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contents. >>> DreamCast: Roxane Mesquida is Independent Film’s Leading Libra ... 4 >>> Al Spx and her Doomed Soul ... 10 >>> Alex Clare Discusses a new album, triumphs, and Major Lazer ... 11 >>> Butterflies: Julia Holter’s dreamy sounds ... 12 >>> Life is Beautiful: Mr. Brainwash at Art Basel Miami Beach ... 14 >>> Mortal Minimalism: Anthony McCall at the Sean Kelly Gallery ... 18 >>> A Period of Juvenile Prosperity: by Mike Brodie ... 28 >>> Pools: Reflections by Kelly Klein ... 38 >>> Scandalous: Barbara Payton’s Fast Life and Slow Death in Hollywood ... 58 >>> Gimmie Gimmie Gimmie: Punk Rock + Couture at The Met ... 74 >>> Sister Machine Gun: Central Saint Martin’s Newest Graduating Class ... 80 >>> 7 Future Girls: And the Eclectic Vintage Trend ... 88
>>> A Perfect Balance: Nektar di Stagni’s Jewelry ... 98 >>> Precious Ghost: Dalila Pasotti’s Hollow Dancer Jewelry ... 100 >>> Wrapped Up In You: Tess Giberson and her Wrap Collection ... 102 >>> The Patriot: David Lerner and Fashion’s Political Activism ... 105 >>> Stories from the Avant-Garde: An Afternoon Conversation between Christophe de Menil and Mick Rock ... 106 >>> Beautiful: The Black and White Trend ... 120 >>> Once Upon A Time in the City: A Fashion Story ... 130 >>> Helena: Supermodel Helena Christensen, at Home ... 132 >>> Helter Skelter: Tokyo’s New Street Fashion Center ... 162 >>> The Killing Game: A Fashion Story ... 166 >>> 2 Hearts: Fantasy Fashion ... 180 >>> Roller Girls: And the Story of “I” ... 188 >>> Buyer’s Guide ... 194
Futu reClaw Magazine Issue 6
Futur e C l a w M a g a z i n e Issue 6 B o bb y M o z u m d e r P ub li s h er / E d i t or - i n - Ch i ef Con t r i b ut i n g E d i t or s - a t - L a r g e Naoko Watanabe, Rene Garza Con t r i b ut i n g W r i t er s S h a nn o n B r o y l e s , M o n i c a U s z e r o w i c z , G a b r i e l l e N i c o l e P h a r ms , H a nn a h Palmer Egan, Kelly Klein, Amanda Rodriques Smith, Linda Boroff, John O’ D o w d , C l a i r e H a n a n , N a o k o W a t a n a b e Con t r i b ut i n g P h ot og r a p h er s E r i c G u i l l e m a i n , C h a r l i e R u b i n , J e f f H a h n , A m a n d a R o d r i q u e s S m i t h , H a nn a h P a l m e r E g a n , D a v e y I p h o t o , A n d r e a C a r t e r B o wm a n , K r i s K i ng h o r n , N i c o I l i e v , R y a n M i c h a e l K e l l y , C h r i s t o p h e r S t a r b o d y , G r e g o r y D e r k e nn e , T a k a s h i Osato, Max Snow, Astrid Sterner, Seiji Kondo Con t r i b ut i n g F a s h i on E d i t or s D i l a r a F i n d i k o g l u , S i m o n e K o n u , K e l l y B r o wn , M a r t h a V i o l a n t e , H e l e n a C h r i s t e ns e n , M e g a n A v e r b u c h , C o u r t n e y P o r k o l á b Ma ny t h a n k s t o a l l t h o s e , p a s t a n d p re s e n t , w h o h a v e m a d e t h i s i s s u e a n d F u t u re C l a w p o s s i b l e . F r on t Cov er H e l e na C h ri s ten s en b y G reg ory Derk en n e, w ea ri n g b la c k si l k v i n ta g e top a n d U n i q lo b ri ef s B a c k Cov er A nt ho ny M c C a l l i n sta ll a ti on v i ew a t th e S ea n Kel l y G a ll ery , p h oto b y H a n n a h P a lmer E g a n © 2013 FutureClaw, Inc. No part of this magazine may be reproduced without written permission from respective copyright holders.
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editor’s letter. Welcome to FutureClaw Magazine Issue #6. This issue is the result of over two years of extensive development. The focus here and in our website is on a tighter overall direction. You should finally be able to see where we’re going with all of this. I owe many thanks to all of our talented contributors. None of this would be possible without their dedication and creative spirit. It’s been a tremendous pleasure working with my fine crew over the years as there’s a great satisfaction in going through this unique learning process together. I hope to continue grow in their company for many years to come. We’re not very nostalgic here at FutureClaw, since the best moments in life will always be right now. With the world packed with so much undiscovered curiosity, the days for us remain in a state of constant amazement as we encounter all of these beautiful things. Only a tiny fraction of these beautiful things are documented in this issue. And if right now always represents the best in life, the future somehow holds the exciting promise of even more amazement and incredible stories to tell. I hope you allows us to entertain you with all those wonderful stories now, and into the future. Enjoy!
BOBBY MOZ U M DE R
Roxane Mesquida - Independent Film’s Leading Libra
Sitting on a large purple velvet couch in a loft high above Soho, I wait for film maven Roxane Mesquida to arrive at her agent’s studio. A beautiful space, with wallto-wall limited edition hardcover books and a soundtrack befitting of a breezy Parisian cafe, I can’t help but feel at home among strangers. Just as my mind begins to wander, in walks a more petite and seemingly effervescent version of what I envisioned my counterpart to represent. She exudes a sheer sprightliness for someone who is cast in dark, often sexual roles, including those opposite Marilyn Manson. Roxane quickly greets her agent (and me,) in a monochromatic purple ensemble, settles in cheerfully, and after sipping her tea (she is getting over a cold,) offers an earnest grin indicating she is ready for a chat. This however, does not come before the surprising excitement that accompanies her memory of a petite brownie nestled in her (also purple) handbag. As she dips it into her tea, we begin. 4
GUILLEMAIN STYLING BY
RENE GARZA WORDS
OPPOSITE: DRESS BY JNBY. LEATHER PANTS BY JITROIS. BRA BY CHEAP MONDAY. ABOVE (TOP): CLOTHING BY JOSE DURAN. BOOTS BY DR. MARTENS.
THIS PAGE: ALL ITEMS BY Y-3. SHANNON BROYLES - You are from a small town in the South of
France. Have you carried any of that with you? Has it influenced your career choices? ROXANE MESQUIDA - There was no movie theater in my town. You
would have to take the bus 30 minutes to watch a film and so you didn’t even think about it. Being an actress. Being in films. All of the movies we watched were dubbed over in French. I wouldn’t say that where I grew up influenced me. When I was 13 I was, how do you say it? Scouted on the street. A director stopped his car to ask me if I wanted to be in his film. SB - So you never wanted to be an actress? RM - That seems like a big word, actress! I fell in love with movies [at
a young age,] but I was always so shy. I always wanted to be involved with film, but I don’t know if I wanted to be an actress. It was hard for me to speak, speak to strangers, but I loved film and being on set. Being on set changed all of that for me. I never say that I won’t do commercial films, maybe I will for fun, but I always love independent films. SB - Speaking of independent films, there is a darkness and sexuality
in a lot of the work that you do. Is that deliberate? Is that who you are?
RM - I know, I do that don’t I? What is wrong with me? (laughs) Well, I
have known Director Xan Cassavetes for a long time. When she presented Kiss of The Damned to me, I was immediately attracted to the character Mimi. She said that she had pictured me in the role of Djuna, the nice sister, but no, I wanted to play Mimi, the bad sister. I like playing the [evil] role, maybe because I actually live a very boring life. I eat very healthy, I don’t drink or do drugs, so I think I look for crazy roles to play in movies. There is this word in French, exutoire, which means you are finally able to express yourself fully, and I think playing these roles helps me do that.
BLOUSE BY JOSE DURAN. JACKET BY MUGLER. FEATHER NECKLACE BY CRUX.
SB - Do you ever watch your own films? RM - It’s very hard for me to look at what I’ve
done, even two years ago because of my accent. I think I have come a long way with my [English,] but I am very into the way that people speak. Sometimes I watch my films twice. The first time I watch and I point out my mistakes and criticize the way that I used to say things, but the second time I can watch it for what it truly is. SB - Out of the characters that you’ve played, who
can you identity with the most? RM - I always want to be true, and I think it is
important to put yourself into a character, and not the reverse, so I would not say that I necessarily identify with my characters, but I think
I make them part of me. I know that there are [methods] that work for some actors, and some that don’t but I am just myself because I do not want to cheat the role. I believe that anything is interesting if it’s true. Insecurities. Confidence. If you feel something strongly, you can make it true. SB - You attended The Barrow Group with Anne
Hathaway and starred in Marilyn Manson’s No Reflection, comeback video. Did you ever think you would cross paths or work so closely with such varying artists? RM - The Marilyn Manson video was amazing!
If there is one video you want to be in, it’s one of Marilyn Manson’s! He loves the film Rubber, directed by Quentin Depieux and always tries to have Rubber people cameos in his videos. After wrapping the film, [Marilyn] asked if me
if I would take a picture with him and the tire, the star! It was so funny! Quentin then asked Marilyn if he would be in his next film, Wrong Cops, Chapter 1, which we starred in together. After that, Marilyn emailed me directly to ask if I would be in No Reflection. I was filming in Toronto at the time, and begged the team if I could fly out for it. I was such a nightmare to them (laughs) but it was one of the coolest videos I have done! He is so smart, and so nice. We were working seventeen hours a day, five days a week, but it was amazing! The dying scene was so fucking awesome! We kiss and I throw up black bile! SB - Alright, so you are a Libra. Libras are known
for being indecisive and flirtatious. How true is that of who you are?
RM - (Laughing) Yes I am, and I always seem to
surround myself with Libras! Hmm, I am not flirtatious, or at least not in an obvious way, I don’t think! If I am, it is not sexual because I am the same way with both men and women. I think I am open with people. As for being indecisive, I am definitely not when it comes to projects, but when it comes to restaurants? I am so indecisive! I can never make up my mind and I never know where to go. I wish I could just pay someone to make those decisions! SB - Libras also have an innate love for theater,
opera and music, which clearly is the case with you, especially now that you’ve begun DJing! Is this something you want to focus on moving forward? RM - Oh I have only done that a few times! I have
too much going on! I am interested in too many things. I am writing a script; I recently produced an American movie. I think it is really important to be inspired by different forms of art, so who knows, maybe I will!
SB - Ok so let’s switch gears and talk about
SB - So you do it all! You act, you model, you
fashion. You’ve traveled the world and are now an international fashion icon. Do you identify with the fashion culture of one particular city? France? Britain? The U.S.?
make music, you’re a fashion icon. What do you NOT do?! What is your Achilles?
RM - I feel like I am never dressed the right way
since I am traveling so much! Paris is very black, and LA is always so bright and no one ever wears black, but New York is somewhere in the middle. My friends tell me that I am very French in what I wear because I like to put on a dress even though everyone else is very casual in LA. My friend and I were shopping [a few weeks ago] and we were both wearing tall boots. When we looked around, everyone else was wearing shorts and casual shoes. We laughed and asked ourselves if we were dressed the wrong way, but I think that will never change. In France you always have to explain why you like fashion because unless you work in it, a lot of people view it as superficial. In LA and New York, you do not have to explain why you love fashion, why it is part of you.
BLOUSE AND SKIRT BY R13. BRA BY CHEAP MONDAY. BOOTS BY DR. MARTENS.
RM - I grew up without a father. It was only my
mom, my brother and I, so I have always had this desire to know everything. It is very hard for me to ask for help because I want to do everything myself. I can’t spend a day in bed without feeling guilty, even when I am sick, and I get so frustrated when I have to rest. In acting there is so much time [spent] sitting and waiting for a call about a part. I’ve learned that you cannot depend on the desire of other people for yourself. You have to be active and keep yourself moving and doing things. Right now my husband is working on so many things also. He is a producer and is teaching me how to rap! SB - So can we expect to hear you rapping soon? RM - You might! No one would expect it from
me, and I never say never.
DRESS BY Y-3. BOOTS BY DR. MARTENS.
Talent: Roxane Mesquida and Louis Guillemain Makeup: Daniel at DeFacto Hair: Alison at Susan Price
MUSIC Al Spx and her Doomed Soul
nice and asked if I could join choir. I never did, but that’s another thing. [Laughs]
Words by Monica Uszerowicz Photo by Charlie Rubin Cold Specks is twenty-four-year-old Al Spx—a nom de plume within a nom de plume—a Canadian-born and London-based songwriter who, for better or worse, has had the sticky label of “doom soul” attached to her album, I Predict A Graceful Expulsion. While that self-described genre may or may not have been a joke, her delicately-crafted songs resonate a light that is certainly soulful—her warm, bluesy voice has a winterizing affect, removing leaves from an imaginary tree to
MU - I’ve come to
understand you not just through your music, but through the story you’ve told in other interviews. You’ve been asked about why you changed your name—and how you did that so your family wouldn’t know you were pursuing music—as well as the themes in your music, like faith and death. I feel like it’s become part of the public understanding of who you are. How do you feel about that? Are you still connected to it? CS - Yeah, at first I didn’t
mind it so much, and then I quickly realized it started to become a sort of story, a story that was constantly attached to the record. I felt really uncomfortable with it. After a while, I stopped going into details. I just stopped talking about my family and all the things that people were attaching to the songs. expose its roots and peculiar vulnerabilities, laying it bare. Lyrically speaking, I Predict A Graceful Expulsion is an album about death and religious faith and family, but, more poignantly, it is the work of a twenty-oneyear-old girl wading through the confusion of her own age and surroundings and, perhaps, nearly finding herself. It’s a testament to her conscientious wisdom that it’s all so evocative—of southern gospel, earnest blues—and redolent with real emotion. While Al Spx prefers to let the material speak for itself, we were fortunate enough to talk to her about her album, her writing, and growing up. MONICA USZEROWICZ - When did you start
making music? COLD SPECKS - When I was in high school, I
was taking a music and computers class. The teacher asked us to use a live instrument on one of the tracks, and I decided to sing on it. It was one of the first times I sang. I couldn’t play anything at the time. My teacher listened to it and thought it sounded really
MU - Yeah, I understand. It might even just be
better to let the songs speak for themselves. So I don’t want to ask too much about your family. But I know you and I are about the same age, and when you reach a certain age, you start to understand your family more as people. CS - Exactly. MU - Do you feel like that’s happened as
you’ve written about them a little in songs and grown up in general? That happens to many of us, but you have a different take on it, because you get to write about it. CS - Yeah, I’m still trying to figure them
out as people. I guess that’s only a natural thing. I guess when you’re a little older, you just…Well, recently, I’ve just been really obsessed with who my parents were—or what they were probably like—at my age. My family’s from Somalia originally. It’s not usually something I talk about. They were in Mogadishu in the ’70s, when it was sort
of nothing like what it is now. And as the country changed, they changed as people as well. Not in a bad way; they weren’t as free as they used to be. The country had a more religious makeup. They’re not bad people; they were just very different. I found a bunch of photos of them in the ’70s, and my mom’s got her Afro out, my dad’s got his Afro out. They look like a young couple, madly in love. If I ever have children, I’d want them to have pictures like that, those memories. I’d want them to remember me that way. MU - Yeah, I really love looking at photos of
my parents from then, too. CS - It’s great, isn’t it? MU - It helps you feel connected to them. So,
kind of within the same vein—the story about Al Spx—I read somewhere that you’ve kind of disconnected from the songs a little bit in order to help you perform them. And I guess you would do that naturally over time. How do you feel about the songs now? What is your relationship to the album? CS - I still like all of the songs and I’m still very
proud of them. I don’t do that as a side thing; I still enjoy the songs as a piece of work. I just don’t feel the things I was feeling when I wrote the songs. It’s just a natural disconnection, I guess. I feel like that saying: once you make a record and you put it out there, it doesn’t belong to you anymore. I don’t mind
putting it out there and having people come up with their own interpretations for what the songs may or may not mean. But I just don’t have any attachment to the songs anymore, personally.
MU - How has that affected your songwrit-
MU - You’ve grown, considerably, as both a
CS - Yes! I used to be brutally honest with
musician and a performer, since you wrote the songs on the album. Do you feel that sharing these songs and performing and working with all the people you’ve worked with has helped you grow as a person? CS - Yeah, definitely. When I was living in
Toronto, I’d written all these songs and I was working this shit job, and I didn’t know who I was or what I was going to do or where I was going to go, like any other twenty-one-year-old. I was just very confused. I dropped out of University and was working at a call center. It wasn’t until I went out to the U.K. that I figured some things out.
ing? You’re in a very different place now, physically and emotionally. Has that changed the content of—and approach to— your songs? what I was writing. I was writing about morbid topics—death, crisis. These days, I just write songs about boys. [Laughs] That’s pretty much what it’s like these days. MU - I know literal, physical place had a
strong influence on your album—at least the music of the American south. You actually got to visit the south on your last tour. How has place provided an inspiration for your writing? CS - When I was really getting into music,
all the musicians I listened to were from the south, so I think that just kind of naturally seeped into my songwriting. The way I
sing, as well—I’m from Canada, I live in the U.K., but sometimes I sing with a kind of southern accent. It isn’t an insincere thing; it’s just something that naturally happened when I started singing. I was really obsessed with James Carr and Lomax Field Recordings. I think that just naturally found its way into my songwriting. MU - What were you doing after you re-
turned home from your last tour? CS - When I finished the tour, I sat on the
couch for a couple days and caught up with all the trashy TV that I couldn’t watch on tour because the laptop was broken down. I completely just put the guitar down and didn’t look at it and didn’t think about picking it up and had nothing to do with it for a few weeks. I was detoxing, and now I’m on tour again. It’s a forced relapse.
Alex Clare Discusses a New Album, Triumphs, and Major Lazer Words by Gabrielle Nicole Pharms Multiple disappointments and challenging hurdles can potentially stifle the growth of an artist. Despite turning down a gig on Adele’s tour and being suddenly dropped from Island Records UK, Alex Clare, London based crooner, proved his artistic and personal resilience by releasing the Major Lazer (Diplo and Switch) produced album, The Lateness Of The Hour. Additionally, Microsoft used “Too Close” as the anthem for a national ad for Internet Explorer, and within three weeks, the track sold over 100,000 downloads. Thus proving true to his self-written lyrics in “Tightrope,” Clare talks to us about how he remained positive to “have no fear at all” in lieu of setbacks and what’s in store for his new album. GABRIELLE NICOLE PHARMS - On your
latest EP for, The Lateness Of The Hour, I know it was produced by Diplo and Switch of Major Lazer. How did you guys actually connect? ALEX CLARE - My A&R (artists and
repertoire) actually worked with M.I.A. on one of her albums. He connected us. They gave them [Major Lazer] my demo and they loved it. The rest is history. GP - I noticed on your debut album, a lot of
it focuses on relationships with the songs “Whispering,” “I Love You” and of course, “Too Close.” What theme can listeners expect on your next EP?
AC - Not entirely sure yet. The future is
bright and promising! GP - Will it have that same soul and drum n’
bass vibe or will you play around with new sounds? AC - There will be new sounds. Maybe
experiment a little. GP - I don’t want to keep referring to it as
“the new project.” Do you have a name for the new EP? AC - It’s gonna be named “the new project”
for a little while longer. GP - On a side note, I really appreciated
the song, “Too Close” because I think it’s relatable and it’s awesome that Microsoft chose to pick that particular song because it’s so real. In that song, you refer to a close friendship that turns into something more. Do you think on a personal level that a friendship can actually recover or a future relationship can blossom after friends cross that invisible line? AC - I find that once you cross that line
emotionally, it’s pretty hard to get them [friends] back. It might be possible, but things definitely change. GP - You couldn’t accept the offer to accom-
pany Adele on her tour and you unexpectedly got dropped from Island Records UK.
What actually helped you to maintain some measure of positivity and not give up as an artist from those two things? AC - I’m going to be blunt with you, when
things tend to go wrong; they more than likely aren’t going to go right again. I don’t let that mar my focus. GP - Just as a creative person you hit hurdles
and sometimes it’s easier to just give up, but if you really love something, obviously, you continue. AC - Sure! You have to keep pushing and
stay dedicated. You enjoy the journey. GP - What advice would you give an artist
that might hit a seemingly immeasurable obstacle based off your personal life experience? AC - Stay positive and don’t let it get you
down. A lot of people have setbacks and that’s just how I think. Stay positive and keep pushing until you reach your goal.
BUTTERFLIES Dream of Julia Holter Words by Bobby Mozumder& Rene Garza Photos by Jeff Hahn
Julia Holter is probably my most listened to musician over the last year. In particular, an NPR recording of her performance at a Brooklyn venue in early 2012 was often on repeat as this issue was put together. Go download that NPR recording and others through her website at www.juliashammasholter.com. And you have to listen to it, because art music is impossible to describe via words. Pitchfork describes hers as “church mass heard throgh half-asleep ears,” which is true, but could mean so many things. I sense modern chamber-pop with a gothic echo and a voice singing from a hole in space. If lineage could help in provenance, then her nearest siblings would probably be a classically tinged Björk, or perhaps a Laurie Anderson with a seductive voice? In any case, Julia Holter is an experimentalist in music which we find pushes the state-of-the art with a beautiful sweetness.
FutureClaw caught up with Julia for a photoshoot and chat during her 2012 European tour and over email. BOBBY MOZUMDER - You started out as more of
a solitary composer, averse to performing your piano recitals, and then got into performing once you started recording. Did that process include a personality change? (ex. does performing cause you to become more outgoing & seek out collaborators & audiences?) Are you a different person now that you perform regularly vs. your high school recitals? JULIA HOLTER - No I’m the same person. When
I perform I go to a different (undefined) place BM - Does performing change your composition
goals? Do you write for fixed playback or allow some freedom in your song structure? Your live performances seem to be less layered than your recordings. Do you have a preference for a more complex sound or less? It looks like you’re loving performing with a band now, will you be writing & composing with others as well?
JH - Performing is just different from compos-
JH - Everyday we had a 2 hour lesson with a
ing, so no it doesn’t change my composition goals. I compose/record on my own, and then leave space for players to play/interpret what I’ve written. My live performances are less layered because, in our case, we are only 3 people. In the future I plan to record with more people
guru, for a month. And he would have me sing along with him loudly for all of those 2 hours, so it was simply for that reason. And then outside of the lesson, I would practice. After our lesson, we would have a bit of free time and lunch and then we would have 2 classes, and then perhaps yoga and then dinner and maybe after-dinner activities. It was really really fun. I even made good friends with a local girl, even though we couldn’t communicate very easily.
BM - What’s the writing process for you? Where
do you start? What input do you bring in? How long does it take? Is your writing process itself always changing?
RENE GARZA - I know from your music that JH - All different ways, but recently I start at the
piano. Well I start with a concept or situation first, and then I sit down at the piano and play some chords and sing a melody over it spontaneously, and surprisingly a lot of times that first melody may work. And some mumbled words will come with it, and the words will grow from that first motive. Writing process changes according to the song I’m working on. every song is different. BM - Your college trip to India to train your
voice, which caused you to be more.. vocal.. tell us about that. How did that cause you to use your voice more? Was the environment a factor in the vocal training? What were your daily activities? A good experience?
composing is really important to you. How much is the difference between lyrics and actual music? What do you think is the importance for each? JH - I think both play a role equally, in different
ways. The way they match up is a magical way that I don’t understand how it works, you just have to trust that it just happens. There’s this point that I’ve shared with other musicians and songwriters I’ve talked to - they have this set of lyrics that they’ve written sort of spontaneously, they think about lyrics a certain way they don’t expect. Generally what happens is words and music comes together. They just happen together, you’ll sing a melody and those
words come out. I think that happens much more than what we give it credit for together. There’s a much more spontaneous process that happens there, and it works with just melody and words. They’re linked, it’s almost they’re very different links that are meant to be together. And they work well together.
RG - As far as subject matter, does your personal
life play into it or are your ideas more abstract? JH - I think my personal life might play into it by
Favorite movie this year: MELANCHOLIA
accident. I very rarely include a specific event or person or creature from my life in it, except this time I wrote this song about my dog once. I’m really inspired by films and situations and interactions, and less by moments in my life or people in my life. [butterfly enters room] Woah there’s a butterfly that just flew in, I might write a song about that. So in that sense, a butterfly flying into a room is inspiring to me. So sure, if something is inspiring I’ll write. I think I’m a normal, dorky person without any drama in my life, I haven’t had much in my life that’s very biographical.
Clothing/accessory item you love:
You sing the line, you don’t know what it means, and it just works, and you’ll build off that melody. You’ll have a moment in mind, you’re not sure what will happen, and you’ll just sit yourself down and record something, maybe something like [sings] The green outside .. the green that I see. I don’t know where that came from, it just happened.
None of your friends knew that you:
Most/Least favorite city you’ve been to:
Like margaritas that much.
I really like Berlin . Today we had our stuff stolen in Nuernberg so maybe Neurnberg? haha.
You like to read:
And then from there, maybe you’ll think a little logically, about what am I talking about with the green outside? It’s pretty? And then sometimes the melody happens with the words.
Sometimes people tamper with it a little, they think too much about it, and mess it up because they think the words don’t make sense. A lot of what I noticed from what some of my favorite artists and friends have talked about is how that moment they decide that something magical happens and I’m not going to mess with it. So I think that sometimes it just happens spontaneously.
You are looking forward to visiting:
In fall you will: Record.
Long light cotton dress. Also a light very thin sweat shirty thing with no zipper and a hood and a big huge baggy waist with pockets. Recent makeup purchase: Eye shadow. Favorite instrument: Cello.
Stories that are long and slow. Fashion Editor: Rene Garza Make-up: Vanessa Collins using MAC Hair: Oscar Alexander Lundberg using JOICO Photographers Assistant: Peter Lally
LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL Mr. Brainwash at Art Basel Miami Beach Words and Photos by Amanda Rodriques Smith
On the final day of Art Basel which has now stretched into Art Week in Miami, when most artists with major installations flee the public spotlight on a.m. flights, retreat to their illusive bungalows and private residences, or blend in as pedestrians and surveyors in the tropic southern metropolis-- Thierry Guetta, the artist better known as Mr. Brainwash, moved swiftly in and out of his own hollowed gallery after what many would call a successful installation. Red dots adorned nearly every info tag, as a Louis Armstrong fused playlist echoed to an otherwise still room, every so often interrupted by quick feet and bustling shadows. Guetta, a world-renowned contemporary mixed-media and street artist who in August 2012 presented a five-story installation at Old Sorting Office in London, curated a smaller-scale, yet certainly not any less riveting, dose of his usual witted social commentary and juxtaposed images of pop figures like Captain America and his imposed likeness to United States President Barack Obama. Guetta’s movements like clockwork, the clock and time regulated by and within his own universe. Un-intrusive patience is the only way to capture his. And in between cigarette drags, removing pedestals and props, and giving layered directives to staff helping to break down the gallery, he managed to expose an exquisite possession of his art, his heart, pausing for a candid talk about inspiration and the fact that life is beautiful speaking expressively in English that hints of his French roots. With such a larger than life persona one expects that likewise his philosophies could be far reaching or tangential, yet they are very specific and indicative of a person, whose mental triumph over negativity and painful losses has drawn him closer to humanity and a desire to see the world content by its own will and capacity to achieve happiness [in real time]. Unique to this conversation is the back drop of fine art fairs like Context, an extension of Art Miami, taking provocative interest in what’s happening on the street evidenced in the Banksy Out of Context exhibition curated by London gallerist Robin Barton and South Hampton based dealer Stephen Keszler, who commissioned 4 walls by the pseudonymous UK graffiti artist, Banksy, for an indoor installation. These walls were removed from their original infrastructure in cities around the world, noted by the dealers as at risk of being destroyed, including two tags transported from Bethlehem for display side by side ‘other’ works of fine art. Notwithstanding of controversy, of course, but an annotation of an ongoing discourse over who decides where, whom and how to evaluate this Avant medium. Guetta who by some is purported to also be Banksy, and who featured a stencil and spray paint on steel portrait called Banksy Thrower, in his latest exhibit, dismissed the hierarchy and segregation of fine art from street art, and street art from street art -- describing the expressive works of all visualists as art and of value.
ABOVE (RIGHT): BOTTERO, OIL ON CANVAS. ABOVE (LEFT) : BANKSY THROWER, STENCIL AND SPRAY PAINT ON STEEL.
AMANDA RODRIGUES SMITH - The
traditional idea of the fine art and visual art world is meeting street art and there’s a conversation being had with visualists like yourself to inform that conversation. What impression did you intend to leave with society through this exhibition? MR. BRAINWASH - I think art, street art
or fine art or gallery art, Miami art -- in the end it’s art. It’s the whole world. It’s like people. You have black white yellow. It’s people. It becomes all one and art doesn’t have any rules. There is no rule in the world of art because art is something that you do from your freedom of it. So, I believe it’s just the way that people live that is different. Street art is like someone who doesn’t have the chance to be able to go strictly to a gallery, so they use the streets because the street it is the biggest gallery that you can get because
you have people that are going to see it from every corner... So some people do it because they want to express that. And in one moment, in the end it becomes just art. It’s what you see in the world or outside or inside it’s what you like. So why I’m here, it’s, Miami, it is becoming a lifestyle; it’s not just about the art world. It’s the night life, the day life, the social, the going out. It’s like summer break or it becomes a fun part to be in Miami , AND it’s an art fair. An art world that Art Basel started and it’s going everywhere because people want to do it. So there [are] other art fairs starting to become bigger and bigger every year. So I guess it’s like a bomb [sound effect] and it’s going everywhere and it’s becoming bigger and bigger each year. And I guess the way that I do my art I just follow my heart.
