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WHATISADAM - ‘MAPLE SIZZURP’ DRUM

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THE

photo Yan Bleney

NEWYORK EDITION ISSUE 3 3


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NEW YORK /njuː ˈjɔːk/

A major city and port in the south-east of New York State, situated on the Atlantic coast at the mouth of the Hudson River; population 8,363,710 (est. 2008). The city is situated mainly on islands, linked by bridges, and comprises five boroughs: Manhattan, Brooklyn, the Bronx, Queens, and Staten Island. Manhattan is the economic and cultural heart of the city, containing the Stock Exchange in Wall Street and the headquarters of the United Nations. Former name (until 1664) New Amsterdam.

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photo Yan Bleney

Decompoz Team Contributors Table of Content Preface Soulful Urbanity Section Business Avant-Gardiste Section Daring Wisemen Section Subscription

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DECOMPOZ TEAM FOUNDERS Romain Dupont Rachel Machalani

CONTENT DIRECTOR Romain Dupont CREATIVE & MARKETING DIRECTOR Rachel Machalani MEDIA & ART DIRECTOR Mazda Alinia COPY EDITORS Edward Ian Cibula, Lindsay Richardson, Jordan Yeager MARKETING & WEB Decompoz Publishing MAGAZINE LAYOUT Rachel Machalani COVER ARTIST Ron English DECOMPOZ HEADQUARTERS 417 rue Saint-Nicolas, Suite 300 Montreal, Quebec, H2Y 2P4, Canada decompoz.com DISTRIBUTOR Messageries Dynamiques INQUIRIES For all ads and distribution inquiries please contact us at sales@decompoz.com. We are always looking for contributing writers, designers and photographers. For more info please contact us at ads@decompoz.com All rights reserved. The entire content is a copyright of Decompoz Magazine and cannot be reproduced without written authorization of Decompoz Publishing (9321-2884 Québec inc.) ISSN 2369-4068 (Print) ISSN 2369-4076 (Online)

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NEW YORK ISSUE TEAM PHOTOGRAPHER Yan Bleney VIDEOGRAPHER Ginga Takeshima INTERVIEWER Edward Ian Cibula MAKEUP AND HAIR STYLIST Isabella Forget VIDEO EDITOR Mazda Alinia WRITERS Chris Perrin Michael D’Alimonte Kelly Stock Jordan Yeager Edward Ian Cibula

Sara Kloepfer Andrea Kristensen Elliott Basille Aya El Zoheery Lindsay Richardson

MODELS Kira Conley (Dulcedo Model Management) Andrew Nguyen David Song A SPECIAL THANKS TO: Feldton| Andrew Nguyen, David Song ConArtist Collective| Brian Shevlin, Brandon Wisecarver, Richard Laurenzi Rialto Jean Project| Erin Feniger, Kandice Watson The Beatbox House| Ken Urban, Chris Celiz, Neil Meadows, Gene Shinozaki, Amit Bhowmick, Kaila Mullady KB Jones & The Kontraband| Daniel “KB Jones” Muñoz, Steve Gornic The Dig| David Bladwin, Erick Eiser, Mark Demiglio Tiiidal|Andrew Smith, Jordan Taylor, Nadeem Salaam, Matthew Aidekman Adam Hauck Ron English & Tarssa Yazdani Kira Conley & Karim Rekik


CONTRIBUTORS MICHAEL D’ALIMONTE

CHRIS PERRIN

Obsessed with narratives of every sort, Michael D’Alimonte is a man of words who really only wants to tell stories. Easily ensnared by anyone with a compelling tale to tell, Michael’s interests and written work are eclectic, if not too varied to categorize. What truly matters to Michael is an engaging account propelled by individuals who wish to make a difference in their own unique manner. These are the pieces of history he hopes to chronicle: the stories of regular people creating exceptional change in the world.

After assembling the most unfocused CV possible, Chris took 2 years off and went surfing around the Pacific (he played some guitar there too). Having decided to get a ‘real job,’ Chris runs the Fetishes & Fantasy philosophy blog and contributes to exiting new projects like DECOMPOZ, writing about alternative culture and sports that are more spiritual than competitive.

ELLIOTT BASILLE Elliott is a preschool teacher and freelance writer—while that is somewhat of a dichotomy, it is also a good indicator of his life and personality as a whole. With a Bachelor’s degree in Creative Writing, he decided to start a career in a very different area, while continuing to write in whatever form possible. His writing is biting and he is unafraid to push and pry. Originally from Montreal, he has lived in New York, Maine, Los Angeles and Miami. He is a proud bohemian who loves yoga, adventures and beautiful people. He spends a good portion of each day wondering about different life questions and hopes to answer at least one before his 40th birthday.

