gladys Perint Palmer, Keanan Duffty, Charlene Modena, Hersha Steinbock, Russell Clower, David Henry Lantz, Martin Zarfardino, Jennifer Cappelletti, Littany Wejrowski, Bryn Carlson, Julianne Delgado, Zoe Cobb, Marcell Rochas, Michelle Grunberg, James Wood, William Mossgrove, Chuck Pyle, Mimi Sullivan, Alexandra Neyman, Monica Tiulesca, Greg Mar, Gordon North, Serita Sangimino, Breanna Castro, Zan Ludlum Casting, Stars Model Management, Elite Models, Cast Images Model and Talent Agency, Look Model Agency, Exalt Model and Talent Agency, Scout Model and Talent Agency, and Workgroup.
Cover: Achok photographed by Isabella Bejarano wearing a coat by Shumpei Okamoto, BFA Fashion Design Facing Page: Achok photographed by Isabella Bejarano wearing a coat by Nika Tang, MFA Fashion Design
180 Magazine 79 New Montgomery Academy of Art University School of Fashion San Francisco, California 94105 email@example.com www.fashionschooldaily.com 5
CONTRIBUTORS Victor Cembellin is a San Francisco-based makeup artist. For over 19 years, he has worked fashion weeks for designers including Donna Karan, Vivienne Westwood, and Gareth Pugh. He has also executed editorial shoots with celebrities such as Natalie Portman, Amy Adams, and Pamela Anderson. victorcembellin.com
Joshua Conover is a San Francisco-based makeup artist and hair stylist who works with American Vogue, Lâ€™ Official, Jalouse, and Louis Vuitton. He studied iconography in fine art, created portraits on canvas, and fine-tuned his talent at the Make-Up Designory school in Burbank, California. workgroup-ltd.com/san-francisco/joshua-conover/portfolio-i
Suchandra Bullock, BFA Fashion Styling, was born in the United States and raised in Italy. As a child, she would visit her father at his job for a local television channel and loved how the wardrobe brought characters to life. She is presently a freelance fashion stylist. suchandra-bullock.com
Noah Shaw, BFA Costume Design, was born in Los Angeles and grew up throughout California, the Southwest, Midwest, and Europe. This nomadic childhood shaped her aesthetic vision. She takes a cinematic approach to styling and enjoys mixing various time periods and subcultures. noahshawstyling.4ormat.com
Jeffry Raposas, BFA Photography, spent the first 15 years of his life in a small town in the Philippines. In high school, he discovered the beauty of photography and has since been in love with creating imagery. His focus is advertising and fashion editorial. jeffryraposas.com
Nude stockings with black rubber trim, Twistmyrubberarm.com
Coat by Youngjin Shin, BFA Fashion Design and Hsin Lee, MFA Textile Design. Shirt by Gwen Shia-Yao Lai, MFA Fashion Design. Proenza Schouler pant and ChloĂŠ boots, Saks Fifth Avenue.
CONTRIBUTORS Aldo Carrera, BFA Photography, is a San Francisco-based photographer with an interest in fashion, a philosophy of “just do it” and an impromptu nature. He is currently working on men’s fashion editorials. Although he shoots with various cameras, his preferred medium is film. aldocarrera.com/
Jen Miyako McGowan, BFA Photography, was born and raised in Martinez, California. She incorporates textures and elements of nature to create an organic feel in her work. She has recently adapted a romantic style with a dark side that comes out when using experimental techniques. jenlovelyphotography.com
Nicolás Gutiérrez, MFA Photography, was born in Bogotá, Colombia. His interest in creating visual stories led him to specialize in fashion photography. References to art history, pop culture and fashion are combined in his work, creating a distinctive aesthetic and personal style. nickgutierrezphoto.com
Isabella Bejarano, MFA Photography, was born and raised in Venezuela. Photography motivates her to experiment, try harder, and test her own limits to evolve. “There is always something new to be learned, something old to get better at, and something else to aspire to.” isabellabejarano.com
2 COASTS photography by Maria Korovilas and Kara Laricks written by Ashley Castanos, MFA Fashion Journalism
MARIA KOROVILAS Everything has come full circle for Academy of
of brilliant fabrics and her hatred for anything
However after graduation, she felt lost while
Art University alumna Maria Korovilas. After
“fast fashion.” As her website puts it, the
continuing her path to a “safe” career by
graduating with an MFA in Fashion and Textile
clothes she designs are “sourced from amazing
applying to law school. Suddenly, on a whim,
Design in 2010, and having her collection
vendors around the world and all garments are
she bought a one-way ticket to Hawaii, which
featured in the Academy’s New York show,
manufactured in Los Angeles, locally, responsibly
was just what was needed to clear her mind.
she worked on refining her skills and unique
and for you.”
She knew that she eventually wanted a career as a fashion designer, and despite her parents’
sensibility with the goal of bringing ready-towear concepts to a high-end market.
By 2012, she was chosen by Gen Art Fresh Faces
It’s been a long journey. Growing up, Maria
conservative concerns, applied to the Academy of
lived a life resembling an “Army brat.” Even
Art University fashion program.
though her family didn’t come from a military background, they moved around the world many
We spoke with the vivacious, articulate Maria
about where she’s been ¬ and where she sees herself going.
in Fashion (the same runway that helped launch Philip Lim and the Rodarte sisters) to preview
Originally from Greece, where they owned
her spring 2013 “Girl on the Run’’ collection.
kalamata olive farms, a destructive earthquake in
ASHLEY CASTANOS: Did you know you
This was also at same the time she was launching
the late ’80s brought her frightened mother to
wanted to be a fashion designer early on?
her eponymously named line, Korovilas.
the United States, and they settled in Maryland, where Maria was born.
She recently opened a new showroom in the
MARIA KOROVILAS: Yes, I feel like design has always been in me. I’ve been making clothes
heart of downtown Los Angeles with hopes
Within a few short years, they moved to
since I was a kid. At four years old, I was on my
of growing her brand and continuing her
Illinois, Michigan, and California. Maria’s
mom’s lap sewing. I would make doll clothes
distribution with orders from Neiman Marcus,
educational goals led her to the University of
from scratch – it’s something I’ve always loved.
Nordstrom, and Planet Blue, just to name a few.
Southern California, where she completed an
The Grecian babe is passionate about her love
undergraduate degree in communications with a
I feel like I got into it because I have such a
minor in theater.
strange body type, the “Hellenic hip syndrome,”
as I like to call it, meaning – Greek hips. I always
little lost in my twenties, that I had veered into
h a focus on ready-to-wear and process focused
had a much smaller top and wider hips and I
something that wasn’t really for me. Even though
design; it hammered in that perspective for
always had to manipulate my garments by re-
I tried to make sense of it, ultimately I needed
me. The greatest part of my portfolio classes
designing them to fit me.
[to] go to design school. I belonged in this trade,
was learning how to design a collection from
and I knew that I had to go to fashion school to
top to bottom. I love the process of actually
really understand the craft.
putting together a collection based off details,
Living in a super small farm town [Visalia, CA]
and learning how to balance a collection. Once
during the “My So –Called Life” era, there wasn’t any good shopping, so I was constantly vintage
AC: What was your experience like at Academy
I started working, it was clear very quickly how
shopping and trying to turn something into
of Art University?
advanced my skills were.
MK: Once I started at the Academy, I became
AC: Since launching your Korovilas brand in
AC: What was it that pushed you to pursue a
so passionate all I wanted to do was focus (and I
2012, it seems to be thriving. Why do you think
career in fashion design?
had been so unfocused in the past). I hunkered
it’s been so successful?
down for almost four years and took it all in.
MK: I wanted to go to design school after
MK: I have a business partner, my good friend
high school, but my parents wanted me to do
At the beginning, I was overwhelmed. I couldn’t
Katie Bernhisel, who handles operations.
it as a hobby. I was a straight A student, and
imagine that when I left I would know how to
Between Katie and I, we’ve been involved in this
valedictorian – they wanted me to make safe
sew a garment. It seemed like such a difficult
industry over ten years. She’s the Patrick Duffy
choices. But after I graduated from USC, I
mountain to climb. I couldn’t wrap my head
to my Marc Jacobs.
had what I call “my quarter life crisis.” I felt a
My biggest asset is that I can do everything! I
angles gave me a super vision. I saw what drove volume, and I also saw what people respected,
can make my own patterns, sew, use Photoshop and Illustrator, and I do all of the marketing
MK: The line is a dress-focused collection.
and then on top of it all I consider myself an
materials. I understand technical design, so I’m
When we started, we didn’t have a lot of money
artist. So I thought, how do I make all of these
fully able to check the contractor’s work, costs
so I decided to focus on the one thing I’m
different elements work? How do I make this
etc. In my first job I was able to get experience
really good at which is dresses. The collection is
company and this line something viable, and
with factories abroad. I learned how to get
classic and timeless. I love beautiful fabrics and
make a living? How do I do what I love to do but
prices down, and what finishing techniques to
still be respected? It was a puzzle I had to put together.
ask for. Everything came out of our pockets; we did everything strategically and purposely. We
I start by breaking down every girl type – the
set out to find the right investor with the right
upper East Side girl, the sporty girl, the tomboy,
And ultimately what I came up with was a
percentage, and we really watch the pennies.
the girly girl, and then figure out what she’s
developing niche in the market, which I call
wearing that season. Then I implement it into
“ready-to-wear contemporary.” My motto has
This is a true case of talent, luck and whom you
each fabric group, a lot of elements blending
been “controlled chaos.” I’ve found a way to
know. We have a great product and we’ve been
together all the time.
explore all of these things and a way to control them.
very fortunate with the reactions to the line. The price point of the line and what it offers is kind
All my worlds are colliding, from expensive
of a steal.
ready-to-wear pieces to design school high-
AC: Your website biography mentions your
fashion snobbery. I studied fast fashion, learning
dislike of “fast fashion.” How does your brand
what cost more, what cost less – seeing all these
steer away from that trend?
AC: Where do you draw the inspiration for your
MK: There needs to be a return to real
AC: Explain to me your definition of “dirty,
it pushed us to outdo each other. To this day I’m
artisanship in clothing and there should be a
still trying to impress him, he was the fashion dad I never had.
respect for the people who make your garments. I’m sick of the whole fast fashion mentality but
MK: I’m super romantic. I love all things
at the same time I want to provide clothing that
feminine, and I’ve always loved super pretty
AC: Do you see Korovilas branching out into
people can actually afford.
things but you kind of have to dirty them up a
bit to balance them. Balance is the answer to I have to think about what fabrics are available
and at what cost. It’s this constant push-and-
love to do a home/interior collection. I have
pull. Fast fashion drives me nuts. My goal is to
AC: Who were your key supporters along
an idea to collaborate with artists, possibly do
give the world a social makeover when it comes
children’s wear - I’m full of ideas! I want to be
to what they’re buying. People need to be more
the next Ralph Lauren. Generally when you
aware of what they’re putting on their body and
MK: I have a super supportive group of friends
pay a little extra so people can utilize their craft.
that championed me. The further along I get
The only way to get things to change is to start
the more appreciative I am of them. My mom
somewhere. I’m at the forefront of that.
supports everything I do. There’s no way I would have the company if my mom didn’t
AC: What have you been most surprised about
believe in me.
by this collection? And I would have to say [Academy of Art
MK: I have huge plans for the brand. I would
MK: The line hits such a large demographic.
University Fashion School Executive Director]
I sell from twenty-year-olds to sixty-year-olds.
Simon Ungless. When I was in school, he was
I’ve never really known a line that can pull that
this higher-up you wanted to please; he was like
off. I think it’s because the shapes are really
the man behind the curtain in The Wizard of
classic, while the fabrics are all different and
Oz. The symbolism of Simon was in our minds;
he was this super power we respected so much,
have an artistic eye you are not limited.
KARA LARICKS It’s been a long road from Kansas but a
some of the backlash…there hasn’t been a
of androgyny and beautiful fabrics,” she says,
rewarding one for Academy of Art University
adding that she found inspiration in Patti Smith’s book, Just Kids. “I was fascinated by her
Fashion Design graduate Kara Laricks. After being awarded a six million dollar design
relationship with [the late photographer] Robert
After winning a Council of Fashion Designers
prize in a final episode watched by an estimated
Mapplethorpe and surprised to learn about
Association scholarship to the Academy, the
8.6 million viewers, Laricks wasted no time
Smith’s prominent feminine side when I had
former fourth grade elementary school teacher’s
designing her own collection.
been so taken with her outwardly androgynous style,” she adds.
menswear-inspired Spring Summer/2009 women’s line line closed the Academy’s
Her designs have subsequently been seen on
Mercedes Benz Fashion Week show in Fall 2008.
the likes of supermodel Joan Smalls for H&M
Laricks has a way of bringing a brilliant
– and Kara personally flew out Stockholm to
sophistication to masculine styles. Her talent
participate in the photo shoot.
resides in providing an unspoken elegance to
Even greater success beckoned. Although
boyish elements. The Huffington Post website
Laricks passed up the opportunity to be on Project Runway in order to finish her final
Yet another highlight occurred when Salome
referred to her androgynous looks as “borrowed-
Academy collection, she couldn’t resist the
Agrippa of HBO’s “True Blood” fame donned
from-the-boys” and Laricks happily accepted
bright lights of television.
one of Larick’s gowns on the red carpet.
the compliment, as it reaffirmed her individual design aesthetic: a successful marriage of
Her first eponymously named collection, “Kara
Fashion Star, gaining the approval of mentors
Laricks,” premiered during the Spring ‘13 season
John Varvatos, Jessica Simpson, and Nicole
of New York Fashion Week, where her designs
Following her graduation from the Academy,
Richie as well as the buyers from three major
were exclusively bought by Saks Fifth Avenue.
she followed her heart to NYC where she had
retailers – Macy’s, Saks Fifth Avenue, and H&M.
Since then, Kara has continued to grow her line
an internship with a women’s wear designer,
She also came out as gay in the course of the
and designed a new Fall/Winter 2013 Collection.
then was promoted to assistant designer before leaving to start a small accessories business,
show but subsequently told Glamour magazine that although she’d been “a little worried about
masculinity meeting femininity.
In 2011, she won the first season competition of
“My inspiration always comes from my love
Collar, Stand + Tie, producing ties and scarves
out of her home. Home is a one-bedroom
difficult choices she made along the way, the
AC: You were given the chance to be on Project
apartment she shares with her girlfriend
key to her career success, and the benefits of
Runway but passed it up to stay in school. Did
Melissa Gunnell in the Lower East Side (LES)
you have any regrets about that choice?
ASHLEY CASTANOS: You’re originally
KL: I made the decision to change careers from
“Many nights we squeezed take-out on a table
from Kansas. How was the transition moving to a
education to fashion for many reasons – one
that housed my sewing machine, laptop, labels,
bustling city like New York?
of which was to feel the freedom of being out
tags and stacks of fabric,” she recalled. The
[openly gay] in my chosen profession.
space was small but well worth the affordability
KARA LARICKS: My “inner voice” always
to continue ordering delicious LES takeout.
told me that I belonged on one of the coasts.