You know heart and art is the same almost words, you know, it’s to do whatever you want to do in life and try to be positive about it. And try to know that in this world we’re are not alone. So when I do it I do it to see, like, if a kid comes here and says that’s what I want to do and he comes home and he’s like I want to become an artist I want to become this and this guy did it and I’m gonna do it, and I think that’s my message out of everything that I do to know that everything is possible in life. That if you are passionate of anything you do in life you will make it happen. Like I do. I wake up in the morning and say life is beautiful even if something happens that is I bad. I try to believe that behind the bad things there [are] always better things so there is no bad things there is always an evolution of something. In front the negative behind
it, there is a positive you know that’s what life is about. It’s the way we see life, it’s the way your energy and heart is and that’s what I do. I tried when I[did] a show, this year I didn’t do it as crazy as last year with a lot of installations because I just finished a show in London that was really, really giant. And like I said it’s like everything that I get -- if I sell and I am trying to making it bigger, trying to show that we can do something very artistic and trying to share with everyone, trying to really enjoy it and to really share it with people. The winning about every show that I do is to [see] people smiling. It makes me stronger. To see kids or older people, you know all different kind of people smiling and happy that I leave some post cards and posters and they can afford something. Because there is something that you can take home. It’s something to have it on your wall and look at it and in one moment you’re like -- I want to become an artist. I have talent, I can do it. If he
can do it I can do it. That’s what I want, I want people to never give up. If you want something in life, never give up. Life is beautiful for everyone. AS - Some of the symbolisms are also
nostalgic with symbols from pop culture, from music from now and then. When you enter your exhibit you’re walking into a space, you hear jazz you hear Louis Armstrong. You hear all of these sounds and you’re surround by all of these images that maybe you’ve encountered in some point in your life. Is the way that you think? How you think best? MR.B - It’s what I like. I love jazz and it’s
what I like. Any show like, the show that I had in London only jazz music was played. I follow my heart. I follow what I like and I try to do. And those people that I put sometimes, Billie Holiday or Charlie Chaplin or a monkey; those are things that I have a feeling for.
BELOW (LEFT) : FRONT VIEW OF GALLERY, CAPTAIN AMERICA/ PRESIDENT OBAMA.
Like Billie Holiday for me is a regular person that is a normal girl that loves to sing. She went all the way to become a legend to do what she loves to do, and that’s what it is when I put them, I kind of respect them to put them in my art. First because I like them and second because I think [about]what they’ve done to prove to other people that you can make it happen. That when you want something in life and you do it and you triumph. Like Billie Holiday, let’s talk about [her]. Time will go by and go by and she will still be Billie Holiday. Her voice is from God and it’s something beautiful and that’s what it is. I like to bring beautiful things back to some kid who doesn’t even know, and in the end they’re like who’s that woman. Many people ask me, who’s this who’s that and after they go look and they’re starting to learn, like Pollock. I do pieces and [some] people doesen’t even know who he is and after they go and they learn. So
it’s like giving them a second life. In my role, and because I like them… I want them to be remembered of what they’ve done.
painting with colors. You know like dripping with no more image, because I will be tired. But it’s just I follow day by day.
AS - In a world with so many restrictions,
Like I say, One life one day. One day, one life. We don’t know what’s going to happen to us in a half hour. We don’t know if something’s going to happen in the world right now and buildings and things are gonna end at right now so try to do the best we can do. And try to be as good as you can be, every moment. Every day. Like if you love somebody, tell that you love them… Respect your parents give them a phone call. Don’t say oh I love them, but you know sometimes you take a phone call, it takes a second, hello, I love you, you know.
where things are more head than heart; how do you remain so positive and work from passion? How are you still able to think along the lines of from the heart instead of what logically makes sense? MR.B - You come to a point. We are all
millions of people walking around right now and we’re all different, we don’t think the same. We don’t grow the same. Everyone has a different way of being, and I feel like, I just don’t think. I just do it. I just follow whatever comes to my mind. You know I’m just trying to do good. You know I don’t think of bad when I’m doing it. It’s just today I’m doing this, tomorrow I may just do some
This for them makes a bigger world… It’s like you know, I’m just different. A different cat. I do my own shows, and I
RIGHT (INSET) : KEEP CREATING, MIXED MEDIA ON CANVAS.
try to do it different. I’m just not scared. I believe that if you are a good person, even if some people talk bad about you, you don’t care about this part of the world. Not everybody has to have the right point of the same way and I respect that. You know it’s not like—oh it’s bad, he’s talking bad. I respect you my friend and I will do whatever. This is a free world. But, I know that myself I’m not alone. In this world and what I’m doing I’m trying to do an association to help kids, to help blind people, to help like any kind of people, any association, I help more than 20 to 30 associations a year – I never refuse anybody and that’s when I feel that what I’m doing is Okay.
MORTAL MINIMALISM Anthony McCall at the Sean Kelly Gallery Words and Photos by Hannah Palmer Egan Step into a silent, darkened room: stop. Wait for the eyes to adjust, for the ears to absorb the quiet. Slowmoving shafts of light cut through a foggy expanse, projected from somewhere unseen onto translucent screens at either end of the space. Walk toward the light, watch the fog swirl through it and listen as your footsteps echo through the calm. Then the space closed around you; you were isolated inside it. So began Face to Face (2013), a new solid-light work by Anthony McCall at Sean Kelly Gallery in
Chelsea, February 16-March 23. The piece was shown in conversation with Circulation Figures (1972/2011), a 1972 performance film installed in a small, mirrored room, the floor strewn with crumpled newspapers. The contrast between the two works felt easy, natural. Like McCallâ€™s seminal Line Describing a Cone, (1973) and other solid-light pieces, Face to Face was about the materiality of light. The artist uses it as a sculptural material, constructing forms in mid-air as a simple projected shape travels toward to the screen.
Thus the fog. In the 1970s, McCall could rely on dusty lofts and smoking visitors to muddy the air enough catch the light. Since returning to art-making (after a 20 year hiatus) in the early aughts, McCall has relied on a fog machine to reveal his work in today’s clean, nonsmoking art spaces. In Face to Face, the machine’s quiet whir was the only native sound in the room. As it ebbed and eddied through the light, fog transformed the gallery into a celestial space: projections demarcated clear horizons with swirling cosmos on one side, empty blackness on the other, a galactic microcosm that delivered the viewer squarely at the question of man’s relative place in the universe. Again, the isolation. The lines would shift; the horizon would split and fragment into geometric forms as the fog machines whirred. Footsteps echoed as you left the gallery. In contrast Circulation Figures, installed downstairs, was more personable. On film, vital young people (including a boyish McCall) filmed and photographed each other in 1970s London—smiling, laughing, maybe a bit self-consciousness at the whole scenario (art-party, what fun!). Mimicking the scene on film, the gallery floor was strewn with crumpled newspapers, and two opposing mirrors reflected it all back and back to infinity. The newspapers created a seamless transition between real and reflected space; it took a moment to realize you 20
were standing in a small gallery with a single screen, not an expansive room with many screens in a line. McCall filmed Circulation Figures just before Line Describing a Cone, (1973), which he conceived somewhere in the North Atlantic—dark and quiet, away from everything, with perfect access to the night sky—on his sea-journey from Britain to the U.S. The idea was to create a film that was itself alone, without reference to another time or place, a minimalist work inverting the idea of what film did. McCall saw projection as the object of the film, instead of an immaterial means to carry light to a screen. Now, the subject (a circle, drawn incrementally and projected from a finite point) was incidental, a servant to the projection’s ends. Circulation Figures, shown 40 years after it was filmed, appears more literal. McCall projected the film onto a screen, inviting the viewer to watch. Doing so felt familiar, like a home-movie, a bit nostalgic, even. Alongside the cosmic sterility of Face to Face, Circulation Figures felt homey and fuzzy (the light was warmer, the smell of the newspapers), but as you stared at the figures on-screen, it was clear they were from a bygone era. Most likely, some of the people laughing and smiling back from 1972, from the heyday of minimalism, were now dead. The mirrors, reflecting all of it to an endless abyss, seemed to ask, ‘How long can this last?’
Back upstairs to the celestial horizon. Showing these two works together, McCall flipped a few paradigms. The piece from the minimalist seventies felt lived-in, engaging and warm. The subjectivist piece, relying on viewer experience, was alienating: with or without a participant, the foggers would churn out mist, projectors would loop the film, the space would remain as it was. This was also true for Circulation Figures, but the mechanics of the piece belied traces of humanity. The newspapers, the sound of steps crunching through them, the fact that the cameras and equipment in the film required a human touch to operate. Nothing in the room had any purpose beyond human engagement. Moreover, while Face to Face built on Line Describing a Cone, its title, like that of recent works Between You and I, (2006) and Meeting you Halfway (2009), suggested distance from the minimalism of McCall’s earlier works. If these titles are any indication his present concerns, an older McCall seems more interested in contemplating emotions and relationships—which are almost wholly subjective— than ever before, and more mortal than minimal. Anthony McCall, “Face to Face” and “Circulation Figures,” at Sean Kelly Gallery, 485 Tenth Avenue, February 16-March 23, 2013.
A PERIOD OF JUVENILE PROSPERITY Photos by Mike Brodie Introduction by Bobby Mozumder
For years Mike Brodie crisscrossed America with his friends by hopping aboard freight trains, hitchhiking, and employing whatever means necessary to fuel his teen spirit. One day he started taking photos after finding a Polaroid SX-70 camera in the backseat of a friendâ€™s car. When Polaroid stopped making the Time-Zero film for his camera, he started shooting with an old 35mm Nikon F3. He never set out to document. The images just happened.
PHOTOS EXCERPTED FROM A PERIOD OF JUVENILE PROSPERITY, BY MIKE BRODIE, AVAILABE NOW FROM TWIN PALMS PUBLISHERS $65. ISBN 978-1-936611-02-7 28
POOLS: REFLECTIONS On the Need for a Moment to Pause Words by Kelly Klein
Pools have evolved, but one things about them remains unchanged - the sense of tranquility, sensuality, or escape they offer. A pool is an oasis, a place of repose, an invitation to drift, to think of better times or not to think at all. Like a well placed comma in a sentence, they allow us to pause, to reflect, and to dream.
WORDS & PHOTOS EXCERPTED FROM POOLS: REFLECTIONS, AVAILABE NOW FROM RIZZOLI BOOKS. KELLY KLEIN HAS BEEN INVOLVED IN FASHION FOR 25 YEARS, STARTING AS A DESIGN ASSISTANT TO CALVIN KLEIN AND CONTINUING INTO A PHOTOGRAPHY CAREER. HER PUBLICATIONS INCLUDES SIX COFFEE TABLE PHOTOGRAPHY BOOKS, INCLUDING POOLS (2007) AND HORSE (2008). ALL PROCEEDS FROM HER PUBLICATIONS GOES TOWARDS CHARITY. OPPOSITE: RITZ CARLTON, BALI. FRÉDÉRIC LAGRANGE, 2003.
WHIRLWIND. RYAN MCGINLEY, 2004.
LE ROCCA BELLA, MONACO. DIVING LESSON. DAMION BERGER, 2001.
BELOW: ZUSHI, JAPAN. POOLHOUSE. KATSUHISA KIDA,1998. OPPOSITE: SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA. CRESCENT HOUSE. RICHARD POWERS, 2009.
ABOVE: FAQRA, LEBANON. BASSIL MOUNTAIN ESCAPE. GÉRALDINE BRUNEEL, 2003. OPPOSITE: RALEIGH HOTEL, MIAMI, FLORIDA. NIKOLAS KOENIG, 2004.
ABOVE: KUWAIT. HOTEL MISSONI. GERRY O’LEARY, 2011. OPPOSITE: CAÑETE, PERU. EQUIS HOUSE. JEAN PIERRE CROUSSE, 2003.
ABOVE: CHARLES JOURDAN. GUY BOURDIN, 1978. OPPOSITE: FRANGIPANI HOUSE, MUSTIQUE. KATE MOSS, MARIO SORRENTI, 2010.
ABOVE: FICTIONAL LOCATION. SANDRA SENN, 2005. OPPOSITE: KOH SAMUI, THAILAND. THE RED POOL. KENTARO MASUJIMA, 2007.
AMAGANSETT, NEW YORK. LAZY POOL. HEIDI GIBBS, 2010..
ABOVE: NAPA VALLEY, CALIFORNIA. NAPA VALLEY. CARLO MONDAVI, 2010. OPPOSITE: MONTAUK, NEW YORK. UNTITLED (MONTAUK). JULIAN SCHNABEL, 2004.
ABOVE: IBIZA, SPAIN. SASHA PIVOVAROVA. MERT ALAS AND MARCUS PIGGOT, 2011. OPPOSITE: GREAT NECK, LONG ISLAND, NEW YORK. UNTITLED. JENNY GAGE AND TOM BETTERTON, 2007;.
SCANDALOUS Barbara Payton’s Fast Life and Slow Death in Hollywood by Linda Boroff and John O’Dowd
February 1967. Above the seedy drugstore parking lot, a slate gray sky fades grudgingly to dawn. Fog has condensed on a dumpster filled with soggy Valentine’s Day decorations; grimy water drools down its flank and drips onto the asphalt beside an inert woman lying under a black plastic bag. Bruises and welts cover her arms and legs. An eight-inch scar, livid as a red worm, bisects the belly. The fragile blonde hair shows two inches of dark roots matted with grime and blood, like bitter truth reclaiming its terrain. The garbage men mistake the woman for a corpse, but this grim scene is merely another night on the town ending for Barbara Payton, once Hollywood’s fastest rising star; now its grimmest cautionary tale. Three months later, at age 39, Payton did finally succumb to liver and heart failure, though many believe that her spirit had fled its battered shell long ago. For years prior, Payton’s troubles had provided a banquet for the era’s insatiable tabloids; no depravity, no smear was too outlandish to print. Ironically, her real-life misfortunes finally eclipsed even their inventiveness. Today, like background radiation, the spirit of Barbara Payton still inhabits the flops and jails where she spent down her years. On the Internet, it’s open season on her for the voyeuristic and the moralistic, as her biographer, John O’Dowd, who spent ten years writing Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye: The Barbara Payton Story, can attest. Even her detractors acknowledged Payton’s acting potential, but in the early Fifties, with Hollywood striving for a wholesome family image, the odds of professional survival for “Glitterville’s Top Tramp” were nil. By the time she hit bottom, Payton, who had once earned $10,000 a week, was reduced to peddling her bedroom skills for $5 a trick in alleys and backseats. Stoned on cheap hooch, bloated and malnourished, victimized by whatever thug happened upon her, she 58
trudged the meanest streets in Nathanael West’s “dream dump of Hollywood.” In the end, all she had left to sell was a caricature of herself, cannibalizing her life in the incoherent, nihilistic autobiography, I Am Not Ashamed, which she dictated to a hack reporter for a few cases of cheap wine. The book sank without a ripple. Whether she was up or down, Payton’s relationship with the lens was honest and fearless. Even at the end, her courage does not desert her: A snapshot captures her run to earth in a Hollywood police station, bagged by an undercover cop for soliciting sex in some Sunset Boulevard dive. Her shell of defiance crushed, she confronts the paparazzi surrounding her like hyenas, one hand at her throat; the other clutching a Kleenex box in its austere 1950s iteration. That box, and the trapped, frightened eyes above it, wrench us back through the years to bring us up short against the horror of being Barbara Payton. In the genealogy of Hollywood scandal, Payton was the onetime wife of Franchot Tone, himself the former husband of Joan Crawford. Payton was also the inamorata of Tom Neal, perhaps the lowest-bottom-hitting actor in history next to John Wilkes Booth. Neal’s performance in Detour—for many the film noir that defines the genre—earned him immortality while eerily foretelling his own dreadful fate. If Barbara Payton was the worst thing that ever happened to Franchot Tone, then the mesomorphic Neal had to have been the worst thing that ever happened to Barbara Payton. (Neal was indisputably the very worst thing that ever happened to Payton’s successor in his affections, beautiful 29 -year-old Gale Bennett, whom Neal married in 1961 and shot dead four years later in a fit of jealous rage as she slept. A wraithlike Payton was spotted in the audience at his trial. Though prosecutors sought the death penalty, Neal served six years for involuntary manslaughter, dying only months after leaving prison.)
Today, the lovers picked up and flung about in these cyclonic affairs lead a second life of sorts on countless web sites, still careening toward Armageddon; forever young, gorgeous and totally, totally nuts.
The Wild Child Barbara Redfield Payton was born in 1927 in postcard-idyllic Cloquet, Minnesota; her mother, Mabel, a beauty of Norwegian descent; her father, Lee, a hard-drinking disinherited scion of the Weyerhaeuser lumbering dynasty. When his daughter was barely in her teens, Lee moved his family to Odessa, Texas, a hard-partying town overflowing with military men from nearby bases. Here, the parents managed a motel, giving their precociously beautiful daughter a running start in flouting public mores. Despite the abundant GI’s, O’Dowd writes that Barbara “lost her virginity at age 15 to a schoolmate’s 45-year-old father, who had sexual relations with her in a dry bathtub in his home, while the unknowing guests at his birthday party celebrated downstairs.” By 16, Barbara had developed the troublesome habit of eloping, earning speedy annulments and paternal beatings; at least three teen marriages took place, one of them to a shoe salesman she had met while shopping. In 1944, she met and married handsome 22-year-old Air Force pilot John Payton. The young couple moved to a modest apartment close to Hollywood. John studied engineering on the GI Bill and their only child, John Lee, was born in 1947. At this point, Barbara Payton was just another hopeful small-town starlet. Perhaps no other American dream has ever exerted such irresistible traction— driving generations of girls to besiege Hollywood’s near-impregnable ramparts against brutally short odds with the single-minded purpose of spawning salmon. After a stint as a carhop at Stan’s DriveIn, on the corner of Sunset Boulevard
and Highland Avenue, Barbara eventually landed work as a fashion model. Magazine ads from the late 1940s reveal a stunning young woman whose prim accessories and coy, conservative tea dresses can’t conceal her page-searing sensuality. When the agency sent her to perform a few high kicks in a comedy revue at Slapsie Maxie’s nightclub, Payton caught the eye of Bill Goetz, production chief at Universal-International Studios. A shrewd judge of feminine potential, Goetz quickly signed her to a contract. Under the hot glare of Hollywood attention, the Paytons’ marriage softened and melted like wax, finally collapsing when John left wife and son to return to his parents in the midwest—always insisting that it was Barbara who had left him. Either way, she was now broke, alone, a single mother and at the mercy of her own demons, which lost no time in manifesting.
Fast Men, Fast Times Sprung from her husband’s oversight, Payton soon became a regular at Hollywood’s hottest clubs. From the start, she showed the same reckless exuberance and appalling judgment that young celebrities of any era are notorious for. Her closest friends included uber-shady dope dealer and trouble-magnet Don Cougar, age 27; sleazy, star-chasing paving contractor Jerry Bialac, and other slick operators from the shadowy side of the Boulevard. (The archetype of these Mickey Cohen tyros was, of course, Johnny Stompanato, whose turbulent affair with Lana Turner—and his life—ended in 1959 at the point of a knife wielded by Turner’s teenage daughter, Cheryl Crane.) Payton also became a regular at the booze-drenched parties of the Mephistophelean Errol Flynn and began keeping company with womanizer George Raft, flaunting the white full-length mink he gave her. Don Cougar seems to have been a particularly baleful influence. He was, notes author O’Dowd, “the former boyfriend of Barbara’s pal, Lila Leeds (She Shoulda Said No), the sexy blonde starlet who made national headlines on September 1, 1948, when she was arrested with actor Robert Mitchum and two others for possession of marijuana.” Even in Hollywood, where beauty is a commodity, Barbara Payton quickly stood out. An instinctive sense of her own style led her to trade her brown hair for blonde—a fitting frame for exquisite features that were both innocent and sensual, pure and profligate. She wore white beautifully and often. Like Clara Bow, Payton radiated attitude, flouting conventional morality at every opportunity. Her indifference to gossip and to her reputation may even have passed as naivete, but on closer inspection, something much darker was 60
taking shape; a compulsion to dance ever closer to the scorching flames. Whether in life or literature, whether the Black Dahlia, Madame Bovary, Messalina, or Katherine Howard, these types of women rarely make good ends. Meanwhile, as a hopeful young starlet, Payton was groomed in the traditional studio regimen. She took classes in dancing and acting, dutifully attended publicity shoots and tours, and appeared in a couple of forgettable short films, awaiting her summons to stardom. Payton’s relative idleness and availability for mischief made it inevitable that she and Bob Hope, a notorious starlet hound, would find one another. After meeting in Texas on a promotional tour, the two became lovers within moments of being introduced. They indulged in numerous trysts, with Barbara posing as the date of Hope’s longtime beard, Louis Shurr. Hope rented her an apartment. Soon, the smitten starlet began showing up at Hope’s sacrosanct golf tournaments, throwing herself into his arms in defiance of the wholesome family image that the Hope pandered to all his life. Unnerved, he began to fear that his hot mistress might singe his halo and tried to cool things down—but he soon discovered that getting Barbara Payton into his bed was a lot easier than phasing her out of it. Fuming, the notoriously cheap comedian eventually ransomed himself for a rumored $50,000. Hope’s role in the messy liaison was deftly hushed up, but Barbara Payton paid for her poor judgment with her Universal contract, canceled by head of talent Rufus Le Maire. She could have drawn the common sense conclusion that there are some people in Hollywood you just don’t cross, but she did not—a deficit of foresight that was to have lifelong consequences. Conventions that seem quaint in 2013 had sharp fangs in their day; it was all more than enough to summon the juggernaut of bad fortune.
At the Precipice Around this time, perennial bad apple Don Cougar talked Payton into providing dope dealer Stanley Adams with a phony alibi for the murder of FBI informant, “Singing Abe” Davidian. According to O’Dowd, informant Davidian had “died a stool pigeon’s death when he was found shot in the head in the living room of his mother’s home in Fresno on February 28, 1949.” At the time it seemed simple enough for Payton to swear to skeptical authorities that Adams was in her company on the evening of Singing Abe’s murder. Naïve and anxious to please, Payton earned herself years of legal blowback that would synergize with other bad cess to write her professional death warrant. But now, just when she needed it most, Barbara Payton’s acting career
hummed to life when she was cast with Lloyd Bridges in the film noir, Trapped, directed by Richard Fleischer, son of Max, the cartoon genius. Bridges, at 36, was already a popular “B” movie actor. Barbara, cast as a cigarette girl who loved the counterfeiter Bridges’ character too well, seized the opportunity, working late night after night on line readings and rehearsals. Fleischer noted in O’Dowd’s book, “she never once complained about the overtime… she did whatever we asked her to do. She was a delightful girl.” Gossip had it that she was also delighting randy co-star Bridges, who had his own lusty appetite for starlet favors. With her life now taking a positive turn, it would have been prudent for Barbara to avoid Don Cougar entirely. Instead, she let him drag her into yet another ugly incident when he caddishly roughed up her elderly landlady for trying to collect Barbara’s late rent. Nevertheless, In 1950, on the strength of Payton’s positive reviews in Trapped, producer William Cagney signed her to a $5,000-a-week contract to co-star with his brother James in what came to be her best-known film, Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye. Her performance, playing to type as the sultry yet gullible “Holiday Carleton,” was hailed as a career breakthrough. Warner Brothers shared her contract option with Bill Cagney and raised her salary to a jawdropping $10,000 a week. Fans proliferated as both MGM and 20th Century Fox competed to lure away the rising young star. This career momentum should have opened up countless opportunities for new dramatic roles, but Payton’s soaring trajectory inexplicably began to wobble and drift. Her next two films for Warner’s, Dallas and Only the Valiant, “more or less wasted her in brief, throwaway roles,” according to O’Dowd, with most of her scenes and lines ending up on the cutting room floor. Likewise with her next movie, the Gone With the Wind knockoff saga Drums in the Deep South. It was as if some malign unseen force were agitating against Payton. As indeed it was. That force was the vindictive, irascible Jack Warner himself. Almost from the start, he had harbored a deep resentment toward Barbara Payton. Her lighthearted irreverence toward him had probably lit the fuse initially; her various entanglements in public ruckus kept it burning briskly. Now Warner, working the phones with his trademark obscenitylaced invective, set out to raze the career of his newest star. Unaware of fate stalking her, Payton continued to dance heedlessly toward the edge of the precipice. In early 1950, she met Franchot Tone at Ciro’s nightclub, where she won a Charleston competition which he judged. Enchanted by the wild beauty in the chandelier earrings, Tone brushed aside the warnings that poured in—including from Joan Crawford herself.
An educated, eastern-bred sophisticate and bon vivant with a classic profile “meant to grace coins,” Tone was rarely without a drink in his hand, but held his liquor like a gentleman. Disappointingly, he had only grazed the first rank of stardom. The career of his wife, Joan Crawford, had soon eclipsed his, with Tone playing the perennial second male lead to more noted stars. Barbara, at the height of her allure, captivated Tone, who found unstable women irresistible. At the time he met Payton, he was still boiling in the soup of his 1948 divorce from actress Jean Wallace. Suicidal and nuclear-tempered, Wallace dragged Tone into a custody battle for their two sons in which she smeared Payton with all the mud in her arsenal. By now, that mud was thick and close at hand. Payton had already misstepped into the swampy terrain of Don Cougar, Mickey Cohen and other lowlife companions. Through it all, Franchot Tone remained unflappably loyal to her. The couple soon became the darling of the tabloids whose sharp eye for dysfunction was instantly drawn by the contrast between the profligate Payton and genteel Tone. Only a short time after announcing their engagement at a lavish party in New York’s Stork Club, Franchot surprised Barbara in bed—at the apartment he rented for her—with the strikingly handsome young Guy Madison, currently co-starring with Barbara in Drums in the Deep South. Tone delivered the immortal line—arguably the greatest example of heroic restraint ever—“I’m engaged to this girl and I’m going to marry her. Are you?” As reported in O’Dowd’s book, the scarlet-faced young actor leaped from the bed nude to gather his clothes and replied, “I can’t. I’m already married.” The incident set off the 1950s version of a viral classic, providing a feeding frenzy for the predatory Confidential Magazine and pushing the choleric Jack Warner to scissor most of her scenes from the movie. By April 1951, when Barbara appeared in Only the Valiant, starring Gregory Peck (another possible lover), her acting career was in free-fall. Although billed second, she barely appears in the movie. O’Dowd unearthed the Confidential magazine article, The Girl Who Made Peck a Bad Boy, published in 1956, years after Barbara’s acting career had melted down: “…it was reported that during the filming of Only the Valiant, “ . . . the two took to meeting at the studio early in the morning for rendezvous in Barbara’s dressing room before the day’s shooting began… Once, . . . Peck borrowed a single horse from the studio corral and perched Barbara in front of him on the nag. With one hand on the reins and another clutching Payton, he rode off into the hills for a little action.” On hearing of this and other gossip, Jack Warner promptly dropped her
co-starring role in Dallas to fifth billing. According to O’Dowd, he may also have used his executive assistant, (and head of Casting) Steve Trilling to phone other studio heads and pressure them to cancel her contracts. This favored tactic of Warner had been used in the past to ruin stars like Joan Leslie and “oomph girl,” Ann Sheridan. But ironically, it was probably Warner who steered Barbara into Jack Broder’s risibly titled Bride of the Gorilla, destined to become a camp classic. The sight of the strapless 24-year-old Payton aswoon in the hirsute embrace of gorilla Steve Calvert inspired the lifelong crushes of countless boys, including himself, O’Dowd admits. Payton even managed to wangle a co-starring role from Gorilla producer Jack Broder for her young friend, Raymond Burr—broke, unemployed and frustratingly overweight. Years later, when she was out of work, Burr tried to repay the favor, but by then she was so radioactive that all of his influence could not land her even a walk-on in Perry Mason.
