Plastic City Editor-in-Chief & Creative Director Amanda Maciel Antunes Layout & Design Philip DuPertuis Editors Amanda Maciel Antunes, Miriam Moser and Amanda Dugay Forrester Contributing Artists Amanda Williams, Bahar Yurukoglu, Eryn Tomlinson, Ashley Conchieri, Joey Asal, Sara Skolnick, Ernesto Morales, Ruth Meteer, Miguel Miro-Quesada, Allison Vanouse Contributing Photographers Corey Hayes, Brendan David Coyne, Shannon Grant, Jackie Puwalski, Bob Packert, Jessica Weiser Contributing Talents Meggie Sullivan, Gina Schiappacasse, Kelsy Osterman, Maria Yeye, Alexis Convento, Laura Kendall, Marla Phelan, Allison Jones, Hazel James, Jenursa Adamites, Liz Washer, Freya Front Roe, Maya Luz, Jeri Evan, Autumn Ahn, Cari Duprey, Special thanks to Amy Berkowitz, Brian Arnold, our phone devices, our parents and boston chinatown.
Contact: +1 617.8031454 www.spiritedmag.com Facebook: Spirited Magazine Twitter: @spiritedmag
Thank you everyone who influenced and inspired.
At This Table Arlyce Menzies
The future is uncomfortable at this table. It feels bolted to the floor and stationed in this sticky place. Hey you! Take me back to the room. I am drunk and tired. The chair is a unicycle— I can’t stay on it. Ha ha ha! The world is too fat to fit out the door. What to do now but watch? It doesn’t work to hope this through. Hope is beached in the bean soup, its forehead to this table.
Photography Corey Hayes Fashion /Body-Art/Headdresses Gina Schiappacasse Hair Kelsy Osterman for Cutler Salon Make-up Maria Yeye Models Alexis Convento, Laura Kendall, Marla Phelan, Allison Jones
Photography Brendan David Coyne Fashion Amanda Maciel Antunes Model Hazel James wardrobe stylist and modelâ€™s own
Photo Autumn Ahn
music Interview By Amanda Antunes
Like all super heroes, they are mild mannered by day with a career in Graphic Design and Community Organizer. When the sun goes down and the freaks come out, the DJ duo Ernesto Morales and Sara Skolnick aka Pajaritos, are what I call “the best dance generators this town has to offer." Acutely intelligent, playful and fantastically energetic, the duo throw a monthly World Bass - Tropical Cumbia Digital - Moombahton party called PICÓ PICANTE.
Photo Amanda Antunes
The boundaries, once pushed, become barriers and everyone goes for that quick fix. Pajaritos are about to change all that by taking Latin music to a place that it’s never been in this city. All you need to do is listen to one of their mixtapes and you’ll know why. We caught up over coffee and hummus snacks to discuss technology, learning from our experiences, whiskey jackets and why Boston is poised to make a bigger impact than ever before…
AA. How did you get started? SS. My first time performing was for Autumn Ahn’s art opening Shrine On at the Cambridge art gallery and performance space The Lily Pad. It’s something I have always wanted to do, it was in the back of my mind and when the opportunity showed up I just dove in. EM. I rode on Sara’s fame a little bit [laughs]. She got invited back to do something else and at that point we were like "OK, lets make it happen!" But, it was also something in the back of my mind. Although, in the beginning, the crowd made us look better than we were. AA. Could you talk about how you pick music together and most importantly how you challenge each other? SS. I think that we both have very specific cultural influences. From our upbringings, I mean, I’m half American and half Ecuadorian and it wasn't until I started working with music that I found an outlet for that. We don’t really talk about what we’re going to play, we just show up with what we have in mind. EM. We never really pre-planned anything musically. We kind of chose the name Pajaritos before we had aligned musically at all and ended up discovering a lot of the same Latin American / Spanish-language music. That’s how the name became true. AA. It’s funny because I grew up in Brazil listening to music in Portuguese but not really music in Spanish, and when I met you two I had this whole new world of Latin music that I wanted to explore. From Puerto Rican to Colombian and Cuban... to the beats of Spain. EM. Yeah, the way we push each other is more so the audience pushing us... by responding to particular tracks and rhythms. I picture them enjoying a track and it works like a dialogue between their response and mine. AA. As a performer you want the audience to respond and the constant feedback is definitely essential. It’s what makes it beautiful.