YAN BLENEY At home all around the world - as long as he’s behind the lens - Yan Bleney is a fashion photographer whose curiosity makes his work as vivid in the street as in the studio. From high fashion shoots in Paris to chronicling life on NYC street, Yan excels when his subjects are showing emotion. With over 15 years in the industry, Yan’s work has been featured in publications such as: Figaro, Madame Figaro, Bambi, OOB, Factice and Glass Book. Yan uses his varied experiences to connect with interview subjects and get the most out a few minutes of candid conversation. He hopes that his pictures will show the best in everyone.

EDWARD IAN CIBULA E. Ian Cibula is a transplanted Montrealer. A graduate of Concordia University, he makes his living as a freelance writer so that he can pick which hours he’d like to work, and which to spend by the water. Ian’s deep interest in arts, music, culture and sport push him to see the world through many lenses. He wishes to see as much of the spectrum of local culture as possible and hopefully share what he gleans by bringing the authentic experience of different subcultures to life in his writing.

SARA KLOEPFER Sara Kloepfer is from San Francisco, California, and recently completed her undergraduate degree in English at McGill. She is drawn to contemporary art, particularly film and photography. In her writing, she focuses on individuals with innovative ideas, those who shift the cultural landscape.

ANDREA KRISTENSEN Andrea Kristensen has worked as a freelance blogger, editor and copywriter since graduating from Concordia University in Montreal with a Major in English Literature and a Minor in Professional Writing. She loves a good laugh and has a fascination with psychology. Andrea has her own blog, Awkward Journeys, and lives in the Montreal area with her family.  

LINDSAY RICHARDSON Lindsay (with an ‘a’) Richardson is a third year Journalism and Creative Writing student at Concordia. She moonlights as a writer and editor at the literary collective Le Shindig, and has previously held editorial positions at The Concordian, Soliloquies, auxjourslejour, and Naked Underground Montreal. She is working on the launch of her own blog, sentimtl, and will eventually try her hand at slam poetry. In a past life she was a published poet and public speaking champion. One day she’ll headline a burlesque troupe.

KELLY STOCK Kelly is an arts and culture writer, and photographer, who is passionate about exploring the work of creatives from around the world and sharing their stories. Originally from Australia, she has a bachelor in journalism and a master’s in publishing. Her interests include: art in all its forms, short stories, dachshunds, and capturing reality through artistic practice.

GINGA TAKESHIMA Ginga was born in Tokyo, Japan. Became an immigrant boy in Vancouver, Canada the year the Toonie was invented. After these transformative events, and many leads and misleads later, Ginga finds himself in Montreal letting curiosity run its course. The camera is his vehicle.

JORDAN YEAGER Jordan Yeager is a 22-year-old Concordia graduate who was born and raised on the west coast; while she loves the nature and relaxed lifestyle her hometown boasts, it was Montreal’s eclectic cultural scene that really drew her in. When she’s not watching embarrassing (but impressive) amounts of TV, she spends her days exploring the city, reading, and trying to find cheap sushi. She likes to write about music, culture, art, and fashion, and she’ll never turn down the opportunity to write an opinions piece.

AYA EL ZOHEERY Aya El Zoheery is a recent McGill graduate attempting to navigate this thing we call life; originally Egyptian, raised in Qatar, and now living Montreal she has developed a fascination with culture and its representations through the arts and society. When she’s not lounging around looking for new music, reading a good book, or hooked on a new TV series, she’s outdoors chasing the sun. She enjoys writing about arts, culture, politics and the absurdities of modern society.

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DON’T MISS OUT ON OUR EXCLUSIVE

NEW YORK CITY VIDEO INTERVIEWS

photo Yan Bleney

decompoz.com/videos/newyork

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SOULFUL URBANITY FASHION 22

Feldton Rialto Jean Project 40 Calle Del Mar 44 Kira Conley 30

PEOPLE 48

Faces of New York

MUSIC 52

The Beatbox House The Dig 62 Tiiidal 58

PHOTOGRAPHY 66

Martha Cooper

ART

Ron English 82 Li-Hill 92 Jamie Martinez 96 Artist Spread 70

BUSINESS AVANT-GARDISTE ART 148 Con Artist Collective VIDEO GAMES 154 Babycastles