Madness at Noon In July 1951, while Barbara was filming Bride of the Gorilla, Franchot Tone departed for a short visit to New York. A few days later, Barbara attended a fateful pool party at the Sunset Plaza Apartments. Here, her destiny collided with that of Tom Neal, the impact throwing up a toxic dust cloud that altered both of their worlds forever. According to an Exposed magazine article, Barbara first spotted the hunky Neal on the pool’s high-diving board, “... displaying his masculinity via a brief pair of bathing panties [sic].” O’Dowd continues: “She later made a statement to the press that was not only unintentionally comical but also a dead-on display of her endearing, if rather quirky romanticism: ‘Honey, I took just one look at him and I absolutely flipped!’ she gushed. ‘It was love at first sight. He looked so wonderful in his trunks I knew he was the only man in my life.’” In leering detail, Exposed [Magazine] surmised, “. . . the memory of whatever Franchot Tone resembled in his undies was blurred by strutting Tom’s conspicuous bulges.” The passionate duo quickly started an affair, with Time Magazine writing, ‘Neal spent the next month and a half lolling around the patio of the apartment that Franchot Tone was renting for her, doing ‘nip-ups with bar bells’ while Barbara gazed at him adoringly.” Tom Neal hailed from Evanston, Illinois, the only son of a wealthy banker. Though just five-foot eight, he had distinguished himself as a boxer at Northwestern University, where he also joined the
drama club. In the fall of 1933, he arrived in New York, already a gigolo and soon was engaged to showgirl Inez Martin, the former mistress of gangster Arnold Rothstein. Pressured by his disapproving family, Neal moved west in 1936, where he signed with MGM. His good looks and physique helped him gain roles in such movies as Another Thin Man, Sky Murder and Andy Hardy Meets Debutante. “During this time,” writes O’Dowd, “Tom was carrying on with both Joan Crawford and a studio executive’s wife… when Crawford learned he was two-timing her, she did her own complaining to [Louis B.] Mayer, who wound up blasting Tom.” Neal, having earned speedy release from his contract, turned to freelancing and eventually appeared in dozens of movies. For many, Neal’s defining role—prior to Detour—will always be First Yank into Tokyo, in which he played an American Air Force officer who undergoes “plastic surgery” in order to pass as Japanese and spirit an atomic scientist out of the country—becoming thereby the most unintentionally hilarious incarnation of an Asian ever concocted by a makeup department. That movie is impossible to watch with a straight face, but Neal redeemed himself for all time shortly afterwards, starring in the Edgar G. Ulmer-directed film noir classic Detour in 1945, alongside Ann Savage who staked her claim as one of cinema’s most fiendish and psychotic harpies. Shot in just six days on a $30,000 budget, Detour is almost universally acknowledged as a masterpiece. But if Detour elevated Tom Neal, the fates seem to have conspired throughout the rest of his life to send him careening to hell. As he muttered prophetically in the movie, “No matter what you do, no matter where you turn, fate sticks out its foot to trip you.” While appearing in 30 low-budget features between 1945 and 1953 alone, Tom Neal bedded some of Hollywood’s most notable stars, including Ava Gardner, Joan Crawford, Lana Turner, and Lorraine Cugat (the wife of Cuban bandleader Xavier Cugat). In 1949, Neal’s then-wife Vicky Lane divorced him for “mental cruelty and insane jealousy,” freeing Tom to hang out with the highliving Errol Flynn and Mickey Rooney. The intersection of Tom Neal’s life with Barbara Payton’s at that fateful party could not have been more precisely calculated to deliver them both to madness. Besotted with desire, the couple became instant lovers. Within days, according to O’Dowd, Barbara Payton was introducing Neal to family and friends as her boyfriend—almost as if her fiancé Franchot Tone didn’t exist. By the time Franchot Tone returned from his business trip, his life and Barbara’s had changed profoundly, with even greater upheavals on the horizon. First, Tone discovered Barbara living
BARBARA PAYTON BY ANDRE DE DIENES PHOTOS COURTESY OF JOHN O’DOWD COLLECTION
openly with Tom Neal in the Hollywood apartment Tone had rented for her at 1803 Courtney Terrace. Though Barbara initially declared that she would marry Tone after all, she soon took off again with Neal and announced that she would marry him instead on Sept. 14, in San Francisco. Barbara Payton bounced between one man and the other over the next few months in an alcohol-fueled series of trysts, as if under some lunatic spell—all tracked by the press with the slavering rapacity of wolves after a limping caribou. On September 13, Barbara Payton borrowed Tom’s car and met Franchot at the Beverly Hills Hotel for a booze-fueled tryst that extended deep into the night, leaving Tom waiting—and drinking— alone at the Courtney Terrace apartment, still convinced that he and Barbara were to marry the next day. As the evening wore on and Tom remained alone, he decided to throw himself, in O’Dowd’s words, a “pity party.” He phoned a number of friends, who were all raucously drunk by the time Barbara arrived home with Franchot in tow, both pathologically drunk as well. The inevitable confrontation deteriorated quickly as the two staggering suitors squared off. Barbara had been, according to O’Dowd, “…cruelly kissing Franchot and urging him to ‘get rid of Tom.’” Tone, his ego pumped up by Barbara’s clinging entreaties, foolishly challenged the younger actor with an outright dare: “Let’s settle this thing outside.” To call the following encounter a fight would imply adversaries who were both conscious and evenly matched by some broad understanding of the term. Neal’s training as a college pugilist had been reinforced by daily weightlifting on that very patio; a pair of his dumbbells remained on the bloodstained concrete as silent witnesses following the brawl. John O’Dowd describes the havoc that ensued: The threesome moved to the front patio of Barbara’s apartment when an adrenalinepowered Tom delivered a punch that—literally—sent his opponent airborne, knocking him a distance of twelve feet before slamming him into the ground. According to later news reports, Tom then pounced on Franchot, battering him in a brutal and bone-crunching assault. Rail-thin and bird-like at 155 pounds, Franchot was twenty-five pounds lighter than his attacker, and crumpled like a blood-splattered rag doll as Tom inflicted one ham-fisted blow on him after another. At some point, Barbara threw herself into the fray and was given a black eye by Tom, whose wayward elbow clipped her face, sending her reeling unconscious into a rhododendron bush. Gravely wounded with a cerebral concussion, a broken nose, a shattered left cheekbone and fractured right upper jaw, 70
Franchot Tone hovered between life and death for days. Meanwhile, the media entered a fugue state and gorged the public with bad press about the hapless triangle. Payton, poured into a strapless white sundress and wearing huge sunglasses to hide her own black eye, soon arrived at the hospital where Franchot Tone lay comatose, carrying—with breathtaking bad judgment—a pitcherful of martinis to share with him. Trailing hordes of paparazzi and sometimes accompanied by sleazy paving contractor Jerry Bialac, she haunted the hospital staircases and hallways, begging exasperated nurses to let her see Franchot. All this time, she continued to issue oddly disjointed statements denouncing Tom Neal as a savage—despite soon being photographed dancing with him at Ciro’s and staying with him at the Courtney Terrace apartment. The hungry fates, not yet sated by this blood sacrifice, continued to wreak misfortune on all three addled lovers. No sooner had a skeletal Franchot Tone tottered from the hospital, his classic profile permanently altered along with his voice—than he married Barbara Payton in a bizarre and hastily concocted ceremony in her home town of Cloquet, attended by Barbara’s puzzled cousins and family. Soon, hounded by the media and spurned by the public (the couple was even booed in Memphis during a promotional tour for Barbara’s new film, Drums in the Deep South) the ill-starred marriage began to crumble. Incidents such as Franchot’s inebriated spitting on notorious “hag columnist” Florabel Muir (the incident was gleefully publicized, writes O’Dowd, with such labels as “a spit-off,” “salivary tussle,” “spittle tiff,” and “nightclub spit-spat.”) destroyed what was left of his cosmopolitan image. After spending the night behind bars, Franchot Tone was released with a small fine and a dismissal. Most of the Hollywood establishment blamed Payton for corrupting and dragging down the once-genteel if bibulous older star. The other two “hag columnists,” Hedda Hopper and Louella Parsons, soon joined the baying pack and subsequently missed no chance, ever, to attack Barbara in print. Meanwhile, Barbara’s appearance before a Federal Grand Jury on October 31 in the Stan Adams/Singing Abe entanglement put yet more pressure on her deteriorating reputation and mental stamina. In November, producer William Cagney dropped Barbara’s option and longstanding adversary Jack Warner not only dismissed her from the Warner Brothers roster but probably contacted other studio heads to blacklist Payton—now nicknamed “Glitterville’s Top Tramp,” among other monikers—nailing shut the coffin of her career for all time. O’Dowd notes, “Dore Schary, MetroGoldwyn-Mayer’s Chief of Production, and Darryl F. Zanuck, Vice President
of 20th Century-Fox, both of whom had once publicly expressed an interest in buying Barbara’s contract from WB, quickly changed their minds.” After only seven weeks, Franchot Tone filed for divorce on grounds of extreme mental cruelty. Although the couple reconciled two days later, Payton’s joining Tom Neal on her publicity tour for Drums in the Deep South, torqued the marriage into new levels of dysfunction. Claiming the low ground, Payton and Neal brawled and threw drunken public tantrums, feeding the tabloids a surfeit of raw scandal and convincing the powers that be in Hollywood of their wisdom in dropping her. Another degrading press tour for Bride of the Gorilla found Barbara and Franchot reconciled, but the madness culminated in her suicide attempt in a New York hotel in March 1952. Following this, Franchot Tone’s seemingly infinite patience and unquenchable passion for Barbara Payton vanished like smoke. As if suddenly occupied by an evil twin, Tone began displaying a level of revenge and cunning that must have completely blindsided Payton. In a final act that took evidence-gathering to pure demolition, Tone hired a private investigator to take extremely graphic photos of Payton engaging in sex with Tom Neal. Tone then circulated these not only to every major studio in Hollywood but to Payton’s friends and family as well. The pictures annihilated Barbara’s case in court, and Franchot Tone was granted his divorce. Having destroyed any possibility of his former wife ever again obtaining any meaningful work in Hollywood, Franchot Tone resumed his personal life of gentlemanly alcoholic conviviality. He relocated to New York and worked on Broadway in several high-end theatrical projects before returning to Hollywood to play out his career on popular television series such as Bonanza, Wagon Train, The Twilight Zone, the Alfred Hitchcock Hour, and Ben Casey. Tone died of lung cancer in 1968; one can only speculate on what went through his mind as Barbara Payton spiraled into homelessness, prostitution and finally death from terminal alcoholism. He could not have wished on her any harsher or more prolonged retribution. Now in 1952, funds were running short for Tom Neal and Barbara Payton. Spurned by Hollywood, the couple tried to subsist on whatever roles they could turn up between their public and private battles. A trip to England yielded two forgettable movie roles for Barbara and culminated in a beating from Tom when he caught her in the arms of an odd character she would always refer to as a “British Lord.” A final hopeless whimper ended her once fiery relationship with Tom Neal. In their ironic last performance together they played another doomed couple in a summer stock version of “The Postman
Always Rings Twice.” After Barbara fainted on stage, probably from a combination of malnutrition and alcohol, Tom Neal departed to live out his own terrible destiny.
The Eyes of a Child Throughout these turbulent years, a small, quiet presence waited for Barbara, usually at the home of her babysitter (and onetime sister-in-law) Jan Redfield’s parents, who cared for the boy lovingly and unstintingly. John Lee Payton had continued to adore his mother with a nonjudgmental acceptance that belied his years. Now, at 26, Barbara resolved to settle down and resume her maternal responsibilities. She rented a large house near the Beverly Hills Hotel, furnished it elegantly, and brought her seven-year-old son to join in her Paper Moon-ish lifestyle. Despite her good intentions, however, she left the boy alone a good deal of the time while she went out chasing her demons. Constant parties filled the house with drunken strangers, albeit some of them the biggest names in Hollywood. Though John Lee wanted simply to be a part of his mother’s life, Barbara lacked the ability to give him a stable, consistent home. She may also have begun experiencing cognitive damage from the alcohol that impaired her ability to exercise parental judgment. When she wasn’t entertaining at home, Barbara became, again in the words of John O’Dowd, “an almost nightly barstool fixture at such local hot spots as Chasen’s, LaRue’s, and The Cock n’ Bull. Bedecked in her finest jewelry and furs, Barbara was always friendly, often drunk, and reportedly seldom, if ever, went home alone.” She was known to pick up men at gas stations and “two-bit lounges” up and down the Pacific Coast Highway, as well as spending a lot of time playing the wanton at a notorious hotell and nightclub called the Garden of Allah. Notes O’Dowd, “She had become hooked on the typical high of the sex addict—the rush that comes with seeking out potential partners and then seducing them— and in this hyper-aroused state, Barbara may have felt a sense of empowerment that was impossible to resist.” Her bedmates included Marlon Brando, but she was not particular when drinking and shared her favors with an unbroken stream of lovers including small-time hoods and casual barroom acquaintances. Says O’Dowd: “With her home now resembling a landing strip for every freeloader and satyr in L.A., Barbara… was cutting a mile-wide swath through a town that was using her up even quicker than she was using it.” Stories circulated, such as a purported effort to blackmail Brando; by now, anything was believed of her and no tale was too farfetched. Her increasing loss of control was illustrated by her behavior during
hospitalization for an ectopic pregnancy, discovered when she was found lying unconscious in a pool of blood at home. Though healing routinely after surgery, Barbara became restless. After her own mother smuggled vodka to her—which probably reacted with her pain medication—Barbara donned a mink coat over her hospital gown and took a cab home. “Laughing and swearing and causing a total uproar,” she had to be forcibly restrained by friends. Later, a doctor mentioned the possibility of manic-depressive (bipolar) disorder as well as “nymphomania,” all exacerbated by alcohol. In 1954, Edgar G. Ulmer—the brilliant German-born director who had immortalized Tom Neal in Detour, starred Barbara in what was to be her last artistically meaningful movie, Murder is My Beat. Ulmer seems to have understood how to draw out Barbara’s inner conflicts to vitalize and validate her acting. Her strong performance is still highly regarded by critics, but despite its intrinsic quality, the film remained obscure. O’Dowd notes, “Murder Is My Beat… passed through theaters largely unnoticed, leaving Barbara’s truncated film career in ashes.” In 1955 Barbara drifted to Guaymas, Mexico, on the Sea of Cortes, a popular hangout of stars like Clark Gable, Lana Turner, John Wayne, and Bing Crosby, who stayed at the Playa de Cortez, a legendary beachfront resort. Here, her son John Lee enjoyed the clean white beaches and searching for abalone in the tropical waters. And here, Barbara met her future husband, Tony Provas, a young sport fisherman of Greek extraction whose family owned a pleasure boat business. Only 21, Tony fell hard for the still-beautiful Barbara. Soon, the locus of her life moved to Guaymas, where she became a regular at the Playa de Cortez. Mexico was a sanctuary for her from the acid rain of the L.A. press and the machinations of her low-life companions, but Payton’s drinking continued unabated. Her son recalls being left alone a lot, and when the eight-year-old returned with his mother to Los Angeles, family friend Jan Redfield was shocked at his neglected, ringworm-infested condition. Barely thirty years old, Barbara Payton was now a confirmed alcoholic, and the consequences were overtaking her.
The Wheels Fall Off Returning briefly to L.A. that year, Barbara Payton wrote three personal checks to Hollywood’s Sun-Fax Market totaling $129.54, which subsequently bounced. Generous and heedless of her finances while earning a high salary, Payton seems not to have comprehended how broke she now was. And though she had spent thousands of dollars at that very market in better days, the owners pursued her unrelentingly. On October 14, 1955, unable to make good on the checks, Bar-
bara was arrested in front of John Lee, handcuffed and taken away in a police car. After being booked and fingerprinted, the actress was bailed out by her attorney, Milton Golden. The debt was eventually retired for old time’s sake by Herman Hoven, the owner of Ciro’s Nightclub, a place that Barbara had frequently illuminated as a young starlet. This comparatively minor but ominous incident foreshadowed what was soon to follow: penury, arrests, and loss of independence and control of her life. Having run through her funds and lost her rented home as well, Barbara now found herself broke and abandoned by all but the staunchest friends and fans. Even from those, she began to withdraw and distance herself. In March of 1956, ex-husband John Payton, who had spent 18 months as a prisoner of war in Korea, filed for custody of his eight-year-old son. Emotionally devastated, Barbara tried to put on a brave front, even to embracing Payton for the cameras and hinting at a reconciliation. The gloves-off custody battle in a court infested with voyeurs and tabloid hacks had a predictable outcome. Barbara Payton saw the boy whom she loved but could not protect removed from her care and whisked off to the air base in Germany where his father was stationed. Payton never saw her son again.
Absence of Control With the last vestiges of accountability gone, Barbara Payton now slipped her moorings completely and began a decade-long free-fall to death. Her drinking, always heavy, entered its final phases. Whether from alcoholic toxicity or encroaching mental disease, Barbara recognized no further boundaries, no restraints. It challenges comprehension to realize that she still had eleven years to live—years of uninterrupted deterioration and physical and mental anguish that would have shamed an Elizabethan torturer to inflict. The alcohol had already blasted her delicate beauty and probably affected her cognition. She began to wear coarse, unbecoming makeup, and her bloated figure contrasted shockingly with the splendid contours of only a few years ago. A tortuous path lay ahead—poverty, booze, sexual promiscuity, and the worst public notoriety. By now most of her relationships, including those with her family, had fallen away. Her parents, both alcoholic, had moved to San Diego but were no meaningful resource for Barbara. The persistent hostility of her father continued, while her mother, suffering from botched breast cancer surgery, was drunk a lot of the time. Now, old friends and lovers watched helplessly as Barbara drifted beyond Hollywood’s Klieg lights toward the infinite
darkness on the other side of the street. Tabloids lured the faltering star into the first of many exploitative tell-alls—adding to her notoriety and fueling the momentum of her decline. Barbara took Confidential magazine publisher Robert Harrison up on his offer of $1,000 to dish the dirt about her 1949 romance with covert ladykiller Bob Hope. As O’Dowd puts it: “Evidently still bitter over Hope ending their affair so abruptly, and now truly hurting financially, Barbara spilled the beans in a biting and unflattering cover story for the magazine, entitled “Have Tux, Will Travel . . . What Bob Hope Did With That Blonde.” According to John O’ Dowd, Hope was enraged by this betrayal and claimed that Barbara Payton was a “vindictive tramp who’d dreamed it all up.” Hope, whom O’Dowd views as “a complex, and at times, mean-spirited individual with the ability to respond with a ruthless vengeance when sufficiently provoked,” nearly sued Payton, but in the end, a strategy of neglect proved ideal for him. The article was quickly forgotten, and Hope’s stellar career proceeded undamaged. After her 1948 marijuana bust with Robert Mitchum had destroyed her own film career, Barbara’s girlfriend, the scandalous Lila Leeds, had moved to Chicago to work as a torch singer and call girl. Barbara Payton, with her son gone and her career in ruins, joined Lila in prostitution in 1957. The two worked from an elegant suite at the Drake Hotel until Lila was busted and sent to prison— a fate which Barbara somehow avoided. (According to O’Dowd, Lila Leeds eventually gave up her lawbreaking lifestyle and became an ordained minister in 1973.) By 1958, Barbara was back in Los Angeles, living with a B-movie actor named Bobby Hall, a six-foot-four-inch, 250-pound mesomorph with a wicked temper. In August of that year, Barbara surprised everyone with an attempted comeback. She called a press conference and appeared, according to O’Dowd, “… dressed in a tight, tailored suit …about five years out of style.” Nevertheless, in the photos, she looks tanned, slender and still beautiful—as if by sheer will she had resurrected the actress she once was and summoned her fighting spirit. To her dismay, she realized that the press had arrived with the intent only to ridicule her. Before long, Payton landed in the seedy Valencia Apartments, a five-story structure built in the early 1920s as a haven for respectable character actors. Even in its advanced state of disrepair, it was at least basic shelter. She found work as a restaurant hostess and later that year worked as a counter girl at The Sunset Plaza Dry Cleaning and Laundry, walking to her job because she had sold her Cadillac convertible. Her drinking soon ended even that, setting Barbara adrift as a cocktail waitress in a strip joint, a shampoo girl at a beauty shop, and even 72
pumping gas on Hollywood Boulevard. From time to time, she would visit her parents in San Diego, where her father gave his now disheveled and disoriented daughter short shrift. Sometimes during this period, notes O’Dowd, Payton scraped together the money for a bus ticket to Palm Springs, where her former producer Bob Lippert discovered that she had rented a room at the Riviera Hotel, working out of the bar as a hooker. Says O’Dowd, “Barbara tried to justify it: ‘There are men who can’t get love unless they buy it. I sell it. What’s wrong with that? I admit I’m a little heavy, but for the act of love I have the perfect body. Men like to go to bed with a movie star.’” Evicted once again, she drifted to Searchlight, Nevada and turned tricks from a tiny studio apartment over a casino. By 1961, she was back at the Valencia, her hair dyed carrot red, her body rapidly ballooning from the booze. Her tricks were a depressing cohort of failed actors, drifters, hustlers; fellow alcoholics and rootless wanderers who had long ago abandoned their dreams and were, in Barbara’s words, “ . . . mad for my big bosom and womanly form.” Always drunk, she began to wander the streets of Hollywood unwashed and disheveled, in ragged castoff dressing gowns that went unchanged for days or weeks. She used gas station restrooms to clean up when she could. Sometimes the owner of the Brush Wave Beauty Salon, where she had briefly worked, would invite her in and do her hair for old time’s sake. “Make her platinum blonde again . . . on the house.” In 1962, she showed up at a Hollywood police station dressed, as O’Dowd tells it, “…in a “tight, one-piece bathing suit, a white sweater and a pair of gold slippers, her legs blotted with bruises…” She told an incoherent story of abduction and attempted rape at the hands of a ‘teenage gang.’ She had been staying at the Jet Inn Motel on West Slauson Avenue, a notoriously crime-ravaged area of L.A. that was, ironically, only a short walk from Hollywood Park, the racetrack where Barbara had once dropped thousands of dollars in the early 1950s among friends who included Bill Cagney, Frank Sinatra and Ava Gardner. The next morning, Payton, still in her rags, was found unconscious and barefoot on a bus stop bench on the corner of Stanley Avenue and Sunset Boulevard. When she came to, “agitated and incoherent,” the police charged her with public drunkenness. She was released on $21 bail but rearrested the following Saturday at a rowdy afternoon party for cavorting naked in front of an open window. By now, Barbara Payton had come to live in a rat-infested building (now a gas station) at 7655 Sunset Boulevard, panhandling and constantly drunk, missing many teeth, her hair matted and un-
washed. Stabbed by a trick, she received thirty-eight stitches, which resolved into a shockingly livid scar that she did not even bother to cover. She was now turning tricks for $5; as O’Dowd puts it, “quick encounters on Sunset Boulevard for five bucks a throw, in cars parked with their motors running.” Arrested again for prostitution on September 23, 1963, she remained in jail for the next 22 days. After bailing herself out, she was once again the subject of the relentless Vice Squad magazine, which described her as “a convicted prostitute who’ll maul a mattress with any unwashed beatnik—or any creep of any kind, color or character…”
I Am Not Ashamed That year, a Hollywood public relations flack named Leo Guild contacted Barbara about writing her autobiography. O’Dowd notes that Guild allegedly paid her a fee of $2,000 for the taped series of interviews. The money was doled out to her in periodic instalments, which quickly disappeared in booze and drugs. Guild would send a check to Barbara at the Coach and Horses—a no-questionsasked hideaway also frequented by William Holden, another heavy drinker. I Am Not Ashamed is a pitiable cry of defiance, painful to read the way a missed jab from a punch drunk boxer on his way to the mat is painful to watch. She stares from the cover, bleary and coarsened, her gaze accusing the Dream Machine and all who betrayed her, including herself. Barbara Stanwyck, taking the cheap shot, declared after reading I Am Not Ashamed, “She jolly well should be!” But by this time, the Hollywood establishment, which jolly well might have helped at least to provide her an easeful death, either stood aside or, as did Stanwyck, piled on. Guild claimed in 1964 that at the time he met Barbara, “she lived almost entirely on red Dago wine and was reduced to prostitution.” He ungraciously described the meeting in a 1967 article for the men’s magazine Pix, as reported by John O’Dowd: “I knocked [on the door] and she yelled, ‘Entre vous.’ Barbara stood alone in the center of a room of unbelievable chaos. She was pig-fat and wore a man’s shirt and that’s it. The shirt just made it past her crotch. There was a red, angry scar coming from under the shirt and running down her thigh. ‘Of course, I remember you,’ she smiled. I noticed she was unsteady on her feet.” Lacking credibility and continuity, I Am Not Ashamed rambles through 190 pages of disjointed stream-of-consciousness recollections. As a final humiliation, the 86-cent paperback generated only a small blip of media publicity before disappearing into the remainder bins. Shortly after the book’s publication, Barbara was busted for heroin and placed
in a locked detox unit at L.A. County Hospital. Released to a halfway house, she was back on the streets within a day. O’Dowd believes that she was offered no further intervention, despite her lifethreatening illness. Addictive disorders were hardly unknown even then among entertainment folk, and Barbara should have had Screen Actors Guild insurance; because of her work as an actress, she was certainly eligible to be treated at the Motion Picture Home and Hospital in Woodland Hills. But the poison had been injected deep by tabloids, vengeful executives, casually jealous competitors, the fickle public—and her own actions. No meaningful help was offered her. In subsequent years, Barbara Payton became a familiar fixture, dragging herself up and down the grimy, decaying skid rows behind Hollywood’s tourist façade, deteriorating visibly. One observer saw her leave a Liquor Locker on the Sunset Strip, weaving and “clearly soused.” After gulping down an entire pint of booze, she tossed the empty bottle in a trash can and staggered down the middle of Sunset Boulevard.” O’Dowd’s research places her at the Highland Apartments on the corner of North Highland and Franklin Avenues: A foreboding and desolate block of burnedout and empty buildings, it was the same Skid Row section of town where the infamous, cross-dressing film director Ed Wood and former Little Rascal-turned junkie Matthew “Stymie” Beard lived at the end of their lives. Nick Bougas, well known on the west coast for his series of graphic crime and scandal documentaries, describes the area as akin to the kind of wasteland left standing after an atomic war. Barbara Payton did a lot of her drinking at a dive called the Gaslight, on the corner of Yucca Street and Cahuenga Boulevard. She would arrive when the place opened at six a.m. “to continue her binge.” The bartender recalled seeing her servicing Johns in her apartment, making little effort at privacy. Now using heroin, she was again evicted and began to wander the streets, toxic and ill, crashing at motels along Sunset and Wilcox and Sunset and Highland Avenues. These flops were a locus of murders, rapes and gang fights. “No place for a broken heart like Barbara’s,” writes O’Dowd. Despite her extremely poor health, Barbara found a job changing bed sheets and scouring toilets at the Hollywood Palms Hotel in exchange for a room. The plush, mink-wrapped dreams of her former life; the luxury and generosity that had led her to shower friends and family with gifts; the chauffeured limousines and cheering crowds were now only hazy memories. But incredibly, her insatiable need to debase herself continued to gather momentum. She associated now only with
those tortured souls on their own respective journeys to oblivion, some dangerously psychotic and violent, the detritus of an unforgiving culture. The filthy dives that she called home, nests of depravity and suicidal torment, existed like a parallel universe alongside the slick, vigorous and dazzling Los Angeles of the early 1960s. As Barbara Payton collapsed, the world around her flourished proportionately. The energy of Los Angeles pulsed and flowed as fortunes and careers were built, innovations launched. People she had known on her way up continued to soar, while she lay dying in a boneyard of lost souls, condemned to live out the other side of the story. At the seedy Coach and Horses bar—now a minor landmark—she nursed shots in her own shadowy corner. John O’Dowd quotes the bartender’s son, author Robert Polito, in Polito’s book, O.K. You Mugs: Writers on Movie Actors: “She oozed alcohol even before she ordered a drink. Her eyebrows didn’t match her brassy hair . . . Her face displayed a perpetual sunburn, a map of veins by her nose. [Her feet were swollen], and she carried an old man’s pot belly that sloshed faintly when she moved. She must have weighed 200 pounds.” A friend would occasionally bring her shampoo and nail polish to use in the ladies’ room. But soon, even the undiscriminating Coach and Horses banned her as a difficult drunk, too hard to eject. Sometimes she “attended” Hollywood premieres, standing alone in the crowd behind the velvet rope and watching the lavish parade that she had once been a part of. She recalled, in I Am Not Ashamed: “Bathing in fame during the halcyon days in Hollywood was delicious. The whole beautiful scene seemed like it was for always. I remember the night I walked into the Presidential box at the opera with my mink coat dragging on the ground and me on the arm of the handsome Franchot Tone. And how everybody looked at me with admiration. I remember how at a premiere of my own movie during which I was paid one hundred thousand dollars, the press fought to talk to me. Man, I was really something . . .” Harassed constantly by police, Barbara often sought refuge in dark movie theaters or in the old Hollywood Public Library, where, according to O’Dowd, “she sat alone at one of the back tables, rarely speaking.”
Last Days Barbara Payton’s restless soul finally delivered her to the home of her parents in San Diego; it should have been a sanctuary, but lifelong conflicts with her father had made the place only one more locus of pain. Old friend Jan Redfield, who had watched the young actress’s career soar before sinking into this sump
of alcoholism and prostitution, spoke of their last conversation a day before Payton’s death: “After everyone else went to bed, Barbara and I stayed up in the living room and talked… She said she knew she had made a real mess of things, and yet she wasn’t quite sure how it happened. Barbara said to me, ‘Janice, why wasn’t it ever enough for me?... Was my having too much, too soon, worse for me than if I hadn’t accomplished anything at all?’ She threw all these really tough questions at me, and I didn’t know how to answer them.” “She told me that she never really knew how to communicate with men other than being a sex object to them. I think Barbara felt very ugly inside. And it was almost like she wouldn’t stop abusing herself until she made sure the outside matched the inside.” Barbara Payton’s stony path ended on May 8, 1967, in the early afternoon. Her final agonies unreel in agonizing detail in O’Dowd’s compassionate but unrelenting biography. Nobody in her parents’ household seems to have taken the obvious step of bringing a desperately ill woman to the hospital or calling an ambulance. So far had she traveled from hope and for so long, that those around her had surrendered as totally as she to her inevitable death. That blindness did not prevent them from grieving piteously, now that what they had feared for so long was finally manifest. The official cause of death was “acute pulmonary congestion with focal pulmonary hemorrhage due to portal cirrhosis.” She was six months short of her fortieth birthday. Following her death, Barbara Payton’s father grimly gathered up her few pitiful belongings and set them outside at the curb to be hauled away by the garbage truck. Even from the grave, Barbara Payton has the power to bring us up short against our own dreams and demons— the archetypal girl who threw it all away, loving always unwisely and far too well. But the overwhelming emotion she elicits—along with deep sadness—must be bitter perplexity. Even as she delivered lines onscreen that aim straight for the heart, she treated her own heart with a self-destructive fury that has rarely been equaled. It is the tragic destiny of this beautiful, once hopeful woman to serve as a reminder of the depths to which we can fall, and the suffering we are capable of inflicting on ourselves and those we love, all with only the best of intentions.
GIMMIE GIMMIE GIMMIE Punk and Fashion at The Met Words by Hannah Palmer Egan Photos courtesy of The Metroplitan Museum of Art
ABOVE: RICHARD HELL, LATE 1970S, PHOTOGRAPH © KATE SIMON OPPOSITE: HUSSEIN CHALAYAN (BRITISH, BORN CYPRUS, 1970), SPRING/SUMMER 2003 DAZED AND CONFUSED, MARCH 2003, PHOTOGRAPH BY ERIC NEHR
If you hadn’t noticed it on the street, you heard it here: punk fashion is having a moment. For the last several seasons, women—girls, tweens and grown dames alike—have been sporting spikes, studs, zippers etc., and there’s been a distinct upsurge in blacks (day or night)—for outings from grocery shopping to formal affairs—it all just feels so mainstream. Which is why a massive exhibition centered on Punk’s influence on fashion, staged at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, is just so apropos. Punk: Chaos to Couture opened May 9 and runs through August 14. The exhibition, like punk itself—greets you like a punch in the gut; there is no easing into this show. Visitors are confronted by a chaotic, flashing film installation by Nick Knight and two mannequins standing guard in menacing black and red ensembles by Galliano-era Dior (Autumn/Winter 2006-07), and Vivienne Westwood/Malcolm McLaren (1976-80). All of this hits with a soundtrack that is, well, punky. It’s a fast start. The Nick Knight films will remain your constant companion throughout the show, so epileptics should proceed with caution. In the first gallery, wild-eyed visions of Patti Smith, the Ramones, and Blondie dance across 16 TV screens, stacked in grainy analog into a single image. The electric, acid voices of the film’s subjects during interviews, mixed with punk music continue to chatter in the air. An adjacent room offers a life-sized reconstruction of the CBGB bathroom in all its black and white, broke-down, spray-painted glory. The bathroom is painstakingly installed and it seems intended to remind museum-goers of the grittiness endemic in the punk scene-- it unfolded largely in divey, dark bars and clubs-- so it’s a nice foil against the otherwise glittery overtones of the show.