EM. Yes, this is also a new kind of communication for me, because we are trying to curate an experience and it can only be done with the audience’s input. SS. I would agree... so much of it is improvisation and I try to catch myself not doing it too much but I do try to see if people are dancing and enjoying themselves. Because I generally have a very specific music taste that I think is fun but when we play it only gets fun if other people are enjoying it too. We do challenge each other. We may not say it out loud. It’s really exciting, because this is more than music, it’s about traditions. SS. We challenge each other by both being so devoted to it. AA. If you don’t connect with the sounds then you have no business playing it, right? SS. Yeah, people can tell. AA. Yes they can. There's also that misunderstanding: calling DJs musicians and vice versa. What do you think about that? SS. I think until we start producing music I will hesitate to call myself a musician, but we both care a lot about creating an experience and that in itself is an art form. EM. I think the difference between the two is the difference between curatorship and authorship. We are developing the skills of being curators and designers of an experience, and we are picking up the influences that, at least for me, build up the itch to create our own sounds. We haven’t really talked about that yet... [laughs]. SS. Now we are. EM. Now is the time [laughs]. AA. You have just started too, how long has it been? EM. Since October 2010. SS. Yeah, I think? But It’s only been a couple of months for us that we defined ourselves and developed an identity.
EM. Before we were playing for a lot of friends and just had this automatic support. It was hard to go wrong with them, we’ve been lucky enough to have those people in our lives to watch. Then we started getting invited to some bigger events and all of a sudden we were playing for the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston, and the CyberArts Festival, and I was like ... we have to shape up in 3 days! [laughs] EM. We would have a lot of phone conversations like “do you realize how important these things are!?” AA. It was all really fast... but again, eventually you want to take it a step further. SS. It takes a few drinks... AA. Im not editing this out [laughs]. EM. There were a lot of times that I’d put on my whiskey jacket... and go dancing [laughs]. AA. Now, where do you find all this music that is new and cool and makes you (and me) dance, because in Boston not a lot of people know about it. SS. We try to find a beat or vocals that are universal. EM. I actually remember we took a Salsa dance class together in college. SS. That was five years ago Ernesto! EM. I will not bring up anything embarrassing. We always shared this kind of root before we even knew it. AA. Well you’re off to a great start and you’re both great dancers. EM. Well, thank you. There are a handful of artists that I keep coming across and I look up everything they have ever done and anyone they have ever worked with, any mixtapes they have created and just expand from there. And I do this over and over again. The Internet, the way people use blogs to share music, these have always been sources of infinite material.
SS. I have a google reader account of 30 blogs that I follow and I look up as soon as they post new music. It’s such an specific genre of music. AA. Where are these blogs from? SS. All over the world. Mexico, Argentina, Spain, Brazil. EM. There’s usually an immediate reaction, and that reaction is based on the audience’s response to what we played before. I can just hear this one part and say “I can work with this.” We’ve played enough that we know how we'll use the music. AA. Let’s say someone were to come to you who wanted to do a project like “Pajaritos.” What type of advice would you give them? SS. To take criticism, to take it seriously, and have the ability to say "yeah, maybe I’m not the best" and build a thicker skin over time. It’s knowing what your tastes are and being prepared to present that to the fullest. You are constantly evolving as with any creative process. AA. We learn from our experiences... EM. I think people--myself included-- start off playing with music that they think is dance music and then quickly realize that is either so overplayed and only pleases your friends or is just not danceable. Starting off with some internal support is essential. It takes an initial investment of just deciding that you'll commit to it. Even if you don’t have a specific direction, if you have passion you'll find out what you are drawn towards. AA. What about when you are relaxing, what do you listen to? EM. I used to listen to Nina Simone, Leonard Cohen, and a lot of Brazilian music. Very personal and really emotional music. I’d look for music that brought up a feeling of nostalgia for home or the idea of home. Now I’m so much happier when I’m bringing an ever present life to my day-to-day, as opposed to listening to music that makes me think of the past. It’s hard to listen to music and not try to work.