MUSIC 158 KB Jones & The Kontraband

FASHION 162 Jeff Staple

LITERATURE 164 Molasses Books STREET ART 166 The L.I.S.A. Project

DARING WISEMEN SKATEBOARD 172 The Harold Hunter Foundation

BMX 178 Adam Hauck

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ISSUE

NEW YORK

3

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PREFACE

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photo Yan Bleney

New York City is more than a melting pot metropolis; it’s more than than the most populous city on the East coast, New York is a Mecca in its own right. This city that is the closest thing to sacred ground to up and coming and established artists alike. It’s a city where revolutionaries can become sell outs only to revolt again - it’s a place where art is as vivid and alive as anywhere on the planet. Naturally, the tumult of ever changing (and competing) cultural communities drew the Decompoz team to New York. Making it in New York might be difficult but one can only take on that challenge if they make it to the city. With six people packed into a (poorly ventilated) minivan we set out on a 15 hour trek that included, much to the chagrin of the backseat passengers, a gasoline incident, a slightly hassled border crossing and a lot of rearranged luggage. The authentic experience wasn’t very far once we reached the city. From the struggle to find a proper place to sleep to the search for a viable workspace, we were thrown into the maelstrom from day one.

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photos Ginga Takeshima

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Unanimously, we came to find it was all worth the effort. New York is a city of hunger, both literally and figuratively artists are constantly being challenged to up the ante in order to stay current and up to date on their rent. The creative churning this city induces leads to masterpieces of every genre. We came to NYC to document American art at it’s apex; well, we came, we saw and we lived out some of the experience. Entrepreneurship in all its forms in NYC is more than alive and well, it’s thriving, breeding, replicating and proliferating itself from borough to borough. We’re excited to share with you some of the game-changers we had the privilege of witnessing in action firsthand. Rachel & Romain Co-Founders

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SOULFUL URBANITY 20


In a constantly evolving world, the Soulful Urbanity section of the magazine is all about portraying the soul of every city we feature. “Urbanity” refers to the personality traits associated with cities and urban areas, and we aim to capture and expose those personality traits by featuring upand-coming artists, musicians, and designers, and giving them a chance to share their driving purposes. Decompoz wants to unveil the citified people with soul, who work hard every day in order to distort the conventional and evoke and inspire moods and ideas. The mission is to emphasize the essence of the communities, breaking down borders and segmentation to create a perfect blend of our universe’s values, rhythms and trends.

credit_MARQUIS MONTES

SOULFUL URBANITY

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fashion


feldton

words Kelly Stock photos Yan Bleney

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Left to right: PR director Andrew Nguyen & Founder David Song

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EAST MEETS WEST: MENSWEAR FUSION watch their exclusive video online at decompoz.com

Feldton’s head offices are a small floor to ceiling display of what happens when complementary forces get productive. David’s understated demeanour fills in the gaps perfectly in the moments where Andrew’s booming voice isn’t resonating in a room beautifully set up to show off the garments both these men are so proud of. The idea of East meets West is one that has always intrigued artists and creators. From a design perspective, the merging of these distinctly different aesthetics is something that can create striking results. NYC-based menswear label, Feldton, is one such brand that merges these two divergent traditions by blending innovative Japanese fabric techniques with rustic American work wear. David Song, the label’s design brain and its VP of creative services, founded Feldton a little over a year ago, and in this short time the company has experienced immense success. Previously, he held design positions at Andrew Marc and London Fog/Herman Kay, working specifically in men’s outerwear. Within Feldton’s first year of operations, it has received funding from investor, Leeward International. Feldton has even managed to fill an order for American behemoth and NYC institution, Barneys New York. Song and his sales and PR director, Andrew Nguyen, say the moment they filled their car with the first Barneys delivery was one of their proudest. Nguyen also comes from a fashion background having worked as a buyer for many years, as well as teaching at the Parsons School of Design. Together the duo constructed Feldton from the ground up, building on the idea of designing clothes for the modern worker. They aim to create pieces that stand the test of time. Since starting the company, Andrew has remained involved in the physical creation of his products – he hand-dyes the garments himself. As he

speaks, he motions with indigo-stained hands. He says, “ Our game plan is built on integrity and durability. Without these two elements, it’s no longer our brand. So we have to keep the principles of what we believe in, combined with the long-lasting quality of our product.” These two core elements – durability and integrity – are reflected in Feldton’s choice of materials and in its manufacturing techniques. Even its choice of logo portrays a double diamond, which symbolizes the ultimate meeting of two strong substances reinforcing one another. The company uses enduring fabrics, and the highest-grade, handcrafted leather, to ensure the longevity of its pieces. The clothing has a recognizable all-American style, with a touch of the Southwest. This is seen in the choice of Wabash stripes, denim, and Native American inspired prints, which together evoke a mix of raw masculinity in the more sharp edges, while also maintaining an elegant softness. The current Feldton collection features: jeans, flannel shirts, vests, cargo pants, capes, sweater coats and Henley shirts. The designers use expertly manufactured Japanese wool, along with more traditional American materials, when carefully crafting their lasting pieces. Each item possesses an originality that can be hard to find in today’s retail environment, which is saturated by fast fashion. Both directors embody the characteristics of the workers for whom they design,so much so that they feature as models in their own lookbooks and act as the“faces” of the brand. However, it was a worker, a nurse, who inspired the company’s name. A nurse named “Feldton” saved Song’s life when he was a child and it was in her honor that he named the company – he says he felt a spiritual responsibility to do so. Now, as workers themselves, the designers have their hands on all parts of the creation process. Everything is designed, and manufactured in NYC, with both the creative studio and the