However, what exactly does this bathroom, which likely cost tens of thousands of dollars to create, mean here, in this context? Ironically, the old CBGB space at 315 Bowery in downtown Manhattan is now entombed in a John Varvatos shop hawking special-edition Chuck Taylors for $170 and jeans starting at $298 to a new generation of downtowners—exactly the kind of punks who buy their clothes pre-ripped from high-end designers like the ones dressing the mannequins in the Met’s show… If you let it, the CBGB install can set off quite the intellectual spiral. On with the show. After the loo comes the first full-on gallery installation in the exhibition, and here the real fun begins. Mop-topped mannequins, their sea-blue hair teased into orgiastic spikey messes, gaze down at you in high-fashion ensembles by Junya Watanabe, Vivienne Westwood & Malcolm McLaren, Rodarte and Alexander McQueen, among others. The outfits are similar in theme—DIY Hardware is the room’s meme, but the clothing is curated and displayed to reveal over 40 years of fashion, starting with Vivienne Westwood in the 1970s and 1980s, through present day Rodarte. Just beyond the hardware display is another downto-the-smallest-detail reconstruction of Seditionaries, McClaren & Westwood’s iconic punk shop on Kings Road in London—which dressed the Sex Pistols and the rest of the London punk scene back in the late 1970s. Around the periphery of the DIY hardware display are several Westwood/McLaren band t-shirts and informal garb from this era. The third gallery houses an impressive collection of haute couture and fine eveningwear, with looks by Versace, Givenchy, Balenciaga, Moschino and two captivating Zandra Rhodes frocks (one in black, one in white) from her 1977 Spring/Summer collection—all displayed
ABOVE : ANN DEMEULEMEESTER (BELGIAN, BORN 1959), SPRING/SUMMER 2000. PHOTOGRAPH BY CATWALKING LEFT: PATTI SMITH, LATE 1970S. PHOTOGRAPH BY CAROLINE COON, CAMERA PRESS
in recessed columns above eye-level, not unlike how the saints in Catholic churches are positioned as stations of the cross. Maybe it was my imagination, but from their positions on high, the mannequins seemed to be screaming “WE ARE PUNK GODS,” in all their bedazzled silence… Or maybe I was just channelling Saint Jimmy, or even—Bad Religion. In any case, saintly references run rampant throughout the punk rock canon—Patti Smith’s faith, grounded in her Catholic upbringing (she is not Catholic, let’s be clear), is well documented and referenced throughout her songs, stories and poems. After the hall of gowns and tailored coats, the DIY Bricolage display was something of a surprise. Most of the clothes are made from everyday plastic materials and other unlikely “fabrics”—an imposing centerpiece by Gareth Pugh (from his Autumn-Winter 2013-14 runway) is a series of shredded black shopping bags that evoke a shaggy, dark army of black muppets—or dark underworld gods, if we’re sticking with the divinity theme. These dark creatures are surrounded by additional plastic, paper, and other altfashion looks by Maison Martin Margiela and others.
MAIN: KARL LAGERFELD (FRENCH, BORN HAMBURG, 1938) FOR HOUSE OF CHANEL (FRENCH, FOUNDED 1913) VOGUE, MARCH 2011 PHOTOGRAPH BY DAVID SIMS LEFT : SID VICIOUS, 1977 PHOTOGRAPH © DENNIS MORRIS ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
BELOW: GIANNI VERSACE (ITALIAN, FOUNDED 1978), SPRING/SUMMER 1994 VOGUE PARIS, FEBRUARY 1994, PHOTOGRAPH © SATOSHI SAÏKUSA LEFT: JOHN LYDON, 1976, PHOTOGRAPH BY RAY STEVENSON/REX USA
ABOVE: MAISON MARTIN MARGIELA (FOUNDED 1988), SPRING/SUMMER 2011 PHOTOGRAPH © NATHALIE SANCHEZ FOR MAISON MARTIN MARGIELA RIGHT: GARY WILSON, 1977. PHOTOGRAPH © ROBERTA BAYLEY
The room culminates in three powerful black ensembles in silk and hi-tech synthetics, meant to mimic plastics (bubble wrap and black garbage bags) by the late Alexander McQueen — truly a whirlwind of curatorial brilliance. Next, in the DIY Graffiti and Agitprop room, over-the-top Dolce & Gabbana gowns, printed and painted, with plenty of pouf to go around, were a highlight. The display feels like a finale piece—but after these dresses there are still a few more McQueens, Westwoods, and Moschinos—as if for good measure. Because, in punk, the point must be always taken to the nth degree—to be sure everything’s crystal clear, and after all, this is the Met. So, even after those extra McQueens, Westwoods and Moschinos, there is still one final gallery, DIY Destroy, a long, dark hall devoted to punk’s deconstructivism via shredded and torn fabric. “PUNK: Chaos to Couture” at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY, May 9-August 14, 2013.
Central St. Martins Fashion program is well known for developing some of the worldâ€™s most creative and influential fashion talent. We take a look at some of the styles produced by their recent graduating class. 80
IPHOTO STYLING BY DILARA
(this page and opposite page)
Printed Tracksuit Trousers by RICHARD
Orange Underground Creepers by TUGCAN
Black T-Shirt editorâ€™s own
Blue American Footbal Team Top editorâ€™s own Multi-Colored Checked Shirt by
White Skirt by
DILARA FINDIKOGLU Orange Cap by
Blue Short-Sleeved Jumper by
Multi-Colored Hoodie by TOPSHOP Jeans are vintage LEVIâ€™S 501 White Underground Creepers by TUGCAN
Green Football Vest & Grass Printed Satin Shorts by
White top with Blue Green Stripes by OBEY
Multi-Colored Felt Coat by 8=10 White Sports Bra by NIKE White Flared Trousers Bra by ZARA White Underground Creepers by TUGCAN
Black and Blue Beanie by VICTORIA
Black T-Shirt by ASHISH
Black and Lilac Fur Coat by
Flamingo Printed Tracksuit by RICHARD QUINN Black Cap by NEW ERA
Sneakers are vintage ADIDAS Model: Lorena Boehm
Seven new faces model the eclectic vintage style that’s become a recent trend.
Hair: Bianca Tuovi at CLM Make Up: Alex Babsky at Frank Digital Operator: Dimitri Ramazankhani Lighting Assist.: Edd Horder Videographer: Rollo Jackson Casting: Transmission Casting Models: Aleksandra Marczyk at Union, Alice Cornish at Elite, Bo Don and Josilyn Williams at Premier, Clarice Vitkauskas at Next, Larissa Hoffman at Viva London, & Tatiana Krasikova at Storm.
Blazer by BURBERRY Gold Shirt by MEADHAM
Jumper by CRAIG
Trousers by MARNI Earrings by PEBBLE
ALEK SAN DRA
Jacket by MARNI Jumper by M MISSONI Shirt by ROKIT Trousers by PAUL
SMITH Shoes by KENZO
Top by MARNI Trousers by M MISSONI Shirt from a selection at ROKIT All Jewelry by PEBBLE
Blazer from a selection at
Printed Shirt by M MISSONI Neck Tie by
PRADA Trousers by ACNE
COR NISH 92
Jacket by MEADHAM
KIRCHOFF Top by AMERICAN APPAREL Collar by SIMONE ROCHA Shorts by NANETTE LEPORE Tights by FALKE Shoes by BURBERRY All Jewelry by PEBBLE
Top by MARNI Shirt by AMERICAN
HOFF MAN 96
Jacket by MARNI Shirt from a selection at
Neck scarf by AMERICAN
APPAREL Sequin top by MEADHAM
DIANE VON FURSTENBERG Shoes by PAUL SMITH
Bangles by PEBBLE
VIT KAUS KAS
A PERFECT BALANCE Nektar De Stagni’s Interplay of Elements Words by Monica Uszerowicz Photos courtesy of Nektar De Stagni
If one were to look at a bullet list of designer Nektar De Stagni’s influences, materials, preferred elements, it’d read like a novel: she draws inspiration from nature, from duality and color and negative space and texture. For the unfocused, that’s a lot to work with. De Stagni, though, creates pieces that reflect the inherent qualities of their muses—but delicately, no matter how bright or elaborate their details. At the Grey Area Showroom launch in Spring 2012, a set of her necklaces drew—even as the room filled and withered then filled again—clusters of girls and their hushed, excited whispers over her designs: chunky, bejeweled, metallic things offset by colored velvet; crystal and silk-wrapped rope; white pearls with painted, smiling faces. Always at play in her work is this balance of opposites: bold and subdued, hard and soft, dramatic and playful. (A very public example: both Kim Kardashian and Terrence Koh are noted clients). The NDS collection was launched in Miami in 2008, and while De Stagni’s press has primarily focused on her jewelry designs, she’s more of a multifaceted wunderkind: her Miami showroom was the first of its kind in the city, and as such ended up serving as both a boutique and conceptual space in which to showcase other artists and designers. Though the shop has since closed, her pop-up stores have been displayed nationally and internationally in its stead (coming soon: the Hamptons); when her boutique re-opens, it’ll again function as a platform for other artists. (Another qualification to add to her resume: as with every good Miami-bred tastemaker, she’s also a DJ.) Mirroring the precious duality of her pieces themselves, De Stagni is an expert at toeing the line between art and design, function and play, and enabling both sides of that conceptual coin to interact. Displaying the craft of others in a way that’s communicative—thus fostering a discussion about what design really is—is as much her hallmark as her work.
We spoke with De Stagni, first in person and then over e-mail, to get an idea of the mental processes behind her craft.
on classic pearl jewelry. Can you speak about this interplay of elements? Is it more about balance or the creation of something new –or both?
MONICA USZEROWICZ - Since we met in
NDS - Yes, that’s it! I think balance is
New York, tell me about how you got involved with Grey Area.
MU - Tell me about your earliest memory
an essential quality of lasting design. It allows the object to contain a kind of complexity that keeps it interesting and fresh over time. As we develop new materials and forms, it is important to me to always reference its history, its roots, its context. I'm interested in the juxtaposition of those things. For example, Youtube and Ebay have been really inspiring to me: the richness and diversity of the sources, the vintage video clips in this new format, vintage objects photographed with a camera flash in contemporary interiors…
of creating, even as a child. How did you express yourself creatively in your youth?
MU - Yours was the first showroom in the
NEKTAR DI STAGNI - I met Kyle and
Manish [of Grey Area] at our store in Miami when they were looking to do a pop-up in Miami during Basel. We found some similarities between our projects since they also explore the "grey area" between art and function, so my collections were a great fit for their new showroom in Soho.
NDS - I've been designing since I was
a young child. I have piles of sketches from that age, as early as six years old. I remember spending a lot of time with Aubrey Beardsley and Erté. I grew up watching CNN's Style with Elsa Klensch, and would record the show on VHS tapes to watch again, not to mention MTV's House of Style. I've always paid very strong attention to the details; one early memory was gluing pennies to the soles on my little shoes so that I could at least mimic the sound of high heels, since heels did not come in my size. MU - You opened your store in 2001, but
tell me the full history of NDS—when did you start creating the pieces and formulating the idea for the company? NDS - I actually started my formal train-
ing in 2000 and 2001, taking sewing classes and reading every book on the industry I could find. By 2005, I started my first company and store—under a different name—which focused on readyto-wear. In 2008, when I felt ready, I launched NDS, my label and store under my own name, this time focusing on jewelry as a foundation for the company. We expect that as NDS grows, we will start making ready-to-wear again, and continue to expand our special editions. We are also excited to have begun to explore the introduction of NDS scents! MU - You've said that most of your work
"explores a tension between opposites." You do this with the materials you use (crystal, rope), the textures (hard, soft), the presentation (bold, subdued), the size (your Half and Half collection), and even in theme, such as your retake
Miami Design District. Can you talk about your relationship with Miami's local art world? NDS - I've known Miami-based artists
like Bhakti Baxter and Daniel Arsham since I was young, and of course I've been in a relationship with Martin Oppel for ten years! I am close with many others, like Hernan Bas, Christina Lei Rodriguez, and Jim Drain. We've shared studios and have had many conversations about art and design, and have collaborated on many occasions. Their work has explored and continues to explore the many interesting dimensions Miami has, beyond the clichés, and I feel they’ve developed a lasting and important language and aesthetic. I am also excited to know some great upand-coming talents in art like Emmett Moore, Sarah Newberry, and in music, Little Beard, Dracula, and many more. NDS is also a "concept space”—not just a shop for your label, but a space for projects by artists and designers. Can you talk about this "new presentation format," the hybrid of art and design? Your work itself seems to be a hybrid of these two concepts as well. I'm interested in advancing ideas in design. As a young designer and as a design company, I feel it is my job to explore that, and to try to always reconsider our ideas about design, what we consider design to be. It’s important to apply those concepts not just to the objects, but to the environments that I create as well. So pushing and experimenting is important, and operating as a "concept space," a "creative retail platform," facilitates this process.
It brings up questions like, what is a retail space? What is our relationship to objects? How can this relationship be symbiotic? How can it make our lives richer and fuller? And again, all the while never forgetting the history, the root, and the context. MU - What are you currently working on? NDS - I am working on a new collection
debuting in September, which will include Baroque, ornate, classic shapes, interjected by minimal metal forms: a square, a triangle. Also, partially-coated pearls, which will have bursts of cobalt and lavender. We are also planning pop-ups in New York in the city in the spring—and in the Hamptons during the summer—featuring new NDS styles and artist collaborations, just before the launch of the new collection.
PRECIOUS GHOST Dalila Pasotti’s Hollow Dancer Jewelry Words by Monica Uszerowicz Photos courtesy of Dalila Pasotti
On stage with her band, Other Crimes, Dalila Pasotti looks like a frontwoman from the days of yore, a mythical, goddess-like creature with a presence so intense she seems to be channeling some power from the depths of Hades. It is hard to refer to the Turin, Italy-born, New York City-based Pasotti without referencing Greek myths or other likewise imaginative, lucid concepts: Hollow Dancer, her handmade jewelry line, features collections with names like Antiope, the Amazon, and Laudanum, the opium tincture, and all of it is fit to be worn by legendary warriors. A former equestrian, both her leatherwares and gemstone-based pieces are constructed with the earthy, grounded precision that requires organic craftsmanship. Pasotti, a former natural sciences student who studied the same precious minerals in her pieces, is completely self-taught, originally creating jewelry to accompany her performances. Hollow Dancer, a name that implies ultimate fluidity and grace and transparency, has since expanded to include pieces made of found stones and precious metals in shapes reminiscent of the cosmos and the wild. Zola Jesus, a magic glimmer of a witch herself, wore her Astrolabe rings in 100
the video for “Seekir”. We spoke with Pasotti over the phone about the physical and metaphorical influences behind Hollow Dancer, and the line’s evolution. MONICA USZEROWICZ - You launched the
collection at Miami Art Basel in 2010, but when did you start making jewelry? DALILA PASOTTI - At Basel, I actually
showed a preview of what I ended up launching one year later. But I started making jewelry three or four years ago. It began very slowly. I was making pieces for myself; I’m a musician and wanted to wear them at my shows. Eventually a bunch of my friends started asking where I got them, and I actually started to take it a bit more seriously. I bought some better leather, learned how to stitch it. That’s what I started with—the leather. But my family and I have always had a passion for precious stones; it’s part of my history. I studied natural sciences in school, where I learned a lot about minerals. My cousin, who studied to be a gemologist, is in the diamond business, and she was very encouraging, pushing me, explaining everything. She was a big help.
MU - The name of your line, Hollow
Dancer, makes me think a dancer with no limitations, no organs. She can move freely through a space. DP - Yes, like a ghost, a dancing soul. I am
obsessed with ballet. To me, the image is a ballerina with a hollow shape, no organs, very light—a mix of strength, discipline, and grace with ethereal magic. It’s very descriptive of what I wanted to convey. MU - And the logo is a horsewoman, like
Lady Godiva. DP - Yeah, most of my collections are in-
spired by this image, especially the leather stuff. When I lived in Europe, I was a professional equestrian for over thirteen years. For me, the idea of an Amazon or a warrior woman on a horse is a very important part of my life. It’s a strong memory, an image of who I used to be. Horses have been part of my life for many years; I cannot detach from that world. A beautiful woman, very delicate, but on the horse—it is an idealistic figure. To me, the fairy tale princess is that, not Cinderella. Everything that inspires this line is connected to something very personal.
MU - You grew up in Turin, Italy, right? DP - Yes, in the French Alps. During my
teenage years, I traveled a lot. I actually lived in Belgium for horse competitions. MU - What was that like? Do you feel
your pieces reflect your youth and your personal geography as much as your imagination? DP - Of course! It is a very baroque place. I
grew up looking at beauty—antique structures, castles all over the hills. It is a very European, old-style, medieval town. That is what I really miss: romantic and dreamy streets, king’s castles. These things are very inspiring to me. It’s my origin, and it is completely alive in what I like. MU - I wanted to ask you about the names
of the collections. One of them is named after something that contains opium, Laudanum; another is named after the mythological Amazon, Antiope… DP - Antiope is the leatherware collection.
Antiope, the woman, was supposed to be the Queen of the Amazon. Even in my music, the Queen of the Amazon is very symbolic for me—again, the horsewoman image. The Laudanum collection is sculpture that I make entirely free-hand. Everything is a bit imperfect. I like that idea of self-creation. I think of people taking opium long ago to make things, when everything creative was fused. The Laudanum collection is not about perfection, but creation. MU - Are all your pieces hand-made,
besides the ones in Laudanum? DP - Every single piece is hand-made in
New York—even the fine jewelry, which is made with a mold. Nothing is machinemade, so that all of it can have a little twist. Obviously, when a human makes it, it will have character. There are slight differences that maybe you cannot even see, but there is life in each of them. MU - What about mass production, per-
haps for the future? DP - I’m working strictly by-order right
now. Eventually, I can make three or four copies of each, but I am never going to mass-produce. I am looking forward to making a one-of-a-kind collection next year—basically only one of each. That is going to allow me to use very special details, very special stones. MU - That seems very connected to your
I am never going to outsource. It’s not what’s behind the idea of my company.
MU - I looked at your blog and noticed that MU - I was looking at your work and
thinking about how certain stones are often given particular meanings. There is a metaphysical quality to them; they’re said to help with emotional problems, illnesses. Is that incorporated into your designs? DP - Always. Like I said, my family and I
have always been passionate about stones. The first time I walked into a stone dealer’s place with my cousin, it felt so powerful. Naturally, everybody has favorite stones, and mine are opals, though they are difficult to work with. They contain all the colors; they’re so intense. But every stone is special: the red of a ruby, the violet of an amethyst, the length of the light as it goes through them. They have natural, radio power. They can heal. Even with my metal jewelry, I’ll always add a twist with stones, because I truly believe in their power and their beauty. It’s not just a legend. MU - You’re working with something that’s
philosophy in general.
DP - Exactly. Minerals, stones—they’ve
DP - I want to keep it as close to a very old
been on the planet for thousands of years. They’re almost immortal. We will live and die, but they were here before us and
way of making jewelry as I possibly can.
probably will be for much longer. you posted pictures of opera singers… DP - To me, making art isn’t like, “I’m an
artist, I do this.” Whatever I am going to do—jewelry, music—is going to be a different expression of who I am. The technique is important, but whatever you do is an extension of who you are. To me, the way opera singers convey their emotions is very powerful. The beauty of something very perfect is unimportant; the strength of a piece of art or jewelry, a song, an interpretation, whatever—it comes from within you. The blog on my website is meant for people to understand what guides and inspires me, the things that catch my attention. MU - Right. Your music is like your
jewelry—dramatic and theatrical. You’re a real performer. DP - Yeah! Well, it’s not so much that I am
a true performer. It’s just that I’m able to escape the way you’re supposed to behave when you, say, go to the grocery store. When I perform, I can really let what I want to feel and be become free. I wear my jewelry, I write my music, I sing—all in that style. It is my own personal world, my own reality.
WRAPPED UP IN YOU Tess Giberson and her Wrap Collection Words by Monica Uszerowicz Photos by Kris Kinghorn
Tess Giberson is initially quiet. In person, she is soft-spoken and subdued; likewise, her collections are as neutral-colored and delicate as she is, with more emphasis on craftsmanship than on showmanship. As in a subtly nuanced painting or film, there is enough visual calm to allow for a slow layering of elements that build on top of each other to dramatic effect. Giberson is a master of this skill: her pieces are designed to reveal, hide, reveal again; knit crochets, artfully torn silks, a loose and elongated silhouette atop something more form-fitting—each feature is exquisitely-tailored, every texture seemingly chosen to simultaneously blend with and stand apart from each other. The pieces contain a strength and high-concept ideology that belies the sumptuous flow of the fabrics. It’s no surprise, then, that Giberson draws attention from the worlds of both fashion and art and design. A former sweater designer for Calvin Klein and design director at TSE, the RISD graduate launched her first collection in 2001, and its mix of abstract design and simplicity earned her accolades from and showings at the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art, the Taka Ishii Gallery in Yoko, and the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum. A visual artist herself, blurring the line between function and concept and aesthetics and wearability, she’s a frequent collaborator with musicians and other artists. Alia Raza directed the video for her Fall 2011 collection; it featured Kim Gordon of Sonic Youth clad in Tess Giberson, moving through a forest like a sorceress, becoming part of the landscape. One of the best parts about Giberson’s works is their ability to exist as multi-faceted projects, stunning combinations of music and design. When all its components were in effect, the setting for Wrap, her Fall 2012 collection, purveyed the same feeling a temple might: lighting was warm, music reverberating. Voices echoed. The wooden X-shaped structures studding the runway—a collaborative effort between Giberson and her husband Jon Widman and built by Max Wang, with whom Giberson has constructed her sets for the past three seasons—loomed like soothing figures under which one could pray. Multimedia artist and musician Sahra Motalebi composed the show’s soundtrack, a set of intense polyrhythmic soundscapes that harmonize and de-harmonized her own vocals. Combined with the dark, slinky realism of the collection, the result was beautifully eerie. We were fortunate enough to ask her about both Wrap, how each collection flows together, and her personal history.
collection handmade by you?
She’s worked with me for years, since my original collection—she and I are very in sync about the way things are made. She works with me a lot on things that are made by hand. It was knit, and then I crocheted them together. We’ve worked together for so long that it merges together. The whole thing with the collection is keeping this hand element, although the majority of the collection contains tailoring—the sweaters, the dresses, things that are not made by me that are more about the concept, the draping, that part of it. But I always like to have something that’s literally made by hand in the collection. It’s just a really nice balance to have. It’s me; that’s what it’s about.
TG - Yes, there were two crochet pieces.
MU - You do a lot of collaborations. I
MONICA USZEROWICZ - Could you tell
MU - I feel like your pieces have that ele-
me about your earliest memory of creating something, even as a child?
ment: a strong emphasis on the fabric, crocheting. Do you think you’ve been influenced by that?
TESS GIBERSON - I can’t actually remem-
ber. My parents both had studios at home and when I was little, I was always making things. That was just normal for us. We did projects. MU - Your parents were artists, too,
right? What did they do? TG - My father’s a glass-blower. And my
mom has always worked with fiber. She used to make collages out of fabric. For a while, she was working with crochet, making hats, jackets, slippers. She was actually making the fabrics, dyeing them—it was more about the fabrics than the clothing. And she’s constantly painting, drawing.
TG - Definitely. It’s from the way that I
grew up; it’s so much a part of me—the emphasis on the hand, having more of a personal touch on the pieces, to really have more meaning put into it. I love things made by hand. I mean, it’s not realistic that every single thing is made by hand, but where it’s originally coming from can be about working from that point. MU - Were some of the pieces in the new
That first tank on the runway was one of them. Kaori Yamazaki and I made that.
feel like it’s a really important part of your work. You collaborate with Jon
[Widman, visual artist and Giberson’s husband], with Kaori, with musicians TG - I’ve always collaborated. I think it
comes from when I was at RISD, where I went to college. They didn’t even call my major Fashion there; it was Apparel Design. It was just the way we worked back then—you’re always talking about ideas with everyone else, with painting, with architecture, with graphic design. It was about this exchange of ideas. Most of our friends are artists or in design. It’s just a very natural thing for me to be exchanging ideas. When I work, it adds so much more to it. I’ve done this collaborative process since the very beginning. Both my sisters are artists, and I’ve done a lot of collaboration with my younger sister, Petrova. Jon and I work very closely together, too. With every collection, we start talking about it together. When I actually design, I work on my own, but when I’m working on the show, or a video, I like to bring other people into it.
I like to build off of one collection to another. We’ll always take something, turn it around, cut it up. It’s like we’re literally taking pieces from one collection and turning them into new forms. It’s nice to have a string that goes through the work, through the seasons. MU - So while you work on one collec-
tion, you’ll already be thinking of the following one. TG - A lot of times one concept turns into
or feeds off another. MU - Her work makes me think of those MU - How did Wrap follow the preced-
figa charms, the clenched fist with a finger pointing to repel negativity
TG - I’d done a series. In Fall 2011, it was
TG - Yeah, the weight of this piece has a
Collage. And then from that, it was just natural to go to Decollage [Spring 2012], going from one to the other, building up and taking down. As I was working on Decollage, we just started thinking of wrapping. I started thinking about how I would actually show wrapping in a presentation—covering things.
feeling of protection.
MU - Yeah, I felt like your show was a
collaborative, multimedia piece. It had a whole feeling. It wasn’t just about the clothing.
works with her, too, so there was already a connection. We didn’t actually meet until December, but we connected very quickly. We used her jewelry in the spring show, but we had just stopped in the store, borrowed stuff. But this line was specifically made for the collection. It was great working with her. Again, it was a total collaborative process. I wanted to do these harness pieces, but in a more delicate way, so she came up with some initial ideas. She also did this piece I’m wearing—this protective jewelry.
MU - Was this collection influenced by
MU - I read one of your old interviews,
and in it you said that a lot of your collections reflect what you’re feeling. Do you still feel like that? I find your pieces to be emotive. They drape the body in a way that’s sensuous, but they end up appearing strong. It’s a little masculine, a little feminine. There’s more than just a visual aspect to your pieces. They feel a certain way.
TG - Well, it wasn’t completely influenced TG - Yeah, there are so many tools to use
when you’re doing a show. I try to use as many as possible because I want to make an environment. It’s always developed in a more abstracted way. With the structures, I wanted to refer back to wrapping and wrapping lines, but the way they moved through the space was more of an abstraction of that idea. It was the same with the music. Sahra Motalebi also did the music for the Spring 2012 video, and she was great to work with. I just talked about what the concept was, and she totally worked with that idea of wrapping. She focused on the wrapping of the music and the way that there was a build-up in the layers of her voice. That’s always important. I don’t want to just have music and a DJ. It has to be music that’s made for the show, that’s made around the idea. I try to consider everything when I’m working. MU - Do you find yourself less inspired by
current trends in fashion than you are by the people around you?
by him. When I started thinking about wrapping, I was just looking at things that were wrapped, so I looked at some of the objects he used to cover. I’ve always loved the installations, the environmental pieces, but it was more about looking at the shapes, the covering of ordinary objects, the lines that are made with the wrapping. I just love those. MU - I wanted you to talk about your
process in general—what happens after you think of the word that inspires your collections? TG - I just start with the words, start
thinking about what it really is—words like cover, wrap, layer, tie, bind. I brainstorm and see where that goes. Then I think, “What kind of things will I do with the clothing?” Will I cover with leather, with tulle? With Wrap, I was thinking about different ways to cover, tie, bind, and how to apply these ideas to the collection. Then I go to the tangible part—what kind of fabrics to use—and then go straight into designing.
TG - Yeah, I focus on what I’m doing. Be-
ing in New York, you have to really focus. It has to be me, my voice. You want to be aware—we’re all part of the same world, and I want to be aware of what other people are doing, but without it affecting my work. There’s always that awareness, but it’s so important to focus on the evolution of my own pieces and to refer more to my own previous seasons.
MU - How did you get involved with Jill
Platner [the jewelry designer for the Fall 2012 collection]? TG - She is actually a neighbor of our
store on Crosby Street. I’ve known of her work, because a lot of people who’ve been supporting my work are also friends with her. My P.R. agency
TG - Yes, I am definitely making clothing
for me, that I want to wear at this time in my life. It’s about presenting myself as being strong and comfortable. There’s a femininity to it, but it’s very strong; there’s nothing girly about the clothing. You want to feel sexy, but in a very empowered way. There’s a big difference between now and when I did my collection the first time. I was in a totally different stage of my life, before having kids. That was very important, when I did that first collection. What I’m doing now is creative, but it’s also a business. Before, it was just about the creative part, which is important, and that’s why I did it before having kids. [Laughs] At a certain point, you realize, you can’t keep going in just that one direction. MU - You probably can’t go into too
much, but what are you thinking about right now? TG - Right after the show, there isn’t
any time off, because you go right into market, and you have to just work on the next collection. But it’s good. It’s always hard right after you work so much and then it’s over. In a way, it’s great to have something that presses you to keep going immediately. Otherwise, there can be a real emotional letdown once you finish something major and think, “What do I do?” I try to see it at that way—let’s make it more positive.
David Lerner and Fashion’s Political Activism Words by Claire Hanan Photo by Charlie Rubin
You might recognize the names David Lerner, the fashion designer, and Alex Marshall, the art advisor, if you happen to run in Manhattan’s creative circles. Where they wouldn’t be recognized is Washington, D.C., the land of law and monochromatic suits. But that’s exactly where their recent aspirations lie and have materialized in a fundraising group called New Political Generation. Wholeheartedly big “D” Democratic, the purpose of the group is to promote political activism among young people so they might have more control over the future they inherit. In its first event, the group raised more than $45,000 for New York Senator Kristen Gillibrand’s 2012 reelection campaign. Gillibrand replaced Senator Hilary Clinton as a New York Senator when Clinton was appointed to serve as Secretary of State. Comprised of people under 35 years old from a slew of New York’s creative industries, Lerner and Marshall hope the group will continue to fundraise for Democratic senators, and they’re also getting behind New York City mayoral candidate Christine Quinn. And they’re not shy about the issue closest to their hearts: gay and lesbian rights. Lerner classifies this as the current generation’s civil rights battle, and the issue has become paramount in their support of candidates. But it’s not only social justice that spins their wheels.