AA. The beauty of the emotional language. SS. I think I really like to pull new music when I travel, so wherever I go I try to buy a CD from off the street, from Peru, India, Barcelona-- it brings up these memories when you are surrounded by unfamiliar and inexplicable things. It’s always good to feel a little bit outside of your normal sense of perspective. AA. So, I want to know a little bit about Picó Picante. I know you just had your fourth event at the Boston nightclub Good Life in September, collaborating with different DJs who share the same aesthetic as you both, and creating this wonderful dance party to elevate the grounds of kinship. What are your next plans? SS. It started by chance, we invited our friends who had similar music and similar ideologies, and tried to make it a participatory event. It’s all experimental, from our first trial at the Lily Pad to Good Life, it’s been great to interact with the space and people.
EM. I always think of using technology to take you outside of technology. Being a DJ is a technological experience and also a current experience. The idea of buying mp3s from artists all over the world and sharing them via the Internet and the dance floor to create an experience that feels natural. I just love living in that realm. AA. Alright, thank you both. See you on the dance floor. SS/EM. [laughs] You will!
EM. I think we are holding on to it being a cultural experience, what makes you involved with a culture in a beautiful way or through music, not at all isolating but welcoming. That and other endeavors of ours are going a lot faster than we ever planned. It’s growing in a really organic way though, we don’t have time to plan beyond the next one. But outside of that we are looking to broaden our horizons. We just got a monthly gig in Providence (RI) and are trying to think of venues in Boston that would be open to the idea of doing something different. We'll both be living here for a while so we'll keep digging further. We are committed to make this more fun than it already is. AA. Yep. Absolutely. Now, for my last question...what do you think of “Plastic City?” SS. I think using technology to your advantage, like social media, you are obviously physically not with people but at the same time you are communicating, although it’s a different kind of communication. I feel that the way we are using technology is to try and create a very organic interaction with people, very, well, I don’t want to say primitive, [laughs] but just something that we can all universally connect by.
Photos Amanda Antunes
Photography Shannon Grant Fashion Amanda Maciel Antunes Hair Jenursa Adamites Make-up Liz Washer Model Freya Front Roe wardrobe stylistâ€™s own, artifaktori, zara, american apparel
The Gloucester Green Antiques Market Ruth Meteer I saw the mirror looking familiar, plaited with filgeree ringlets of gold, framing a full-length face. It was one old friend I hadnâ€™t seen since she cracked up nearly seven years ago, and I moved into a house with whitewashed walls. But she smiled, and I smiled, and we both walked home together. I tell you, I have never felt so self-conscious as when that double decker bus of glass shaded faces blinked quizzically at us standing side by side at the light on Rewley road. They were gone before I could begin to explainâ€” Only one of us is, really, cold and flat. If you look you can see. Steel backed, the other one is lying.
Photo Amanda Antunes
Photography Jackie Puwalski fashion Maya Luz Hair & Make-up Rose Fortuna Model Jeri Evan (Model Club)
Eryn Tomlinson Gouache
Interview by Meggie Sullivan
I first saw Eryn Tomlinson’s work on an iPhone screen. "Look, it's you in a painting", said my friend Liana pulling the screen to my face. She had snapped a shot of a painting from the Rhode Island School of Design's (RISD) senior art show, thankfully catching the artist’s name below. Feeling curious and impressed, my mission to learn more began with a phone call to Eryn’s Denver home. Thank you, Internet. "Hello?” a seemingly shy and young voice answered the phone. But as our conversation progressed, a heard wisdom and experience debunked my first impression. Like her words, Eryn’s work reveals maturity. Reflecting controlled balance, energy, and a deep understanding of color, the canvases arise from her meditations. Each piece starts at a central point, developing in spontaneous freehand and almost perfect symmetry. As observers, the product is our visual meditation as well. This is art’s most elusive aim, yet now achieved.