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factory based in the city’s garment district. In fact, the two buildings are only separated by one block, so if there’s an issue at the factory, they can just walk over to discuss any changes. This attention to detail, and focus on quality, is something that permeates all levels of Feldton’s creation process. Ultimately, though, the designers want their attention to detail to lead to more than just beautiful clothes for today; they want their work to translate into lasting value. Nguyen says, “We want those who buy our products to still have them 100 years from now, like an old pair of Levi’s. We want them to feel like it’s a treasure, a timeless piece.” As a brand so embedded in New York, both directors say they draw a lot of inspiration from the city itself. Andrew in particular says he’s very drawn to the history of New York, and how the Empire State was constructed. Adding, “To be in New York and feed off that energy – it’s the energy that

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people come here for. You come to New region. Already, they’ve had interest and York and you’re like, ‘Wow, this is Manhat- support from industry tastemakers like Attan.’ This is where everything happens.” sushi Matshushima of Clutch Japan Magazine, Takashi Okabe of Clutch/Men’s File However, the flip side of this coin is the ex- Magazine , and Nick Clements of Men’s File pense of manufacturing in NYC. One of the Magazine . toughest challenges Feldton faces is ensuring that they can keep production in NYC However, at the moment, the pair is focuswhile still keeping costs under control. One ing on creation, and the promotion and sale way they do this is by involving themselves of their Spring 2016 collection. And it’s this in all aspects of production, so they can creation of quality, durable products that manage the whole process and respond to gives Feldton’s designers the most satisfacany issues as they may arise. Staying hands tion. Song says, “I compare designing these on is both a core value and a safeguard for clothes to cooking things. I’m a chef in the Feldton’s directors. kitchen. I just cook and then give it to the customers. If they like it and they enjoy it, Discussing what the future holds for the then I’m happy.” brand, the duo says they would like to penetrate the notoriously tough Japanese market, and show that their New York _ City fusion is fashionable the world over. Given that part of the Feldton aesthetic Website: www.feldton.com is derived from Japanese ideals, it’s easy Instagram: @feldton to see how they could be successful inthe


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fashion

IN PLAIN SIGHT words

Ian Cibula

photos

Yan Bleney

hair & makeup Isabella Forget

model

Kira Conley -Dulcedo Models 44


KIRA CONLEY 45


people

F A C E S

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O F

BY STEPHANY HILDEBRAND

N Y

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art

RON E NG LI S H words Ian Cibula photos Yan Bleney

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_ Website: www.popaganda.com Instagram: @ronenglishart

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LI-HILL


words Kelly Stock photos Li-Hill 83


artist spread

ICY & SOT The strongest artistic statements are sometimes delivered in minimalist mediums; Iranian-born, NYC-based art duo ICY and SOT demonstrate this daily. Brothers by birth but collaborators by choice, ICY and SOT bring socially conscious messages to walls and galleries the world over. Often using children, military images or both in their work, ICY and SOT clearly have an interest in starting conversations about how societies perceive violence and the future. The stark black and white or black and grey images often contain a touch of irony or humour. Playing on familiar scenes in the public conscience or pop culture images ICY and SOT create pieces that are easily digestible at first glance but that also leave a lasting effect on their audience.

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artist spread


DAIN Graffiti and glamour don’t always go together but Brooklyn street and studio artist Dain makes it look easy to combine hollywood femininity with spray paint. Pop art gets fused with NYC inspired grit when Dain puts together his fragmented portraits. His subjects are primarily A-list celebrities and icons of the silver screen but their presentation is as much a glorification of their beauty as it is a call to question why we find these images so desirable. Art that brings together beauty and interrogation is always relevant so it’s easy to see why Dain has risen to be an important voice even in an artistic forum as packed and competitive as New York City. _ Website: avantgallery.com/dain Instagram: @dain_nyc

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ISSUE 2

TORONTO


words Andrea Kristensen photos Yan Bleney

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Issue 3 | New York Edition Preview