The years I spent at Academy of Art University
Despite her subsequent success, they still
Making the move from Kansas City to San
were personally life changing. In an environment
currently reside there and couldn’t think of a
Francisco was a perfect stepping stone to
where I was learning the design skills I had
place they’d rather live.
prepare me for my eventual move to New York
always had a passion for and without a care in
City. When I arrived in New York City, I was fresh
the world about who knew I was gay, I flourished.
She handles her opportunities – and
from the California sun and I had design stars
transcontinental travels – with aplomb and
in my eyes. Living in New York takes a lot of grit
Each garment I created for my final collection at
style. In the course of a conversation, Laricks
and determination, but the payoffs have been
the Academy had a right angle somewhere in the
opened up to me about her creative journey, the
beyond my wildest dreams.
pattern to signify the box I felt I was kept in as a
semi-closeted lesbian teacher [in Kansas]. When
Most importantly, I have reconnected with so
KL: I believe in the power of kindness, positivity,
I watched my collection walk the runway at the
many people from my past and continue to hear
laughter and forward movement. The most
end of my Academy program, I officially broke
from fans around the world who identify with
successful steps in my career have been those
free from that box.
my story and aesthetic.
that I felt would not only benefit me, but had the potential to benefit those around me. I’ve
AC: How has your life and career changed since
AC: What is your design process?
learned to trust my heart and my gut, and when an opportunity feels right, I take it and I run as
winning Fashion Star?
KL: I am not an illustrator – I prefer to work
fast as possible!
KL: When I won Fashion Star, my design
directly with fabric on a dress form. My goal with
dreams came true. I was able to lead a team of
each new collection is to build on what I loved
AC: Can you recall any influences that inspired/
pattern makers and sewers to create capsule
from the previous collection and to constantly
encouraged you along the way?
collections for H&M, Macy’s and Saks Fifth
strive for a better fit – while at the same time,
Avenue. Under my direction and in my signature
maintaining my masculine meets feminine
KL: Creatively, I look to designers Yohji
masculine meets feminine aesthetic, my team
Yamamoto, Jil Sander and Thom Browne. In
developed my designs and made my vision a
terms of style - unique women who stand apart
reality. Prior to my time at the Academy, I was a
AC: Why do you think you’ve been so
from the typical “body con” crowd like Janelle
fourth grade teacher, so winning Fashion Star
Monae, Cara Delevingne, Tilda Swinton and
was certainly an affirmation of my career change.
Diane Keaton inspire me.
I am continually encouraged and inspired by
in NYC’s garment district can teach you where
KL: I never envisioned that my stint on a reality
the incredibly hard working designers who
to find fabric, trim and get buttonholes made.
competition television show would afford me
are successfully running their own companies
the opportunity to share my reality as a member
season after season, like knitwear designers
If you want to start your own line, start small.
of the GLBT community, but it has. I now get
Karen and Marie Potesta (also Academy of Art
Find a niche and get very good at one item
the chance to travel across the country and
University graduate) of Micaela Greg. Finally, I
before launching an entire line. Take the
share my story in hopes of inspiring others to
wouldn’t be able to do anything I do without
opportunity to focus on one item – perfect
follow where dreams lead.
the support of my mom, sister and Melissa.
the design, secure production and get a good handle on marketing, advertising, promotion
So what’s next? Designing, traveling, inspiring
AC: Do you have any advice for aspiring
and selling. Your instinct will be to do it all at
and a table clear of everything but Lower East
once, but trust me, slow and steady wins the
race and patience and determination in the
KL: My advice is to stay kind, focused and
fashion industry is key.
determined. Get some “real world” experience by working for other designers. If you have the
AC: What’s next for you?
right attitude, fetching coffee for a design team
credit where credit is due From printing presses to online options, fashion journalism continues to make its mark by IAN MACKINTOSH photo ISABELLA BEJARANO
Academy of Art University’s always stylish School of Fashion became even
“Last but not least, fashion is a topic that interests everybody,’’ added
more so in the spring of 2013, when it was announced that the Bachelor and
Palmer, the former fashion editor of the San Francisco Examiner and author
Masters programs in Fashion Journalism had been officially accredited.
of Fashion People and Adam & Yves.
The new programs, led by Fashion Journalism Coordinator Paul Wilner in
“This is a great opportunity for Fashion Journalism students to get in on the
conjunction with the other ambitious initiatives at the school, consolidate
ground floor,” said Wilner, the former editor of the San Francisco Examiner
and streamline classes so students can get the maximum benefit in the least
Magazine and the San Francisco Chronicle Style section.
amount of time. “The growth of the Internet has significantly added to professional Gladys Perint Palmer, Executive Vice President, Academy of Art University
opportunities in the field,” he added. “If students can marry technical skills
Artistic Development hailed the move, saying, “Fashion journalism is an
with understanding the basics of the trade, they will be well positioned for
excellent profession. We can ask questions that otherwise would be impolite
or politically incorrect. We can go to fashion shows, see the latest styles, without spending any money [and] meet industry movers and shakers.”
The Academy is the only school in the United States that offers a fully
accredited program in Fashion Journalism. The program is also open to
Fashion Journalism students contribute to Fashion School Daily, 180
students majoring in other subjects, from Merchandising to Multimedia
Magazine, the Academy newspaper and other venues, and intern everywhere
from Conde Nast publications to 7x7 here in San Francisco. Students have also had the benefit of candid panel discussions with industry stars like
The field has changed considerably from the early stereotypes of fashion
Cathy Horyn, former chief fashion critic of the New York Times and Suzy
journalism in films like “Funny Face’’ – or even “The Devil Wears Prada,”
Menkes, longtime fashion editor of the Herald Tribune who has recently
as social media have opened up new opportunities and platforms, from
switched to the International editions of Vogue.
longstanding outlets like Conde Nast to web sites developed by many longstanding retailers and relatively new forums like Refinery 29 and The
The future is shining brightly for this once-troubled field. This program
Business of Fashion to sites like Nowness.com, funded by LVMH.
is aimed at providing students with the skills they will need in order to succeed in it – and make journalistic history on their own.
The barriers of the past are disappearing, and while print journalism continues to face challenges, other doors are opening.
CALIFORNIA’ S HALL of
Notes from the Underground: The Hidden Past of the School of Fashion’s Polk Street Headquarters
Fashionable students and faculty coming and going into the stately building between Turk and Eddy streets no doubt learn to choose their routes carefully given the Tenderloin’s sketchy reputation.
But the latest gentrification efforts in the neighborhood – a burgeoning of galleries, restaurants, including Brenda’s sizzling soul food place across the street and ateliers harken back to an earlier period in San Francisco history. Originally built in 1912 by the German Association, the Polk street building, then known as the Rathaus, was a social epicenter at a time
written by Paul Wilner photography by Simon Ungless
New fashion students entering the halls of 625 Polk Street are probably unaware of the building’s illustrious - and frequently checkered - history.
While visitors have included the likes of famed French designer Jean Paul Gaultier and East Coast shoe king Kenneth Cole, not to mention lifestyle queen Martha Stewart and British fashion royals Sarah Burton and Philip Treacy, many others have filled the facility’s spacious first floor auditorium in the course of its checkered history. when Polk Strasse was the main commercial street for San Francisco’s The illustrious and colorful list includes the likes of Janis Joplin and
sizeable population of German immigrants. In 1914, the name was
the Jefferson Airplane in the heyday of the 1960s to early gay rights
changed from Das Deutches Haus to the more Americanized
activists from the Council on the Religion and the Homosexual who held
a costume party to raise money for the organization in the building then The area has impressive literary antecedents as well. As noted on the Nob Hill in San Francisco website, Frank Norris’ McTeague, the dentist who was the protagonist in the novelist’s 1899 work, subsequently adapted into two movies, including Greed, directed by Erich von Stroheim lived on mid-Polk, just a few blocks north of the School of Fashion’s current home. McTeague’s Saloon is currently located at Polk near Bush.
In the novel, Norris describes the society ladies who strolled down Polk Street before the Great 1906 Earthquake destroyed their Van Ness Avenue mansions: “Towards eleven o’clock the ladies from the great avenue a block above Polk Street made their appearance, promenading the sidewalks leisurely, deliberately…. They were handsome women, beautifully dressed. They called California Hall – only to have it broken up by the San Francisco
knew by name their butchers and grocers and vegetable men. From his
Police Department, who snapped pictures of the attendees in a blatant
window, McTeague saw them in front of the stalls, gloved and veiled and
attempt to intimidate them.
daintily shod, the subservient provision men at their elbows, scribbling hastily in the order books. They all seemed to know each other, these fashionable ladies from the fashionable avenue.”
Well, the fashionable part still applies.
McTeague came to a bad end, even having his dentist’s license yanked after a dispute with his wife over $5,000 she won in a lottery but refused to share. (He retaliates, after a lengthy sojourn in Death Valley, by getting drunk and beating her to death…a parable that presaged later Gold Rush misadventures.)
But exciting developments remained at the Polk Street facility, which has earned a place in California history in more ways than one.
On Dec. 31, 1964, the Council on Religion and the Homosexual held the afore-mentioned Mardi Gras costume party at California Hall. Members of the group included Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon, two pioneers of the gay marriage lawsuit years later, which ultimately ended being ratified by the California and federal Supreme Courts.
Four people were arrested (not including Martin and Lyon) after the police took photographs of the attendees but were denied admission because it was a private event. The official records of this incident are now housed in the James C. Hormel Gay & Lesbian Center at the San Francisco Public Library.
Reverend Robert Cromey, executive assistant to Bishop Pike of Grace Cathedral and Rev. Cecil Williams, the long-time minister of Glide Community Church, were among those who supported the event – they even tried to get arrested, although the SFPD refused to take the honorable clergy into custody.
The incident became such a scandal that former San Francisco Mayor John Shelley called Police Chief Thomas Cahill on the carpet, and Municipal Court Judge Leo Friedman subsequently ruled that there was insufficient evidence to convict any of those arrested of obstructing the police – if anything, he said, the police presence was aimed at disturbing the party.
While the incident was an iconic moment in pre-Stonewall gay history, even wilder days lay ahead.
By the mid-60s, the psychedelic revolution was in full swing in San Francisco.
Some of the first freewheeling rock concerts – later to become commonplace at the Fillmore Auditorium and elsewhere – took place at California Hall, where the Jefferson Airplane and the Charlatans appeared on January 8, 1966.
Organized under the auspices of a communal group called The Family Dog (motto: “May the baby Jesus shut your mouth and open your mind”), a communal group organized (extremely loosely) by nascent entrepreneur Chet Helms, subsequent acts booked into the venue were the Electric Train and Big Brother and the Holding Company, starring a transplanted Texas blues singer named Janis Joplin in February.
Joplin also reportedly hung out and performed at the dive bar The Brown Jug on Eddy Street and the late, great jazz trumpeter Miles Davis recorded one of his most famous discs at the Black Hawk, located on Turk and Hyde from 1949 till it closed in 1963.
By April of 1966, The Charlatans, fronted by singer-songwriter Dan Hicks, were back at California Hall, along with the intriguingly named rock bands The Mystery Trend and Wanda and Her Birds.
And it wasn’t just musicians who made this venue their mecca. Poets like Lew Welch, harpist James Broughton and Kirby Doyle read from the stage, and longtime San Francisco radical activists with the San Francisco Mime Troupe performed pieces, while other folkies and rockers including Moby Grape, Quicksilver Messenger Service, Country Joe and the Fish, and Steve Miller also appeared, amid the flashing light shows considered de rigueur at the time.
By late 1967, the scene had migrated up the street to the Avalon Ballroom (now the site of the Regency Theaters on Van Ness Boulevard and Sutter Streets) and the Fillmore Auditorium, run by Bill Graham in a fashion that was considerably better organized, if less fun.
But the spirit of the ‘60s still remained in the place, even as it was occupied for a time by the California Culinary Academy and, for the last two years, by Academy of Art University.
The fashion students who crowded the Polk Street Atrium to hear Jean Paul Gaultier’s enthusiastic encouragement or gather in the balconies to prepare their next transgressive artistic experiments are surely channeling the creative souls who have been there before them.
As George Santayana remarked, those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.
Surely the Academy fashion students of 2014 – and for years to come – can learn from their famous forebears, even as they set out to blaze trails of their own.
luminous visionary written 34
With her fashion photography career already prospering, Academy of Art University Fashion Journalism student Heather Perry continues to explore new vistas. From New York Fashion Week to Wilkes Bashford, she is carving out a stylish niche in the fashion scene – all while carrying a full school workload.
Heather Perry knows a thing or two - or more - about what it means to take charge of one’s own career and adamantly pursue your most farfetched dreams
Since beginning her professional photography career four years ago – but having been involved in photography for nearly fourteen years now – Perry has built an enviable rapport and resume that includes being published everywhere from The New York Times and Nylon magazine to making it to New York Fashion Week, shooting for multiple shows at the almighty destination for countless fashion hopefuls.
Perry has been the consummate fashion enthusiast for as long as she can remember; beginning with ripping out editorials from her favorite fashion magazines and covering her bedroom walls with them, she eventually began documenting what she enjoyed most about the editorials, be it the clothing, lighting, models or set locations.
Having “grown up all over the place,” travelling with her family from San Francisco to New York before finally settling in Colorado, Perry is also well versed in the trials and tribulations of adaptation. She has in her own words, “pretty much redone that loop and will bring it back full circle when I finally decide to resettle back in New York…. .By nature, I can’t stay in one place too long.”
Before deciding on the world of fashion photography, during her stay in New York, Perry delved into multiple corners of the industry to find exactly what her calling in the fashion world was.
“I worked as a model, which I hated,” said Perry emphatically. “I assisted stylists and liked it but was more interested in what the photographer was doing. The first time I went to Fashion Week, I was in the audience and I wasn’t even
watching the show. I was fixated on the photographers and the sound of the shutters clicking got me and I knew that was it.”
Despite discovering her innate talent by teaching herself how to shoot, Perry deemed her education in the photography field a primary necessity to perfect the technical concepts. She enrolled in school and had no intentions of making her scholastic career an elongated process and began with only a small amount of classes. She completed all of the requirements for her Associate of Arts Degree in Photography at City College in San Francisco and earned awards for her coverage of New York Fashion Week for the school’s Etc. magazine. Not content to rest on her laurels, while still enrolled in school, she stepped out of her comfort zone and contacted various fashion photographers to inquire about assisting them.
Then, she says: “I came across the work of Daniel Watson, who at the time was a student of Photography at Academy of Art University and I fell in love with his work. I sent him an e-mail to see if he needed an assistant, we met and the rest is history.
Perry began assisting Watson, the founder and editor of the New York-based fashion publication, LIVID magazine, then eagerly initiated New York fashion shoots of her own.