MS. How’s it going out in Denver? Is the Midwest summer treating you well? ET. I've been working at a kid's art camp for the summer and painting whenever I can. I love being around kids because they’re so creative. After I get a paycheck I’m like ‘What, I get a paycheck? This was too much fun.’ I could see myself teaching in the future for sure. I’ve also been trying to get my portfolio together and applying to this residency called Anderson Ranch. MS. How did RISD grab your allegiance? ET. When I first visited, I went to the Nature Lab where they have all sorts of dead animals and bones and things to draw. I liked the colonial feel of Providence; everyone is really dedicated to what they do. At the other [art] schools they're a little too laid back and unfocused. MS. At what age did you pick up a paintbrush? And at what age did you declare ‘I’m an artist?’ ET. My mom is an artist. She’s a painter and teaches art, and took me to her classes when I was little. That got me going creatively from the start. My dad is a writer. They’re always working on stuff and I thought that was normal. I was always doing projects. Growing up I never thought I would end up going to school for art, or becoming an artist as a career. I wanted to be a fashion designer in high school. MS. What are your thoughts on the statement that ‘Fashion is art’? ET. I’m very influence by a lot of designers: Alexander McQueen, the digital prints of Basso and Brooke. I certainly believe in that statement. Wash colors right now are part of this generation and neon or digital. It’s all connected. MS. Tell me about the process of making your pieces. ET. I start out with a palette idea; I never know what it’s going to look like. If I’m doing a symmetrical piece I measure the center and side points but not everything is always perfect. I only use my hand – I don’t use a ruler on most of the lines because I want the process to be completely organic. I start at the center and work my way out or start at the end and go to the center. It’s very much like the process of sacred geometry. The painting turns out to be like a crystal or a pyramid as I go along. MS. What is your greatest inspiration? ET. The design of nature is my number one source - it’s incredibly symmetrical. Also, all other artists and creative people are very inspiring. I’m inspired by ancient architecture; it’s symmetrical but also organic. I enjoy Buddhist and Native American art.
MS. How do you feed your creative process? How do you keep things fresh? ET. It’s become a part of my daily routine at this point. It’s like going to yoga class - doing a little of it everyday. The more I do, the more creative I feel and more satisfying it feels. My new rule is once I start I have to finish it. Consistency is really important. If I make something crappy I have to finish it. MS: Are you religious? ET. I don’t like to be defined by one thing - I read a lot about different religions. There are different things I take from each of them. I like the idea of everyone having their own religion. I don’t think there’s any one way to do things or to believe. I believe in energy and that what you think and how you act makes a huge difference in the world. I live by that. I believe in being positive. I’m into cult things - and hippie things. MS. Do you have a mentor in your life? ET. There are so many people, my parents are my mentors, my sisters. Lately, I’ve been fascinated by two female artists. Emma Kunz is one; when my teacher told me about her I thought I was her reincarnation. She’s inspiring because she was also a healer. Frida Kahlo has also always been inspiring. I am really inspired by anyone who keeps doing what they like to do even if they don’t get any success in their lifetime. They do it because they want to. MS. Are you good at math? Your paintings show abstract symmetry, but symmetry nonetheless. ET. I wish I were good at geometry. In high school I barely passed any math classes. MS. How do others describe you art? ET. I have heard a variety of descriptions about my artwork. One of my classmates at RISD said they should be inside of a meditation room, another person said they reminded him of computer screen-savers, and another one of my classmates said they looked like laser-light shows at a rave. But I think generally most people always comment on the artificial light that the color creates, the geometry, and I always get the question of ‘why do you make them symmetrical?’ That is something I am still trying to answer for myself.
