{' '} {' '}
Limited time offer
SAVE % on your upgrade.

Page 1

SUP ER LAT IVE SPACES I NS PIRATION AL LOCATION S

ZH A L A R IFAT A BUBBLE S ES S ION

No.4 FA L L 2012

T R AVI S M I LLA R D E X P LO R E S T H E COMMON MAN

LO N D O N T HE B I G SM O KE

SUPERLATIVE CONSPIRACY ALEX PRAGER SHOT BY GE OFF MOO RE

4


WORDS FROM ABOVE

[001]

Life is good. It is, because we have it. It’s easy to compare yourself and your possessions, your being and your reality with others but sometimes you just need to stop and look at what you got - and treasure that. We’re all here, there, everywhere - giving and getting, seeing and being seen, giving and receiving - and that’s a beautiful thing. When you feel like you have nothing more to give - take a step back, retreat and feel refreshed and start over. That is what we want for this fall - we show you where we find inspiration, where our people channel their inner selves and where they get the energy to create and give back. May it be the streets, the woods or in the sanctuary of their homes. This fall issue of the Superlative Conspiracy, No.4, features the WeActivists in their Superlative Spaces; being where they find inspiration and the peace of mind to create and be the good people they are. We also talk to new music sensation Zhala Rifat, get inspired by the IRAK crew, see a different side of London, we receive words and voices from people who have relevant things to say, such as Edina Sultanik and Eddie Zammit, and we’re presented with the art of incredibly talented Travis Millard. We also present visuals and photographs from some of the better photographers we know like Jonnie Craig, Kunle Martins and Jens Andersson. Plus, we like to be out there and have fun, so we wanted to re-visit some of the better parties we’ve hosted lately with people such as Grillat & Grändy, Icona Pop, the A$AP Mob, Zebra Katz and our friends. All fronted by the cover story of Alex Prager, shot by Geoff Moore. At the end of it all, we hope this issue serves as a tool for you to see something new and to be inspired to create something. Because at the end of the day, that is what makes it worth it. That and all the good people doing great things together.

[002]

[008]

[010]

[012]

[014]

CONT RIBUT ORS

V OIC E No . 1 EDDIE ZA MMIT

VO I C E N o. 2 TONY ARCABASCIO

VO I C E N o. 3 E D LE I G H

V O I CE N o. 4 E D I N A SULTAN I K

[016]

[020]

[024]

[028]

[036]

CURRE NT L UCKY E XPRESS

S K ATE C H R IS PA S TR A S

MUSIC Z H A LA

A RT T R AVI S M I LLA R D

CO VE R A L E X P RAGE R

[044]

[094]

[102]

[114]

[116]

FASHIO N FALL 2012 SUPER LAT IVE SPACES

L IF ES TY L E C U RTIS B U C H A NA N

PHOTOS

I N S P I R AT I O N IRAK CREW

CI T Y GUI D E LO N D O N

[120]

[122]

[124]

[126]

LOCATION S MID SUMME R NYC EVEN T

L OC ATIONS S TENDH A L S Y NDR OME S TOC K H OL M EV ENT

LO C AT I O N S B B B A FT E R PA RT Y B E R LI N E VE N T

R E LE A S E JÖR G E N K R U T H


CONTRIBUTORS

[002]

EDDIE ZAMMIT - Eddie Zammit has recently been in the States launching his New York edition of T-world. He hosted 10 events in less than six weeks. The only journal on T-shirt culture in existence is what Zammit is best known for. After last year’s ‘NEXT: The future of T-shirt graphics’ exhibition in Sydney, Zammit has his sights on creating the world’s most prolific T-shirt museum. t-world.com.au eddie@t-world.com.au

GEOFF MOORE - Los Angeles born photographer and director creates classic imagery with contemporary innovation. He has left his indelible cinematic mark on the pages of major magazines, hit MTV videos, print and TV ad campaigns, photography books, and on the walls of many galleries. He has shot everything from the Red Hot Chili Peppers and the Cardigans, Swedish Elle to British GQ, Dita Von Teese to Heidi Klum. HIs videos have been honored by the MTV and Billboard Awards, receiving two director of the year nominations by age 25. He began his visual career being the youngster director amongst such visionaries as Gore Verbinsky and Jean-Baptiste Mondino, followed by several years directing for Ridley Scott’s company RSA. Moore’s innovative artistry invites an even more exciting future as he continues his photographic and directorial journey. geoffmoorestudio.com Instagram- thegeoffmoore