Her road to professional success was also dramatically enhanced by her “dear friend’’ Richard Renda, a long-time figure on the East Coast fashion scene, who introduced her to other players in the field and significantly mentored her career.
There is much to be gained in this industry by the person who is unafraid to network and thoroughly create genuine and longstanding connections with other willing professionals. It is apparent that Perry need not be reminded of this virtue, since her connections and ability to maintain relationships have propelled her to unreachable heights for some. None of this would be possible, needless to say, were it not for her unique talent as a shooter, from street style to corporate work and travel photo journalism.
“Almost all of my experience has come through maintaining relationships that I had previously made in the industry. They say it’s all about who you know and it’s so true,’’ said a reflective
Lynn Yaeger, contributing fashion editor to Vogue.com and a contributing writer to Vogue.
Perry. “When I started to see the results from stepping out of my
constant hustle in the city.
comfort zone, I also started to see growth within myself.” Within two weeks following her decision to live “where no car was While reaching the height of Fashion Week would be the ultimate
necessary,” she was a San Francisco resident and Academy of Art
goal, for Perry, it meant that she was just getting started.
University was Perry’s destination to study Fashion Journalism. Her decision to return back to school was fueled by the hopes of fusing
After her initial East Coast experience, she advanced to cultivating a
both journalism and photography professionally by being employed
new aspect of her career through her blog “Vintage Slang.” Through
for both at a publication.
this platform, Perry has tied words to her images, bringing her back to her adolescence and interest in fashion writing.
“Vintage Slang” was initially a documentation of Perry’s favorite fashion shows, then blossomed to a portfolio of recent work and also
Perry started to enjoy writing again and, “…figured I should start
houses a now favorite photographic activity of hers, arresting self-
doing more of it. I started writing for a few publications and decided
portraits. She has travelled from Miami, Hawaii, Yosemite and Mexico
I wanted to get into a journalism program.” She decided to make
City, where she posts reflections of her trips and portraits of herself.
the move from New York to the West Coast after growing tired of the
Perry admitted that she has always enjoyed being behind the camera
Designer and actor Waris Ahluwalia with designer and filmmaker Arden Wohl
rather than in front, but shooting herself has slightly diminished
for an in-house photographer at esteemed retailer Wilkes Bashford,
she jumped at the opportunity to shoot their luxe products.
Her street-style photography has twice been featured in the New
After having grown accustomed to the freelance life, where one is
York Times, with shots of a cheeky East Coast chick decked out
able to solely own how and where to gauge where efforts and time
in Tommy Hilfiger duds with a Brooklyn Nets cap and “Dressed
are spent, being contracted in the corporate environment of Wilkes
Up Sweats,’’ a shot of a beshaded fashionista looking every bit as
Bashford was a welcome challenge for Perry.
confident as Ms. Wintour behind her shades. And besides the Times, Nylon and LIVID, her work has also been featured in Wcities, a San
“Working at Wilkes Bashford has definitely switched gears in
Francisco-based travel and entertainment site, Examiner.com and
the way that I was used to working, mainly because product was
something that I had lightly done before,” she says. “It has been amazing working for this brand because it was the next goal I had
Through perfecting her runway, self-portrait and street shots, Perry
set for myself!”
has ventured into nearly every coveted genre of fashion photography. In true East Coast fashion, however, after coming across an opening
In viewing Perry’s work, there are few noticeable influences but
DNA model Adonis Bosso
her keen eye and distinct perspective voice a difference in her work that separates her from the average budding photographer. Her work is stark and bold and forces one to delve into the who, what and why and places her subjects on a platform where they can be upheld and revered. There is also softness and an inviting quality that opens a whole other dimension to what it is that she captures.
Perry has noted that she is without doubt influenced by the great classics: Irving Penn, Herb Ritts, Richard Avedon and Helmut Newton. However, one can deduce that the starkness of her images stems from her modern influence, Terry Richardson.
“I draw a lot of inspiration from Terry Richardson,” she says. “Regardless of what many people think of him, he is a brilliant photographer. I’m a huge fan of his signature flash lighting, but beyond that, I’m inspired by his ability to shoot anyone from Oprah to Barack Obama and have the ability to make it his. His ability to take these people and inject some of his personality into the shots and pull out a little of their personality that we’re not used to seeing, that is inspirational to me.”
Perry’s progressive yet ever-growing levels of success in fashion photography and beyond are as striking as Perry herself. The clear-eyed gaze in her self-portraits is a window into her aesthetic.
There is a hunger and definite will to be the most developed version of herself that has apparently pushed her thus far in her still youthful career. Her versatility and experience speak much to the state of the industry today, where one’s success is not just determined on one level of expertise, but various levels. The ability she has to adapt to constant change and thrive in areas that others might find overwhelming means that this is just the first of many introductions to Heather Perry and her luminous work.
INVISIBLE CLOAKS words and illustrations by
GLADYS PERINT PALMER
Here is how, and why, I started drawing on a
method is far from perfect and getting a white
borrowed iPad at the end of November 2013.
I was convinced that digital art was not for me,
I had been commissioned by the San Francisco
If the colours glow, the background is dingy
that real drawing, using real art supplies, getting
Chronicle to send drawings from the Paris Haute
– quite useful on occasion when drawing a
my fingers covered with real ink, was the most
Couture, in January 2014, for their online blog,
snowstorm outside Dior – but not as a
important part of my real life.
When Simon Ungless suggested a piece about
When I traveled, I used to draw on paper, lay
It may be adequate to post on Facebook, but not
iPad drawing for 180 Magazine, I hesitated.
down the illustration near a window in daylight,
to print on the blog of a major publication.
I am in love with drawing on the iPad.
Having drawn on paper for over half a century,
photograph it, download to iPhoto on my In order to draw on the iPad one must be able to
laptop, try to enhance it, and then email or post
A friend, Dawn Stofer, who had been using
draw really well on paper.
Paper53 application for years and had been trying to convert me to the iPad was delighted,
I do not encourage our students to attempt the
In Paris, time is of essence, running between
at last, to show me how. Fortunately Dawn is an
iPad until they have learned to draw – blind
shows. Photographing a drawing in the evening
contour, grid suit, negative spaces, the torso, the
is not possible because artificial light turned
head, hands, feet and more.
She made the process far more interesting than the banal, dismal demonstration that comes with
Anyone who says “I can’t draw hands” should
Even in daylight (mid-day is best but that’s a
the app. Had I first seen Paper53’s boring and
not get his, or her hands on an iPad.”
time when there is a fashion show or three) this
badly drawn rendering of a coffee cup, I would have dismissed the iPad outright.
On Aura Tout Vu in black light.
It was clearly a good solution for the San
I went to see David Hockney’s iPad drawings
If asked, I shall certainly suggest that Paper53
Francisco Chronicle (though the drawings
at the de Young Museum. He had given digital
should improve the demos.
for the newspaper, published on Sunday
drawing credibility. One great advantage to drawing on the iPad is
February 9th in the Style section were drawn on paper with ink and water color, and scanned
I must admit I was disappointed. His earlier
that I am covered by an invisibilty cloak. I can
work (on paper and canvas and his designs for
draw in public and nobody notices.
the stage) are brilliant. In comparison, his iPad I started practicing every day.
drawings less compelling.
I have sat on a ferry with passengers standing right over my seat who never noticed what I
At first I found the size of the screen truly
Recently Paper53 found me and inquired if I
was doing. Had I been drawing in a sketchbook
limiting and getting a whole figure to fit very
was using their app. (I delete the words ‘Drawn
I would have attracted some unwelcome
with Paper’ before posting).
Everyone is busy poking and smearing on
Colours can be mixed and saved. The
I wonâ€™t go on, because everyone must discover
iPhones and iPads and other hand-held devices.
paintbrush has a character of its own and can
his or her technique.
be used in many ways. BUT, PLEASE, ONLY AFTER YOU HAVE
Paper53 comes with colours and tools. It is important to buy the complete set.
A drawing can be saved, then changed. Each
LEARNED TO DRAW.
time I save I have a slightly different result and Personally I like the thin and the thick tools,
can select the best version.
Gladys Perint Palmer is Executive Vice President, Academy of Art University Artistic
and the paintbrush. The pencil is not my favorite. The eraser can produce wonderful
The background can be luminous white or
results around the edges. And of course it can
deep black with white lines and the colours are
clean up a mess.
INFUSING TRADITION WITH INNOVATION
Insect brooch by Kaori Chiba, BFA Jewelry & Metal Arts. Opposite: Cuff by Dale Beevers, MFA Jewelry Design.
written by TONISLAVA DOCHEVA photography by JEFFRY RAPOSAS
Leading-edge digital tools with a backbone
Some of these techniques include ceramic
laser cutter and Zbrush, a 3D modeling
of traditional techniques that pioneer
sculpture, centrifugal and vacuum casting,
software, “place emphasis on conceptual
authentic pieces of art are the outcome
rendering, and enameling, which is an
designs that depart and expand the ideas
of the new Jewelry and Metal Arts major
ancient material. Essentially, enameling is
of traditional jewelry and wearable forms.”
at Academy of Art University. The highly
“the art of fusing glass and metals to create
These exciting new classes have students
anticipated department made its debut
colorful designs and surface enhancement,”
exploring completely new dimensions of
in Spring 2013, and is now going on
according to the course catalogue. The
strong heading into its fourth semester.
second-level enameling course further
It is rapidly expanding and has become
explores the technique and combines it
Unleashing creativity without boundaries is
a driving force of many collaborations
with the metal work skills that students
the ultimate goal of the art produced here.
within the departments in the school.
have learned in other classes to create
Director Modena puts great emphasis on
Students fully immerse themselves in
sophisticated bodies of art.
the importance of organic creativity and the individual’s unique voice.
classes that give them a wide perspective of different techniques, as well as career building skills that they can utilize in their personal and professional work. Offered as both a Bachelor and a Master of Fine Arts program, the original and innovative work that is created in this department is refreshing.
“We are all aware of trends, but our students are taught how not to be bound by convention.”
Faculty and students often refer to the major as JEM, but don’t let the charming
In addition to these historic techniques,
“We are all aware of trends, but our
acronym fool you: this is a tough major
the major now offers the most innovative
students are taught how not to be bound
that exposes students to a variety of
organic 3D modeling and printing and
by convention, and how to avoid the
difficult techniques. Department Director
digital design laser cutting classes. Gordon
trap of blindly following fashion and
Charlene Modena says that although we
Silveria, who is the Associate Director of
art world trends,” she says. “Rather, they
have “… a lot of traditional techniques,
Arts Technology, created these classes.
are encouraged and coaxed along a path
our focus is on contemporary outcomes.”
State-of-the-art equipment like the CO2
where they can develop a distinctive voice
Bag by Ashley Lagasse, BFA Jewelry & Metal Arts
in synergy with critical thinking, and the
designs and are frequently collaborating with
student Jaide Lennox, from the Fashion
ability to always ask why? All of this takes
students from the photography, styling, and
place while they engage in an artist’s intimate
fashion design departments; most notably,
dialogue, which includes, not excludes,
the collaborations between fashion design
Lennox explain that a “surrealistic desert
culture at large.”
students during the academy’s shows at New
vibrant in color and abstract in shape”
York Fashion Week and the Spring Show in
inspires her designs. Cope is morphing her
jewelry to work with the fashion designer’s
The focus is on “how you are influenced by what goes on around you, but also what goes on inside you; it’s a point where these two
The 2014 Spring Fashion Show featured
bicep and wrist cuffs. The armor jewelry is
meet, a quality of bringing out who you are,
three collaborations between fashion
inspired by sacred geometry and created by
which is a very organic process,” she adds.
designers and students in the JEM school.
using etched metal and laser cut Plexiglass.
Zoe Cope, who graduated Spring 2014 with
Her process is detailed. “First I generate
The work that the students in this new
a degree from the department, showed
graphic geometric designs in Adobe
program produce is humbling and, indeed,
her work at the Spring Show through
Illustrator. I print and etch the design on
highly individualistic. They have been
collaboration with undergraduate fashion
copper, shape it, and cut Plexiglass to fit into
wowing us with their intricate and elaborate
concept of the desert by creating forearm,
the geometric shapes.”
Insect brooch by Kaori Chiba BFA Jewelry & Metal Arts
Plexiglass is a material not often found in
Collaborations between talented designers
when one enters a JEM classroom. Students
high fashion jewelry and looks bold and
like Jaide Lennox and Zoe Cope show us the
are engaging, interacting and feeding off of
unconventional. “I then color the metal
new generation of trendsetters.
each other’s creativity. The major has formed inseparable friendships – and even business
with hammered gray spray enamel and use
a dry brush technique with black acrylic
The JEM major calls the 410 Bush Street
paint to give the pieces a slightly ancient
building its home, and has three rooms that
feel,” says Cope, who thoroughly researched
allow students to work on their projects
Zoe Cope and Ashley Lagasse, another
sacred geometry instead of just winging it.
during and after class. Currently, there are
alumna from the JEM department, have
Although she “struggled with using exact
“eight part-time faculty [members] who teach
taken their expertise and similar ideas to
sacred geometry designs for the etchings,
every semester or every other semester, two
develop their own jewelry company called
[she] decided to follow [her] gut and creative
part-time instructors who only teach online
Birds .N. Bones.
eye and ended up making designs that
(although the classes they will be teaching
were way cooler than anticipated.” Overall,
haven’t started yet, and two instructors…
The two ladies first met in a casting class
the designs are graphic yet understated
who teach the digital 3D modeling classes,”
that they were in together, where their first
because they are all gray, which balance out
explains Director Modena. There is a
jewelry piece came alive.
the vibrant colors in Lennox’s garments.
constant buzzing flow of creative energy
Cuff by Dale Beevers, MFA Jewelry & Metal Arts.