It is nice to know that most people enjoy looking at them, and don't feel the need to immediately ask: What are your sources? Why do you draw geometry? What are they about? I want people to ask these questions, but I also just want them to have an experience with the environment of the paintings before they think too hard about them. MS. How do you call your style to a blind person? ET. I would describe it as if they could imagine a spiritual energy- as an ambient sound. Maybe they could touch something in nature. I did take some video at RISD – I would like to make more videos that are sound based. MS. If no one could say no to you, what would you be up to? ET. Ideally I would like to have an art show or solo show coming up - New York would be great. I'd also like to simply be happy. I want to get my own house, I want a cat, I want to be able to paint everyday and have a job and still be able to go out with friends. MS. How much is one of your paintings and where should I put in my house? ET. I've sold one piece at $400 which is pretty good for now. There are about five of my pieces still in Providence. They're in the “New Contemporary Show“ at Galmen Gallery – thankfully I don’t have to pay to ship them. They are all around $400- one's on panel are at $500. I want people to put them in their homes or simply make their personal space more enjoyable. MS. What kind of satisfaction do you get from your art? What kind of satisfaction do you want me to get? ET. To me it’s about the meditative zone. It’s satisfying to make things that are symmetrical. I once read that symmetrical pictures are supposed to have a calming affect on the brain. Your brain just likes to see it. It makes me happy when others say looking at them is calming, it’s why I make them.
Photography Bob Packert Model Autumn Ahn
Interview By Amanda Antunes
Technology’s evolution has made buying a decent camera easy and calling yourself a ‘photographer’ even easier, but the true photographers, the ones who stand out amongst the millions of shooters, are the artists who continue to create new ways of exploring life behind the lens. Bahar Yurukoglu’s attention to detail is evident in the photos she makes-- she cleverly capture the gaps of life, the overlooked spaces. Bahar turns the scenes within her photographs into three dimensional worlds with a material of her own: Plastic. The TurkishAmerican artist who landed in Boston for a grad program at MassArt by way of D.C. and New York City, shares with us what brings her to the realm of her most recent live installation project Ante Camera: a haunting, evocative, and imbued reality that never really existed.
AA. First off, tell me a little bit about you. BY. I grew up in D.C., having moved there from Turkey. I went to study Photography when I turned 18 in NYC and got my BFA. I end up living in New York for 10 years working at Domino Magazine and also assisting on shoots. Then I decided I wanted a change and moved to Boston to go to graduate school. AA. When you moved to Boston from New York did you already knew that this is what you wanted to do? BY. I thought I did. But one of the reasons I came here is because I wanted to change what I was doing. And it changed a lot-- from photography to art installation. AA. I can definitely see the similarities within your work as a photographer and as an installation artist-the way images are conceptualized and your use of light. BY. Yes, it’s all about space. It’s the ‘plastic city’ of our contemporary society, and trying to say something about the culture we live in now. AA. Do you ever play with the idea of waste? BY. Well, kind of. I reuse all the pieces. AA. Was there a point in life that you decided to be an artist? BY. It just happened. When I was thirteen I got my father’s camera, he used to do black and white photography, and I went off to Turkey. That was my first roll of film. I came home and I had this reminder of my time there. That was it for me. Then I started taking a photo class in seventh grade and I just went all the way. I feel very lucky actually, I never had to struggle with what I wanted to do. It was never a question. AA. I'm the same way. I kind of always knew. BY. Yes, we are lucky. AA. Your photography reminds me of dark dreams, but it's soft and serious in a parallel way. Do you feel that your sub-conscious interferes with your work? BY. Living in a world that is all plastic, we are so in it that we don't realize what's outside of it. It has to look beautiful too, to bring beauty into this sort of frightening concept of plastic. These things that we don't understand. I want both, I want to make you happy by looking at the image, by enjoying that and also make you a little bit uncomfortable, or just to question it. AA. What about your installation Ante Camera, how did that transition happen from photography to building plastic scenarios? BY. I wanted to know how to recreate that space in my photographs with the material that I wanted to work with-- plastic. This is also pretty new. I started working with plastic in January. So, it’s still evolving. I’m going to keep working on that. There’s so much to do still. AA. So, would you say that your photography and installation work are complementary?