[003]

CONTRIBUTORS

ED LEIGH - Ed Leigh has been called a lot of things in his life, the most common being ‘dick’. But if you were to ask Ed what he is, he would tell you he is a story teller and some how Ed has managed to turn this into a profession. The three main skills required for this job are an ability to shamelessly exaggerate, a memory that can retain an incredible amount of useless information and an uncanny knack of charming people. Ed divides his time between travelling the world telling stories and amassing new ones and being a dad and terrible but enthusiastic footballer/skateboarder/surfer in New Zealand. His most notable achievement, despite dedicating six years to a semi professional snowboarding career is his status as three time undefeated UK Air Guitar Champion. wesc.com/weactivist/ed-leigh Twitter- @snowedleigh Instagram- dedleigh

EDINA SULTANIK - Edina Sultanik probably knows more about menswear than you do. She’s one of the owners of the New York-based fashion consultancy BPMW, which works with emerging designers, and the owner of Capsule— the groundbreaking fashion event that takes place in NY, Berlin, Paris and Las Vegas. In a former life, she was the fashion editor at Complex . Edina lives in Manhattan where she’s recently taken up indoor gardening, and biking to work. bpmw-agency.com


CONTRIBUTORS

[004]

TRAVIS MILLARD - Travis Millard is the CEO/janitor of the Fudge Factory Comics operation, specializing in drawing zines, weird books and assorted ephemera. Travis currently lives in a cabin near some coyotes on the backside of a hill in a Los Angeles fire zone. fudgefactorycomic.com

MARIA DECIDA WAHLBERG - I’m a net-native stereotypophobe, a transnational 2FACED1 based in Stockholm! Like the Pop Culture nerd I am, I’m trying to understand as much as possible about it and how it affects the modern day identity. I’m interested in clothing as an identity cursor, as symbols, as a part of a context. I prefer to work in different media and I’ve guess I got a certain style and way of seeing things that is possible to communicate through these different avenues. Styling, Creative Direction and Choreography are just some of them.

2faced1.com Twitter- @decida Instagram- decida


[005]

CONTRIBUTORS

CHRIS PASTRAS - Chris is a legendary skateboarder, artist, longtime WeActivist, and television host from New Jersey, who began his career in the 80’s during the emergence of the New York City skate scene as a rider for Shut Skateboards. Chris relocated to California in 1990 and shortly afterward turned pro for the groundbreaking brand World Industries. Then in 1992, Pastras founded Stereo Skateboards with longtime creative partner Jason Lee. With it’s unique, retro based aesthetic, Stereo has been credited with revolutionizing skateboarding graphics, advertising, and videos. Alongside being Creative Director, and Co-Owner at Stereo, Chris is still an active pro skater. As a television host, Chris is featured in numerous shows on Fuel TV, and on ESPN’s X-Games. His artwork can be found on the racks of skate shops and on the walls of galleries all around the globe. www.stereosoundagency.com wesc.com/weactivist/chris-pastras Instagram- akadune

GOIVANNI REDA - Giovanni Reda’s skateboard photography career began in 1993 when he would take the train everyday from his home in Brooklyn to shoot photos of his friends skating the streets of NYC. As his reputation and network of friends grew, he began photographing the world’s top professional skateboarders, freelancing for every major skateboard publication, including Transworld, Thrasher and Skateboarder. By 1996 Reda was a senior photographer for Transworld Skateboarding Magazine. In 1999 he shifted gears and became the staff photographer for Zoo York Skateboards. Upon completing his tenure at Zoo York, in 2003 Reda became the Photo Editor for Big Brother Magazine, which produced the MTV show Jackass. He is still a frequent contributor to Thrasher and Transworld Skateboarding Magazine. Reda’s infectious humor and appealing personality has earned him a weekly episodic video blog on skateboarding top content producing website, The Berrics.com. “Wednesdays with Reda” showcases his unique humor and quick wit as he travels the world with a camera and various professional skateboarders. Through his skill and devotion to his work, Giovanni has become one of the most sought after and successful photographers in the history of skateboarding. Today any contribution made to a skateboard magazine is always accepted. His devotion to both skateboarding and photography are unquestionable, and he vows, “As long as I breathe I am going to shoot skateboarding.” giovannireda.com wesc.com/weactivist/reda Instagram- giovannireda