As small business owners the duo say they want to shift public attention away from the misdeeds of Wall Street, instead focusing on promoting growth for small businesses. The y agree that microlending viable approach to this not-quite-yet-recovering economy, which would provide manageable loans to new businesses who are trying to get a foot in the door. And to them, it’s personal. When Lerner began his company in 2008, he says he couldn’t obtain a loan from any bank because he wasn’t able to provide collateral in the form of home ownership. But despite being turned down for that starter loan, his company has realized profits for four years and employs 15 people. He’s especially proud of the fact that every aspect bearing his name is produced in this country. And he can only wonder today what kind of doors a loan of $50,000 would have opened then. Lerner and Marshall’s enthusiasm for New Political Generation, and perhaps a bit of idealism, is palpable. “In the last couple years, we’ve been saying to each other that we need to stop complaining and start doing something,” Marshall says. In fact, they see their influential creative positions as something that folds seamlessly into their political goals. The point of the campaign, Marshall says, is to get people involved. “We’re just trying to lead by example.”
Where You’ve Seen Them Lerner is known for his edgy sportswear, popular among the downtown set. His collections are anchored by the thick, pliable leggings with zipper, leather or sheer-panel detailing that supremely enhance the oft-ogled derriere. His on-trend designs play with asymmetrical hemlines in jersey and silk – the kind of casual cocktail wear that looks best with a pair of strappy sandals in bondage black. Marshall, who met Lerner while in school at Syracuse, used his art expertise that had long been cultivated by his family to start a consultancy, Alex Marshall Fine Art. As an early collector of works by the Bowery School artists like Dan Colen and Nate Lowman, Marshall’s apartment feels more like a homey gallery flooded with sunlight and contemporary installations. Like that six-foot inflatable gold butt plug in the corner of his living room by artist Paul McCarthy. Shorts by David Lerner Styling by Megan Averbuch Makeup by Candace Henderson Model - Caitlin Lyon @ Fenton Moon
STORIES FROM THE AVANT-GARDE An Afternoon Conversation Between Christophe de Menil and Mick Rock.
Introduction by Bobby Mozumder. Photo by Nico Iliev and courtesy of Christophe de Menil and Mick Rock
If there is a modern version of the famous House of Medici family, it would be the de Menil’s. Starting with John and Dominque de Menil’s inheritance of the Schlumberger oil fortune, the family has amassed over 16,000 contemporary and antique works of art with the collection renowned for its sensual and spiritual character. Their spiritual gene extended throughout the family to give birth to some cutting-edge creatives of their own, including the late artist Dash Snow and his brother Max Snow. After John and Dominique de Menil’s passing, the family’s spiritual heart largely transferred to their eldest daughter Christophe. Christophe’s own taste in modern art developed as a teenager when her parents introduced her to Father Marie-Alain Couturier, a well known arts editor and an advocate of incorporating modern art into the Catholic church. This introduction set the stage for a fascinating life journey that involves all major artists of the 20th century: from groundbreaking musician John Cage, to the great Andy Warhol, and every avant-garde creative person in between. Christophe’s own creativity developed through her personal fashion and jewelry works. And she was the ultimate champion of her grandson’s Dash’s interests in the arts with the kind of love that only a grandmother could provide. Around the same time, photographer Mick Rock produced some of rock-and-roll’s most iconic imagery. Widely known as “The Man Who Shot The 70’s,” Rock’s initial studies in modern languages at University of Cambridge led him to become friends with Pink Floyd’s founding member Syd Barrett. They collaborated to produce Barrett’s first album cover, and from there, Rock become David Bowie’s official photographer. This caused his career to skyrocket, where he went on to photograph the birth of punk in the 70’s and then on to a long career photographing the worlds great musical talent. Although de Menil and Rock may have been contemporaries and shared common interests and acquaintances, their paths have never crossed.. until now. FutureClaw was fortunate enough to put these two avant-garde legends together for the first time in a recorded afternoon conversation. We listen as they discuss their life’s works, experiences, philosophies, associates, and family.
CHRISTOPHE DE MENIL - What is this? MICK ROCK - What’s what? On his fore-
head? That’s a golden circle. CM - So, you mean just paint? Paintings
How much initiative do you have in that position? At which point do you feel strong enough to strike out?
too, he used mostly French. MR - Well the Brits also had their romanCM - No just in general.
MR - It is. It’s literally just makeup.
MR - Because I’ve never assisted anybody
David was very good at putting out symbols. You attach whatever meaning you want. It’s like an artist to do that. He doesn’t tell you what to think, he provokes you with your own thoughts.
in my life. I picked up a camera and just went for it and that was it. I wouldn’t know how to assist. But, I mean, I have assistants.
CM - An artist, they have their own
It’s like when they ask on becoming a photographer.. I mean, I don’t really know. Mine was more accidental and timing. I was studying modern language and literature at Cambridge University.
MR - For me, creativity is mostly therapy.
It’s the best therapy in the world. CM - It’s like breathing, almost. MR - Yep. And I do a lot of breathing be-
cause I do a lot of yoga. Every morning I do an hours workout that involves 10 minute headstands, and at then the end of it, a chant. And then I use my Brain Machine. CM - Can you talk about the transition
from going to being someone’s assistant?
CM - He could have used German poets
MR - Are you talking about me?
trajectory that is from here to there, or whatever
especially in that hippy period.
tic poets as well, in Coleridge. He was in an opium trance when he wrote Kubla Khan. And certainly Shelley and Keats and company were up to no good. They were the particular ones that intrigued me when I read about them. Later on, when I got into the visual thing, I got more interested in Paris in the 20’s and 30’s. And then Man Ray, for me of course, was the most important artist, because he was the artist that worked in the photographic medium. CM - He was so playful, too.
CM - What languages? MR - He was everything, because he did MR - Mostly French and German. So all
I did was read about drugs and poets Verlaine & Rimbaud. CM - So sad about Rimbaud and Ver-
laine, he’s the one I really liked. MR - Yes they all got high and they all
produced great work. When I was 17 or 18 I thought that was fascinating,
everything. That was the other thing I liked about him, because sometimes I do photo art as well. People sometimes say to me “Mick you do too many things.” But I say “Well, I do this rock-and-roll photography thing, but I do all kinds of things, because I like it.”
SEAWEED NECKLACE BY CHRISTOPHE DE MENIL
CM - Well Dash loved Rimbaud &
in here? Or is that based on the look?
to close it.
CM - No. From the seaweed they make
MR - This is very cool, though.
wax, and then I look at the wax, and how it looks.
CM - That’s the ring, and this is a cross.
Verlaine. MR - They’re easy people to love, because
they took so many freakin’ drugs, if you read about them.
MR - That is very fabulous. CM - You mean they’re pickled too much. CM - That is wonderful seaweed. MR - Well, I’m saying they produce great
art, but nevertheless, the means to it may be sometimes a little too rock-and-roll. Nevertheless, their work stands.
MR - Yes it’s very expressive, because of
the sea makes all kinds of things. CM - There’s two kinds - this kind which
CM - Well I was very interested in poets,
because of the whole John Cage & Rauschenberg group of people.. Merce dancing. MR - (looking at Chrisophe’s jewelry) Oh
is flat, like flat fingers, and there’s another kind, which I like a lot, which is hard to find in New York. I don’t know its name, but it is made with big olives. Along the chain, there are little tiny leaflets, and then big olives.
that’s fabulous. It’s like seaweed?
CM - It is seaweed! You’re so good to
know! It’s Wrack, it’s the most common seaweed on the eastern seaboard. I got some because I love it. I made this earring, too. And then I was putting it on my hand, but I didn’t know how to close it. This part was holding me up, so I put it in the freezer for three years. MR - You mean there’s actually seaweed
I want to use that too, but I keep having to go to Balthazar to get some more. That’s the only place I know that has any, and they won’t give it to me, so I said, “Come on, you have to give it to me,” because I really, really need it, because you lose a sense of the balance. How long between olives? Is it always the same? Is it threes? Or what? Here we are, unfroze the first Wrack seaweed that I had frozen, and we played with it trying to figure out how
You know why a cross is important to me? Because the cross is the origin of the passport. I’ll show you how it works. (grabs paper and starts to draw) Let’s say this is you.. your grandfather, male ancestors. would be there. Your son, male son, mother, your grandmother, your daughter. If you take out the cross, what you end up with is the Tartan, which people think is just the British Isles. You recognize this, right? MR - Yeah. CM - It’s all over. It exists in Indonesia.
In Japan they have a lot of fabrics based on that. And of course if you have an extra grandfather or something, you’ll have a pink line here or an orange line there. There are many variations. I used to go on walks against the death penalty, and I said to the woman who’s the head of it, Anna, “Anna, why do you wear that instrument of torture around your neck”, the Christ on the cross. Well, Christ was first one of these emblems, and you have to erase Christ
or whomever you consider a bad person. Not only just them, but everything, all their connections. That’s why it became important. It’s not just the person, but all their ramifications.
MR - Wow that’s fantastic.
La Vue, that was a 17th century king’s architect. My history is very bad.
CM - Who did the hairstyle?
So I thought, well I saw this cross like this at the Met, in the gold room, and I’ve been looking for a cross for a long time. It comes from Columbia, South America. You know something funny is that the Met said to me? I said “Could you tell me about your cross?” And they said “It’s not a cross.” and I said “How come?” “Well because it was made previous to the arrival of the Spaniards on the South American continent.” And I said it didn’t matter, it’s universal. The cross is universal.
MR - You were exposed by this gentle-
on other things.
man when very young to great works of art. That’s marvelous.
CM - It’s beautiful.
CM - There was this big salt factory, west
MR - I came up with the idea of my Me-
MR - It’s a very primal thing. CM - But they refuse to talk about it
because I was calling it a cross. MR - Yes because Christianity got a grip
of it and made it theirs. But the cross seems to be a symbol since the beginning of time. CM - .. of who I am. It’s my passport.
Where do I belong? You look around, I belong in this village, and a part in this village. And of course it was much clearer a couple of generations ago when people didn’t move around so much. Anyways that’s why I felt.. it doesn’t mean that I’m a Christian. MR - No. I like going to Catholic
Churches. I love going to any churches that are colorful, because I love the iconography. If you think about Catholic churches, they are the most colorful. I’m not a Catholic, and my inclinations are much more Hindu and Buddhist. But I can still go and enjoy it as a piece of art. So you’re not celebrating religion when you’re doing your process, you’re celebrating something much more union, more primal. CM - A man who my parents gave me to
be sort of my guide, was a Dominican priest from a famous convent in Paris, but I thought, when I was 18, I thought I don’t want this, I don’t want no priest. I was trying to move away from Catholicism really then. But he was so amazing. He was never familiar. He treated me with great respect. He took me to meet Matisse. He took me to meet Corbusier. I don’t know how he knew that I was really interested in architecture. I can’t remember how we talked about it. And so he took me to see Corbusier. He took me to see the abbey in Marseille.
CM - He took me to see all the works of
of Lyon. I just thought it was beautiful, with fields of tall grass when we arrived there. Then there was this little rotunda in Paris. He took me to see all these things. Then he took me to see Matisse. He took me to see Léger. When somebody was asking him, “Why can’t you make your women with hair?” because sometimes he didn’t, and Léger said “I just can’t.” That’s all. You must feel that sometimes, when somebody asks you to do something, and you think it’s not how you feel about it? MR - No. CM - It doesn’t happen to you? MR - No, no, no. It doesn’t happen like
that. I’m either going to do it or not going to do it. But I’m pretty straight, I’ve got a bit in my teeth, and if you throw up a suggestion, I’ll probably absorb it to some degree, if I think it has some value. If it doesn’t, I’ll explain that maybe that’s not going to help, and to trust me, but I’ll tell you what, let me finish what I’m doing, and I’ll see what I can do with that right there, and let me finish my trajectory first.
I always wanted to get a particular picture.
MR - Wendy it was. She works with me
dusa. I was beguiled by filth. Nowadays it might be a bit out-of-date, because all the kids are using digital cameras, but that was my Medusa. I wanted it to be glam-punk, because that was where my sensibilities probably still lies in a way. That was what it was going to be, glampunk. It was going to be the cover of my first book I was planning but didn’t happen. It’s in the show of course, and I put it in my show. CM - Yes I saw that. MR - It has a certain symbolic value for
me. ... CM - I was very attracted to what John
Cage was into. MR - He must have worked very organi-
cally, probably a little bit of math thrown in somewhere right? CM - A bit of mess? MR - Math. He may have done speed, but
CM - That’s very nice.
I don’t know. Math. Maybe there was some mathematical stuff in there that’s buried as well. Sometimes musicians like to slightly mathematically construct the skeleton.
MR - Because here, this where I am now
in the process, but we’re going through a process. The image may lay further down the road in this trajectory, just let me do it. But I’ll be open to someones idea. If you’re taking pictures it’s slightly different, especially if you’re doing portraits. You kind of have to give them the feeling that you’re open. Most of these people don’t have suggestions. If I’m taking a picture I want you to love it. I don’t give a damn what the magazine or record label says, but do you love it? If you love it, then I’m done, and the rest of them could fall in line. But I want to please you. If I’m doing certain other things, then I’m not trying to please the subject. Say in the case of this one (points to photo), it’s the totality of the image that I want. That happens to be my wife in her earlier years, but that wasn’t the issue because
CM - Because he liked to challenge him-
self saying “I can play.” And I love that. I can play. I can do it without paper. I can draw without anything. Let’s get started. MR - But getting on with it is the impor-
tant thing. CM - So I paid him a lot of attention, and
all this is his work. This is Dash. I’m glad you knew about Dash. MR - Oh, yah, of course.
You know, he went the way, unfortunately, I’m sure some of his rock-and-roll heroes. You know, like Hendrix, Morri-
son, Kurt Cobain. It’s a trajectory down which is not a self-destructive thing, it’s an experimental thing.
focus and things like that, it wasn’t that complicated.
MR - He must have said, “Bug them I’m
CM - You mean because of digital cam-
CM - No because I saw him once at a
It’s like with me, I might have died 15 years ago, but that was an accumulative thing. It wasn’t an overdose, it was an accumulative thing with me. I was wildly experimental, but not with opiates or alcohol, more like psychedelics or stimulants.
eras you don’t need to..
CM - Well what I wanted to say about
MR - It’s so uncomplicated. I’ve seen
pictures that monkeys have taken, really good ones. If you get the buggers to sign it they’d probably be worth a lot of money. John..
CM - Dash and I didn’t agree with John
Cage. He was a little leery, because he was not his generation. I’m two generations beyond him.
MR - A master, John Cage.
MR - Well he was very experimental,
MR - Well Lou (Reed) and David (Bowie)
Dash. He would use any element to make art. So, he was very of the modern breed.
CM - When all these works of his...
were always intrigued by John Cage, too. CM - Lou and David too?
I’m sure he’s got a body of work that stands up already on his own. Like the Basquiats of the world, the work lives on. CM - I never really talked to him about
John Cage, because there was no point. I just knew he wasn’t interested.
MR - I think so, yeah. CM - You know, he was so booed. I
remember being at concerts at Paris and New York where people would say “Boo!” MR - Well he didn’t sound like anything
MR - He probably felt John Cage was a
they were familiar with.
little cerebral, because Dash was obviously an intuitive artist. He may have been intellectually very bright...
CM - But you don’t need that. You just
CM - He was bright.
MR - You and I know that, but we have
MR - But that wasn’t where his art came
creative spirits. We’re like, fuck it, this is different. That’s already good, because it’s different.
from. My creativity does not come from my intellect, albeit that I’ve had a classical English education. It’s a feeling, it’s a visceral thing. I mean, your intellect plays a role in organizing, because you have to get a bit organized in photography. These guys have to get their equipment set up, get their cameras loaded, do that..
need to see how does it feel.
CM - Well it’s fresh. I remember being
at a concert hall in Paris with Xanakis, which you might like very much, and Lukas Foss, and they were discussing after the concert about the shortcomings of John Cage, and he’s not a musician, he’s a thinker or something. I was so enraged, I yelled from the balcony “No Lukas, you can’t say that!” It was just too silly.
going to do it anyways, up yours! concert in New York and he was booed a lot, and then he just went through the form of bowing anyways, and I thought how does this man have this clarity to do that? MR - Because he respected that they paid
their money or whatever they’e done, and that was their privilege to boo. CM - I just adored the man and his music,
first of all. To say heck with you, I can make music with this paper. I’m going to wriggle it in such a way that I can make music. I can make music with two rocks or give me anything you want. Well that was the attitude with John. I can make music with seashells, and water in the seashells, and the way I rock them, well that would be the music. MR - He was so far ahead of his time
because nowadays, because of all the computers, it’s almost quite easy to take the sound of a river, and fuck around with it and make a sound, but he was doing it without all that, without the benefit of that. But he was an artist, I mean more than anything. John Cage is a monstrously important artist, he’s a pure artist. I think even Picasso got booed in some sense. Which is how he is. “They booed Picasso?” CM - Well Picasso was a mean bastard. MR - Well they were booing his art, not
John was a remarkable musician. I never talked to Dash about it.
him. One thing that one learns in life is that great artists are not always fabulous people. Sometimes they are. But it’s a bit like the rest of life. People come in all walks. Some artists are not so fabulous, they’re far from going into the naming of anybody. But some artists are fabulous in all senses. But who’s the greater artist? It’s got nothing to do with personality. Personality is here, the work is here. As long as I’m not going having to go home with you, I don’t give a fuck.
lecture, some of the first things I say is “Listen, get the ball on the ground, a monkey can take a picture.” And they have been known to, and some of them can take a really good pictures. So let’s clear all the fuzz out of the way, and we can get on with it.
MR - He broke ground. He influenced
CM - Oh, ok, I like that.
Photography is not complicated. It’s all down to the individual eye. And even when it was a bit more complicated, because you have to load film, and
MR - Well he must have liked it as well.
CM - It was easy, it was obvious. (to crew)
With all respect, guys.
MR - Oh photography, when I give a
loads of people. A lot of people in rock may not even be aware of how much that he influenced them. CM - I hope he knew that. I don’t know
how he withstood so much opposition.
CM - No!
MR - All I care about is the art. It’s even
if I’m photographing you, I don’t care, I’m just taking a picture. I’m not going home with them. They’ll be fine with me. Just bring them, plunk them, it will happen, because they’ll know, for the moment, for the period of time that I’m taking their photograph, that I am in a sense, in love with them. It’s like being an uptown hooker. Whether I do it for
money or free, if you’re in front of my camera I’m in love with you. Once it’s over, I might not be in love with you, and look at other pictures.
first, and I drew it and drew it and drew it, until I figured I have to feel like I’m swimming like this seaweed. Kelp! Kelp is what I’m trying to think.
CM - I feel the same way. MR - You’re in love with this?
You become what you think you’re in love with.
CM - Yes. I become that thing.
MR - What you’re obsessed with. It
comes out an obsession. I remember feeling that way, especially about a seaweed. A very big.. what is it called, from the deep sea, it’s wider, with ruffled edges.
CM - It comes out what you’re saying in
love, is close to, very close to. MR - What you’re seeing is an obsession.
MR - Mollusks and things like that? I
ocean. Very wide.
It’s that kind of obsession. The beauty of it is that there’s no complication. You can just love it, and do it. And have the complications of romantic love, and the changes of mood.
MR - I know when you see a film on the
CM - Anyways what those guys are say-
deep ocean, you’re like “my God, there’s so much amazing..” It’s not only amazing stuff, it’s unbelievable amounts of it, and it’s all different. I can barely swim, so I’m never going to go down, but I like to watch it on film.
ing, Rauschenberg, too. He didn’t really say, but he agreed with John, is that, what they loved about nature is their manner of operation, the way it moves and transforms.
don’t know. CM - It’s a kind of seaweed from the deep
MR - I’ve photographed a lot of trees. I CM - I like to watch it as much as I can.
I used this seaweed, yarns of it, because I used it for a dress. Like here’s the end of the seaweed, went over the shoulder, and back down. To draw this like this, I felt I had to become the seaweed. I put it on a banister, with fabric and paper
like trees, because there’s so much character. I mean, some have more character than other ones. But, if I’m relaxing, I’m going to walk in a space with trees and go and photograph. Because it’s all there, and you can explore all the textures, and the gestures. Trees do amazing things.
KATE MOSS FROM MICK ROCK:THE LEGEND SERIES
CM - I’ve wanted to draw trees along
central park, but I’m scared. MR - You think the trees might not like
it? (laughs) CM - No, no, it’s because I don’t really
know how to draw. I just have to follow what I can see, and so I am scared, but I keep getting closer and closer. MR - Take photos. Then you can bring
them home. When you can bring them home then you can explore them. It’s a bit like stealing. You don’t steal bits of nature. Grab grab grab, and bring them. CM - It’s ok, they don’t mind. MR - You’re not going to tell anybody.
You’re going to bring it home. But because you took the picture, you own the image. If I took a picture of Notre Dame, I actually own that reflection of Notre Dame. I can sign it Mick Rock. Photographers have been doing it for years. French photographers take pictures of Notre Dame, and they sign it. Because in a sense, they own it. Once you photograph it, you own the photograph. CM - You’re just closer. But otherwise
there’s just too many fluctuations in nature.
obviously infatuated with her, because she let him take any kind of pictures he wanted to.
MR - Yeah photography is very concrete.
MR - You tell him this is what I want, this
Bingo - there’s the picture. However elusive the image may be, you can still get a grip of it. And in this day and age with computers, then you can bugger about the stuff.
is what I’m giving you money to do. If you want him to do it, do it. My tech guy will try whatever I want. If he thinks there’s limitations, he’ll tell me, but he’ll try to keep me happy.
CM - It’s funny because I have refused to
CM - But most people don’t understand.
CM - You tell him what to do.
They think I want something, like anything. It’s very often that they’re understanding is so shallow that I don’t like it. I have to throw it out. I have to say “No, no. I don’t mean that. I want this. I don’t want to go there.”
MR - I am an art director. I tell him do
MR - But that’s sometimes that’s the
this do that, then he shows me things.
process you have to go through.
CM - I don’t know.
CM - How does that make you feel, more
CM - To keep correcting.
MR - Yah it was, that was his real name.
MR - My secret is that I don’t actually do
the photos. I have my tech guys.
comfortable or closer? MR - Yes, it’s just like editing a film. MR - Well when I do my collages, I do
everything. I do the things. I take the photograph. I don’t want to be an expert on a computer. I can do what I need to do. I have my tech guys do this, they start playing around with this, play there or with that, and see what happens. Because something is going to come up anyways and I’m not letting go until it does. CM - Do you repeat and try? MR - Well I just push him around in dif-
ferent directions, we try different things around. But I do it nicely, because he’s a nice guy.
... MR - Oh it’s a belt buckle. But it’s very
cool. CM - But it’s just pure. I almost felt like a
thief taking it, because I didn’t make it. MR - Well you are, you’re like me. I say
that. So I take your photograph, I’m slightly vampiric, sucking a bit of your blood get to you. But you are, you’re a bit like thieves in the night. We’re artists. CM - It’s like breathing.
CM - Of course. Do you think you have
MR - Picasso and Man Ray weren’t
more freedom if you do it through somebody? Because I think I have more freedom. You see this basket back there? It’s filled with little tiny.. how do you say, modules? Little tiny tryouts of certain earrings I want to make. I do it because my jewelry doesn’t understand my drawings. I do it with hard paper, and then I do it in copper. I cut out sheets of copper. And at some point I didn’t have the courage to do it.
thieves in the night? They were. CM - We can’t talk about Picasso, I really
don’t like him. MR - I love some of the art. I love Man
Ray, though. We also had the same initials. Although he was a little guy from Philadelphia, and I’m a lanky guy from London. But once I found him out, then he confirmed a lot of my instinctive things with photography.
MR - You serve up the goods, like I serve
up the goods. I serve up all the imagery. We’re just buggering out with it. You serve that up. CM - But that’s what I give him.
I love Le Violon d’Ingres because everyone knows the image. And then many years you find out that the sign, he laid it on it. He got the photograph. It wasn’t on her body. He put it on afterward. It was a little bit of art.
long as he does what you tell him to do it’s fine. CM - That’s so difficult.
CM - It’s brilliant. MR - My name, Mick Rock, is my name. I
didn’t have to make it up. His was a vault of the imagination to do that. Because no one was ever called Man Ray. From the name, from a very early age, even though I didn’t know what he did, it was the name, so surreal. CM - You found that out when you were
in Cambridge? MR - Most people have heard of Man
Ray, you find in the world, but not everybody’s sure of what he’s done, and if they do know what he’s done, most people know Le Violon d’Ingres. He was doing stuff all the time. There were so many books out with all these images. Of course he had to go to Paris to flower, but of course Paris was the center of the cultural universe as far as we in the West were concerned in the 20’s and 30’s. There is no doubt about it. And for me, it was probably the most interesting place, time, thing that ever was, because it was like a ferment. And of course, London was doing great stuff, and New York, but there was something about Paris in the 20’s and 30’s. CM - Or New York in the 60’s. MR - Yeah but Paris in the 20’s and 30’s,
the density of what was coming out was so huge, especially in the visual arts.
MR - Yes, that’s great because your
CM - I was thinking in the 60‘s New
CM - But he still doesn’t understand what
MR - But it doesn’t matter because as
Bam. He understood that Emmanuel Radintsky was too much of a mouthful, but Man Ray is..
CM - Oh yes, Man Ray.
MR - Yes exactly.
I want him to do sometimes.
He was best known as a photographer, but first of all he was an artist, and undoubtedly a great artists too, although I’m sure it always seems photography. Plus he wrote very well, actually. He’s an interesting writer. I mean he writes about himself and his life, and his photos, and his processes, and his thoughts. MR. Although his real name is Emmanuel Radintsky, wasn’t it? I think it was.
brain assumes it was the photograph. But no, he took the photo, and all he did was... plop. And everybody in the entire universe knows that image, it’s his girlfriend’s back, Kiki de Montparnasse, well known hooker, with whom he was
York, there was dance, there was music. I was so astonished. I had come back from Boston. MR - By the 60’s, Paris wasn’t quite so
groundbreaking anymore, although
there were some good movies, definitely.
MR - You know what, don’t eat and don’t
middle of avant-garde art.
on the lawn, and actually have your things turn into pink flamingoes, and suddenly you’re part of Alice in Wonderland. When you’re 17 or 18 years old, that was important for me, because it blew everything that went before me, my life away, and opened up my brain up to the possibilities to what people sometimes call magical things. I mean that’s what art is, you’re producing magical things.
CM - But all the people that were
CM - I love that. Who found that word?
CM - I tend to resist that. I don’t want to
CM - Yes. I’m not so familiar with them.
But because, I was, by accident, I don’t even know how, got into the Cage, Merce Cunningham... MR - Oh yeah you were right in the
involved or had their own school, like Debbie Hay... Alex Hay... lots of people not so well known. I just went to their performances all the time. I listened to their music. I was so fortunate because there was no need for my parents. It was more abstract.. new artist... what they worked.. buy this.. show that. And it wasn’t knowing them, going to their concerts, and their friends dance. I was so fortunate, for like 10 years perhaps, it was literally a big part of my life all the time. I felt...
CM - Don’t eat and don’t sleep? MR - Oh yah, when your blood sugar
plummets, you get a lot of interesting images. It’s like taking LSD. You see things, an enhancement to your visual perception.
CM - Magical things.
be triggered by a lowering of my body chemicals. I want to see it with my total awareness, ability, or whatever. Of course I might be interested to try it out.
MR - Oh I don’t know, it just popped
MR - No but you don’t have to do it. I
MR - Magic?
out of my mouth, but I could have read it somewhere, but for me, that certain thrill of magic, something a little magical. The first time I saw David Bowie, I remember thinking that about him.. “Wow, he’s kinda got that bit of magic.” CM - Well I was never involved in it,
MR - I’m sure it influenced your creativity.
sleep. In ’77 I used to do a lot of that.
think everybody’s approach is different. It’s like talking about artists, there’s no rule is there. They are what they are. Is this Caroline, your granddaughter? CM - My granddaughter, you’ve seen her?
when Bob Thurman took a lot of LSD. Not only LSD.. DMT.
MR - I know who she is. Dash’s sister.
out all the plugs.
MR - Oh of course, you were married
CM - It’s fun to see part of your offspring
MR - Oh, of your past, you were free in a
too.. because of course he was like a Bhuddist, right? Did he die?
CM - No, it just let me free. It just took
sense. CM - No, he’s alive. CM - Just to pay attention. MR - OK, but he’s Bhuddist, isn’t he? MR - Because one has to, in a way, like
I had to, be free from my upbringing, which was very modest by any standards, but I had to be free of it, in order to a creative person. CM - Do you think if you lived in a big-
ger town, I don’t know the size of your town?
Did he like the Dalai Llama. CM - I find that very big trip because
of the insistence on being right. He’s always insistent. MR - (laughs) That’s not the LSD, that’s
CM - Yah, probably. MR - London. MR - You can’t blame the LSD, because CM - There’s more freedom in a big town.
MR - Oh yeah. CM - In Houston, Texas, where I really
was from the time I was 12 to 18, was almost very forbidding to say anything. MR - Also places like London, Paris,
New York, Berlin, they attract so many people from all over the place, so you get that great ferment. CM - Did you feel... MR - Well it was at Cambridge that it
really happened with me, but of course Cambridge has its own Masonic, freethinking vibe embodied in the totality of that university. It’s a particular place to take LSD, and then go and play croquet
LSD depends who you are. My ability to perform under pressure, which is obviously linked with photography, and in some acid trip, I picked up the camera, (pew pew pew) everything was enhanced, when I was clicking, it got into my mind, and it also allowed me to sit with the camera. I could sit and stare at your face for hours, and it was all right. If I would do that on an acid trip, it would kind of freak my friends out, but I would get fascinated, because you could see in one face the entire history of humanity from the beginning of time, if you would breathe deeply. I never would forget the first time, that the whole ripple effect of a face. CM - Well I’ve never seen that exactly as
you describe it.