BY. Yes, they are one thing. I project the photography over the installation and that’s when it becomes a world of plastic, because you have the image inside of it and you can’t differentiate what is light and where the line is, and you can’t figure out where the shape and color are coming from because there’s so much reflection and refraction. You can’t tell when it's real and when it's not. And that’s exactly how I feel about the work. AA. That's sort of how I feel in the city sometimes. BY. [laughs] Oh my God, yeah! AA. Do you have an artist you look up to? BY. I love this Icelandic artist Olafor Eliasson. I actually got a residency in Iceland for June next year and I’m going to be there for a month, which I'm really excited about. Also the German photographer Thomas Demand, in the way he constructs his images, he finds real places, constructs them and photographs them. AA. What does “Plastic City” mean to you? BY. I think about my work, actually. I think about the scenes I build. They are about cities, architecture, structure. The world is built after this material. AA. Yes, it's true. AA. What are you planning next? BY. Just keep on working. Applying for residencies, doing shows, and find a studio space. AA. Are you staying in Boston then? BY. Oh yeah, I’ll be here. AA. That's refreshing, it’s always good to know that after great artists graduate in Boston they don’t automatically leave for Brooklyn [laughs]. BY. Been there done that. It's time for a change.
1 When you open her bottle, its lid snaps out of position with an insistence that suggests no movement. It was designed by serious industrial designers to be used in time as well as space, molded into itself which is to say: an object with specific tension sufficient to make reality function like two frames of the same film or flip-book that have lost their explanatory interim. It feels, at least, this way. This is the type of object you will finger for a mild, sterile aesthetic pleasure that you barely recognize. Snap, snap, snap, snap, open, close, and open and the click and slight resistance of that comforting last close. Unnoticed pleasure, like the quiet resolution of a chord in distant music. O moments touching such objects, which are simian and meditative. O strangeness of social existence (the subject of the meditation) where so much has already been decided: not only the bottle, the mouthwash inside the bottle, not only shape but this, these very moments of our isolation in discrete and nighttime bathrooms where this object becomes strange its moment simian and meditative. She is comfortable with matter she resembles: curved in the right places, sharp in others. Nearly medical in its insistence on itself. But enough. She has left the bottle already. She has gone back to the bed. His flesh is cold and fleshy. The sheet is damp. She rolls onto her back to spoon with solitude, and studies, now, the state of her incubated dissatisfaction. It is moist, electric, sterile, and the color of a pearl. She is opening her body toward the ceiling. She is showing sexless beauty to the luscious, cool, and unresponsive night.
Plastic Objects Allison Vanouse
2 Le truc en plastique, câ€™est comme la pilule. It was a phrase she had practiced. It used a French that was informational but tinged with enough studied colloquialism to indicate that she possessed an intoxicating, dry worldliness. There are few oral examinations on the description of various birth control systems. Her vocabulary was untested. That made this a test. And this Swiss with this downy fluff of body hair â€“ as he reached beyond the elastic at her hips she considered the phrase. And as his fingers struggled for an advantageous angle, as they combed across the groomed pubic triangle, she reconsidered the phrase. She practiced its mouthshapes beneath a breathy indication of generically legible ecstasy. Hold the mouth forward. Focus the U. And then at last. She feels him fumble for a slimy opening. Feels him finger, instead, the small and contraceptive device. And, wonderful, he is taken
aback. She licks her lips. She has already caught his wrist. She whispers. “Le truc en plastique” her blood is pounding “c’est comme la pilule”. And her pronunciation she judges perfect, and his comprehension she judges complete. The oral passed, the perfect score, the ecstasy of self-creation. She pulls out the thing & clatters it on the parquet. Her plastic truc is shining, not two feet across the floor. The streetlights seem to zig-zag on its surface in a rhythm like a jackhammer. She watches this. She is undeterred by the distraction. Even if he goes all night, she will stay in the clean interior place that he can validate but not control. The luscious, unresponsive night. How lovely to be dry and worldly. She was so understood. In the morning, she will finger the plastic bulb, reinsert it, say, A la prochaine she thinks. The mattress squeals it. He is fucking steadily. Ou quoi -The sound- Ou quoi? Ou-quoi-ou-quoi-ou-quoi-ou-quoi. “A la prochaine,” she forms the words beneath her breath, “ou quoi?” 3 There are schools of colored tubes beached along the lakeshore, made of pearlized pastel plastic. To