CONTRIBUTORS

[006]

ANNA FISCHER - Anna Fischer is a Swedish filmmaker who grew up around the world. She attended the United Nations International School in New York and Switzerland and received her Masters degree from New York University in Journalism and International Relations. She has worked with UNICEF in Geneva, Switzerland, volunteered with a peace organization in former Yugoslavia at the height of the war, has worked in Pakistan for the World Health Organization (WHO) and in refugee camps on the Pakistani-Afghan border, and has taught hygiene for midwives in Afghanistan during the Taliban rule. She lived in Kathmandu, Nepal for three years and has been living in Varanasi, India since 2003. In India she shot her first documentary, “Laxmi Burns”, on the subject of dowry burn victims and worked with mothers who have lost their daughters to dowry murders (brides immolated in kerosene by their in-laws for not providing enough dowry money upon their marriage). She also created a public awareness day against the evils of dowry in Varanasi in 2004 (aired on TV), which included public speeches by some of India’s leading feminists. In April, 2012, Anna won “best Director of a Documentary” at the ITN Distribution Film Festival, Los Angeles, California, USA for “Lucky Express”. luckyexpress.org

CURTIS BUCHANAN - Curtis Buchanan is a photographer who lives and works in Los Angeles. curtisbuchananphoto.com curtisbuchananphoto.tumblr.com


[007]

CONTRIBUTORS

LOUIS M SCHMIDT - Louis M Schmidt was born and raised in rural, central Illinois, which is more a point of curiosity than one of pride, as one doesn’t typically meet too many small town Midwesterners in the “fine” art world. He is currently situated in San Diego, CA (he earned an MFA in Visual Arts from UCSD in 2010) whence he produces a plethora of variously executed drawings, drawing-based installations and publications, whilst running a small gallery called Double Break. This fall, he heads to Japan for the Tokyo Art Book Fair, then to NYC for the NY Art Book Fair at MoMA P.S. 1. Schmidt has exhibited work in Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco; his zines have been featured in zine-related exhibitions in Madrid, Budapest and Leipzig, and were included in Behind the Zines: Self-Publishing Culture, published by Gestalten in the Spring of 2011. cargocollective.com/bridgethevoid bridgethevoid.blogspot.com.

VANESSA PRAGER - Vanessa Prager is a self-taught artist born and raised in the bohemian L.A. neighborhood of Los Feliz. Using vivid color palettes or simple ballpoint pen drawings drafted on vintage music sheets, Prager’s highly saturated works give way to a false sense of reality; her study of the universe feels accurate. Combined with her tendency for heightened drama and slightly offbeat situations, Prager’s work naturally draws in the audience and leaves them feeling eerily connected to her beautifully disquieting world. vprager.com wesc.com/weactivist/vanessa-prager Twitter- @vanessaprager Instagram- vanessaprager


EDDIE ZAMMIT

[008]

E IS FOR EDDIE PHOTO BY NICOLE REED

“I

t’s only a T-shirt!” Do you know how many times I’ve heard this? Every. Single. Day. My name is Eddie Zammit and I own well over 4,000 T-shirts. I have enough tees to wear for over a decade without washing them. I didn’t set out to collect this many tees – it just happened over time and I haven’t been able to let go. I live in Melbourne (Australia) and I’ve spent over half my lifetime collecting T-shirts. I rent three storage units just to house them while I travel the globe in search of more. My extensive travels have allowed me to meet the owners and designers of hundreds of T-shirt labels. What fascinates me most is that T-shirt graphics haven’t been around for that long. Very few tee labels existed before the 1990s; the graphic tees people wear now are often made by companies created within the last 20 years. As a kid of the ‘70s, I was born into the tee generation and witnessed the global T-shirt explosion. Why T-shirts? In 1993 I was studying an art and design tertiary course, and as a final year project I decided to create a T-shirt line. Back then, outside of school hours, I was an avid raver – judge me at will! Yes, drugs, dancing and never seeing daylight was how I spent most of my weekends, and this is when my T-shirt obsession started to really take shape. I was immediately addicted to the anti-brand culture that dance parties offered, so it was a no-brainer to create a line of tees dedicated to the lifestyle I was entrenched in. In nearly all the designs I created, I used an ‘E’ to speak the code of ravers. ‘E’ was for ecstasy – yeah, the pill, not the mood. After the project was submitted, I was taken aback to be told I was being nominated for ‘Student of the Year’. WTF? I couldn’t believe a government-funded institution would even consider me, based on