Beautiful young lady. beginning to strike off, field new boundaries. I’m glad. MR - She’s obviously a dynamic young
lady. CM - She lives in a great place, which is a
protestant church, St. Luke’s. MR - Lives in? CM - Yah, they have these 19th century
houses, 1820, which is just before the Civil War. Can you imagine, in New York, we don’t have antiquity very much. In Europe, we have it everywhere. For me, this house, that was 1820, and I remember talking to Barnett.. he wanted that we would, together, a bunch of artists buy a bunch of buildings, near where the South Street Seaport is, there are a lot of Civil War buildings there, brick buildings along the river. MR - Oh that’s right, because Manhattan
grew from Downtown. CM - And so that’s right by the East
River. There’s a street, just by the South Street Seaport that has a lot of Civil War buildings. And he said, oh well, we’re going to find a bunch of friends, and we’ll.. So for me, a Civil War building, which is, as a French person, not old at all. 1820? MR - That’s a couple of years ago for us,
because we’re European. Continues on pg. 202. >>>
BEAU TIFUL PHOTOS
RYAN MICHAEL BY
Complex statements can often be made through a visual dialogue in blackand-white, a trend designers have been exploring for several seasons. Model: Chrystal Copeland at Fusion Makeup: Natalie DiStefano, using products by Lanc么me Hair: Dennis Fei at Kate Ryan Manicurist: Mary Soul Inzerilo, using products by Chanel
previous page: Black wide-leg pants by Helmut Lang. Black Alexus playsuit by Agent Provocateur. White and black bikini top by Charlie. Black, white, and brown sling backs by Marni. Black leather shoulder piece by Bliss Lau. Black and white ruffle gloves by La Crasia. this page: Black and white lace dress by Behnaz Sarafpour. Black and white pearl necklace by Lee Angel. White leather gloves by La Crasia. Black and white fishnets are stylistâ€™s own.
White and black mesh zip up top & black leather cutout skirt by Catherine Malandrino. White ivory and wood two-finger ring by Sticks and Stones. White leather skinny belt by G-Star. White chain necklace by Lee Angel. Cat eye glasses are stylistâ€™s own.
Black leather blazer by Cote by IMPROVD. Black and white feather and fur skirt by J.Mendel. Black and white print leggings by Ohne Titel. Black, white and brown sling backs by Marni. Black and white striped jersey top by Forrest & Bob. Black double strand necklace by Lee Angel. Black leather belt by Cote by Improvd.
Black trench coat by Christian Siriano. Black and white print stockings by Gal Stern. Sling back shoes by Marni. Black and white gloves by La Crasia. Cream leather studded belt are stylistâ€™s own.
White horsehair ball gown by Jovani. Black pleather t-shirt with placket and white button-down blouse by G-Star. Black Daade cut out wedges by Steve Madden. Pearl and ribbon necklace by Lee Angel. White leather gloves and black leather finger gloves by La Crasia.
Black chiffon and velvet dress by Catherine Malandrino. White and black polka dot bikini top by Charlie. White skirt by J.Mendel. White opaque tights by Fogal. White leather studded gloves by La Crasia. Black and silver bracelet by Jessica Winzelberg. White neck ruffle are stylist's own.
Black & white sequin dress by Carlos Miele. Black and white gloves by La Crasia. White leather skinny belt by G-Star.
Black dress with Swarovski embroidered netting by Catherine Malandrino. Cream skirt by J.Mendel. Black patent leather motorcycle gloves by La Crasia. Black perforated leather skinny belt by G-Star. Metal fringe necklace worn as belt by Lee Angel.
Black and white graphic blouse by Charlie. Black PVC dress by Catherine Malandrino. White studded motorcycle gloves by La Crasia. Black striped tights by Betsey Johnson. Black and white heels by Barbara Briones. Black earring by Jessica Winzelberg.
ONCE UPON A TIME
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HE LE NA
We take a raw, intimate look at supermodel Helena Christensen, at her New York City apartment, styled by herself in her personal clothing... or nothing.
Triumph Smooth Sensation High Waisted Panty.
Sometime during the 80’s, the concept of the supermodel happened. These women dominated the press with their striking elegance and exaggerated personal affairs filled with A-list celebrity couplings and stunning music video tributes. The public identified them as the faces of fashion just as the fashion world exploded along with the global economy. This fortunate timing will forever leave these women with their iconic supermodel status, as models from just a decade earlier were lost in time to an anti-fashion culture, and newer models having to compete in a much larger industry now with a high-tech hypermedia environment. Meanwhile, the person most responsible for creating the supermodel concept, Gianni Versace, called out one model as having the greatest body in the world: HELENA CHRISTENSEN. Indeed, Helena leads the full-on supermodel life, complete with a stunning music video and celebrity besties. But, as it turns out, hers takes a more creative role compared to the other supers. From starting Nylon magazine to building a successful photography career, among her many creative endeavours, Helena’s artist personality fits perfectly in this universe as a beautiful form of inspiration.
BOBBY MOZUMDER - Thanks for shooting
with us for our cover story. The photos are ridiculously great and exciting. We love them, and you look so good. How did the shoot go? HELENA CHRISTENSEN - The shoot went re-
ally well, thanks. There was a great, mellow at- mosphere all around. It’s good to work with a small, tight team of people you know and respect. Gregory takes very unique pictures. He is sort of a silent shooter, which I really dig, as I’m sort of a silent subject.
wearing a combination of something quirky and strange. Maybe style shouldn’t so much be defined, but rather felt. BM - Did you preplan the looks, or create the
looks on the fly? HC - Ehm, I’m not exactly a planner. Quite
Harry before, correct?
the opposite. I feel slightly claustrophobic when I get caught up in planning too much in advance. Maybe that comes from many years of having a sporadic and random schedule. So I guess the answer to that question is no, I didn’t preplan the looks. I opened my closet doors and picked the pieces as the day went along.
HC - Yeah, they’re a great team to work with.
BM - How did you feel about styling yourself?
Obviously really talented, but also, they all come with an injection of their own sense of humor, and it all mixes up very well.
HC - It was fun. You suddenly see your own
BM - You've shot with Gregory, Hung, and
BM - Tell us about why you chose to shoot at
wardrobe from a different perspective, almost from a photogenic perspective. BM - Do you feel styling is something you'll be
HC - It kind of made sense to do this shoot at
more involved with in the same vein as your photography work?
my own place, since it’s a very personal and intimate story.
HC - The great stylists out there are so good
BM - You acted as your own stylist for this
shoot. Are these your personal favorite items? HC - There are some of my favorite items in
there, yeah. It was interesting to have to go through my own clothes for a shoot. I tend to dress in items that don’t necessarily go so well together, I like when style isn’t obvious. I always end up feeling most comfortable
and the next day a vintage slip dress with braids in my hair. To be honest, I feel I dress rather messy and confusing at times. But again, it feels right for me to dress that way.
at their job, I wouldn’t want to interfere. But, in a way, everyone is their own little stylist every day.
BM - You're honestly one of my favorite pho-
tographers, and looking at your not-so-secret blog hints at your own influences. Have your photographic tastes progressed over time? Or were you always into this very sensual feminine imagery? HC - I hope my photographic tastes progress
over time. I seem to focus on the little nuances in life. I get super excited about catching moments on my camera. I definitely hyperventilate a little bit, when I sense I’m about to capture something out of the ordinary. And the fact that photographs are a split second of life documented on a flat piece of paper, that thought alone is thrilling to me. The mood in a lot of my photographs might seem kind of harsh, dark and cold, with sharp lines cutting through the image. But I’m definitely aware of my tendency to be drawn towards organic shapes and poetic, melancholic atmospheres, which adds a feminine element to my images. Anyway, I might only end up with 3-4 images a year I am thoroughly thrilled with, but it’s worth taking a lot of photos just for those.. BM - Is there a fashion photographer you feel
BM - It seems the hippy/boho vibe is your
a kinship to?
instinctive style, is that your favorite personal style theme?
HC - I was ridiculously fortunate to be work-
HC - I think my style kind of changes too often
to be defined. I could be wearing men’s trousers one day, with a big shapeless sweater,
ing with so many unbelievable photographers. They all managed to stir something different inside of me, emotionally, physically. And so their photographs show various sides
Vintage Lace Top. Le Mont St. Michel High Waisted Panty.
Brown Vintage Slip Dress in Organza and Lace.
La Perla Bra. Modelâ€™s Own Panties. 142
Vintage Corset Slip Dress.
Vintage Lace Dress. Damaris Panties.
Vintage Chiffon Poncho with Feather Trim. 146
of me. There are in particular two photographers I felt very close to. Herb Ritts, who did very sensual, strong, powerful photos and Peter Lindbergh, who seemed to portray me in a dark, moody, mysterious atmosphere. Herb was, and Peter is, the sort of photographers that you end up feeling completely honest and raw with, you trust them and so you let go of any inhibitions.
and Julianne Moore. Marillon seems to be inside her own little illuminated bubble, so incredibly talented and with breathtaking features, and Julianne has a grace, wit and intelligence about her beauty that is very rare.
BM - Is there a photographer that you haven't worked
HC - No, not really. I think I was always very much
with but would still like to?
aware of the fact that I have an unusual and very interesting job. Any negative obstacle along the way seemed pretty insignificant when weighed against all the thrilling moments. I do realize I’ve always been extremely fortunate to work at this level. I mean, I really do not see how that could have happened. It must have been a combination of being at the right place the right time, and then an enormous amount of luck.
HC - I would like to work with Deborah Turbeville.
Her photographs have a poetic and hypnotic quality that makes you feel like you could disappear into them. One of my favorite photographers of all time is Robert Frank. His images are very powerful, but more than that, they’re beautiful and profound art-pieces that transcend time. I’m also really into the work of Gregory Crewdson. I’d love to be a lonely, alienated person in one of his haunting photographs. BM - Is there a dream current model you'd like to work
BM - Were you ever unhappy with your modeling work,
or of the overall industry?
BM - Do you follow current events? With womens'
issues currently a central focus in this year's Presidential elections, how would you respond to conservative attacks on women? Do you agree with Hilary Rosen's characterization that Ann Romney doesn't represent working women?
HC - There are so many cool and interesting girls
around. I always love shooting Natalia Vodianova, she has such an awesome face and moves with such grace and elegance. Two actresses I would like to photograph that I find immensely beautiful are Marillon Cotillard
HC - I personally think, and hope, that was a bit of an
off-the-cuff comment. I don’t actually put too much emphasis on what politicians say about each other in the run-up for the elections. Much of it just comes off imma-
Huit Cupcake Bandeau Strapless Bra.
Vintage Lace Dress. Damaris Panties. 150
ture and pointless. It’s more important what they say about the relative issues themselves. Regardless, it’s a privilege to be a mother, it’s a privilege to be a mother able to stay at home with her children and it’s a privilege to have a job. Whether you’re a woman with a career, a woman who raises a family, or both, these accomplishments should all be celebrated. BM - Obviously the major cultural differen-
tiation from the original supermodel era and now is the development of the Internet. How has the Internet affected your life and work as a model and photographer? HC - I’d be lying if I said I prefer working
with digital cameras to film cameras. There’s a loss of intimacy that used to exist on sets. Now, because of the instant download of an image to a computer screen, you’re immediately subjected to everyone’s comments and criticism, which creates a very intimidating atmosphere in the studio. And almost simultaneously, those images are posted online. The thought of being exposed on the internet, regardless of intention, leaves me with a slightly uncomfortable feeling in my stomach. It’s not just about shooting the actual story or campaign anymore, it’s about ‘how can we get these images exposed as much as possible?’. You start out by creating beautiful, interesting little stories with a small tight team and next thing the images are being criticized in ever which way on the internet. But such a the digital times we live in... BM - You haven't seem to be posting on your
blog much this year. Is that done or is there something new planned? HC - Lately I’ve been working on it again.
I kind of post randomly. I might not put anything on there for a long amount of time, and then suddenly I’ll be staying up till 3am downloading images. This blog started as a therapeutic pastime for me, to be honest, and I think it still is, in a way, so I guess it’s when I’m in a special kind of mood that I end up posting photographs.
BM - Also, you don't really have a social media
HC - Honestly, no. I think there are enough
presence, which fashion people are completely addicted to. Have you thought about engaging social media sites like Twitter/ Facebook/Pinterest/Tumblr? Do you follow social media at all?
magazines out there at this point. BM - Do you see print magazines continuing
to exist? HC - Books, newspapers, magazines, it would
HC - The answer to both those questions is
a big NO. I cannot and will not ever be able to engage in any sites of that nature. I do understand why those sites can be very useful to people, I even get why people end up more or less addicted, but they just don’t appeal to me. I feel like I already know the people I want to know and care about. Virtual reality seems to suck up too much time. I also do not have any desire to publicly talk about my daily whereabouts. It’s hard enough to talk about yourself and your opinions in a random interview, which unfortunately has become part of the job as a model, to do press for the companies you work for. There’s always this feeling of ‘jeez, I’m boring the shit out of someone right now’. BM - As far as traditional media, I found it
great that you cofounded Nylon as its Creative Director, which I think is the natural progression for a photographer. How did that work out for you? Was it a positive experience?
be a crime if they disappeared from our world. There is nothing that can replace the feeling of a book in your hands, the sound of the pages turning, then smell of the paper, the little folded corners that are so exciting to go back to and check out years later... finding a vintage book in an old book store, full of personal notes and comments... that does not happen on a computer. BM - I like that your father was a typogra-
pher. Kanye gets emotional over fonts. Do you? HC - Oh yeah, very! I might have given off the
feeling that I’m not so into digital de- vices. But in fact, a computer is also pretty damn awesome in so many ways. The little font tab is very useful. But I think it’s very, very important that kids in school keep learning how to write in cursive. Essays ought to always be done in hand-writing. I wish people still wrote hand-written letters. BM - Is your creative drive rooted in your
HC - I really enjoyed being part of starting a
magazine. It was a lot of work, and I learned so much about the media and advertising world from a different perspective. When Nylon came out, it was such an exciting and unusual magazine, like a breath of fresh air amongst all those other, often predictable fashion magazines. BM - Any lessons for future media moguls on
father's work at all? Or perhaps even from your mother? HC - My father definitely is very artistic. He
draws beautifully and obviously his job was all about being graphic and precise. My mother is creative in a different way, in her way of dressing and decorating, in her way of cooking and conversing. I’m equally artistically inspired by both.
starting their own media empires? BM - Is your son Mingus still a chess HC - I am far from qualified enough to be
answering such a question. I guess figure out what interests people, and then take it many steps further. Always keep it unexpected and full of art, interesting topics and interviews. BM - Would you start another magazine or
prodigy? What are his interests now? HC - He is awesome at chess, but I think he
suddenly got a bit bored with it. I hope it’s just a phase, as it was so interesting to watch him play against skilled grown-ups and use quite exotic moves. He is really into reptiles, always has been. We have a bearded dragon and a fireskink at home, and he spends the
summers catching lizards, snakes and frogs upstate or by the ocean in Denmark. He also is a keen soccer player and takes boxing lessons. It’s about keeping those kids activated and stimulated. BM - Does he know what he wants to be
when he grows up? HC - He wants to have a pet store slash cafe.
You’ll be able to snap up a couple of Horny Devils and a macchiato on the side. BM - Will Mingus have any other siblings? HC - That would be nice.
--BM - Quiz time!
BM - Top 5 most played songs in your
iTunes library (click on "Plays" in music list to sort by play count) HC - There are 7 songs with equally as many
Margiela/ Prada/ Sybilla/ Edun/ Martine Sitbon. But most of all, vintage pieces.
plays: Insects, by Woodsman- Heads will roll, by Yeah Yeah Yeahs-Summertime, by Maxine Sullivan- Hovedet i Spindelvaev, by Zander- Safe without, by Interpol- BIllie Holiday, by Warpaint and Special, by Mew
BM - A recent makeup purchase?
BM - If you were a musician who would be
HC - Very rarely, but I do sometimes get a
HC - Shu Uemura's brown drawing pencil BM - Do you buy on internet?
HC - Chet Baker, Billie Holiday or Sponge-
little sucked into lingerie sites and sales at Barney's... But mostly I just fill the cart endlessly and then shut my computer off.
bob. That little yellow dude is actually an awesome singer.
BM - A fashion editor you liked working
your dream duet?
BM - You love your agent Scott Lipps
with? HC - My all time favorite was Babette Djian.
Gianni Versace said you had the best body in the world. Who do you think has the best body?
HC - He's a lovely person, and he really
Together with Peter Lindbergh she created some of my favorite stories ever.
enjoys what he does, which is mostly play drums.
BM - Favorite shop?
HC - All the naked women in Helmut New-
BM - New York or Copenhagen? Pick one,
HC - All the stores around the center of Co-
tons pictures. The were long, lean, toned and yet feminine and curvaceous. BM - Read that your favorite female icon is
everyone dies in the other. You have to pick. HC - So you mean I have to either kill off my
Marilyn Monroe. Who is your favorite male icon?
entire family and best friends, or my boyfriend and son...? Hmm, let me think about that for, like, ever.
HC - She's one, Jean Seberg and Jane Birkin
BM - Favorite dish by your mom?
are two others. Their style is effortless, personal and greatly compliment their personalities. I think Willem de Koenig and Lucien Freud had amazing presence and style, not to mention otherworldly talents. BM - If a guy wants to be your boyfriend he
better... HC - Make me laugh, love and feel. And
make me feel I do the same for him. BM - You want to star in a movie directed
by... HC - Martin de Thurah. Check out his music
video 'Special' by Mew or 'What else is there' by Royksopp. I would wanna see an entire movie directed by this guy.
penhagen create the most exciting shopping route in the world. No doubt about it. BM - Favorite flower? HC - Fritillaria. it only flowers 2 weeks a year
and it is so very delicate and poetic. BM - What animal will you come back as in
HC - Oh man, that's also kind of impossible.
your next life?
She's Peruvian! Everything she makes tastes delicious and flavorful, even her rice. I do like her mussels though...
HC -An axolotl. This has got to be the most
BM - 19 fashion brands you like (hey you did
say 19 is your favorite number..) HC - I wish my favorite number was 3 right
peculiar looking little animal in the entire universe. In fact, I believe it must be an alien, a happy little alien that came to earth and decided to take up residence in a big lake outside Mexico city.
now... but ok, 19 it is, not in any particular order;
BM - You are an expert on...
Tsumori Chisato/ Camilla Staerk/ Isabel Marant/ Veronique Branqhino/ Marc Jacobs/ Peter Jensen/ Marni/ McCartney/ Vanessa Bruno/ Dries Van Noten/ Comme des Garcons/ Helmut Lang/ Baum und Pferdgarten/ Henrik Vibskov/ Martin
pretty decent at a few things. For example, I'm quite good at spending endless amounts of time in the ocean. And eating 5-course meals.
HC - I'm not an expert on anything. But I'm
BM - Thank you!
Vintage Slip Dress from Chelsea Antique Market.
Hair: Harry Josh Make Up: Hung Vanngo Thanks to: Christopher Michael & Scott Lipps at ONE Model Management
HELTER SKELTER Tokyo and the New Age of Fashion Words & Styling by Naoko Watanabe, Photos by Takashi Osato
It comes to mind that the New People who define what Japanese street fashion is have now migrated from Harajuku to Koenji. Those who are called Tokyo Street Fashion People are the club kids, street style kings & queens, and fashion bloggers. Unlike in the past, when Harajuku was a mecca for street fashion, the new street fashion people mingle amongst themselves in a building called Kitakore in Koenji. What is Kitakore? It’s actually just a building, a congregration of clothing stores, one of which is a store called Garter. One day I went to Garter and met Aili, who is the designer assistant/shop assistant there. I asked her what her dream was. She responded, “I want to know what Marilyn Monroe or JFK saw at the moment of their death, when they experienced Life’s
supremacy and abyss all at once in that intense moment. It fascinates me.” Unlike others who live in between the past and the future, Aili gave up what can be described as a diamond, a world measured by material value, in exchange to live a life following her heart. Once she set foot on that path and gave up her huge diamond for a beautiful glass, she found her true love, a placed called Garter. Some things are better left unknown, but uncertainty is nothing but an urge to discover what is unseen. Tokyo Street Fashion People don’t necessarily have a fixed face that they wear, they change their minds like they change their clothes. A very unique and noble practice at that. That itself is the new fashion, the style of Tokyo Street Fashion.
Special thanks to Koushiro (owner of Garter), my girl Aili, and Masako. Additional thanks to The Bebe for graphic design.
HERMES SCARF AND ALEXANDER MCQUEEN KNIT DRESS ARE AILI’S OWN.
BELOW: HAIR VEST BY MAISON MARTIN MARGIELA. BLACK BELT AT GARTER. WHITE SHIRT BY VALENTINO. PINK SKIRT BY GIAMBATTISTA VALLI. FUR ACCESORY BY CELINE AND IS AILI’S OWN.
ADDRESS: 104 KITAKORE BLDG. 3-4-13 KOENJI-KITA SUGINAMI-KU TOKYO 166-0002 HOURS: SUNDAY TO SATURDAY 1-9PM (CLOSED HOLIDAYS) PHONE: +81-03-5356-9296 WEB: GARTER-TOKYO.COM
(both pages) Vintage Briefs by
ALESSANDRO DELL’ACQUA available at NEW YORK VINTAGE 212-647-1107
Standing (this page and opposite page) Dress by MANTILLA
available at New York Vintage 212-647-1107
Sitting (opposite page) Bra & Panty by LES JUPONS
Enjouée Balcony Bra: EN5001 Enjouée Panty: EN2001
Standing (this page and opposite page) Dress by MANTILLA
available at New York Vintage 212-647-1107 Sitting (this page page) Bra & Panty by
LES JUPONS DE TESS
Enjouée Balcony Bra : EN5001 Enjouée Panty : EN2001
Bra & Briefs by
Joseline Bra, Black, $130 Joseline Briefs, Black, $130 available at AGENT PROVOCATEUR stores and www.agentprovocateur.com
Vintage Shoes by YSL available at New York Vintage 212-647-1107
LES JUPONS DE TESS
Elegante Corset: EN5001 Panty: EN2001 Vintage Shoes by YSL Leather choker, and briefs available at New York Vintage 212-647-1107
1920â€™s Couture Dress available at New York Vintage 212-647-1107
Shoes by RAG & BONE Suna Platform Loafer, 100% Leather
Dress by NORMAN
Shoes by COSTUME
Both available at New York Vintage 212-647-1107
Above: on her: Bra & Briefs by
Selena Bra, Black/Pink, $220 Selena Briefs, Black/Pink, $190 available at AGENT PROVOCATEUR stores and www.agentprovocateur.com
on him: Modelâ€™s Own
Below: Thong by LES JUPONS DE TESS Enjouée Thong: EN8001
Whitney Playsuit, $390 available at AGENT PROVOCATEUR stores and www.agentprovocateur.com
Boots by RAG & BONE Asha Platform Boot, 100% Leather, $815
Left: Fur Fox Stole available at New York Vintage 212-647-1107
Model: Suzanne Diaz at Next Hair Stylist: Wesley Omera at Wall Group Make-Up: Virginia Linzee at Ray Brown Pro Digital Technician: Ryan Burke Studio Manager: Tania Montgomery
Dress by SARAH
BAADARANI Cape by A LA
Earrings with Ear Cuff by
Gold Blouse by
MARIA GRACHVOGEL Skirt by SARAH
Leather and Metal Necklace by CHARLOTTE
Cardigan and Skirt by
GUDRUN + GUDRUN Glass Feather Earrings by
RIMZIM DADU Necklace by
Feather Eye Mask by
Body Armor by
Dress and Earrings by
A LA DISPOSITION
A LA DISPOSITION
AMERICAN RETRO Earrings by KIRSTY WARD
Models: Agata Rudko, Rasa Zukauskaite, and Charlotte Nolting Hair: Indira Schauwecker Make Up: Michelle Dacillo Set Designer: Adriana Ivancou Stying Assistant: Chad Curry
KONDO WORDS & STYLING
A few years ago I saw the movie Roller Girls Diary, known in America as Whip It, and starring Ellen Page. I wanted to find out if they had these kinds of Roller Girls here in Japan. A quick search later, I found a team in Tokyo and was able to met them towards the end of 2011. The team is called Roller Girls Tokyo (http://www.rollergirls.jp) , and they established themselves in the early aughts. The team consist of colorful characters that includes former Japanese national athletes in figure skating, pole dancers, and cheerleaders. Some of the cheerleaders participate in American football events and some of the dancers have their own videos to their credits. My fascination with them grew as we planned our photoshoot. Working with them, I discovered their individual personalities, which usually remain hidden behind their stage characters. They do retain traditional Japanese female personality traits, which include a demure character with an inner strength and an outer warmth. We shot at Marunouchi, a business district in central Tokyo similar to Wall Street in New York. The area maintains a strict business atmosphere, with power as a main goal. I know a lot of women from around this area who are Hunters, who seek the wealthy men as their game. The Hunters are obsessed with this game, but these days I’m done with the issue. At this point I would like to say “I” just wanna have fun! “I” (women) can stay egoistic, love shopping, and romance like a teenager. This photo below is titled is “I.” A woman headed towards a dream till it comes true. She is brilliant. Everyone easily finds her, even if she’s in a crowd of people. People are attracted to this woman, and everyone can be attractive like her if they follow the things they believe in. We finally found the Roller Girls on the day of our shoot. I saw a really beautiful face for each girl. Hopefully I’ll be bumping into “I” everywhere, especially in this big city.
Hair: Daisuke Mukai at &’s Management Makeup: Makiko Endo at Takahashi Office
LEFT TO RIGHT: DENIM VEST AND DRESS BY CANDY. WHITE LEATHER VEST BY PLUMPYNUTS. WHITE DRESS BY G.V.G.V. SILVER BEAD DRESS BY BOWIE. BLUE DENIM SHIRT BY LEP LUSS. WHITE TOPS AND SHIRT G.V.G.V. ALL SUNGLASSES BY SOLAKZADE.
OPPOSITE PAGE, FRONT TO BACK (AND THIS PAGE): FLOWER PRINT SHIRT BY PLUMPYNUTS. YELLOW SET UP AND WHITE SCARF BY ISSEY MIYAKE. GREEN BAG BY PHENOMENON. STRAW JACKET BY BY TIM VAN STEENBERGEN. LEATHER VEST BY NUBOAIX. INNER TOP AND GREEN SKIRT BY TOGA. WHITE DRESS BY HAN AHN SOON. WHITE HEADPHONE BY BLESS X AUDIO-TECHNICA X CHIKAZAWA. DENIM TOPS BY G.V.G.V. GOLD SUNGLASSES BY HOUSE OF HOLLAND. ALL OTHER SUNGLASSES BY SOLAKZADE.
ABOVE, LEFT TO RIGHT: LEATHER JACKET BY PHENOMENON. PINK AND GREEN KNIT BY PLUMPYNUTS. WHITE TOPS BY YOHJI YAMAMOTO. PINK PYRAMID NECKLACE BY NANA-NANA. PATTERN BLOUSE AND BELT BY YOHJI YAMAMOTO. PURPLE CHECK SHIRT BY THIERRY COLSON/DIPTRICS. PATTERN SHORT PANTS BY PLUMPYNUTS. GREEN BAG BY 99%IS. ALL SOCKS BY MINTDESIGNS.
with all for you like a motherâ€™s selfless love like lovers share love and pain like friends laugh frisk struggle
close my eyes follow your paradise take off clothes leave everything go for paradise just two of us what I need more than I have you feel paradise appear from inside of me sparkle Smell you like a cat softly warm walk in water familiar Iâ€™ve never been here but I feel I was here Close my eyes always you are here stay together irreplaceable like mother like lover cry smile irritable in your arms you never know donâ€™t need to know my paradise paradise paradise
INSPIRED BY HELENA We look through Helena Christensen’s list of her favorite brands and pick a few of our favorites.
Vanessa Bruno Athé ABOVE: LEATHER SHORTS $404 MATCHESFASHION.COM. RIGHT: MELANGE KNIT STRIPE SWEATER $288 SHOPLESNOUVELLES.COM.
Marc Jacobs LEFT: STRIPED BUTTON-DOWN SHIRT $818 MYTHERESA.COM. RIGHT: FLORAL DOT LONG V-NECK DRESS $1,200 MODAOPERANDI.COM. BELOW: TAILORED TROUSERS $987 MYTHERESA.COM.
by Courtney Porkoláb & Bobby Mozumder
Veronique Branquinho ABOVE: LARGE BEATEN COPPER CUFF $570 SSENSE.COM. BELOW: ‘DALIA’ BOOT $566 FARFETCH.COM.
Maison Martin Margiela ABOVE: FIVE-ZIP LEATHER JACKET $2,203 MATCHESFASHION.COM. LEFT: TWO-TONE LEATHER KNEE BOOTS $1175 ON SALE FOR $822.50 NET-A-PORTER.COM. BELOW: LEATHER AND CANVAS OBI BELT $4,299 NET-A-PORTER.COM.
Tsumori Chisato RIGHT: ‘CAT OPAL’ SKIRT $692.04 FARFETCH.COM. BELOW: EMBROIDERED FOLD-OVER CLUTCH $507.20 ON SALE FOR $355.04 FARFETCH.COM.
VANESSA BRUNO ATHÉ PHOTO COURTESY OF SHOPLESNOUVELLES.COM AND MATCHESFASHION.COM. MARC JACOBS PHOTOS COURTESY OF MYTHERESA.COM AND MODAOPERANDI.COM. VERONIQUE BRANQIONHO PHOTOS COURTESY OF SSENSE.COM AND FARFETCH.COM. TSUMORI CHISATO PHOTOS COURTESY OF FARFETCH.COM. MAISON MARTIN MARGIELA PHOTOS COURTESY OF MATCHESFASHION.COM AND NET-A-PORTER.COM.
HELMUT LANG PHOTOS COURTESY OF MYTHERESA.COM AND NET-A-PORTER.COM. PETER JENSEN PHOTO COURTESY OF FARFETCH.COM. STELLA MCCARTNEY PHOTOS COURTESY OF LUISAVIAROMA.COM AND MATCHESFASHION.COM. ISABEL MARANT PHOTOS COURTESY OF MATCHESFASHION.COM. DRIES VAN NOTEN PHOTOS COURTESY OF MYTHERESA.COM. COMME DES GARÇONS PHOTO COURTESY OF SSENSE.COM. MARNI PHOTOS COURTESY OF MODAOPERANDI.COM AND LUISAVIAROMA.COM. PRADA PHOTO COURTESY OF BARNEYS.