her, they appear robotic. She has only recently learned what they’re for. She has only recently learned not to pick them up with bare hands. They are things that look like they ought to screw into a matching interior threading. The plastic is the same grade as a low-grade Barbie. The vagina might as well have an interior threading. She has never used a tampon. Toxic shock syndrome is a spectral monster at sixteen. So is her vagina. Unseen place that grows hair around itself. Unseen place, with unseen interior threading that accepts objects, whole, that leaves the applicator behind the way space travel leaves the launching equipment. The launching equipment swims in pearlized pastel schools. The National Honor Society forms an outing to pick them up. But between the rocks, the pastel plastic still looks up at her, from so many gaps,
between so many rocks. Nobody else will pick them up. Boredom is disgusting. When she has her period, she will use the most-recently advertised thing and she will never get her hands slimy. She will wear the prettiest panties and order salads and will never weigh more than 110 pounds. Her mom once had to use a piece of soggy cotton diaper like old Hungarian women used to because she forgot to bring a tampon to the dairy farm where her grandmother lived. The women in her family are mostly big and fleshy, but she is sixteen and is thin. All of her things will come wrapped in pearlized plastic, and her clothes will look on her the way they do on the models in the back sections of Teen Vogue. She is happier now, and distracted. She leaves the plastic things, like everybody else. She wanders, wonders, in a selfpermissive way, if there was a secret instruction not to pick them up. She will help to lift a larger object, a big piece of rusty pipe that takes six people. She will have her picture taken doing it. Her period will come that summer. She will feel glamorous about herself for the next five years. 4 Now the Polly Pockets are almost too much of a little-kid toy and so are most of the other things in this part of the house. Next year they are both going to middle school but when they have sleepovers they still like to bring the box of Polly Pockets down, or maybe just a couple of the Polly Pockets, because it’s almost a tradition to have them. One night when Shawna was the only one over, she slept on the pull-out bed and they played with the two very sexy Polly Pockets, which have night scenes on the stickers where the windows would be, and a big bathtub that you can fill with a tablespoon of water and a heartshaped bed all plastic with negative space to fit the people, who are a quarter of an inch tall and hinged at the waist so they can sit in the bathtub
together. When they play with these Polly Pockets they put the little man in the bathtub with the woman, or lie him on top of her in the bed. There’s a sensation that if the tiny dolls are left there, lying on top of each other, while you do something else, or pretend to be doing something else, or, what’s best, if you snap the container closed, they will take care of it on their own. While they sit in a lukewarm bath or lie on top of each other, you don’t need to know what they are doing, or look at it, or even have Shawna notice you looking at it. When you snap the toy open again, it is over. The boy and the girl are on opposite sides of the room, or upside down, or lying next to each other. And Shawna is singing while she carries the box downstairs. Your sleeping bags are next to each other. You can stay up all night and eat powedered-sugar donuts in the morning. You are the coolest girl you know. And you can still play Polly Pockets for at least another year.
Ashley Conchieri Textile
Interview by Amanda Antunes Photos by Bob Packert
Ashley Conchieri, Boston-based fiber artist and recent MassArt graduate, shares with us her post-school plans for developing a community fiber workshop, what role fashion plays in hers and in our lives, and the origins of inspiration for her first collection. Her newest pieces are both hard and soft, eliciting equally the feeling of being swaddled in the warmth of tangled spiderwebs and confined by the hard cool of medieval chainmail.
AA. What have you been up to lately? AC. Since graduating I'm sort of in that weird limbo. I've done some internships at Anthropologie and Timberland, and that kind of made me realize how important it is for me to work on small-scale productions where I can emotionally and physically get involved. I'm trying to figure that out and take the right steps to brand myself. AA. Are you planning on working for your own brand full-time? AC. I'm learning how to deal with all the details of starting your own business, and what that means and how to get yourself out there. I wouldn't mind doing some freelance work for other artists right now, but slowly build up a collection and put it out on my site and into small boutiques. I don't know, I hope that in ten years I can have a fiber studio, with all the mediums -- weaving, knitting, sewing, silk screen printing -- where people can come and rent space, have shows, sort of like a workshop. Thatâ€™s my dream, really.