“My first mold that I ever made was a rib
come in all of the valuable techniques that
Currently, the two are working on a spring
mold, and it’s our highest selling piece
they had learned in the JEM department,
collection that is influenced by the character
[at Birds .N. Bones],” says Cope. The Birds
utilizing sautering, which is gluing metal
Khaleesi from Game of Thrones’, the “mother
.N. Bones website, featuring their line of
together with metal for the clasps.
of dragons.” They are inspired by this theme and are using the molds of badger teeth
necklaces, rings, and earrings, was launched on Halloween 2013. Which is suitable since
Managing a full-scale company is a task
and claws to market them as dragons, a
they have a witchy and dark feel.
within itself and this major has well prepared
very clever take that will undoubtedly be
them for it. “Branding has been a huge thing
successful. Lagasse knows they are “not the
“With muses like birds, bones, taxidermy,
for us and our success so far. We really knew
only ones out there casting bones…but we’re
gothic novels, earth and life sciences, the
who we were as designers and what company
really building a brand,” she says, “and the
jewelry of Birds .N. Bones lends itself to
we wanted. It’s really helpful that all of our
fabrication level is really superb and sound.”
imagery of witches and other supernatural
pieces online are listed with their scientific
Indeed, there is a sleek and sophisticate
beings wearing these pieces,” Cope describes.
name and that’s from Lagasse’s previous
feel to their pieces that speak to a market in
The process of creating these pieces, however,
degree in Biology and our love of earth
which there is demand, and they are rapidly
is a world of its own, “we start with finding
science,” describes Cope, who was studying
on their way to success.
bones that we like in nature, make a mold,
Advertising before she switched her major
and cast them in metal,” says Cope. Then
Brooches and rings by Wavy Yucen Tang, MFA Jewelry & Metal Arts
Like these two talented ladies, graduating
There are different career options that a
comes from being intimately in touch
with a degree from the Jewelry and Metal
student can take. Talented and hard-working
with your creativity and raw emotions,
Arts department at the Academy has given
alumni have gone on to become very
and letting it come out in your work. The
JEM students a competitive edge because
successful with their careers. Alumni Elliot
School of Jewelry and Metal Arts nurtures
students are prepared for a career in the
Gaskin has become a “one-of-a-kind limited
that creativity and allows students to fully
field. However, the faculty does not push
edition” jeweler creating custom work that
embrace it by teaching them traditional as
them in a specific direction but instead gives
was featured at the Velvet da Vinci gallery
well as contemporary techniques, which are
them the skills and knowledge to make their
in downtown San Francisco. Others have
the foundation to becoming a great artist.
become entrepreneurs and opened up their own businesses like Anna Sheffield, who
Director Modena says, “Many students
has built an empire out of bridal and fine
go on to work in galleries, or to work for
other artists, trunk shows and craft fairs,
and develop their own work through their
These success stories are much a part of
hard work as they are talent. Great art
Neckalce by Dale Beevers, MFA Jewelry & Metal Arts
This is Not Project Runway written by SARAH LEMP photography by ALDO CARRERA styling by SIMON UNGLESS clothes by WEI BAI + JIANXIA JI
At the half-way stage of the Master of Fine Art degree,
We sat down and spoke with the designers about their
candidates present their midpoint review. They show the
experience launching a line, and the process of pre-collection.
work completed over the duration of their studio courses and propose what they plan to do for their senior thesis project.
What was the aesthetic you were going for? What was your
For designers in the School of Fashion with their sights set
main source of inspiration?
on showing at the School of Fashion’s show during MercedesBenz Fashion Week, this means presenting their pre-collection.
WEI: Chic, easy and modern. We want people in the busy world to look chic and not spend too much time styling
When MFA Fashion Design students, Wei Bai and Jianxia Ji,
themselves. We want them to have fun with the clothes. This
decided to collaborate on their pre-collection project, they
collection was inspired by the 1960s. The silhouette of the
challenged themselves to produce and present a retail-ready
garments, the lifestyle of the women, and the change of their
collection of 45 looks and used the opportunity to launch their
mindset during this time were all points of inspiration for us.
brand, EMIT. What originally inspired the name EMIT or “TIME”? Their talent did not go unnoticed by the midpoint review panel and in the fall of 2013, Wei and Jianxia were asked
JIANXIA: On the day of the fashion show, we invited people
to present their EMIT Fall/Winter 2013/14 Collection in
from different cities and countries so that it was not only a
a combined runway show and photo-shoot. The EMIT
local audience. They came from different time zones and had
presentation exemplified the university’s collaborative spirit.
different “jet lags.” In Chinese, jet lag means an upset in the
Not only did the two designers have the opportunity to
order of TIME, so we came up with EMIT.
work together on the collection, but the student-run fashion club, Beyond the Front Row (BtFR), worked together on
WEI: To me, time means memory; it tells stories. History has
producing the launch event. As a BtFR board member, I had
always been one of my favorite topics to study as well as the
the opportunity to work closely with these two inspiring
clothes from past fashions. Each period of time has a different
designers on casting, booking and fitting the models,
story, and so does the clothing. Time passes, but stories remain.
designing the runway, the lighting and music as well as
EMIT means that we select the stories from the past and
managing the backstage production at the event.
combine them with modern elements to emit to a modern look. We want the designs to make people look chic and modern, as
As we stood amongst the photographers and models before the
well as associate the story in that time.
show started, I sensed we were part of something remarkable, setting a new precedent in the midpoint review process.
What went into pre-collection? How did your line evolve throughout the process?
Wei and Jianxia certainly proved they had the ability to “wow” with a pre-collection and I look forward to seeing the
JIANXIA: With this collection, I learned what goes into a
Spring 2015 collection they are working on for the university’s
runway show while also finding our target audience. Before
September show at Lincoln Center.
we began designing, we did a lot of market research. For the runway show, we needed every piece to be perfectly placed all while finding the balance between wear ability and design.
We have seen much change in the fashion world due to globalization - How do you think that effects the connection between the West (U.S.) and China?
WEI: Many Western designers nowadays get their inspiration from China. On the other hand, more and more young Chinese designers choose to study abroad in the U.S. and bring that aesthetic back to China. It is a constant exchange of fashion culture.
How did you grow as designers? How were you able to merge Asian and Western cultures into this collection?
WEI: The fashion field has taught me that I should keep doing what I love. Designers should have their own viewpoint in fashion…you have to know what you like and don’t like. The way you consistently design will become your style.
I don’t think there is a big difference between modern people in China and the U.S. I think the only difference is style. Differences are not only between countries, but also between people. Some people like vintage style, while others like tomboy style. We define our target market and try to understand them, and then we design with them in mind.
JIANXIA: Ever since I was a little girl, I dreamt of becoming a fashion designer. I grew up designing dresses for my small dolls. My mom’s closet was my idea of a fabric store and I would cut swatches of clothes just for a small piece of lace. After graduating from my prior fashion design university, I came to the U.S. to study fashion at Academy of Art University. With this collection, I am working towards achieving my dream.
make-up by VICTOR CEMBELLIN for Workgroup using MAC Cosmetics hair by JOEL CORTES models: DEEDEE, SYDNY, LAYLA and ANNA V. at Stars Model Management
Tunic by Gwen Shihyao Lai, MFA Fashion Design. Bandana pants by Rik Villa at www.rikvilla.com. Necklace, modelâ€™s own. Sweater (worn as scarf), UNIQLO.
Styling 101 written by JEANETTE PEACH photography by ISABELLA BEJARANO styling by SUCHANDRA BULLOCK
Behind every compelling image is a stylist
directed by the students of the program are
working on his or her magic to make ordinary
already industry standard. Student are being
objects come to life and grab the viewer’s
commissioned by companies and having their
work published well before they graduate,”
Academy of Art University understands the
importance of styling and recently became
The student work coming out of the BFA
the first university in the United States with
Styling Program caught the eye of globally
an accredited BFA Fashion Styling Program.
respected brand UNIQLO, who donated
The program was created under the masterful
garments to be styled by the students for this
direction of Simon Ungless, Executive
shoot. “UNIQLO strongly believes in our
Director of the School of Fashion, and Flore
customers’ intelligence to make their own
Morton, Styling Coordinator.
style choices; we may provide suggestions, but
“We have set the bar high, and expect to be not only the first, but also the best for a long time. Now that Fashion Styling is an accredited program, students are able to take classes in a specific sequence that introduces the skills that are needed. The quality of the photo shoots styled, produced and art
we never dictate looks,” said Jean EmmanuelShein, Marketing Director, UNIQLO USA. “We feel that the unvarnished creativity displayed by the students in the Fashion Styling program at Academy of Art University is also reflective of this ethos and that the styling itself is refreshingly natural.”
Turban, UNIQLO v-neck sweater. Pants by Gwen Shihyao Lai, MFA Fashion Design. Long shirt by Frank Tsai, MFA Fashion Design and Andrea Nieto BFA Textile Design. Beaded necklace, modelâ€™s own.
Coat by Gwen Shihyao Lai, MFA Fashion Design.. Pants by Ryan Mora, BFA Fashion Design and Melissa Avalos, BFA Textile Design. Sweater by Elizabeth Castellon, MFA Fashion Design. Necklace made from UNIQLO sweater.
Hat, Stephen Jones for Walter Van Beirendonck from MAC. Sweater, UNIQLO treated with corrosive bleach. Shorts by Gwen Shihyao Lai, MFA Fashion Design. Necklaces, modelâ€™s own.
Tunic by Gwen Shihyao Lai, MFA Fashion Design. Bandana pants by Rik Villa at www.rikvilla.com. Necklace, modelâ€™s own. Sweater (worn as scarf), UNIQLO.
Tunic tuxedo shirt, Dries Van Noten. Hat, stylistâ€™s own.
Floral wind breaker poncho, Dries Van Noten. Tunic top by Frank Tsai, MFA Fashion Design and Andrea Nieto, BFA Textile Design. Layered pants by Didvik Kuang, MFA Fashion Design. Beaded necklaces, modelâ€™s own. Fabric necklaces, made by stylist out of a UNIQLO sweater.
model: Tucker Wiedenkeller, Exalt Model Agency
make-up and hair styling:
: creative : partners : the riches of : : written by JEANETTE PEACH by JAKE MERILL : photography styling by AUBREY KIA : all clothes by PHOEBE WANG : : : : : :
Inspired by the collection of BFA Fashion
Kia knew just the photographer for the job,
Design alumna Phoebe Wang, BFA Fashion
and called on longtime collaborator and friend
Styling student Aubrey Kia and MFA
Merill. Most recently, Merill has been working
Photography alumnus Jake Merill teamed
in NYC as a freelance photographer and
up with the designer to create a shoot
assistant to several top fashion photographers,
that captured the subtle nuances of her
and has worked on campaigns for clients such
collection. “My collection was inspired by
as Calvin Klein, Givenchy, Prabal Gurung,
workers, specifically oil workers and cooks,”
H&M and Dior, as well as editorials for Vogue
explained Wang. “What I tried to infuse into
US and International editions, Harper’s Bazaar,
my collection was an edgy, cool vibe, which I
Interview, Elle and W.
achieved by using lots of layers and different textures.”
Merill said of he and Kia’s working relationship, “There is a lot of trust between
“Just like you see in [Wang’s] designs, I
me and Kia, it’s a joint effort; we each weigh
wanted the entire production to reflect the
in on every aspect of the picture. And, maybe
juxtaposition of soft with hard, femininity with
most importantly, we know how each other
edge,” explained Kia. Beyond that, Kia stressed
works…which goes a long way.” Kia echoed
that she didn’t just want to provide Wang with
his sentiments, saying “The beauty of finding
a lookbook, but wanted the designer to have a
friends in your creative partners is that you
don’t really have to communicate verbally—it’s all almost intuitive.”
model: CAITLIN HOLLERAN at Cast ImagesModel and Talent Agency assistant photographer: BRENO ARAGON make-up: CYNTHEA AMNATKEO hair styling: DESIREE MOON CERDA shoes by: CONVERSE + GENTLE SOULS
INTERNATIONAL STYLE written by ASHLEY CASTANOS photography by ISABELLA BEJARANO styling by NOAH SHAW all clothes with resin insert by SOSHANA PINEDO, MFA FASHION DESIGN
Shoshana Pinedo has made the transition from Europe to the States with ease and grace, pursuing a successful design career with Viktor & Rolf and following her own muses.
“I never try to limit myself with where I can find potential inspiration - you never know where it will strike next.”
Born in Amsterdam, recent Academy of Art
degree in photography at Wheaton College in
AC: What does a regular workday in the studio
University Graduate Shoshana Pinedo headed
look like for you?
in May 2013 with a final collection of luxury
After leaving the Academy, Shoshana continues
SP: It’s always different. Typically, it consists of
women’s wear influenced by the Italian artist
to consult for boutique design studios,
fittings, developing concepts and ideas for fabric
Alberto Seveso and the paper artists Richard
international ateliers and major brands;
and prints, approving strike off and sketching.
Sweeney, Matt Shlian and Norika Ambe.
designing, organizing and delivering memorable
To elaborate, concept development begins with
a goal, or what you believe the goal to be when
East after earning her MFA in Fashion Design
Her resume offers a prestigious line of
you set out. As the creative process unfolds and
experience, working for some of the world’s most
We talked to her about where she has been – and
new elements and inspirations are introduced,
well known contemporary brands including J.
where she is going.
the goal can evolve into something you never
Crew, Kenneth Cole, and Jason Wu. She has also
anticipated, that you could never have imagined
spent time employed as an accessories designer
ASHLEY CASTANOS: What have you been
without the process itself. This is how you can
for couturiers Victor & Rolf.
up to lately?
arrive at a truly novel and unique concept.
Her education combined with her European
SHOSHANA PINEDO: The past few
AC: Where do you find inspiration for your
background, along with her knowledge of high
months, I have been working on the women’s
fashion, has a heavy influence on her aesthetic.
wear team at J. Crew as a freelance Associate Designer. Currently I am designing for women’s
SP: Inspiration can really come from anywhere.
When first moving to the United State, she
novelty bottoms and suiting. It has been a great
I love going to museums. I don’t have a favorite,
overcame cultural barriers, including less
experience and I am learning the ins and outs of
there are too many to choose from. New York has
open-mindedness than she had been used to,
designing for a larger company.
a lot to offer so I try to go to at least one once
and missing her family, after coming to this
a month. I love the Stedelijk and the Van Gogh
country in 2001 to take an undergraduate
museums in Amsterdam. I like to go where the
best work is. If I am in Amsterdam and there is
in positions I could not even have dreamed
We started with research, created concept
a great fashion exhibition in Paris, I will try to
of. I started at Viktor & Rolf as an intern and
boards, and presented those to the broader team
sneak off to go see it (that’s the beauty of living
ended up in Paris as the Head of Accessories for
before narrowing them down for continued
the Fall 2012 Show. This was an unbelievably
development. We would sketch, make samples,
immense challenge and a lot of pressure.
receive samples from Italy, do fittings, make
I also like seeing what contemporary artists
Fortunately I had an amazing team to work with
changes and then send them back to Italy.
are working on. Like museums, I don’t have
and the show was a success.
Eventually we would get the final product in the Paris showroom and finish the season with the
one specific artist who I’d call favorite, I just
appreciate great creative work. If I had to name
I was able to work one on one with Viktor
names, Andy Goldsworthy and Andy Warhol have
and Rolf, who were very nice, a humbling
both been an inspiration to me at some point.
opportunity I’ll never forget. Having such
AC: Why do you think you have been so
talented designers put that much responsibility
successful in your career?
I also love researching history and pop culture,
on my shoulders forced me to work hard and
and developing ideas from there. I never try
be at my best. I still keep in contact with the
SP: I have always been open to any opportunity,
to limit myself with where I can find potential
whole team and try to go back for shows to help
and made sure that I did everything to the best
inspiration – you never know where it will
whenever I am able.
of my abilities.
AC: Can you explain the design process for the AC: How was your experience designing for
accessories you created for V&R?