Stella McCartney RIGHT: OVERSIZED ACETATE SUNGLASSES $212 LUISAVIAROMA.COM. BELOW: ROSEBERRY LACE AND FRINGING DRESS $3,588 MATCHESFASHION.COM.
Peter Jensen ABOVE: ‘BARBARA’ SWEATER $255.55 ON SALE FOR $204.40 FARFETCH.COM.
Helmut Lang ABOVE LEFT: MIST BUTTON-DOWN SHIRT $459 MYTHERESA.COM. LEFT: DEER BROWN PATINA STRETCH LEATHER LEGGINGS $840 STYLEBOP.COM. BELOW: KINETIC MODAL-BLEND JERSEY TOP $950 NET-A-PORTER.COM.
Isabel Marant ABOVE: PIPER BEADED BLOUSE $2,830 MATCHESFASHION.COM. BELOW: DUNCAN EMBELLISHED LEATHER TROUSERS $2,815 MATCHESFASHION.COM.
Dries van Noten LEFT: DAKIRA FLORAL PRINT SILK DRESS $1,155 MYTHERESA.COM. BELOW: EMBOSSED LEATHER SHOULDER BAG $1,205 MYTHERESA.COM.
Marni LEFT: AZUR SHORT SLEEVE STRUCTURED DRESS $1,870 MODAOPERANDI.COM. BELOW LEFT:WOVEN RAFFIA & PATENT LEATHER LARGE BAG $2,250, ON SALE FOR $1,575 LUISAVIAROMA.COM.
Comme Des Garçons BELOW: WHITE DERBY WEDGE PLATFORMS $1025 SSENSE.COM.
Prada LEFT: POINTED TOE PUMP $650 BARNEYS.COM.
Mulberry BLACK SUEDE ZIGZAG LILY BAG $1,650 STYLEBOP.COM.
Lanvin LEFT: DEDALE CRYSTAL CHOKER NECKLACE $3,190 MATCHESFASHION.COM. . BELOW: SHINY GUNMETAL TREDINGTON CLUTCH $2,875 BELSTAFF.COM.
Repossi LEFT: BLACK GOLD & BLACK DIAMOND SEVEN-ROW BERBERE RING $13,500 BARNEYS.COM.
Belstaff 3.1 Phillip Lim
ROCK & ROLL
Jason Wu RIGHT: PLISSÉ SILKCHIFFON DRESS $21,200 NET-A-PORTER.COM.
Music makes the fashion world go round. LEFT: CHANEL FALL 2013.
BELOW: MICK JAGGER BY BOB GRUEN (1972) EXHIBITED AT THE MORRISON HOTEL GALLERY.
BELOW: BUCKLE BOOTS $448 MATCHESFASHION.COM.
T by Alexander Wang ABOVE: LEATHER BRA TOP $532 MYTHERESA.COM.
Prabal Gurung ABOVE: BLACK LEATHER BOW BELT $325 ON SALE FOR $165 MODAOPERANDI.COM.
Ellery ABOVE: BLACK CITY THUNDER PLEAT SHORTS $650 AVENUE32.COM.
Christian Benner Thom Browne
ABOVE: THE STOOGES TEE $100 CHRISTIANBENNERCUSTOM.COM.
ABOVE: SWEATER WITH SAFETY PINS $1,150 MODAOPERANDI.COM. 196
Elise Dray ABOVE: BLACK DIAMOND & BLACK GOLD SERPENT RING $10,536 MATCHESFASHION.COM.
MULBERRY PHOTO COURTESY OF STYLEBOP.COM. LANVIN PHOTO COURTESY OF MATCHESFASHION.COM. REPOSSI PHOTO COURTESY OF BARNEYS. 3.1 PHILLIP LIM PHOTO COURTESY OF NET-A-PORTER.COM. BELSTAFF PHOTO COURTESY OF STYLEBOP.COM. JASON WU PHOTO COURTESY OF NETA-PORTER.COM. CHANEL FALL 2013 PHOTO COURTESY OF CHANEL. MICK JAGGER BY BOB GRUEN PHOTO COURTESY OF THE MORRISON HOTEL GALLERY. T BY ALEXANDER WANG PHOTO COURTESY OF MYTHERESA.COM. TOGA PULLA PHOTO COURTESY OF MATCHESFASHION.COM. PRABAL GURUNG PHOTO COURTESY OF MYTHERESA.COM. THOM BROWNE PHOTO COURTESY OF MODAOPERANDI.COM. ELLERY PHOTO COURTESY OF AVENUE32.COM. CHRISTIAN BRENNERY PHOTO COURTESY OF CHRISTIAN BRENNER. ELISE DRAY PHOTO COURTESY OF MATCHESFASHION.COM.
LEFT: STRETCH-SILK MINI DRESS $5,690 NET-A-PORTER.COM.
NASTYGAL PHOTOS COURTESY OF NASTYGAL. NINA RICCI PHOTO COURTESY OF NET-A-PORTER.COM. MAISON MARTIN MARGIELA FALL 2013 PHOTO COURTESY OF MAISON MARTIN MARGIELA. JIL SANDER PHOTOS COURTESY OF FARFETCH.COM AND MATCHESFASHION.COM. STELLA MCCARTNEY PHOTO COURTESY OF MYTHERESA. COM. DION LEE PHOTO COURTESY OF MATCHESFASHION.COM. MARIOS SCHWAB PHOTO COURTESY OF AVENUE32.COM. JONATHAN SAUNDERS PHOTO COURTESY OF MATCHESFASHION.COM. PROENZA SCHOULER PHOTO COURTESY OF NET-A-PORTER.COM. ZILLA PHOTO COURTESY OF FARFETCH.COM. J BRAND PHOTO COURTESY OF FARFETCH.COM. MARC BY MARC JACOBS PHOTO COURTESY OF STYLEBOP.COM. RAY-BAN PHOTO COURTESY OF MYTHERESA.COM. GIANVITO ROSSI PHOTO COURTESY OF FARFETCH.COM. PIERRE HARDY PHOTO COURTESY OF LUISAVIAROMA.COM. MAISON MARTIN MARGIELA PRODUCT PHOTO COURTESY OF FARFETCH.COM.
Jil Sander ABOVE: CRESCENT CUT GLASS BROOCH $420 ON SALE FOR $336 FARFETCH.COM. BELOW: HOLOGRAM EMBELLISHED TSHIRT $285 MATCHESFASHION.COM.
Nina Ricci ABOVE: EMBELLISHED JACQUARD JACKET $2,850 NET-A-PORTER.COM.
Nasty Gal ABOVE: HOLOGRAM SATCHEL - GREEN $58. ABOVE RIGHT: HOLOGRAM SATCHEL - GOLD $38. NASTYGAL.COM.
Stella McCartney ABOVE: HOLOGRAM SEQUINED APPLIQUÉ TOP $917 MYTHERESA.COM.
HOLOGRAM An iridescent metallic future is now.
Marios Schwab ABOVE: HOLOGRAPHIC LAVENDER CHIFFON PENCIL SKIRT $1,995 AVENUE32.COM.
ABOVE: MAISON MARTIN MARGIELA FALL 2013.
RIGHT: THE PS11 MIRROREDLEATHER WRISTLET CLUTCH $1,335 NET-A-PORTER.COM.
ABOVE: THERMAL LINEAR-PRINT DRESS $1,774 MATCHESFASHION.COM.
Zilla RIGHT: CROSS BODY BAG $828 ON SALE FOR $360 FARFETCH.COM.
Jonathan Saunders ABOVE: CLARK SILVER-FOIL SKIRT $655 MATCHESFASHION.COM.
Marc by Marc Jacobs
LEFT: METALLIC COATED SKINNY JEAN $227 FARFETCH.COM.
ABOVE: TECHNO TABLET BOOK IN ROSE HOLOGRAPHIC $140 STYLEBOP.COM.
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Ray-Ban ABOVE: RB4125 AVIATOR SUNGLASSES $212 MYTHERESA.COM.
Maison Martin Margiela
BELOW: IRIDESCENT MIRROR BELT $579 FARFETCH.COM.
LEFT: 10MM IRIDESCENT LEATHER SNEAKERS $775 ON SALE FOR $542 LUISAVIAROMA.COM.
Azzedine Alaïa LEFT: STRUCTURED FULL-SKIRT COAT $4,377 MATCHESFASHION.COM.
RIGHT: ARTEMIS LEATHER & OSTRICH FEATHER BAG $2,125 MATCHESFASHION.COM.
RIGHT: FUR STOLE $4,990 MYTHERESA.COM. BELOW: SUEDE BLOCK HEEL LOAFERS $850 MYTHERESA.COM.
Moschino Cheap & Chic LEFT: CONTRAST-COLLAR COTTON AND WOOL-BLEND SWEATER $495 ON SALE FOR $247.50 NET-A-PORTER.COM.
A classic look reinterpreted for the modern woman.
RIGHT: BLUE AND GOLD EMBOIDERED KNUCKLEDUSTER BOX CLUTCH $2,845 ON SALE FOR $1991 SSENSE.COM.
RIGHT: LOUIS VUITTON FALL 2013.
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Norma Kamali ABOVE: ONE-SHOULDER RUCHED SWIMSUIT $350 NET-A-PORTER.COM.
Bliss Rose ABOVE: AUGUSTINE BROOCH PIN $11,411 LUISAVIAROMA.COM.
LEFT: WHITE PAVAN PRINT SKIRT $1,345 AVENUE32.COM.
Bottega Veneta LEFT: EMBOSSED LEATHER PLATFORM SHOES $1,258 MATCHESFASHION.COM.
ABOVE LEFT: LIGHT PINK/WHITE BELTED SILK LACE DRESS $3,290 STYLEBOP.COM. ABOVE RIGHT: VA VA VOOM LEATHER HANDBAG $2,242 MYTHERESA.COM.
CHRISTIAN LOUBOUTIN PHOTO COURTESY MATCHESFASHION.COM. AZZEDINE ALAÏA PHOTO COURTESY OF MATCHESFASHION.COM. MIU MIU PHOTOS COURTESY OF MYTHERESA.COM.MOSCHINO CHEAP AND CHIC PHOTO COURTESY OF NET-A-PORTER.COM. LOUIS VUITTON FALL 2013 PHOTO COURTESY OF LOUSI VUITTON. NORMA KAMALI PHOTO COURTESY OF NET-A-PORTER.COM. ALEXANDER MCQUEEN PHOTO COURTESY OF SSENSE.COM. ROCHAS PHOTO COURTESY OF MODAOPERANDI.COM. BLISS ROSE PHOTO COURTESY OF LUISAVIAROMA.COM. VALENTINO PHOTOS COURTESY OF STYLEBOP.COM AND MYTHERESA.COM. TEMPERLEY LONDON PHOTO COURTESY OF AVENUE32.COM. BOTTEGA VENETA PHOTO COURTESY OF MATCHESFASHION.COM.
Gucci LEFT: ALYSSA PATENT LEATHER THONG SANDALS WITH BLOCK HEEL $776 MYTHERESA.COM.
Olivia Collings Antique Jewelry THIS: PINK PASTE RIVIERA NECKLACE $4,700 BARNEYS.COM.
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Fendi RIGHT: MINI BEADED BAGUETTE BAG $2,320 BARNEYS.COM. LEFT: STRIP COTTON KNIT DRESS $2,046 MATCHESFASHION.COM.
A.F. Vandevorst LEFT: EMBROIDERED STRETCH TULLE LONG GLOVES $371 ON SALE FOR $259 LUISAVIAROMA.COM.
Balenciaga LEFT: CONTRASTLINING STRAPLESS DRESS $7,033 MATCHESFASHION.COM.
LEFT: CRYSTAL SMALL RING $615 ON SALE FOR $369 BARNEYS.COM.
ABOVE: WOOL-CREPE HUNTER DRESS IN ACID GREEN/PURPLE $1,610 STYLEBOP.COM.
RIGHT: GRACE BOX BAG $2,111 MATCHESFASHION.COM.
ABOVE: STRIPED STRETCH-SILK CREPE DE CHINE SKIRT $255 NET-A-PORTER.COM.
LEFT: SUEDE KNEE-HIGH WEDGE BOOTS $1,010 STYLEBOP.COM.
Irene Neuwirth Diamonds ABOVE: DIAMOND, FIRE OPAL, ONYX, RUBY, TOURMALINE, CARNELIAN & CHRYSOPRASE BRACELET $26,260 BARNEYS.COM.
Ralph Lauren Black ABOVE: SILK CAITLIN SHIRT IN ROYAL BLUE/ OFF WHITE $875 STYLEBOP.COM.
Prism THIS: JADE CAPRI CAT-EYE SUNGLASSES $425 AVENUE32.COM.
ABOVE: DAY LUXE TALL TOTE $5,400 ON SALE FOR $3,239 BARNEYS.COM.
T by Alexander Wang
ABOVE: FITTED BLAZER $611.29 ON SALE FOR $489.03 FARFETCH.COM.
ABOVE: PAPERCLIP BUNNY NECKLACE $1,624 LUISAVIAROMA.COM.
Erdem ABOVE: FELICIA PRINTED SILK DRESS $1,930 NET-A-PORTER.COM. ABOVE RIGHT: CRYSTAL BEAD BRACELET $450 MYTHERESA.COM.
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Versace RIGHT: TRIPLE MEDUSA HANDBAG $2,395 FARFETCH.COM. BELOW: VINTAGE PRINT PANTS $695 MODAOPERANDI.COM.
Steven Alan ABOVE: BUTTONED SHIRT $253.13 ON SALE FOR $202.51 FARFETCH.COM.
EDITORS’ PICKS Our own selection of interesting and favorite items. Narciso Rodriguez Dsquared LEFT: 150MM STUDDED HEARTS LEATHER BOOTS $1,350 LUISAVIAROMA.COM.
ABOVE: HAND-BEADED CREPE SABLE TOP $4,575 AVENUE32.COM.
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RIGHT: SKINNY MOTORCYCLE JEANS $656 MYTHERESA.COM.
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PREEN PHOTO COURTEESY OF MATCHESFASHION.COM. CHARLOTTE OLYMPIA PHOTO COURTESY OF MATCHESFASHION.COM. COMME DES GARÇONS PHOTO COURTESY OF FARFETCH.COM. WILDFOX PHOTO COURTESY OF MATCHESFASHION.COM. DELFINA DELETTREZ PHOTO COURTESY OF LUISAVIAROMA.COM. PETER PILOTTO PHOTO COURTESY OF MYTHERESA.COM. STTANTA BIJOUX PHOTO COURTESY OF LUISAVIAROMA.COM. CHRISTOPHER KANE PHOTO COURTESY OF MATCHESFASHION.COM. BURBERRY PRORSUM PHOTO COURTESY OF MATCHESFASHION. COM. GILES PHOTO COURTESY OF MATCHESFASHION.COM. PETER SOM PHOTO COURTESY OF AVENUE32.COM. TOPSHOP UNIQUE PHOTO COURTESY OF TOPSHOP. JIMMY CHOO PHOTO COURTESY OF MYTHERESA.COM. CHLOÉ PHOTO COURTESY OF SSENSE.COM.
Preen Comme Des Garçons
ABOVE: BO TARTAN COLLAR SHIRT $765 MATCHESFASHION.COM.
ABOVE: STRUCTURED OPEN JACKET $2,500 ON SALE FOR $2,000 FARFETCH.COM.
Peter Pilotto LEFT: PRINT PATENT LEATHER STILETTOS $1,298 MYTHERESA.COM.
Delfina Delettrez Settanta Bijoux
ABOVE: RAINBOW RING $423 LUISAVIAROMA.COM.
ABOVE: LIMITED EDITION CANVAS COLLAR $247 LUISAVIAROMA.COM.
RIGHT: CAMO-PRINT BUCKLE DRESS $1,698 MATCHESFASHION.COM.
LEFT: STUD BUTTON SHIRT DRESS $1,021 MATCHESFASHION.COM.
Peter Som BELOW: MOSAIC VINE DUSTER COAT $2,215 AVENUE32.COM.
Burbery Prorsum ABOVE: SLIM CHINO TROUSERS $640 MATCHESFASHION.COM.
Chloé RIGHT: GREY LIZARD PRINTED LEATHER MARCIE SHOULDER BAG $2,295 SSENSE.COM.
Jimmy Choo ABOVE: TAROT EMBELLISHED SANDALS $1,595 MYTHERESA.COM.
ABOVE: GLASS FABRIC SKIRT $200 TOPSHOP.COM.
>>> Continued from pg. 113.
magazine and blow it. It doesn’t matter.
CM - But, to him, it was meaningful. It’s
Warhol, where did he get his art from? In his early years, he’d pull stuff out of magazines, newspapers. I love the fact that he had a Marilyn a couple of years ago that sold at auction, and understand where I’m coming from, for $50 million, and I remember going “that’s fabulous.” There’s a bunch of those Marilyn’s running around, and he didn’t even take the picture, and it’s $50 milllion. I love that. Because he did something. He moved the culture. Anything that he did became ultimately fascinating.
true, that the windows were smaller, the ceilings were lower, and there’s a kind of hunk, squattish type feeling, but it’s quite delicate. And she lives there, in this church block. MR - Wonderful. So she gets that sense
of time, depth, and the intuition of time. Yes, it’s harder to get it here, because it’s very clean and modern. But you’re into the primal stuff anyways, so you could be anywhere. You’re not bound by any of that. You’ve tapped into a whole other area for your creativity. Everyone’s different and everyone’s inspired... CM - Don’t you think everything that is
close to you is a start for something else? MR - Yes I do think so. And, when peo-
ple ask me about, “Oh, I wish I was this or that” I say “Start where you are!” So photograph your cats. Or photograph frogs. Something! Whatever. If you collect fish, photograph your fish! Whatever the hell it is that you’re obsessed by, because you can develop your eye. And it’s there. It doesn’t cost you anything. You don’t have to go anywhere. Start with that, or go and photograph trees. Follow your obsessions. What are you obsessed by? Are they women’s hats? Then go out and photograph women’s hats. Because the other thing, on a very practical level, you will build up a collection of images which is worth more in its totality than the individual images are, so you become the go to person when it comes to women’s hats over the last 30 years. CM - I used to embarrass my daughter,
and imitate birds. MR - I see you have in the bathroom, I
see frogs, I see birds, I see things, little seeds. CM - Little frogs, it was this big, and I
put it on Bill’s hairy hands. I’ve been trying to find it, run up with that frog. I know where they are, I have to get serious about it. MR - Well go and grab a few frogs, and
maybe make art from the frogs. CM - No, no they’re too small. They’re
almost not there. you could blow the print up that big, and then you could work conceptually with something bigger. Get a photo, it doesn’t matter, you could steal it out of a
when he photographed the hammer and the sickle, because in America.. MR - And he portrayed the Chairman..
Chairman Mao. CM - And Lenin. Because in America,
there’s such a fear of the hammer and the sickle. Anything communist is super dangerous. It’s going to undermine your culture, your sanity. And so I just loved that he would plow in there and did that. MR - Well he would do anything. I mean,
he didn’t take the swastika, that probably would not go down very well. The hammer and the sickle was still.. well, ok it was sort of the enemy. The swastika was more than an enemy, the swastika was pure evil. Of course, the original swastika sign was a Hindu sign, and it’s a universal sign, it was appropriated by Hitler, and organized into this red and black thing. But no, he would do.. he would have gentlemen come in off the street, piss on a bit of metal, let it oxidize, and sign the back. That would cost you a bunch. I think that was so Duchamp-ian. Like Duchamp taking a toilet, dumping it in a museum, and calling it art. He said “well, if everybody says it’s art, it’s art, what can you say?” CM - No no, it’s because it has that
second layer. Dash had people, he would pay them, I think, $50 to masturbate, on I forget, what was the surface. MR - I would have charged him more if
he wanted me to masturbate. I’d say $50 isn’t going to get you what you want. (laughs) CM - Dash played with that too. I just
MR - If you took a photograph of it,
CM - What interested me especially was
loved the idea that he was inviting, how many guys? At one point, he had like a storefront, and he had all these guys masturbating at the same time, and friends of his watching.
MR - He had photographs of them all
doing it? CM - Yah! MR - Oh fabulous. CM - Isn’t that crazy? It was a fascination.
It wasn’t an original idea... MR - No, it had nothing to do with an
overt interest in mens penises, either, it had nothing to do with that. It was an intriguing thought that he’d find. CM - Yah. MR - It’s art, you tell me it’s not art?
Alright, even it exists, so what are you going to do? CM - When you look at the picture of the
hammer and the aickle, I’m sorry I didn’t investigate that, because it’s so simple. It is hammer and sickle, and lights and their projection, and that’s all. It’s so simple, but it’s so beautiful. It’s the way he set it up, it’s the space he left around. I loved especially the hammer and the sickle. But also that it’s so naughty in American politics. MR - Well he was very subversive, yeah
definitely. But also, I think didn’t Mao came around at the same time as Nixon? He was very opportunistic, which artists frequently can be, and again that’s no criticism. I think when Nixon and Kissinger went to China, would produce all these Maos and people... CM - Was that the same time? MR - I think that was around the same
time, early 70’s, I’m pretty sure it was. I mean it was an artist, it’s wonderful. “It’s art.” “Chairman Mao on your wall?” “What? I’m a big capitalist, but I’d also like to have one of Andy Warhol’s Chairman Maos on my wall.” He had this subversive humor to humanity, like the way he was always “Oh, no, I don’t really do anything, I’m just sorta like a retard, and everything happens.” And then you see all this stuff, and then he pulling the “Oh no I don’t really do the silkscreens.” But he bloody did do a lot of those silkscreens. Yes, he had some help. I’ve done silkscreens, you need a bit of help. But of course he did all this stuff, but he would pretend he didn’t. CM - I like that he upset them.
this, orange. This is a temporary table that I wanted to design for myself.
MR - He would pretend he wouldn’t do at
MR - I think in a way, they looked the
times, he would mess up people’s minds a bit. But he was a trickster in so many ways, and that’s an artist. I mean, not all artists are tricksters, but.. CM - He’s playful.
same. Which is it? In a way, you could see that is more female, because of that hairy thigh. But still, nevertheless, what is a penis anyways? It’s mostly used for pissing... Don’t get too excited about them.
MR - Exactly, just buggering about to see
CM - Anyways, that was just one night,
where it goes.
and I was leaving the next morning, and I wanted to play with my great-granddaughter, Secret.
Anyways, there’s this guy, who was a megalomaniac, who died, who was very, very bossy, who was a pretty good artist, and I realized that everything I was building, whether it was a table design or a house, and I thought “Oh my god, this is Donald Judd.” And I hadn’t started out to copy him, but he had influenced me a lot, looking at his work.
ing to talk to. In politics he was so smart, he saw things as they are, he would say it. I’m not sure he would publish it, but..
MR - Did you have to take your clothes off
MR - That’s not a bad thing. You can be
MR - No, no no, he’s too smart for that.
CM - Well I said this enough, I’m not
No he would never give away any of that, and he’s quite right.
what you’re allowed to be influenced. We’re all allowed to be influenced. As long as you make it yours anyways. You make it yours.
MR - Well you’re not your regular 77 year
CM - I was a little frightened by being so
CM - You know he was always so interest-
in order for that privilege? (laughs)
CM - But it’s so amazing that there’s been
this complete switch between 9-11, when nobody dared to argue with Bush, that you were considered not a citizen.
CM - No because I cared for him so much
influenced so much by him. It was scary. It meant: Why don’t I have an idea? Why can’t I find a solution?
that I would do anything reasonable, what I thought was reasonable.
MR - But you transform it. It goes
MR - Oh yeah, I actually did give an
opinion down at the National Arts Club once about something, and this woman said, “Why don’t you go back to England?” Well, I just happened to be having an American father, an American wife, an American daughter, and pay American taxes and I own a house here, so forget the go back to England bullshit. But I wasn’t allowed to make a criticism. I found that very... your right though it was like that, and it soon went away.
MR - Well, that looks reasonable. It has a
nice surreal touch to it. CM - And also I could almost be bought,
always, if I thought I could see Secret. And she was then very small, climbing all over him. If I thought I could see her, I would do almost anything, and I think that’s why I said OK I’ll come, because I knew I could play with her. Ah yah, see, she was like this.
CM - Well this is Dash, and he wanted
through you, and you transform it into something else. CM - I had been in his place in Marfa. I
mean, it was an unpleasant figure. But I thought some of his ideas were just very firm, very solid, very satisfying. And, so, when I made a table model, when I finished with it, I realized, “Oh my god that’s Donald Judd.” But I hadn’t started out doing Donald Judd, it just seemed rational. MR - It’s nice and big, I think that’s the
to do something for this magazine, and I was leaving at 6 in the morning for Houston for this board meeting, and I said, man I would do anything for Dash. And it was my opportunity to.. I think magazines shouldn’t do that.
MR - Ah yah, beautiful child.
key thing with this table.
CM - But I was going to have a layer that
a bit, wasn’t he?
was in a bit, so whenever people come to dinner, I can put all my papers there, but they’re easy to come out the next day.
MR - I know. One thing about on-line is,
CM - Yeah.
MR - That’s good.
MR - So, guess what? He’s getting a kick
CM - I think he did even that, that his
if you can see it big enough, when that kind of stuff goes online, it’s there, but still, you can’t see the actual touching of the lips. CM - He said, “Grandmother, would you
take off your clothes?” And I said. “Well, depends how much?” He was gradually trying to take off layers, and then he finally got this far, and I said “Ok, that’s it. No more.” It’s true, I was crazy about him. I don’t know who this other dude is. This is good. It’s nice. I don’t know why they had.. is that magazines don’t allow..?
MR - Well he was into winding people up
out of it. He’s having a good time.
table, which you can see at Mary Boone..
CM - You know something? He always
MR - Mary Boone, she called me two
wanted to work with people. He started to make artwork that were big collages that would start at this corner, and he did two, the second one never finished. And he gradually made collage, collage, collage, and I was working here, and I realized that I was going to have to get a new table top, and he said, “Don’t worry grandmother.” I said, “Nobody is going to want to buy this as a work of art, it’s too heavy.” “No, no,” he said, “Don’t worry.” He must have charmed the gallery. MR - Cause they did show it.
MR - No, he obviously was hiding it. CM - Yeah, he sold it. And then he had CM - Yes, I know but..
the gallery make another one, just like
days ago. Never spoke to her before, but the writer that did the piece on me for the New York Times, Bob Morris, is a friend of hers. CM - Is he a sculptor? MR - No, Bob Morris is a writer. He
wrote.. Did you see that piece on me in the New York Times.. he wrote that little piece, and he was speaking to Mary, and then she called me, she said “I want to get together and talk.” She said “Oh, didn’t he tell you I was going to call?” I said, “No, it doesn’t matter, I know who you are, you know what you’re doing.. talk to me.”
Anyways, Bob Thurman and LSD.. ahhh. Now Steve Jobs talks about LSD, too. He was also quite bold talking about it. I’m certain sure it did have some influence on his way of thinking. Certainly he regarded himself as more of a buddhist than anything else. Unfortunately it did went so far that he wouldn’t deal with his sickness in a much more traditional way. We don’t know whether it could save his life or not, no one can say that, but I suppose that was his character, it was his genius. It was also part of his extreme nature, because it seemed he was fairly extreme in a certain sense, but extremely brilliant was one of his extremes. But he talked about LSD fairly frequently. And I think as much as for many people, it was not a good thing to do. For some people who came of age in the late 60’s and early 70’s, it allowed a quantum leap in their thinking. A lot other lives were destroyed by it I believe. I believe in my case, it triggered something, albeit I didn’t really knew what I was doing.
or bad or whatever, he was reckless, that’s for sure, which had it’s place, his recklessness. And I first heard of LSD when I was in Cambridge, in relation to reading about Harvard and him. Yah, I remember reading his name coming up when I was 16 or 17, when I was at Cambridge. I can’t say he was a good influence, but he was, and how do you assess people influences as either good or bad, but that whole nexus, including apparently that guy Andrew Weil, who writes these books, who’s got this new number one seller, you know, he’s the botanist. CM - Oh yah, he’s got a clinic in Arizona. MR - He looks like Santa Claus. When
Maybe with Bob, was he a buddhist before he took LSD?
I was recovering from my own heart bypass surgery, I read Spontaneus Healing. I didn’t realize that he was involved with the whole Harvard crew earlier, but he had a good take on it because he talked about combining western medicine, with organic and natural. They had to cut me open and operate, I realized, because I would have died. There was no clever way around it.
CM - No. It was with Timothy Leary in
CM - It was a big decision of you to make.
MR - No it was made for me, I just went
MR - Oh, so he was involved with the
along with it. I had three heart attacks, I finally recognized that, including one in the middle of a photo session.
hardcore initial element. CM - But you see, I was saved I think,
from exploring that, number one I had this baby we had, and I just knew I wasn’t going to fool around with it. And, number two, I felt what they said... they had all these pow-wows with the students that would come over, had one dinner, then a second dinner, it was chaos... it was so boring! They were trying to redo Hagel, what the heck does that mean? MR - Redo? CM - Hagel. they were trying to recon-
figure, re-express, and I just thought.. get me out of here. And I realized I was saved perhaps, because I had been introduced to people by this Father, who took me to see Matisse, who took me to all these artists, and what they said or didn’t say, was so glorious, that.. what these guys were saying were super stupid. MR - Still they were a fascinating bunch
of people, because they did influence. Even Timothy Leary. CM - I never met him so I don’t know. MR - It doesn’t matter if he was good
CM - I know, that was the last one. MR - No, it wasn’t the last one, that’s how
in the sense that I didn’t have insurance, but because of this friend of mine, that I got this incredible care. I love the irony of the fact that they couldn’t let me die. I find nothing wrong with that, I just think it’s fabulous, because I had gotten the benefit of the treatment. CM - When Andy (Warhol) went to the
hospital, I forgot which time. MR - ’87 it was.
CM - They wanted to let him go, just
goodbye, that’s it, we can’t do it. And his friends that went with him said, “No, wait he’s very rich, just take care of him.” Don’t you think that’s kind of shocking? MR - It’s all shocking, but this America,
what are you going to do about it? I’m not arguing. I’m not fighting it. It worked for me in this particular case. If I died, I might have been pissed off about it in some way but I didn’t. As it was it was the luck of the draw. The interesting thing was that the gentleman that did it was this guy called Allen Klein, who was the business manager of the Beatles and the Stones, and he had this wild reputation as being like a gangster, being ruthless. I think maybe I don’t think he was a gangster, he was a super accountant, but he had this reputation as being whatever it was, but he was the man who saved my life. (to crew) You know who Allen Klein is?
out of touch I was, with my body.