AA. You want that space to be in Boston? AC. Yes, since there's nothing like that in Boston thatâ€™s easily accessible. AA. How did you become interested in Textile Design? AC. Well I was always interested in fashion, and I was planning on going to school for Fashion. But then I took a tour at MassArt and saw the fiber department and was surrounded by all those tools and I was like "I want to learn how to use all of these machines and see how they work.â€? I knew how to sew so I wanted to learn different skills. I wanted to really understand the cloth. It's such an important part of fashion. I thought I could be a better designer if I understood the materials that I was using. AA. Any designers you love and that inspire you? AC. Yes, I love Japanese designer Kenzo Takada and Belgian designer Dries van Noten. They use patterns and textures in their collection thatâ€™s definitely very inspiring to me. AA. How did you conceptualize your first collection? I definitely see medieval references, is that right? AC. Yeah, it came from when I was traveling around Scotland and I was visiting castles, and with seeing all the architecture there I began doing research of that time in history and fell in love with the clothing from that century. AA. Fashion is for the most part our personal armor. AC. Definitely... I wanted the first cohesive collection to be sort of like an armor for myself.
AA. Strong and romantic, it makes me think of Alexander McQueen and his Savage Beauty exhibit at New York Met. A cutting-edge couture exhibit that assembles and epitomizes the themes of romance, armor, chic, exoticism, and illusion. Have you seen the exhibit? AC. Yes, it was amazing. It took me three hours of walking through. I have never seen anything like it. He makes something inside of you not feel right. AA. It's true, I went twice and I think the most important lesson I learned about the whole thing was to recognize his craftsmanship and that what really draws me to fashion is art, and certainly not fashion as a status symbol. AC. I agree, and I hope to develop my craft for that same reason. It will be a learning year.
and that is all.
Photography Jessica Weiser Fashion Amanda Maciel Antunes Hair&Make-up Cari R Duprey Model Tessa Morrisey (Maggie Inc.) wardrobe artifaktori, stylistâ€™s own, oonaâ€™s, redbird vintagE, anthropologie
photo By Amanda Antunes
I still remember her her clumsy beauty, her lust driven pain, debasement blooming musk a flora a fauna engorged always cunt red, and on an off night i'll gleam that hunger in another - & it will invoke the spirit of our patron saint, saint sinner, hollow be her name: it howls! she howls! sobbing wet tears down chins & I drank of it deep & I choked on it pubes. she was made of flesh! flesh! and she rendered it bled! and she savored it fed! as red lines bloomed streaked lipstuck smeared mocked; and she held it in both fists! burned as she melted; she melted on thighs.
And it burns -burns endlessly long after the medication. - in her bed of ambers time smoldering ash. days drenched into stained sheets windows parted wide as our - but i didn't touch her.
not in that way that way frightened her that wasn't debasement that was something else that was someone else. She never spoke of it aloud and once with a tacit love she dug into me a knowing with a cold indifference a hatred, maybe. but it wasn't her it was something else And I may love her and hate how her kiss still lingers a canker to this day. How her howls cantor echoes, whispers: We burn or we are worthless we wilt as we bloom "They never get it," she said, "Not even you."
So common. The best, shiniest, easiest, cleanest, sexiest, most outrageous, most convenient, most wasteful, most self-indulgent, most fake, most dehumanizing objects we can imagine:
Words and Photo Brendan David Coyne
Plastic City fearlessly straddles the border between theory and "genuine" expression. Exploring tribes, celeb-preneurs, games&players, make-...
Published on Oct 8, 2011
Plastic City fearlessly straddles the border between theory and "genuine" expression. Exploring tribes, celeb-preneurs, games&players, make-...