Viktor and Rolf?
AC: Can you recall any influences that inspired/ encouraged you along the way?
SP: Viktor and Rolf would come up with the SP: I moved back to Amsterdam for the job,
concept for the next season and brief the teams.
SP: Definitely the people and experiences from
and it was an amazing experience that presented
The accessories team had a little bit more room
Viktor & Rolf made a big impact on my career.
me with some unique challenges and put me
to explore and expand on those ideas.
At Academy of Art University, School of Fashion
Executive Director Simon Ungless was great to work with. He really pushed me out of my comfort zone and empowered me to indulge in the whole process of creating.
For my senior thesis, I was working on fabric manipulations and ended up using resin to seam the garments together and to create panels. I think most teachers would have stopped me from pushing on because learning about this new material and developing a technique to manipulate it was a timeintensive process. I was tasked with producing a final collection in six months and even half way through I still had a lot to learn. I failed often but Simon was always there to support and encourage me.
AC: When youâ€™re not doing freelance work, you are working on your own design projects. Would you mind telling us about them?
SP: Right now I am working on another small collection of coats and jackets. I think it is good to keep working on your own projects as you design for different brands. It is uncommon for me to sew or make patterns as an in-house designer, so it is nice to keep those skills sharp at home.
AC: How do you spend your time when youâ€™re not working?
SP: My fiancĂŠ is an advertising art director so when we are free we like to do things to feed our creative minds - visiting museums, watching movies, walking in the city, and photography adventures in the country.
AC: Do you have any advice for aspiring designers? SP: Be open to any opportunity, because you never know where it might take you.
model: Avery Tharp at Scout Model Agency make-up and hair styling: Preston Nesbit, Aburi Balk Management assistant stylist: Stephanie St. Croix, BFA Styling Accessories: Drip effect stockings, Wolford. Kloud patent and lucite creepers, YRU. Long black latex gloves, stylistâ€™s own. High waist panties, Hue.
GROWING to EXTREMES Forging a new language – in architecture and fashion – for a new age
written by PAUL WILNER photography by ISABELLA BEJARANO styling and art direction by FLORE MORTON 94
Cape by Nika Tang, MFA Fashion Design. Belt and shoes stylists own. Prosthetic models from the School of Architecture.
Special thanks to: Mohammed Al Omran, Mohammed Alaqil, Raya Alavi, Yousef Algiaan, Dima Almobarak, Sondos Ashi, Jesus Gutierrez, Chanan Jaionnom, Ponlapee Mahavisessin, Fady Rophael, Soufiane Bedda, Jenna Chen, Dugesar Manjeet, Fadol Amjed, Chao Ching Hsu, Peiliang Liu, Si Beck Nam, Rapeepong Tanmanee, Ke Wang, Tyler Whalen, Xianxiu Zheng, Shadi Sinclair, Cheng Zeng, Youchen Wong, Yi-Hsuan Wong, Sulaiman Alkhulanui, Qasam Ali, T Almutair, Yi Wang, Saraswati Sri Lalitadewi Latumahina, Chen Hung-Chin, Danny Prem Jethnani, Robert Everett, Nicholas Kostal, Kylee Keller, Alexandra Barrett, Sami Almidani, Ahmed Fouad Banaja, Ye Bao, Mohammed Moustafa Fouda, Amanda Pinon, Jasmine Serrano, Ana Jimenez, Siyu Han, Po Yee Wong, Xu Lin, Jacqueline Wray, Hao Hsu, Anna Evans, Sarah Lemp, Rachel Ambasing, Zihe Liu, Jaclyn Kershek, Lea Ben-Ichou, Nicole Soliman, Brienna Logan, Kylie Sun, Jonathan Viramontes
The challenge of our time is how to adapt
A more recent ARH 609 project was based
Reconsidering the idea of fashion meant
to seemingly insurmountable obstacles –
on the same concepts involved in an unusual
incorporating the notion of globalization
economic, environmental, and existential – in
pop-up exhibition at an Oakland medical
which fuels a hypercommodified world.
ways that promote survival.
building. As Tiulescu and Neyman explained it, the students’ work explores two parallel
“In the 79 Montgomery and Cannery
An unusual project was taken on by
concerns: “The first is research into the
shows, bodies were dressed in muslins. The
Academy of Art University School of
philosophical and physical implications
prosthetic had to negotiate with the body as
Architecture students, under the guidance
of body modification, as it relates to social
well as the clothing designed for the body,
of instructors Alexandra Neyman and
identity. The second is the development of
which was an interesting opportunity.”
a building block system that maneuvers like
The students in the Architectural 609
an evolving ecology through adaptation,
When asked how the creative use of
resulting in emergent behavior.
tattoos and other body adornments, plastic
class – Intermediate Design Studio –
surgery and changing out understanding
collaborated on a project with Fashion
“The installation celebrates the grotesque
of disease can contribute to constructive
School merchandising instructor, Hersha
and the authentic and capitalizes on
new approaches to the existing problems,
Steinbock’s FSH 328 Interpreting and
beautiful deformations, the procedure and
whether in an urban landscape, or more
Reporting Fashion class. The class “dealt
process of transmutation and the cultural
individual challenges, the instructors replied
with notions of nomadism and identity,’’
process of extreme adornment to the point
that the experiment “does not intend to
Neyman and Tiulescu explained. “Our
of creating multiple identity or indefinable
solve any particular problems, resolve
conversations with fashion students and
identity,’’ they add.
any social issues, but rather it operates
Hersha dealt with a design of a growth
within that context as a site of opportunity.
system sited on a human body,’’ including
The joint architecture-fashion project built
However, [it] does take a social stance, as
the opportunities provided by prosthetics.
the framework for a Community Bazaar in
far as being interested in intensifying the
an area south of downtown San Francisco.
local conditions of the site and the global
“On both ends – architecture and fashion –
Underneath the freeway on Fifth and
conditions of San Francisco from a social
we were always interested in the blurring of
Brannan Streets a new model for urban
and political perspective. We capitalize on all
the normative identity…Our studio started
living and thought was created.
kinds of defective conditions and anomalies
with the human body as a malleable and highly regenerative organism.”
found in the process, as we celebrates human The students are, “researching processes of
diversity to the extent that anyone can be
complex behaviors,’’ they add.
who and whatever they want to be.”
on the concepts of biomimicry, a growing
“We also examine the neighborhood as a
It’s a worthwhile notion to consider
trend which finds inspiration in nature to
social construct embedded with dynamics
as Academy students – whatever their
solve human problems, the work from the
discipline or field of study is – struggle
Conceived as part of a larger project based
courses was shown at the Atelier Gallery
to come to grips with their physical and
on 79 Montgomery and, subsequently, at
“The logic of design is generated through a
psychological boundaries and come up with
rule-based process of growth that capitalizes
new alternatives for a new generation.
on aggregation, variation, and evolution.”
Coat by Nika Tang, MFA Fashion Design. Facing Page: Top and culotte by Stephina Touch, MFA Fashion Design.
This page and facing page:
This Page: Dress by Stephina Touch, MFA Fashion Design. Prosthetic models from the School of Architecture. Facing Page: Bathing suit by Shumpei Okamoto, BFA Fashion Design, and Andrea Nieto, BFA Textile Design.
This Page: Skirt by Vicken Derderian, MFA Fashion Design. Facing Page: Coat by Nika Tang, MFA Fashion Design.
Top by Nika Tang, MFA Fashion Design.
Coat by Nika Tang, MFA Fashion Design.
model: Achok Majak, Scout Model and Talent Agency make-up: Victor Cembellin for Workgroup Ltd. using Mac Cosmetics assistant photographers: Nick Gutierrez, and Jake Merril assistant stylists: Winnie Huang and Stephanie St Croix
DEVAUX RANCH ALDO CARRERA photographer
SIMON UNGLESS fashion editor
ZACHARY BLUMENFELD stylist
Hand painted coat by Ryan Morar, BFA Fashion Design and Melissa Avalos, BFA Textile Design.
This page: Tank and Long shirtÂ by When Simon met Ralph, Pants by Ryan Morar, BFA Fashion Design. Facing page: Hand painted coat byÂ Ryan Morar, BFA Fashion Design and Melissa Avalos, BFA Textile Design.
Tank and Long shirtÂ by When Simon met Ralph, Pants by Ryan Morar BFA Fashion Design.
This page: Jacket by Gwen Shihyao Lai, MFA Fashion Design, pants by When Simon met Ralph, Boots by Walkley Clogs. Facing page: Coat by Mingyu Du, MFA Fashion Design and Joseph Khawane, MFA Textile Design, pants by When Simon met Ralph, Shirt stylists own.
120 Hand painted shirt byÂ Ryan Morar, BFA Fashion Design and Melissa Avalos, BFA Textile Design. Scarf by Gray Market.
Denim jacket by Robert Curry
Shirt by When Simon met Ralph.
Tank byÂ When Simon met Ralph. Pant by Ryan Morar, BFA Fashion Design
126 Shirt and tie by Didvik Kuang, BFA Fashion Design. Pants by Gwen Shihyao Lai, MFA Fashion Design.
Sweatshirt by When Simon met Disney. Pant by Ryan Morar, BFA Fashion Design.
Sweatshirt by When Simon met Disney, pants by Ryan Morar, BFA Fashion Design and Melissa Avalos, BFA Textile Design.
Sweatshirt by When Simon met Disney, pants by Ryan Morar, BFA Fashion Design and Melissa Avalos, BFA Textile Design.
Jacket by Gwen Shihyao Lai, MFA Fashion Design. Pants by When Simon met Ralph, boots by Walkley Clogs.
model: David Henry Lantz hair and make-up: Joshua Conover at Workgroup using Oribe photography assistant: Sam Herndon special thanks to Ian MacKintosh
SCHUYLER Nicholas Guiteriez photography
Simon Ungless fashion editor
Suchandra Bullock styling
136 Pants by Frank Tsai, MFA Fashion Design and Andrea Nieto, BFA Textile Design. Boots by Alexander McQueen. Hat, cummerbund, and gloves, stylistâ€™s own.
Leather shirt by Elizabeth Castellon, MFA Fashion Design. Pants by Frank Tsai MFA Fashion Design, and Andrea Nieto, BFA Textile Design. Scarf by When Simon met Ralph. Harness and boots, stylistâ€™s own.
Pants by Leslie Dilloway, BFA Fashion Design. Leather shoulders by Oshrat Ben-Issac, BFA Fashion Design. Cuffs by Blacken. Sophie Hallette lace tank, stylistâ€™s own.
140 Leather jacket by Kittiya Punprapun, BFA Fashion Design. Mesh tank by Frank Tsai, MFA Fashion Design. Necklace by Blacken. Hat, stylistâ€™s own.
Leather coat by Ran Bi, BFA Fashion Design. Sunglasses, stylistâ€™s own.
142 Leather jumpsuit by Elizabeth Castellon, MFA Fashion Design. Necklace, stylistâ€™s own.
Leather jumpsuit by Elizabeth Castellon, MFA FAshion Design.
144 Leather coat by Ran Bi, BFA Fashion Design. Pants by Frank Tsai, MFA Fashion Design and Andrea Nieto, BFA Textile Design. Boots by Alexander McQueen. Necklace by Blacken.
Jacket by Ran Bi, BFA Fashion Design. Necklace by Blacken. Hat, stylistâ€™s own.
146 Jacket by Ran Bi, BFA Fashion Design. Pants by Frank Tsai, MFA Fashion Design and Andrea Nieto, BFA Textile Design. Boots by Alexander McQueen. Hat, stylistâ€™s own.
Leather sweatshirt by Antonio Luna, BFA Fashion Design. Hat, stylistâ€™s own.
Jacket by Ran Bi, BFA Fashion Design. Hat, stylistâ€™s own.
Pants by Frank Tsai, MFA Fashion Design and Andrea Nieto, BFA Textile Design. Necklace by Blacken. Cummerbund, stylistâ€™s own.
150 Coat by Ran Bi, BFA Fashion Design. Pants by Frank Tsai, MFA Fashion Design and Andrea Nieto, BFA Textile Design. Boots by Alexander McQueen.
Leather jacket by Kittiya Punprapun, BFA Fashion Design. Pand and tank top by Frank Tsai, MFA Fashion Design. Boots by Alexander McQueen. Hat and gloves, stylistâ€™s own.
model: Schuyler at Stars Model Management hair and make-up: Joshua Conover at Workgroup using Oribe first assistant: Isabella Bejarano
Leather shoulders by Oshrat Ben-Issac, BFA Fashion Design. Sophie Hallette lace tank, stylistâ€™s own. Hat, stylistâ€™s own.
tech assistant: Jorge Jaramillo
Suspenders, stylistâ€™s own.
Dress by Gwen Shih-Yao Lai, MFA Fashion Design. Céline sweater, Saks Fifth Avenue. Shoes, stylist’s own.
JEN MIYAKO McGOWAN photography FLORE MORTON styling
Tunic and skirt by Jason Tam, MFA Fashion Design. Shoes, stylist’s own. Opposite: Coat by Youngjin Shin, BFA Fashion Design and Hsin Lee, BFA Textile Design. Shirt by Gwen Shia-Yao Lai, MFA Fashion Design. Proenza Schouler pant and Chloé boots, Saks Fifth Avenue.
Tunic by Jason Tam, MFA Fashion Design.
Vest by Gwen Shia-Yao Lai, MFA Fashion Design. Tunic by Jason Tam, MFA Fashion Design.
Cardigan by Emma Mengchen Yang, BFA Fashion Design. Pants by Gwen Shia-Yao Lai, MFA Fashion Design. Brogues, Manolo Blahnik, Saks Fifth Avenue.
Coat by Youngjin Shin, BFA Fashion Design and Hsin Lee, BFA Textile Design. Shirt by Gwen Shia-Yao Lai, MFA Fashion and Textile Design.
Dress by Gwen Shih-Yao Lai, MFA Fashion Design. Sweater, CĂŠline, Saks Fifth Avenue.
Vest by Gwen Shia-Yao Lai, MFA Fashion Design. Tunic and skirt by Jason Tam, MFA Fashion Design. Shoes, stylistâ€™s own. Opposite: Coat by Andre Torija, BFA Design. Dress by Jason Tam, MFA Fashion Design.
model: Lea Celine for Look Model Management make-up: Jaridann Hutcheson hair styling and make-up: Miriam Honig assistant stylists: Suchandra Bullock, BFA Styling and Stephanie St. Croix, BFA Styling assistant photographers: Jeffry Raposas, Evelyn Choi, and Elliot Alexander, BFA Photography
giuliana a color story
photography ISABELLA BEJARANO art direction + styling SIMON UNGLESS AND FLORE MORTON 168
Printed coat and dress by Flora Cervantes, MFA Fashion Design and Lori Solem, MFA Textile Design.