(crew) He comes sometimes.
CM - That you didn’t respond to that one.
He once told me that, he said, because loved me. He was very straightforward. And apparently he was that kind of man. He was ruthless in business, but gave a load of money to charity to help people. Later on I heard he was an extremely charitable person. But I remember once thanking him for the 50th time, he said “Oh Mick, you’re my ticket to heaven.”
MR - Well, I didn’t have a doctor, because
if I was seriously sick, I’d go back to England. Well, you can’t fly in those circumstances. If it hadn’t been for a wealthy friend of mine laying out $100,000, not cause I asked him, because he just did it, from the music business.. if it hadn’t been for that I don’t know what I would have done. He put me under the NYU Medical Center, I was there. And I had 24 hours a day people running around. The interesting thing was that I realize a couple of days after my surgery, my heart was going crazy, it was going (brrrr brrr brrr) And I had a roomful you never would have seen, I had doctors, I had nurses, I had interns. Only later did I think about it, that I realize this friend of mine had been giving a couple of million dollars a year to the hospital, so they couldn’t let me die, because it could have cost them a lot of money. So I was lucky,
(crew) Allen Klein! Allen Klein! Hey! CM - That’s so beautiful. MR - He died unfortunately, although
I still have good.. with his son and daughter. But I loved Allen. I knew he had this interesting reputation, but he gave me a lot of work when nobody else would when I was so fucked up. And he paid my daughter’s school fees one year, and he never played games with me about anything. He was just straight ahead kind, and I knew he would fucking play games about money if it was
business, because I would hear about things, and he would even tell me some things, but if it was personal, and he cared, he would do anything for you. I loved the man. CM - What I don’t understand about
the Buddhists, and I had even met the Dalai Lama.. Bob took me up there to Dharamsala.. He’s very charming, he’s like a country rodent, he speaks like this... MR - Oh the Dalai Lama? CM - Oh he’s adorable. MR - He looks like a lovely face. CM - But he’s unaware, for instance, of
the hierarchy of his surroundings. For instance, he did not honor the first doctor Yeshi Dhonden, back when his sister came in from China, with her husband who was a docter, he dropped Yeshi Dhonden and just went with just the husband of the sister. That’s a bit harsh, you know.
... CM - Architecture.
Oh, Ando. It’s true I love Ando. I am trying right now to find some money for Ando, for Fukushima. Ando, the architect’s dream right now is to try to do something for Fukushima, and his way of assessing it is to create a school, a boarding school for little kids, who can be educated. He feels its the best thing we can do for them. And, so I know he would need a lot of money. Lots of Japanese are going to give him a lot of money, but we need to help him, too. A nuclear debacle like this is going to.. everywhere. I mean, we have it 25 miles north of New York, maybe ok, maybe not ok, and so it’s a reality for all of us. I think we should listen to this man. You know his work? The architect Ando? Tadao Ando? MR - I know the name but I really am not
this window, into this window on the ceiling, to the chimney, and then down onto the shelf of the chimney. I thought it was wonderful. Also, in Paris, all I had that was, in my Paris apartment, was this Bob Wilson light and Fred Sandback, and I feel, maybe because I was born around that kind of thing, you have to have .. otherwise you can’t show your face to the door. I don’t want to think like that. I don’t want to live like that. So all I had there just Fred Sandback, which I like a lot, and so I thought, let them chew on that, so heck with it. Also, my parents were so involved in art I don’t have to worry about what they think. So I had this very severe apartment. But glorious, it was overlooking the gardens of Musée Rodin. There was this very rich British guy next to the Musée Rodin, just east of the Musée Rodin. And my daughter used to climb down the vines into the little garden, running around with her little pals, do their morning exercise, and climb back up.
CM - Some day, you will see. It’s so MR - Yah, well sometimes brilliant
men are harsh. That doesn’t excuse it, though. CM - And then I had gone one time
to a festival in the middle of India, I forgot what the town was called, and his brother, who called himself JT, for something Tenzing, was offering me tea in the afternoon, because I was supposedly working on this book with Bob. He was writing text and I would do the photos, about his holiness. So, JT would invite me for tea in the afternoons, and then two years later I went back to Dharamsala with Bob, and we went to the house of the mother of the Dalai Lama, who was quite an extraordinary person. I think he played a big role in his spiritual development. MR - He became the Dalai Lama quite
gorgeous what he does. There’s a sense of space, breathing and looking, and all the textures that makes the domes or whatever, it feels so great, like basketry or something. You would truly love it. He becomes sort of unpleasant as a person but who cares, that’s beyond my rapport with him. MR - Because he has this mission. He de-
serves support. So intrinsically he’s not such a bad guy, he just has a bad manner about him. CM - I love talking to him because it’s
real. It’s OK to disagree. What is true, about architecture, I’ve always been drawn to it.
Anyways, when I asked Bob, well, what do I owe you for this light? And he said, “Well, we could make an exchange?” And I thought, how fabulous, nobody has ever offered me an exchange, it’s a real honor.. OK great. And then the next morning I wake up and realize, listen, you’ve been dreaming, this ain’t no exchange. It’s just.. he wants you to buy two dresses from Madame Gray for his play in Munich. And it made me mad. It made me mad enough that I decided, to heck with this, I’m just going to do it myself, and I had never done any clothes at all. MR - So his intuitive thing was very
sharp? When I was doing costumes with Bob Wilson, which was really..
CM - No I just..
MR - Which is a big deal.. Robert Wilson.
MR - Because in fact you did, you pro-
young, didn’t he? CM - Yes, like when he was three?
duced this stuff. CM - It was really like.. ingest.
MR - Yes very young, so obviously he
lived in the Dalai Lama bubble, for a long time, so one can see how he might be disconnected in some way.
CM - No, but I think anyone can do it MR - But then you offered, and he took
MR - No. I don’t believe that. I think CM - No, he had made a sculpture for me,
CM - The filled glasses completely
convinced, that yes, the Dalai Lama recognized these jewels and implements that the people who went around noticing and went looking for the next holiness, that this kid that they saw in this farm, recognized him as if he had been in that life.
you up on it. After the Light. A very brilliant light, that went from one room into the next room. Like this, say this is one room, the front hall, and the next room is a dining room. So, from here, there was a wall. Behind the wall there is a light. Went through
that’s your modesty. CM - No, I think we’re all much more
able to... MR - Yes we are, but still, only certain
people do. I think you don’t give yourself enough credit to say that. You know why? Because Robert Wil-
son, I mean he’s a serious opera writer. If what you were producing wasn’t right, he wouldn’t have mattered. He would say “bugger it. I gotta move on.” But he recognized what you did was right.
bit more credit for his intuition as well, as well as yourself.
on the second 4, your voice.. I find that insane. I don’t think that’s sane at all.
CM - So then, since I was not being paid,
MR - No, it’s probably not sane, but it’s
So, no, I don’t think just anybody could do that.
MR - That’s the beauty of not being paid,
Even if it‘s somebody who’s just drawing a line. And that’s “so alright, just draw a line.” But you drew that line, and that was the connection. CM - At the beginning, when I started
to work, I bought myself a very cheap mannequin. It was so cheap, it was very wobbly, so I bought sandbags to hold it down. This was in Paris, I was there in that apartment that was so uncluttered yet so cozy. And then, Bob would come in from out-of-town, and he would say “Well, you have too many idea.” Meaning, hurry up, I need it now. I decided I really wanted to stick to it, and say the deadline was April, this was like November, so I thought to myself, I am going to continue, maybe I’ll find it, maybe I won’t, if I don’t, I will go and buy the dresses from Madame Gray, but I’m not going to do it now. So anyways, I said, “I want to come to Munich to see the actors.” They were just two women and two men. I bought 15 yards of black silks. I thought, well, I always liked black, Bob likes black, we’ll use it somehow. 5 yards of heavy, 5 yards medium, 5 yards light. It was very heavy, so I asked Bob, “Would you meet me at the airport, because this is so heavy?” I went there, and in the plane I got the idea for the dress of the younger woman, which was like a jungle, the leaves, the sleeves. And the older woman, I couldn’t figure out, but I finally did. I kept wrapping, my shaky mannequin, rewrapping it, and Bob was getting impatient. He would say “The trouble is you have too many ideas..” Anyways I had the gall to just keep going, because I had nothing to lose in a way. If worst come to worst, I ask Madame .. if the dresses would take three months, maybe, and that would be OK. But he saw me through it! Because he could have said “Christophe, I think this is too hard for you, I need to...” You know he would have found a way. MR - Maybe you should have given him a
I was very arrogant. you’re allowed to be arrogant. The minute someone gives you money, you’ve got to be a little humble, because I’m taking your money. CM - The deadline was, what, April? So
I knew I had to return something in by February, otherwise I had to buy. Anyways, he accepted the dresses I gave him. I went to the dress rehearsal, and I saw.. I don’t know if you know Isabel Eberstadt, she was a big New York socialite, and she was there. I said, Isabel, “I think the necklace Bob has put on Mrs. Nicklas, the older actress, is quite wrong.” She said, “I agree with you.” So, we went to the head of the department of costumes. In Europe, the costume departments are really exquisite, most everywhere. And we said to her, “We have a problem, both of us, with this necklace, because it’s too stiff, it was like wooden beads.” And we wanted something that had a better curve when you hold it out. And Bob sent a note saying please leave Ms. Nicklaus alone, we don’t want to confuse her or upset her. But she understood, that when I was fitting her, I did this.. I took.. and I felt.. and she understood that I wanted to make her as comfortable and as sleek as possible. I didn’t need to say anything, she trusted me. And we were talking about it, and I said, “Mrs. Nicklaus, I would like to offer you another necklace. You could try it in your..” What’s it called, a “pre”.. What’s it called when you try on something.. a play before.. MR - Oh you mean a preview.. CM - Yes.. “Would you try it out, and
if you don’t like it, it’s OK, we’ll forget about it.” And Bob was always sending me these notes saying “Please leave Ms. Nicklaus alone.” But I never felt that freedom afterwards. I ignored, and I just went on. Anyways, we succeeded. Ms. Nicklaus said “Yes. I’d be happy to try this necklace.” There was no problem with her finding it.” Because Bob, all his plays are on time. So, as an actor, here, or during rehearsal, this rhythm... and you’re... 1, 2, 3, 4.. 1, 2, 3, 4... let’s say.. you know you’re
quite effective obviously, because he’s had a hell of a career. Sometimes it works for one person, it doesn’t work for another. CM - But he’s very cruel on actors,
because they don’t do it.. they get their fingers rapped. MR - Quite right.. quite right. CM - No we shouldn’t do that. MR - I’m only kidding. (laughs) CM - So anyways, it worked out fine.
I thought well, that’s it, I cleared my thing. I gave him what I needed, it was a fair exchange. And then he called me in May, and said “Could you come to Frauenbeurg?” and I said “No, I don’t think so.” Because i have to go to Houston, there’s going to be a a board meeting about the architect about the museum. And I thought that was more important, because I was the only person that really studied architects. And then I called back about 15 minutes later, and I said, “No, I’d like to come.” Because I realized I never would win in Houston, I might as well let it go. Because, obviously they wanted Piano. Piano’s not a great architect. He’s proficient. But, I wanted Ando. And I had before that, asked for Luis Kahn, then Louis Kahn died because we waited too long, and then Luis Barragan. ... I always forget how I do this. the only way I can do it, is you see, this is the front, the cross. And the back is like this. And it has one and a half turns. I found it when I was doing work for Bob Wilson. It wasn’t part of our program, but I noticed Dutch women historically have very interesting headgear, starched white. Really, it was quite sometimes extraordinary. So I went to an old town, I forget what it was, it was near Antwerp, to see where they had the most interesting headdresses. It turned out this is it. I forget how it became a hat, probably by twists. MR - That’s interesting how you commu-
nicate with things, how you make these. That’s how you communicate your ideas. Because you don’t draw it, you don’t take photographs, you do this.
CM - Those are my notes. I made it very
skinny. I made it very fat. I’m trying to work on this, because I haven’t remade it. But I care a lot about it, because of where it comes from, because it’s a very simple geometric figure, and I want to make it work. ...
they’ve done, the jeweler. I feel that I don’t have a copyright on it. particular design.
tion, where we could both have a Coke or coffee or whatever. And that was what brought it home to me, because otherwise I thought it was a very.. goodie-goodie.
CM - Everything else, I have the copy-
MR - Well, racism grew out of that whole
right, but not the Japanese..
slavery thing, there is a certain undercurrent in certain parts of America where there’s racism.
MR - You have a copyright on your own
MR - Well you can’t copyright a Japanese
MR - Everybody. They are recession-
Crane. But, you can copyright your illustration, or your photograph. I can take pictures of Japanese Cranes, but I own that image. And, you say with the cranes, so what are you going to do about it, you can’t control the copyright of your image.
proof. They communicate. It’s like walking art. I believe in it, too.
CM - But they probably like it.
Look at that, that’s impressive.
MR - They probably love it, yah. Because
MR - Tell me about your T-shirts. When
I got in here, I knew did these things, but the one thing I didn’t know about... CM - Well, because I think t-shirts are..
CM - I still like it. I haven’t made it in a
they’re into being admired. CM - That’s amazing.
year. I particularly like this one. This is the Croc and Boa. In this case, from the Florida Everglades, because people have allowed their snakes and crocs to..
MR - This is like your walking canvas.
MR - Yah, it’s serious business, I can see
You like them? CM - I love them. MR - Made exactly. CM - And I have lots of ideas. MR - You can instantly get your shape
down and plum.. plum.. plum.. CM - And this is a Deep Sea Fish, but so
But obviously, to be fair to America as a whole, if you can even think about America, I’m not sure when there’s going to be a black Prime Minister in England, though you’ve had a female Prime Minister in England, I don’t know whether a black one is going to get in. You go, I know Europe has been more liberated about all these things, but, there is a black President in America.
MR - In and of itself, you have to acknowlCM - So, anyways, I’m working on this
right now. CM - But I saw that with the Menil
you’re not lacking about with it. I can see that it’s a great, unique range.
Foundation, I finally resigned, because I saw that I really knew about things, and nobody listened to me, because I wasn’t giving huge amounts, and that’s it.
CM - It’s true that I don’t know right now
what’s going to be my next object or whatever, but it doesn’t matter, because I bump into things all the time, and they just.. suddenly I look at them, and I’m “Really?”, and I haven’t before.
For instance, I told people in Houston, all over, that they should buy Ken Price. You know his work? Ken Price?
MR - And then you take them apart..
CM - Super divine. I have to send you
MR - No.
deep sea, that it has no eye. It has an eye, but it doesn’t function.
CM - And then it’s ok, I don’t need to
MR - What is it called?
MR - No, you know when you get your
worry it’s my last idea.
He’s a guy, about 80, who lives in Santa Fe, who does drawings that are very, very beautiful watercolors of the end of the world, and we don’t give up, because it’s starting again. They’re worms hugging, and having children and babies. I mean, it’s corny what I’m saying. But, there’s endless hope.
call it. It only feels its space with its long tentacles that comes out of its chin. Isn’t that insane? That’s three or four times longer than the body.
last idea? Just as you pop off. When you bing that light. Shit, the only thing I regret, is when I’m going out, and I’m going out and I didn’t do this last thing I wanted to do. I wish I did this one before I pass..
CM - My parents got involved with
there’s a new world.
human rights, because of the shock of being in Houston, and seeing..
CM - Yes. And so they’re very devastating
CM - I forgot. Deep Sea Fish is what I
And this was when I make the babies.. I’m in love with the Japanese Crane, they play with their necks, and jump up and down. They jump.. Japanese Cranes, they sing together, they’re very group oriented. So I used them for babies. MR - That’s good stuff. CM - Thank you. I have lots more ideas,
I’ve been trying to focus. And you don’t want me to mention that I’m working on a new line, which is a venus fly trap. But, I’m still not quite happy with what
MR - Oh, beyond the end of the world,
MR - Oh at that time especially. CM - In the 50‘s and 60’s.. and seeing so
much abuse. I realize when I bought my first high-heel shoes, what was I, 15? I went with our housekeeper, to downtown Houston, to buy high-heel shoes, and I bought two pairs, and then we wanted to go have a drink, a Coke, or something. And then I realized, we could not together have a Coke, unless we walked 30 blocks to the railroad sta-
canyons, and buses going down canyons, and all kinds of things, but there’s regeneration too. Despite absolute fear surrounding us, there is hope. We are creative, we are loving. Special thanks to Alina Morini.
fashion index. 10 Crosby Derek Lam dereklam.com ............................................. 133 3.1 Phillip Lim www.31philliplim.com. . ...................................... 128, 196 8=10....................................................................................... 83, 85 99%IS www.99percentis.com............................................................ 191 A La Disposition www.aladisposition.com.......................... 175, 185, 186 A.F. Vandevorst www.afvandevorst.be. . .............................. 132, 135, 19 9 Acne www.acnestudios.com.............................................................. 93 Adam Atelier adamatelier.com.. ...................................................... 180 Adidas www.adidas.com................................................................. 87 Agent Provocateur www.agentprovocateur.com........... 114, 164, 168, 170 Alessandro Dell ’Acqua www.alessandrodellacqua.com..................... 160 Alexander McQueen www.alexandermcqueen.com..................... 157, 198 Alexis Bittar www.alexisbittar.com. . ......................................... 126, 129 Aline Johnson www.alinejohnson.co.uk. . .......................................... 178 American Apparel www.americanapparel.net........................ 94, 96, 97 American Retro www.americanretro.fr............................................ 187 Ann Demeulemeester www.anndemeulemeester.be. . ........................... 76 Anndra Neen anndraneen.com....................................................... 125 Arielle de Pinto arielledepinto.com.. .......................................... 127, 133 Ashish for Topshop www.topshop.com............................................ 86 Aurélie Bidermann aureliebidermann.com....................................... 126 Azzedine Alaïa www.alaia.fr......................................................... 198 Balenciaga www.balenciaga.com..................................................... 199 Barbara Briones www.barbarabriones.com. . ..................................... 123 Behnaz Sarafpour www.behnazsarafpour.com................................... 115 Belstaff www.belstaff.com.. ............................................................. 196 Betsey Johnson www.betseyjohnson.com.......................................... 123 Beyond Retro www.beyondretro.com. . ......................................... 93, 97 Bjørg Jewellery www.bjorgjewellery.com............................. 175, 179, 185 BLESS x audio-technica x Chikazawa www.honeyee.com............. 190 Bliss Lau blisslau.com................................................................... 114 Bliss Rose www.blissrose.fr. . .......................................................... 198 Bottega Veneta www. bottegaveneta.com ......................................... 198 Bowie bowie.com.au...................................................................... 188 Burberry www.burberry.com..................................................... 89, 94 Burberry Prorsum www.burberry.com............................................ 201 Calvin Klein www.calvinklein.com.................................................. 127 Candy www.candy-nippon.com........................................................ 188 Carlos Miele www.carlosmiele.com.br............................................... 121 Carven carven.com. . ................................................................ 126, 131 Catherine Malandrino www.catherinemalandrino.com.. 116, 120, 122, 123 Celine www.celine.com. . ................................................................. 158 Chanel www.chanel.com.. ......................................................... 77, 196 Charlie.......................................................................... 114, 120, 123 Charlotte Olympia www.charlotteolympia.com . . ............................... 201 Charlotte Valkeniers www.charlottevalkeniers.com. . .......................... 177 Cheap Monday www.cheapmonday.com......................................... 4, 8 Chelsea Antique Market............................................................ 154 Chloé www.chloe.com............................................................. 132, 201 Christian Benner www.christianbennercustom.com............................ 196 Christian Louboutin www.christianlouboutin.com........................... 198 Christian Siriano www.christianvsiriano.com.. .................................. 118 Christophe de Menil www.christophedemenil.com. . ........................... 108 Christopher Kane www.facebook.com/pages/Christopher-Kane/.......... 201 Comme Des Garçons www.comme-des-garcons.com................... 195, 201 Costume National www.costumenational.com.................................. 167 208
Cote by Improvd cotebyimprovd.com............................................... 117 Craig Lawrence www.craiglawrence.co.uk........................................ 89 Creatures of the Wind creaturesofthewind.com. . ........................ 124, 130 Crux www.cruxny.com...................................................................... 7 Dalla Nonna dallanonnajewelry.com............................................... 124 Damaris damaris.co.uk............................................................ 145, 151 David Lerner www.davidlernerny.com.. ........................................... 105 Diane von Furstenberg www.dvf.com...................................... 97, 199 Dion Lee www.dionlee.com............................................................. 82 Dilara Fidikoglu www.dilarafindikoglu.com...................................... 82 DKNY www.dkny.com. . ................................................................ 199 Dolce & Gabbana www.dolcegabbana.com. . ................................... 200 Dr. Martens www.drmartens.com. . .............................................. 5, 8, 9 Dries van Noten www.driesvannoten.be.......................................... 195 Elise Dray www.elisedray.com ....................................................... 196 Ellery www.elleryland.com ............................................................. 196 Erdem www.erdem.com ................................................................ 200 Falconiere www.falconierenewyork.com............................... 125, 132, 134 Falke www.falke.com...................................................................... 94 Fendi www.fendi.com. . ................................................................... 199 Fogal www.fogal.com. . ................................................................... 120 Forrest & Bob www.forrestandbob.com............................................ 117 G-Star www.g-star.com............................................... 116, 119, 121, 122 G.V.G.V. www.gvgv.jp............................................................ 188, 190 Gal Stern gal-stern.com................................................................. 118 Garter garter-tokyo.com................................................................. 158 Giambattista Valli www.giambattistavalli.com.................................. 158 Gianvito Rossi www.gianvitorossi.com.. ........................................... 197 Giles giles-deacon.com ................................................................... 201 Giuseppe Zanotti www.giuseppezanottidesign.com............................ 199 Givenchy www.givenchy.com.......................................................... 199 Gucci www.gucci.com.................................................................... 199 Gudrun + Gudrun www.gudrungudrun.com.................................... 178 Han Ahn Soon www.hanahnsoon.com. . .......................................... 190 Heidi Gardner heidigardnernyc.com. . .............................................. 127 Helmut Lang www.helmutlang.com. . ........................................ 114, 195 Hermès www.hermes.com. . ............................................................. 157 Hillier London www.hillierlondon.com. . ......................................... 200 Hollow Dancer www.hollowdancer.com......................................... 100 House of Holland www.houseofholland.co.uk.. ................................ 190 Huit www.huit.com.. ..................................................................... 149 Hussein Chalayan chalayan.com.................................................... 75 Irene Neuwirth ireneneuwirth.com. . ................................................ 199 Irene Shuang. . ............................................................................. 86 Isabel Marant www.isabelmarant.com............................................. 195 Issey Miyake www.isseymiyake.com............................................... 190 J Brand www. jbrandjeans.com........................................................ 197 J.Mendel www.jmendel.com............................................... 117, 120, 122 Jessica Winzelberg jessicawinzelberg.com................................. 120, 123 Jil Sander www.jilsander.com.. ........................................................ 197 Jimmy Choo www.jimmychoo.com. . ................................................. 201 Jitrois www.jitrois.com...................................................................... 4 JNBY www.jnby.com. . ...................................................................... 4 John Rocha www.johnrocha.ie........................................................ 182 Jonathan Saunders www.jonathan-saunders.com .............................. 197 Jose Duran www.joseduran.net....................................................... 5, 7
Jovani www.jovani.com.................................................................. 119 Kenzo www.kenzo.com................................................................... 90 Kim West www.kimwest.co.uk.........................................................184 Kirst y Ward www.kirsty-ward.com. . ............................ 180, 181, 184, 187 La Crasia lacrasiagloves.com........................................ 114, 115, 118-122 La Perla www.laperla.com. . ............................................................ 142 Lanvin www.lanvin.com. . ....................................................... 196, 200 Le Mont St. Michel www.lemontsaintmichel.fr................................. 139 Lee Angel www.leeangel.com................................ 115, 116, 117, 119, 122 Lep Luss www.lessplusdesign.com................................................... 188 Les Jupons de Tess www.lesjuponsdetess.com. . ................... 163, 165, 169 Levi’s www.levi.com....................................................................... 83 Little Shilpa www.littleshilpa.com................................................... 179 M Missoni www.m-missoni.com............................................ 90, 91, 93 Maison Martin Margiela www.maisonmartinmargiela.com... 79, 158, 194 Maison Scotch........................................................................... 183 Mantilla & Halston . . .................................................................. 162 Maria Grachvogel www.mariagrachvogel.com.................................. 177 Marni www.marni.com. . .................. 79, 90, 91, 96, 97, 114, 117, 119, 195 Marc by Marc Jacobs www.marcjacobs.com.................................... 197 Marc Jacobs www.marcjacobs.com.................................................. 194 Marios Schwab www.mariosschwab.com......................................... 197 Mark Cross markcross1845.com ...................................................... 197 Meadham Kirchoff www.meadhamkirchhoff.com................... 89, 94, 97 Melinda Maria melindamaria.com........................................... 124, 125 mintdesigns www.mint-designs.com................................................. 191 Miu Miu www.miumiu.com............................................................ 198 Moschino Cheap & Chic www.moschino.com................................. 198 Mugler www.mugler.com. . ................................................................. 7 Mulberry www.mulberry.com.. ........................................................ 196 NaNa-NaNa nana-nana.net.. ......................................................... 191 Nanette Lepore www.nanettelepore.com........................................... 94 Narciso Rodriguez www.narcisorodriguez.com ............................... 200 Nast y Gal www.nastygal.com ........................................................ 197 Natalie Frigo bynataliefrigo.com.. ................................................... 132 Nektar de Stagni www.nektardestagni.com....................................... 98 New Era www.neweracap.com......................................................... 87 New York Vintage www.newyorkvintage.com ............... 160, 162-167, 173 Nike www.nike.com......................................................................... 85 Nina Ricci www.ninaricci.com........................................................ 197 Norma Kamali www.normakamali.com........................................... 198 Norman Norell.. ......................................................................... 167 nuboaix nuboaix.com. . ................................................................... 190 Obey obeyclothing.com..................................................................... 84 Ohne Titel www.ohnetitel.com......................................................... 117 Olivia Collings Antiques www.oliviacollingsantiques.com. . ................ 199 Pamela Love www.pamelalovenyc.com. . .................. 124-126, 128, 133, 134 Paul Smith www.paulsmith.co.uk............................................... 90, 97 Pebble London www.pebblelondon.com ..................... 89, 91, 94, 96, 97 Peter Jensen www.peterjensen.co.uk ................................................ 195 Peter Pilotto www.peterpilotto.com . . ............................................... 201 Pierre Hardy www.pierrehardy.com . . .............................................. 197 Pierre Balmain www.balmain.com ................................................ 200 Phenomenon phenomenon.tv .................................................. 190, 191 Plumpynuts www.plumpynuts.jp ...................................... 188, 190, 191 Prada www.prada.com ............................................................. 93, 195
Prabal Gurung www.prabalgurung.com .......................................... 196 Preen www.preen.eu ..................................................................... 201 Prism www.prismlondon.com .......................................................... 199 Proenza Schouler www.proenzaschouler.com ................................... 197 R13 www.r13denim.com .. .................................................................... 8 Rag & Bone www.rag-bone.com ............................................. 166, 170 Ralph Lauren Black www.ralphlauren.com . . ................................... 199 Ray-Ban www.ray-ban.com . . .......................................................... 197 RED Valentino www.redvalentino.com ........................................... 125 Repossi www.repossi.com .............................................................. 196 Richard Quinn ...................................................................... 81, 87 Rimzim Dadu .................................................................... 179, 185 Rochas www.rochas.com................................................................ 198 Rokit www.rokit.co.uk.......................................................... 82, 90, 91 Roksanda Ilincic www.roksandailincic.com ..................................... 199 The Row www.therow.com ............................................................ 200 Salvatore Ferragamo www.ferragamo.com...................................... 127 Sarah Baadarani www.sarahbaadarani.com............................... 175, 177 Settanta Bijoux www.settanta.eu ................................................... 201 Simone Rocha simonerocha.com ..................................................... 94 Solakzade solakzade.com. . ..................................................... 198, 190 Sonia Rykiel www.soniarykiel.com.................................................. 129 Stella McCartney www.stellamccartney.com ............................. 195, 197 Steve Madden www.stevemadden.com............................................. 119 Steven Alan www.stevenalan.com. . ................................................. 200 Sticks and Stones www.yeahwewood.com....................................... 116 T by Alexander Wang www.alexanderwang.com....................... 127, 200 Tamara Ackay www.tamaraakcay.com. . ........................................... 196 Temperley London www.temperleylondon.com................................. 198 Tess Giberson www.tessgiberson.com.............................................. 102 Theyskens’ Theory theyskenstheory.com.. ......................................... 131 Thierry Colson www.thierrycolson.com........................................... 191 Thom Browne www.thhombrowne.com. . .......................................... 196 Tim Van Steenbergen www.timvansteenbergen.com.. ........................ 190 Toga www.toga.jp........................................................................ 190 Toga Pulla www.toga.jp................................................................ 196 Topshop www.topshop.com............................................................. 83 Topshop Unique www.topshop.com................................... 133, 134, 201 Triumph www.triumph.com............................................................ 137 Tsumori Chisato www.tsumorichisato.com....................................... 194 Tugcan Dokmen.. .............................................................. 81, 83, 85 Urban Outfitters www.urbanoutfitters.com.. ...................................... 82 Valentino www.valentino.com.................................................. 158, 198 Vanessa Bruno Athé www.vanessabruno.com. . ................................. 194 Verlaine www.verlainenyc.com. . ....................................................... 135 Veronique Branquinho............................................................... 135 Versace www.versace.com........................................................ 78, 200 Victoria Sowerby victoria-sowerby.com. . ..................................... 84, 85 Wildfox www.wildfoxcouture.com.. ................................................... 201 Y-3 w w w.y-3store.com............................................................... 6, 9 Yohji Yamamoto www.yohjiyamamoto.co.jp. . .................................... 191 Yves Saint Laurent www.ysl.com. . .................................... 131, 164, 165 Zara www.zara.com. . ...................................................................... 85 Zilla www.zilla.it .......................................................................... 197