170 This page and facing page: Printed dress by Flora Cervantes, MFA Fashion Design and Lori Solem, MFA Textile Design. Horsehair and leather necklace by Elizabeth Prost, BFA Fashion Design.
Printed coat and dress by Mingyu Du, MFA Fashion Design and Joseph Khawane, MFA Textile Design.
Printed and woven coat, shirt, and pants by Ernest Huang, MFA Fashion Design and Hong Ni, MFA Textile Design. Socks, stylists own. Shoes, Aldo.
Printed coat and dress by Flora Cervantes, MFA Fashion Design and Lori Solem, MFA Textile Design. Beaded tassel earring, stylistâ€™s own. Shoes, Aldo.
Printed dress by Flora Cervantes, MFA Fashion Design and Lori Solem, MFA Textile Design. Horsehair and Leather necklace, Elizabeth Prost, BFA Fashion Design.
176 Vest, shirt, and pants by Ernest Huang, MFA Fashion Design and Hong Ni, MFA Textile Design. Socks, stylistâ€™s own. Shoes, Aldo.
Coat and dress by Mingyu Du, MFA Fashion Design and Joseph Khawane, MFA Textile Design. Shoes, Aldo.
Jacket and pants by Ernest Huang, MFA Fashion Design and Hong Ni, MFA Textile Design.
model: Giuliana Caramuto, Elite Models. make-up and hair styling: Joshua Conover at Workgroup using Oribe.
178 assistant stylist: Suchandra Bullock, BFA Fashion Styling. assistant photographer: Geoff Mau, BFA Photography.
Coat, shirt, and pants by Ernest Huang, MFA Fashion Design and Hong Ni, MFA Textile Design. Socks, stylistâ€™s own. Shoes, Aldo.
FAMILY WITHIN FASHION A Visual Tour of the Camaraderie within the Fall 2014 New York Fashion Week Design Process
written by Chloe Preussker photography by Isabella Bejarano 180
Gonbee Tanaka, Keverne DeSantis and Zoe Cobb working with the designers at the NYC studio.
Designers Arijana Kajdic and Nisha Hanna Btesh watching the runway monitor
When thinking about what goes into a fashion
invest themselves fully in collections that they
show for New York Fashion Week, one might
truly believe in. Being committed to their vision
believe it all centers around one designer — his
motivates the designers to push through tight
or her specific ideas and story that culminates in
deadlines, handle the stress of running around
the collection. However, the reality behind the
New York City days before the show, and finally
fashion industry lies in the collaborative spirit
carries them through the moment of taking a bow
built among a team of designers working in a
after their collections walk off the runway.
collective process. “The students caravan all the way out to New For the Fall 2014 graduate designers at Academy
York City to set up shop,” said Ungless. “Their
of Art University, working together was the key to
camaraderie and willingness to help one another
successfully launching their collections. For ten
throughout the whole process is remarkable.
years the School of Fashion has been participating
It’s inspiring to watch the designers push new
in New York Fashion Week under the guidance
of Simon Ungless, who was recently named Executive Director of the School of Fashion.
Passion isn’t only apparent in Ungless and in the
According to Ungless, this crop of designers’
designers; it also lives with the studio team in New
united approach to their collections made them
York, the show stylist, the hair and make up team,
especially well suited to show in the monumental
the casting crew and the professors at the School
tenth anniversary show.
of Fashion. “Everyone becomes a real family, a family who actually cares where these students
“I call them designers, not students, because
go on in life,” said Ungless. “This is a new wave of
by the time they get to New York their work is
designers with exceptional talent and we are all
very much industry-level— they would have
rooting for them to succeed.”
the same responsibilities if they were working for Michael Kors or McQueen,” said Ungless.
Captivated by the chemistry of the Fall
“The fashion industry is not about an individual
2014 designers, Ungless turned to fashion
designer, but rather it’s about artists with unique
photographer Isabella Bejarano to document the
viewpoints and a shared passion for innovation
collection creation process. “Isabella’s point of
and partnering to push the envelope. What I love
view, use of lighting, love for the fashion industry
about this group of designers is how they worked
and understanding of beauty are all reasons why
together creatively, bringing their individual
her photographs so beautifully tell the story of
perspectives into a shared focus that shifted
these designers,” said Ungless. “She captures
away from trend and onto craft, handwork, fabric
the vibe of the collections and character of the
manipulation and hand-finishing.”
designers, models and clothes, and creates a stunning visual narrative of the creative process.”
Months before the designers show their work on the New York runway they begin the design process in San Francisco, where collection concepts and muslin mock-ups are born. From that point on, between the sewing, knitting, printing, fittings and castings, the designers
Rachael Robinson from Next Models at the Fall 2014 show.
Carolina Thaler from Elite Models, backstage at the Fall 2014 show.
Gonbee Tanaka and Simon Ungless watching the runway monitor
Noam Frost from The Society ManagementÂ backstage at the Fall 2014 show.
Gryphon O’Shea from New York Models backstage at the Fall 2014 show.
Jacket, ACT Costume rentals. Dress, UBIFRANCE French Textile Collection. Ring, H&M.
malcolm mclaren + the gospel of “spectacular failure”
written by KEANAN DUFFTY photography by ISABELLA BEJARANO styling by FLORE MORTON
The influence of counter culture
a group of Central Saint Martin’s
‘Subversion Sex and Style’ are what
and the punk movement was
fashion students (including
is needed to create success and
arguably the story of the last year
myself) to meet the great pop
that today’s culture is Karaoke, but
in fashion, given the enormous
manipulator, learn a few lessons and
trying to be authentic. He died in
success of the David Bowie show
be photographed with the master.
2010 at 64, but given his convictions,
at the Victoria and Albert Museum
However McLaren didn’t show up,
Lord knows what he would have
in London, the punk retrospective
which was my first lesson in star
made of the recent efforts at
at the Costume Institute of
quality: always keep the audience
commodification, including the
Metropolitan Museum and even the
PUNK: Chaos to Couture exhibition at The Costume Institute of The
Isabella Blow fashion exhibition at Mclaren had that knack. Not only
Metropolitan Museum of Art in
did he create the Sex Pistols image
New York. Westwood, his former
Malcolm McLaren may not be
as “young, sexy, assassins,” he
partner in crime, did show up,
household name these days, but
was the design (and for a while,
wearing a large button with the face
as the manager and eminence gris
the personal) partner of Vivienne
of Bradley Manning, the WikiLeaks
of the seminal British punk band,
Westwood, manager of Bow Wow
the Sex Pistols, he was responsible
Wow, and had a hand in the careers
for putting punk rock on the map
of Adam Ant and Boy George
Before his death, Malcolm was
– and changing the way people
before producing his own records,
making “musical paintings’ and
looked at society in the Margaret
including the much-sampled track
exhibiting them at Art Basel and in
Thatcher era forever.
‘Buffalo Girls’ from the 1983 album
Times Square New York. McLaren
was in the tradition of the great
pop managers like Elvis Presley’s
My first close encounter with McLaren, in the true punk spirit,
McLaren also developed movies in
Colonel Tom Parker, the Beatles’
never took place. A few years after
Hollywood with Steven Spielberg
Brian Epstein, Led Zeppelin’s
the Sex Pistols imploded, The
including ‘Fashion Beast: the Life
Peter Grant, the Spice Girls’
London Times had arranged for
and Times of Christian Dior’ and
Simon Fuller, and Andrew Loog
‘Heavy Metal Surf Nazis,’ which he
Oldham, who was instrumental
described as a cross between Lord
in the Stones early launch. A true
Of The Flies and The Magnificent
showman, a great haberdasher and
Seven. He was even a producer for
a fanciful raconteur.
the film adaptation of Fast Food Nation, based on Eric Schlosser’s
After my initial interview in the
Hamptons, I saw Malcolm a few more times in New York City
When I finally sat down with
before he was diagnosed with
Malcolm in the Hamptons in 2008
mesothelioma in October 2009 and
his message was that magnificent
died of the disease in April 2010 in a
failure was better than benign
hospital in Switzerland.
success. The idea of ‘branding’ was an anathema to him. Chaos is sexy.
Here are some snippets of my
Transgression has been co-opted
interview, so you can get a sense of
by corporate culture. The three S’s;
Malcolm, in his own words:
Necklace, ACT Costume Rentals. Shirt, stylist’s own.
Jacket, ACT Costume rentals. Dress, UBIFRANCE French Textile Collection.
Overskirt by Phoebe Wang, BFA Fashion Design. Cuff and necklace, ACT Costume Rentals. Hermès bracelets, tarp, shirt, and safety pin, stylist’s own. Opposite: (top) Coat by Pheobe Wang, BFA Fashion Design. Shirt, UBIFRANCE French Textile Collection. Cuffs, mohawk, and necklace, ACT Costume Rentals. Scarf, stylist’s own. (bottom) Top by Ginie CY Huang, MFA Fashion Design. Skirt by Rinata Lindroos and Mina Fadai, BFA Fashion. Jeans and Hermès bracelets, stylist’s own. Loafers, Freda Salvador (by Christina Paolo-Nelson, MFA Fashion Merchandising).
On Vivienne Westwood, Anti Fashion
and greedy and all these people we loved
and the boutiques:
turned ugly on us and that’s why you had punk. We said, “We hate all this, it’s
Keanan Duffty: You started in the
disgusting. We hate all these fu@#$%g
early 70s with a boutique that made
rock and roll people.” You just wanted to
a metamorphosis over a 10 to 12 year
see them all dead and buried. Now...the
period from the biker look, to 50s rock
problem is that the active role of the rebel
and roll, to S&M, to punk and then the
has changed. Most people are not sure
pirate look. Today most fashion brands
whether that art of transgression has not
create a look and then stick to it for
been co-opted by corporate culture. Now
consistency and branding.
people think; transgression? That’s Diesel. What the f… is that??? The costume of
Malcolm McLaren: Well you never
transgression has been co-opted.
wanted to create a “‘brand.” The brand was horrible. The idea of branding, the
[Sex Pistols bassist] Sid Vicious started
idea of being a tradesman, a merchant,
out in the audience and then got onstage.
was an anathema to me. I’d been
He was very special and therefore an icon
programmed to fight the good fight-
that epitomized the punk culture that
create a magnificent failure. So anytime
was so much celebrated with this DIY
the shop became successful, I used to go
aesthetic. He was lucky....and then sadly,
home to my [then] girlfriend, Vivienne
not so lucky [Vicious overdosed in 1979].
Westwood [and said], “No, Vivienne, we’ve got to close this down, this shop is far
The record company presented us
too successful.” It’s horrible-I’ve got to
not with a gold record but with a gold
keep the door permanently locked. I’m
dustbin lid. I wish I still had it.
only opening for an hour a day.’ We [had] ganged up together and I decided to go
Keanan Duffty: It’s probably on eBay
and find a place on the King’s Road, a
shop, an extension of art school. I was going to make the most magnificent
Malcolm McLaren: The record
failure and I was going to do it in the
companies felt I disliked them and they
trendiest watering hole at the far end
were absolutely right. I did loathe them. I
of the King’s Road in Chelsea. But the
can never have any pretense that the Sex
last thing I wanted to be in was fashion.
Pistols could live in harmony with the
Unless it could be anti-fashion.
On the Sex Pistols and Punk:
Keanan Duffty: You set out to destroy it.
Malcolm McLaren: After the 60s, it felt
Malcolm McLaren: I had to take the
the culture had got all fat and horrible
blame for that I and, naturally, the birds
were coming home to roost when the Sex
wants to stand next to. You need grace and
Pistols just splintered and it wasn’t before
charm to attract people to this subversive
long that I was going to be driven into the
idea. And then, Adam, you are going to have
courts either by the music industry or the
to be very sexy to sell it. Work on those
Sex Pistols. There was going to come a time
three S’s: Sex, Subversion and Style. That’s
where I had to take off the mask of no longer
what it takes.”
being this jester, joker ...manipulator, chaos maker...I’m sure Heath Ledger’s character in
On Art School and Failure – Meaning Of
‘Dark Knight’ was rooted in McLaren.
Keanan Duffty: It does look at lot like
Malcolm McLaren: My art lecturer told me,
Malcolm McLaren (laughs).
“Malcolm, if you have chosen the role of being an artist - the artist is on a journey
Malcolm McLaren: The music industry didn’t
that never ends.”
under stand that punk was as impactful as the motor car, as impactful as any Pablo Picasso
My fellow students and I – we were the
painting and it took the culture forward
backroom boys, lighting the fire here and
and became a true expression of the true
there. We were the guys that were not
intentions of an outlaw culture, better known
for sale. I remember going into a record
as rock and roll.
company meeting and explaining how anarchic this record, “God Save The Queen,”
On Adam Ant-Sex Subversion & Style:
by the Sex Pistols, was, and this guy said, “Is that a new drug?”
Malcolm McLaren: My first lesson to Adam Ant was: “Right, Adam, these are
Ultimately, the Sex Pistols had to implode...
the three ingredients for any pop cultural
we all know we were going to fail, and there
success which I know looking at you, you
was no expression of doubt about or wanting
desperately want. Ok, first subversion,
or caring about succeeding, we knew we were
understand what that is and that it is
going to fail, it was just a question of how
a major ingredient in your look, your
long have we got and how spectacularly can
behavior and what you write and what you
you fail. When most people are confronted
produce in the form of music. Two have
with failure, they want to go the other way.
heaps of style-you’re going to need it to
The trick is to fail magnificently. Then you
seduce and to be someone that anybody
have real success.
model: CAITLIN HOLLERAN at Cast Images make-up: VICTOR CEMBELLIN for Workgroup Ltd. using MAC Cosmetics hair styling: JOEL CORTES assistant photographers: NICK GUTIERREZ, BRENO ARAGON, and BRITTANY MCCLAREN assistant stylists: NOAH SHAW and STEPHANIE ST. CROIX
Dress, UBIFRANCE French Textile Design. Overskirt by Phoebe Wang, BFA Fashion Design. Pants by Ginie CY Huang, MFA Fashion Design.
Robert Altman, on the Paris set of PrĂŞt-Ă -Porter, with Jean Lepine, Director of Photography, Geraldine Peroni, editor and Scotty Bushnell, producer.
PICTURE PERFECT A BIRD’s-EYE VIEW OF THE MAKING OF ROBERT ALTMAN’S “PRÊT-ÀPORTER” SHOWED THAT FICTION CAN BE STRANGER AND EVEN MORE ACCURATE THAN THE TRUTH WORDS AND ILLUSTRATIONS BY
GLADYS PERINT PALMER
LIFE IMITATES ART SOPHIA LOREN as Isabella de la Fontaine, widow of the President du Chambre Syndicale – dressed in Dior by Gianfranco Ferré.
WHEN GLADYS PERINT PALMER, EXECUTIVE VICE
SUBSEQUENT EVENTS – THE PREVALENCE OF INSTANT
PRESIDENT, ACADEMY OF ART UNIVERSITY ARTISTIC
CELEBRITIES LIKE KIM KARDASHIAN AND KANYE WEST
DEVELOPMENT, WAS INVITED TO DOCUMENT THE
AT THE FRONT ROWS OF COLLECTIONS, THE RISE OF
FILMING OF ROBERT ALTMAN’S “PRÊT-À-PORTER’’ IN
UPSTART BLOGGERS AND THE NOT SO BRAVE NEW WORLD
1994, FEW COULD HAVE REALIZED HOW PRESCIENT THE
OF ‘SELFIES’ – HAVE PROVEN HIS DIAGNOSIS OF THE
HOLLYWOOD DIRECTOR’S GIMLET-EYED VIEW OF THE
ABSURDITIES OF THE SCENE TO BE ON THE MONEY.
FASHION SCENE WOULD BECOME. PALMER WAS PRIVILEGED WITH A FRONT ROW SEAT AT ALTMAN’S SATIRIC TAKE ON FASHION, IN THE SAME SPIRIT
THE FILMING, FROM MARCH 4 TO MAY 18 OF 1994, WHICH
AS HIS SPIRITED MASH-UP OF HOLLYWOOD IN “THE
PROVIDED A DIFFERENT PERSPECTIVE FROM THE MANY
PLAYER,” RECEIVED LESS CRITICAL AND COMMERCIAL
OTHER COLLECTIONS SHE’S ATTENDED IN LONDON, PARIS,
SUCCESS, PERHAPS BECAUSE THE PUBLIC WAS NOT YET
NEW YORK AND MILAN.
READY FOR HIM. EXCERPTS FROM HER SATIRIC, JOURNAL AND DRAWINGS TWENTY YEARS HAVE NOW PASSED SINCE THE RELEASE OF THE MOVIE. THE ANNIVERSARY REMINDS US THAT
PARIS. SUNDAY MARCH 25, 1984, 6:30
SAN FRANCISCO. THURSDAY APRIL 23,
Prêt Productions Inc.’s office at 79 Rue de la
Boëtie is humming.
SONIA RYKIEL’S FALL COLLECTION,
S.F. FILM FESTIVAL OPENS WITH
SALLE SULLY, JARDIN DES TUILERIES
ROBERT ALTMAN’S, ‘THE PLAYER.’
Anouk Aimée is on the phone displeased that there was no car to take her home after the
Robert Altman attends his first fashion show
“Have you seen ‘The Player’?” Robert Altman
party last night and she was obliged to take a
and decides that one day he will make a film
asks. “You’ll like it. It’s like your drawings.”
taxi. Sophia Loren had a car. Robert Altman walks in. “Taxi? Anouk uses taxis to my house.
about the world of Paris fashion. •
Sophia came in a car with someone.”
• PARIS. FRIDAY MARCH 4, 1994
John Fairchild is on the phone to apologize
TWO DAYS BEFORE ‘PRÊT-À-PORTER’
for an item. “I’m not angry,” replies Altman,
“I’m just bored with the thing.”
Miramax wants Julia Roberts’ name at the top of a press release.
“No,” says Altman. “Alphabetical.”
4:30 p.m. Altman dispatches his actors to the collections in the Carrousel du Louvre hoping that the press will get used to them by Sunday.
Week One: CARROUSEL DU LOUVRE. BULGARI. DAILIES.
SUNDAY MARCH 6, 1994 GOODWILL TO ALL MEN
Designers Christian Lacroix, Sonia Rykiel, Jean-Paul Gaultier, Christian Dior and Issey Miyake have agreed to participate in the film. Inside their invitations there is a note:
“We would like to inform you that Mr. Robert Altman’s camera crew, as well as several members of his cast, will be among the guests at our fashion show, for the shooting of his next film, ‘Prêt-à-Porter.’ You may feature in some of the general shots. Therefore your presence during this event tacitly implies your ROSSY de PALMA played Pilar, the assistant of Anouk Aimée (Simone Lo) in YSL couture.
consent to being in this film. This strictly personal invitation will be requested at the entrance. Please bring your identity card with you.”
Sophia Loren, in black Dior, outsize polka-dotted bow at the neck with matching cuffs, and a Bulgari watch, is mobbed for a full ten minutes. Flashbulbs explode. Janie Samet of Figaro tells everyone that Sophia is wearing a 1980 Jean Barthet hat. Journalists scribble madly. Linda Griffin of the Houston Chronicle asks Altman, “Is Julia Roberts going to take my job?”
Kim Basinger sits apart, with her assistant, her hairdresser, and her makeup man (she is paying them herself). Other actors with staff are Marcello Mastroianni and Sophia, each with an assistant and a shared hairdresser. Everyone else uses the services of the production costume mistresses, hair dressers, and makeup artists.
DANNY AIELLO was Major Hamilton, a buyer from Chicago and a cross dresser a.k.a. May Rose, wearing a faux Chanel suit.
Actors are learning to be fashion editors, assistants, or buyers. Some ‘take notes.’ Some chat. Some kiss.
JULIA ROBERTS played Anne Eisenhower, assistant fashion editor Houston Chronicle.
SOPHIA LOREN, in black, with red accessories and a huge hat by Jean Barthet, at the funeral.
autographs are written on three blackboards
In favour of ‘Prêt-à-Porter’: Gaultier, Ferré,
in French, English, and Italian. Marcello picks
Rykiel, Azzedine Alaïa, Vivienne Westwood,
A large tourist sightseeing bus waits in the
up a piece of chalk and solemnly corrects
Claude Montana, Martine Sitbon, Jean-
garage of the Carrousel du Louvre.
three mistakes on the Italian board.
Charles de Castelbajac and many minor
5:30 pm, Vivienne Westwood show.
designers. Loren, still wearing a three-foot wide veiled
Sophia to Altman, “I have a run in my
hat, sits behind the driver; next to her
Others fear that Altman will make them look ridiculous.
Marcello, chain smoking. Altman to Sophia, “True beauty must have When the bus arrives at Gaultier, a huge
says, “I’m a backstage person. I don’t want
crowd is waiting to ogle, press flesh and get autographs.
MONDAY MARCH 7, 1994
to be an actor. I want to be director.” Also,
Valentino, Pierre Bergé (YSL), John Fairchild and American Vogue.
The cast is led upstairs into an office where messages of welcome and requests for actors’
Against ‘Prêt-à-Porter’: Karl Lagerfeld, who
The fashion world has drawn sides.
At the 10:30 a.m. Karl Lagerfeld collection,
evening (though Jonathan Newhouse puts in
John Fairchild stomps up and down waving
“We’re Italians. Everybody knows us.”
Marcello shrugs: “No need to give an
an Altman disclaimer, saying it is not legal.
interview. They make it up.”
In his opinion, Altman has disrupted the
The Bulgari party is held in the Pavillon
shows, which start late and the cameras
Ledoyen on the Champs Elysées from 7:
invade privacy. Since no fashion show
30 p.m. to midnight. Shooting is scheduled
except Givenchy ever starts on time and the
from 7 p.m. to 2 a.m. Fairy lights sparkle.
Carrousel du Louvre is a public place with
Six hundred glittering guests (or unpaid
hundreds of cameras, this is not a convincing
extras) from the fashion business begin to
BRIDGE, AIRPORT, GRAND HOTEL.
arrive around eight. There are six crews
filming Altman filming ‘Prêt-à-Porter,’ 184
SUNDAY MARCH 13, 1994
Anna Wintour, editor-in-chief of Vogue, has
organizers, dozens of blue-coated waiters
“SUR LE PONT...” AT THE CRACK OF
sent a fax to Dior (for the 2:30 p.m. show) to
ready for actors, celebrities, Christie, Linda,
say that Vogue does not wish to be seated
Naomi and Yasmeen. The weather has turned. It is freezing and
near the actors. Vogue will come to Dior, but Sophia Loren comes out from behind the
drizzling on Pont Alexandre III, the most
curtained dressing area in a very low cut New
beautiful bridge in Paris. There is no traffic,
In the Salle Gabriel, Altman is directing a
Look Dior with a huge skirt, a pretty petal
but Altman has created a massive traffic jam
cameo scene with Thierry Mugler, playing
hat and gold, ruby and diamond Bulgari
by parking a double-decker car carrier at the
himself. Mugler models are coming off the
baubles valued at 7 million francs. She has
Left Bank end of the bridge blocking the
runway and Kim tries to interview him.
her own security guard.
flow in two lanes.
garments from recent years. The models
Grace Mirabella, elegant in Geoffrey Beene,
At lunchtime a hot meal is served in the
do what they do best: kiss, scream at
is looking for her friend Sally Kellerman,
mobile canteen. Soon I will get used to
cameramen, demand dressers and beaucoup
who is still behind the sliding doors. Sally
such lavish fare, but as yet I marvel at duck
attention. Ditto the designer. Kim does a fine
sneaks out for a chat. They are joined by
à l’orange and Iles Flottants. There is an
job as a confused journalist.
Bacall, who plays the ex-editor of American
empty seat at Marcello’s table. I promise
Vogue. But her character is not necessarily
not to conduct an interview. This is easy.
THURSDAY MARCH 10, 1994
modeled on Mirabella (an ex-editor of
Throughout the two and half months I never
THE DAY OF THE PARTY
American Vogue). It was Diana Vreeland (the
formally interview anybody. I note the dismay
editor before Mirabella) who discovered the
on actors’ faces when a tape recorder is
In the morning at Chanel we are treated to
young model Lauren Bacall and introduced
thrust into their faces minutes before they go
Karl Lagerfeld’s humour. Though he has
her to Slim Keith the wife of Hollywood
in front of the camera. It is hardly surprising
banned Altman, the stage is a film set with
mogul Howard Hawkes.
they have nothing to say. They are so nervous
they do not want to be in the film.
Thierry has unearthed many exotic, kinky
they are in perpetual motion. At times, this
the Louvre as backdrop. There is a director’s
makes even the quickest sketch a challenge.
chair with a Chanel bag on it. Our press kits
Laura Dubini of Corriere della Serra wants
are inside an oversized reel cannister with
an interview with Marcello and Sophia. She
the double C stamped on it. It becomes a
begs me to get her through the sliding door.
Marcello is in top form; he talks about a trip
“I know them,” she says.
to Japan where he toasted the locals with the Italian words “Chin-chin.” Chinchin is
André Leon Talley tells me that Vogue is
I ask Marcello. He declines.
Japanese for male genitals.
not going to the Bulgari/Altman party that “But she knows you,” Sophia says gently.
Lovett, a boot mogul in the film, is wears his own alligator Western boots.
I ask if he and Julia have had a chance to walk around Paris. “We tried, but it was impossible.”
There is always a crowd around Julia. Right now as her image for ‘The Pelican Brief’ is all over Paris.
“Julia handles it well,” adds Lyle.
FRIDAY MARCH 18, 1994 SHOOTING IN THE GRAND HOTEL
Lyle is happy. “Julia and I got out of the hotel on our own today. Just a little.”
Danny Aiello is mulling about his crossdressing scenes, to be filmed in May. Actors refer to their character in the third person. “He (Major Hamilton, Danny’s character) is uncomfortable in his skin when he wears men’s clothes; in women’s clothes he is LYLE LOVETT was Clint Lammereaux, a Texan boot mogul – and at the time of filming Julia Roberts’ husband.
sensitive. Maybe he’ll sing ‘I’ll be loving you always’ to his wife.”
TUESDAY MARCH 15, 1994
WEDNESDAY MARCH 16, 1994
He also talks about negotiating salaries. His
A DAY AT THE AIRPORT WITHOUT
standard fee for a film is one million dollars.
“Learn to say no when you’re supposed to say yes. Hold out.”
In the evening, there is a star turnout at the MGM: Tim Robbins and Julia Roberts have
Actors are sitting around waiting on the upper
arrived. They smoke. They laugh and joke.
floor of Terminal 2C at Charles de Gaulle
In this movie his fee is much lower. “Lower,
Julia is dressed in a dark turtleneck, a jacket
Airport in Roissy. We are in the Sandwich
lower middle...” Danny admits.
nipped in at the waist and wide print pants.
Area near the Exits. There are mountains of
Lyle Lovett is silent, grinning from ear to ear.
prop baggage: Vuitton, Samsonite, scruffy bags
He has the sweetest smile, a strong Piero della
and Clint’s wooden crates of Western boots
Francesca profile and a delicate El Greco face
marked Stingers, Cobras, Sidewinders, Black
straight on. When they leave, bodyguards
Widows, Tarantulas, Scorpions.
Altman is agile in his brand new AIRMAX
TUESDAY MARCH 22, 1994
FASHION IS A PRACTICAL JOKE
materialize and rush them into a car.
TRACEY ULLMAN, in Philip Treacy, played Nina Scant, editor British Vogue.
Lauren Bacall, dressed in Armani, played Slim Chrysler, the colour blind exeditor-in-chief of American Vogue. Born on September 16, 1924, she died on August 13, 2014. R.I.P.
This week, Julia Roberts and Tim Robbins
crotches. After the rehearsal, the models get
watch television, argue and make love in
a round of applause.
she is a fashion editor. Both have lost
WEDNESDAY APRIL 6, 1994
For courage, champagne flows freely.
Next day, the models complain of terrible
a hotel bedroom. He is a sports reporter,
hangovers. To satisfy modesty, a ‘bandage’ bra is
Dailies at MGM. Anouk is perfect as
constructed for Julia and pinned to the
the betrayed mother/designer. Rossy de
The fashion show, the high point of the
sheet to keep the bedding in place as they
Palma looks incredible in her turban, her
churn with passion.
asymmetric El Greco face, one dark eye, one pale eye, one droopy eye.
WEDNESDAY MARCH 23, 1994 BEDRIDDEN
Altman has the flu. Two directors of
There is a dreamlike quality of nymphs going to bathe. Of vestal virgins in a sacred
Sonia Rykiel congratulates Anouk and
setting. It is pure and simple. Ute carries
teases Altman, “Why do you give a bigger
a bouquet of white lilacs and wears a
part to Anouk than to me? I am jealous.”
wedding veil with a long train. She points her toes like a ballerina as she walks. She
photography have the flu. They struggle to •
the dailies. On screen, Julia has wet hair,
no makeup, a small mole visible under one eye, big ears and multiple earrings. She
is beautiful. Julia and Tim wear towelling coats. When the lights come on Altman
WEDNESDAY APRIL 13, 1994
comments: “Adequate, Tim. Adequate Julia.
THE NAKED TRUTH
THURSDAY APRIL 28, 1994
Very, very adequate.” At the rehearsal of the naked fashion show,
THE GRAND HOTEL
Julia: “That’s what we strive for. Very, very
the models (still dressed) are edgy. Altman
asks, “Who wants to go first?” Jan Marie
In the ballroom of the Grand Hotel a real
Giebelhausen from Chicago jumps up.
fashion show, Revillon furs, is in progress.
Altman tells them, “We will only do it twice unless something goes very wrong,” adding,
Upstairs, Danny is trying on his ‘Chanel’
“By then you may want to do it more!”
suit. Though nobody asked him to, he has been shaving his legs for two weeks.
WEDNESDAY MARCH 30, 1994
Divine Liturgy by Komitas and Les Petits
BACK TO THE DRAWING BOARD
Chanteurs de St. François de Versailles
Danny is learning to keep his legs together
accompany the fashion show. Towards the
and his shoulders back. “I need a slip. I
I stay at home to draw Tim Robbins. Out of
end of the parade, there is an Hallelujah
need hip pads (the skirt is slipping off).”
30 attempts, three work. The rest look like
chorus. Everyone is very quiet during the
Karl Lagerfeld without a pony tail. Months
rehearsal. ‘Sisters’ Dane and Kiki, played by
The fitter asks, “Where do you want the
later he will be the only member of the cast
Georgianna Robertson and Tara Léon come
to withhold approval of the drawings.
out holding hands. They are wearing layers and layers of clothes. Tara has a filthy cold.
“The higher the better,” says Danny.
They ham it up by covering up each others’ A chain belt is added.
He hums a few bars from a song, ‘Let’s Begin Again’ that he will sing in the cross-dresser club. “Bob wrote it,” he says.
Stockings arrive. “A new meaning for Queen-sized.” He learns to clip on the suspenders.
Then earrings. “I have ten days to get used to these nineteen and half pound earrings.”
He proudly displays his water-balloon falsies. “Like Mozzarella cheese.”
Week Nine. GRAND HOTEL. FIRST WRAP PARTY.
TUESDAY MAY 10, 1994 CROSS DRESSER CLUB
In the evening, Danny cross-dresses. The set is at 40 avenue George V, once a failed fur shop, later a failed restaurant called La Dorada.
Danny is in full costume. Pink tweed Chanel, gold buttons and chains, quilted bag, high-heeled pumps, the golden wig, false eyelashes, sweet-pea makeup.
“How do you feel?” I ask.
A tiny Madonna voice replies, “I feel small. I feel simple. I feel sensitive.”
A normal deep voice adds, “I feel ridiculous.”
RICHARD E. GRANT, Cort Romney, fashion designer (Vivienne Westwood character) getting a few tips from Vivienne Westwood.
FRIDAY MAY 13, 1994
one paranoid,” she says. They listen to tales
BACK IN THE GRAND
of the cross-dressing scenes. “Cross-dressers have the best arses,” remarks Julia.
Is this a lucky day? Not a cloud in the sky. •
We’re back on the second floor of the Grand Hotel. Week Eleven. At 11 a.m., the First Unit with Jean Lépine is ready to reshoot Tim Robbins’ and Julia
WEDNESDAY MAY 18, 1994
Roberts’ farewell scene.
THE LAST DAY IN THE BOIS DE BOULOGNE
Wags on the set remark that two days of sex does wonders for the appearance.
It is a bittersweet, beautiful day at the crossroads of Route de Sèvres and Route
Julia’s new Richard Tyler suit, not even pure
du Champ d’Entrainement. To create a
cotton but a mix, bought retail for $4,700, is exactly the same style as the one she wore on March 25th but a different colour. The last one had to be altered. She jests that Altman brought her back to Paris just to wear pale brown instead of black.
In the corridor Julia and Tim chat with Altman. “The press are really after us. It makes
MARCELLO MASTROIANNI, another ex husband of Sophia Loren’s character, was Sergei Oblomov -at the Rodin Museum under The Thinker.
ANOUK AIMÉE played Simone Lowenthal, fashion designer (Sonia Rykiel character) in Simone Lo’s atelier with Sonia.
completely lush green setting, turf is brought
stole pop out among the sea of black behind
Of the 31 actors, only Marcello Mastroianni,
in to cover brown spots.
and the deep green above. Marcello, asleep on
Anouk Aimée, Anne Canovas, Ute Lemper,
a bench, must wake up and follow the cortège.
Tara Léon, Stephen Rea, Lauren Bacall and Sam Robards are still around. The others
Sophia arrives on the set, arm-in-arm with Marcello, who is still in black leather. The
After the final take Stephen Rea and Altman
milliner Jean Barthet is at her side.
have left town.
When the party ends we drive back to Paris in She is wearing a tight button-through black
Everyone cheers. There isn’t a dry eye on the
Dior dress, left largely unbuttoned, sheer
a gentle drizzle.
The filming of ‘Prêt-à-Porter’ is over.
black hose with seams, a red satin Dior stole, red Roger Vivier sling-backs, red glacé gloves,
Later still, a second wrap party is held in
red bag and the most sensational red picture
a beautiful house ‘Les Erables’ at Meudon
Gladys Perint Palmer is Executive Vice
hat. There is a conference.
Bellevue, outside Paris. There is plenty of
President, Academy of Art University Artistic
delicious food. Guests gorge on smoked
Altman says yes to the red stole. No to the
salmon and the first cherries of the season. We
get T-shirts with 31 actors listed on the back and a choice of Rossy de Palma, Richard E.
The funeral procession files past many times.
Grant or Sophia Loren’s photo on the front.
In the dappled sun, Sophia’s crimson hat and
Everyone wants a Sophia T-shirt.
ROBERT ALTMAN, early morning on May 18, 1994, waiting for the final day of the shoot to begin.
Genesis Breyer P-Orridge goes beyond music as he envisions a better, more diverse and tolerant universe
introduction by Paul
Wilner interview by Keanan Duffty
illustration by David
San Francisco has always been at the forefront
And his work is being introduced to a
Burroughs and Gysin credited their mutually
of transformative social movements – from the
new generation, with the release of Thee
created cut-ups with writing, photos, and tape-
Beats in the ’50s to the hippie invasion the
Majesty (Dais Records), a live collaboration
recorders to a “THIRD MIND” that only existed
next decade, the birth of the gay rights scene
between GBPO and Bryin Dali, of Hirsute
as the union of the two of them through pieces
in the Castro in the ’70s and, most recently, the
Pursuit, originally recorded in France in
1999. Bucking the tide as usual, the album
But Academy of Art University students are
is available exclusively as a limited edition of
Lady Jaye and I believed all that we create,
300 vinyl copies.
and our very physical existence, when
also aware of broader cultural crosscurrents,
evidenced by our ever more determined
exemplified by famous visitors to the school
Duffty talked with Genesis Breyer P-Orridge
rituals to integrate totally body and soul
from Alexander McQueen to Jean Paul Gaultier,
about art, life - and Pandrogyny.
were a “THIRD BEING,” which we called
Philip Treacy, and McQueen’s handpicked
the Pandrogyne. A Positive Androgyne.
Keanan Duffty: One could draw a line
Each of us was literally “The Other Half” of
connecting your work to the “modern primitive”
this being. The Alchemical hermaphrodite
When fashion comes together with other fields
movement, Acid House, the industrial
as storm troopers of a future in potentia.
in the arts – music, film, political action – a
movement, punk rock, Timothy Leary, the Merry
Burroughs asked me, how do you short
“Third Mind’’ is born that is greater than the
Pranksters, the Beat Generation all the way back
circuit control? This led us via all kinds of
sum of its parts, providing unique opportunities
to the Dadaists. After five decades, where do you
scientific and consciousness exploration
for creative collaboration.
see your art going next?
to conclude DNA is a probable contender
successor, Sarah Burton.
for the location of control. We feel it is a Keanan Duffty, senior director of
Genesis Breyer P-Orridge: In 1993 we
recording device that goes back to single-
merchandising at the Academy of Art
met Lady Jaye [the American, musician whom
celled slime mold billions of years ago,
University School of Fashion, comes by his
he married in 1993; she died in 2007]. We
making it also the common denominator of
outlaw credentials honestly: The Central St.
have met and collaborated with many amazing
“life.” We speculate that mitochondria could
Martins graduate is the executive producer
artists and literary figures in our journey:
be the superior life form on earth and human
of an upcoming documentary about Malcolm
Derek Jarman, W.S. Burroughs, Brion Gysin,
beings are useful containers, deliberately
McLaren, the famed British punk provocateur
Ken Kesey, Dr Timothy Leary, and a host more.
given an unnecessarily short lifespan. We are
and Sex Pistols manager.
[But] we can honestly say that Lady Jaye is
hosts to this parasitic species. Where do the
the MOST remarkable human being we have
thoughts of DNA stop and our autonomous
All in a day’s work for Duffty, who sat down
EVER met. From the beginning we began
consciousness begin? By breeding constantly
to talk a while back with an even further out
playful dressing up.
we unwittingly perpetuate our rival species
representative of the British avant-garde music and political scene, Genesis Breyer P-Orridge.
who may have come from off earth. We both believed in a direct karmic link between the Inquisitions and S&M domination.
NOW! We wanted to confound these little
Born Neil Andrew Megson in 1950, the
The witches burned and tortured now wear
blighters. Our first act was a vasectomy. A
English musician’s band, Psychic TV, took on a
the oppressors outfits and use their tools to
denial of the continuance of DNA via my body.
systematic assault on conventional notions of
torture males of power. Soon we were dressing
We see bodies more as a biological coral reef,
gender that had not seen before – or since.
the same, doing our hair the same. We saw our
a conglomerate of clusters with more than
SELFs as two halves of a whole. [The writers]
one agenda. Lady Jaye calls the body a cheap 225
suitcase. We get discarded once our DNA has
evolutionary design, the possibilities become
GBP-O: There are days when we WISH we
run its current programs. The human body is
endless. Grow fur, feathers, gills to swim, horns
could “sell out” [but] whatever that is or how
NOT SACRED! It is just a biological container
for decoration, many-hued skin. We have
that is done we’ve never known. It is true
for its precious cargo of consciousness.
become apathetic and inert. Entropy is a natural
we give lectures sometimes. We have always
“YOU” and “I” are not the body itself. That is
law; when we stop using our imaginations for
felt it vital for an artist to share both those
a container. “You” and “I” are the mind that
the most incredible dreams of new perception,
who have inspired their path and work AND
resides within our cortices. Once we saw that
we are on the slow road to extinction.
the conclusions and information they have
DNA was a crucial sector of “control,” we
retrieved during more extreme body and out
wanted to at least symbolically reject DNA and
We see our works going ever more deeply into
of body experiences. Perhaps our explorations,
its usual control over exactly how our body
the genetic and biological research required to
some taken at risk, can be useful, functional or
looks and functions biologically. This led us to
make people aware that this time around you
even just a flag saying, “you are not alone” to a
cosmetic surgery procedures. The initial LOVE
CAN be ANYBODY, with ANY BODY.
person in the boonies who is isolated, maybe
motivation of wanting literally to be physically
picked on. So we accept talks to SHARE what
consumed by each other and to be capable of
My personal goal is to prepare myself mentally,
we can IN CASE it is useful in some way,
becoming ONE single being after we both drop
spiritually and physically to drop my body and
maybe even as a warning. The Establishment
our cheap suitcases. A single being the sum
then, we pray, find Lady Jaye’s “consciousness”
normally reward your surrender into their
total of both consciousness fully integrated and
awaiting me. Then we shall flow happily into
cabal with seductive invitations to power
still aware of an autonomous memory of itself
each other’s essence in total unconditional
gatherings and soirees. They also funnel money
and thus viable for infinite time and space, even
surrender to BIG LOVE and become one
to their favorites (in the mediaeval sense of
dimensional travel together for eternity.
“pandrogyne of pure mind” created from our
favorites). As long as young people come and
tell me they are inspired or encouraged by my words we will continue to talk.
We have worked with reincarnated Rinpoches from Tibet for many years and are convinced
Our work will metaphorically and literally
certain beings can remain identity intact after
always refer one way or another to this endless
KD: Has the concept of ‘Pandrogyny’ been
death AND return and get reborn to continue
quest for moments of perfecting. Let our
welcomed by the transgender community?
spiritual work on earth. Why not aim for the
species awaken and begin to apply their massive
resources to unifying our species instead of
GBP-O: PANDROGYNY is not about
fragmenting it. We MUST start to truly see
switching gender. It is about the deep
The human species as it is now is still at a
our SELF as one cell of a massive, beautiful
ramifications of identity, social, economic,
primitive, theoretically larval stage. We have
organism called the Human Species. Once we
violent, political, religious conditioning, and
so much more potential to grow and develop.
perceive our SELF as a tiny part of a whole
about peer group and familial pressure too.
Our technological environment is far advanced
we would inevitably phase our conflict and
Inevitably gender inequities are entwined
over our spiritual growth. This imbalance
be active only in the greater good. If food is
irrevocably in all this. Some people feel they are
has led to totalitarian capitalism which
needed, it is supplied to the part of the species
a woman trapped in a man’s body. Some people
unchecked will destroy all species ever more
“body” that requires it, once we see ourselves as
fell they are a man trapped in a woman’s body.
rapidly. If we DO move out to colonize space,
totally integrated with every other person.
A Pandrogyne just feels trapped in a body.
how to hibernate like bears, frogs, and many
KD: In 2009 “30 Years of Being Cut Up,” a
KD: More than 30 years after a Tory member
other creatures. Long journeys would become
retrospective of your collages was presented
of Parliament told the Daily Mail, “These
feasible. Perhaps we could become cold blooded
at Invisible-Exports and the Tate Gallery
people are the wreckers of civilization,”
to save on heat in space. Become shorter; maybe
acquired 40 years’ worth of your art, writing,
you still have the power to shock and
short legs are all we need in space without
correspondence, video, and audio. You have also
confront people in a way that many of your
gravity. In fact once you realize that this body
lectured at universities. Do you feel you’ve now
contemporaries have lost. Are there are any
we have is dictated by DNA without your say,
been accepted by the establishment?
artists/performers today who could carry the
Pandrogyny suggests we use science to find
and you let go of assuming this is the end of our
mantle, “Wreckers Of Civilization?”
GBP-O: We have felt slight twitchings of something happening. Go to our website www. truetopi.ning.com where we are trying to create a network to brainstorm on the realities of setting up autonomous, creation driven coum-unities. Who buys the land? Who owns it? How do you survive? Who cooks, cleans, gardens? Having lived in communes and collectives of various types most of my life we HAVE seen the best and worst of such experimental coum-unities. Our legacy would be to begin a long-lasting web of small self-motivating coum-unities and retreats, avoiding the myriad pitfalls that destroy nearly all communes. As to specific artists who might be termed “Wreckers”…. not so far. But that doesn’t mean they are not out there. However, our belief is that the individual, “look at me!” ego sodden, uniquely inspired devoid of influences artists are less and less relevant. And as global structures collapse, zones set up for shared pressures will also be collections of artists, musicians, writers, thinkers, mechanics, and lovers.
VIVA LA EVOLUTION!!
Cape by Donghyuk Dan Kim, MFA Fashion Design. Pants by Gwen Shihyao Lai, MFA Fashion Design.
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180 Magazine, Issue Seven. By Academy of Art University.