the controversial subject. But who’s to judge? There lies the funny part… Against all odds, not only did I win, but that government institution also awarded me $5,000. In the speech given by the Head of the School, it was revealed the committee of judges decided it was an innovative idea to create tees with the letter E. “We consider Eddie’s entry very left of field – we love how his tee line features E’s. ‘E’, after all, stands for Eddie.” Weeks later, I used those same tees as my entry into the best graphic design University in the country. With only 60 placements on offer from over 1,000 interviewees, I wanted to stand out from the crowd. I’ve always considered risk a valuable asset, so rather than show my artwork in a traditional black leather portfolio like all the other students, I decided to unconventionally strip in front of the two lecturers interviewing me. I stripped one T-shirt at a time, with each layer of cotton revealing new art, until I’d shown the whole collection. I ended up getting into the University, though I was unaware one of the lecturers was gay (“… not that there’s anything wrong with that!”) and thoroughly enjoyed my strip. I never capitalised on my potential as a stripper, but I did go on to create the world’s only journal on T-shirt culture, T-world. The journal has been described as the authority publication on T-shirt graphics and is distributed to over 30 countries. That’s a long way from my raver days! T-shirts have landed me in all sorts of weird situations and introduced me to incredibly talented people along the way. There is no greater conversation starter than the humble tee, and nothing better than hearing a T-shirt story directly from the original source. I have gone head-to-head with 83-year-old Milton

Glaser, arguably the greatest graphic designer in history, on the true story behind his famous ‘I love NY’ logotype. Yes, he really did it for free and has never profited from its success, even though thousands of tees bearing his graphic are sold daily in Times Square. I’ve also designed graphics for a range of commercial and not-so-commercial clients. At my former agency, Grin, I created T-shirt graphics for notorious Australian criminal Mark ‘Chopper’ Read. The slogan tee was hardly subtle, as it pronounced, “To the human filth I have bashed, belted, iron barred, axed, shot, stabbed, knee capped, set on fire and driven to their graves… I regret nothing.” We also used his actual fingerprint – a symbol of criminal history – as the sewn neck label. T-shirts have taken me on an unexpected journey from the darkness of Pentridge where Chopper was imprisoned to even the colorful world of my childhood. In 2010, I art directed an edition of T-world with the original Muppets and a select group of artists for the 40th anniversary of Sesame Street. I’m 38 years old, and picking the next tee to wear is like being a kid in a candy store. You may argue that ‘E’ stands for excess, but Tshirts have always been my ticket to rock the boat and are a sure-fire way of steering clear of dull 9am-to-5pm jobs; the collared shirt is the symbol of the ordinary life I fear.

*


[009]

VOICE No.1

EDDIE ZAMMIT’S TEE COLLECTION IS HOUSED WITHIN STORAGE UNITS IN MELBOURNE (AUSTRALIA). ONE DAY HE HOPES TO CURATE A MUSEUM BASED ON THE TEES HE HAS COLLECTED FROM AROUND THE WORLD.


TONY ARCABASCIO

[010]

SMART MOVES PHOTO BY VIVA ARCABASCIO

W

e live in a tough economy. People, corporations, and even countries are going bankrupt. There’s nothing I can do for them, but I can definitely look after myself. I keep my eye on the little things so I don’t go down the same road. Here’s a few to keep in mind for yourself. Every dollar counts.

1. Drink alcohol on the street. We all know how we feel when we order a round of drinks from a bar/restaurant and the bartender gives you a bill of 60$ for 4 drinks. Any normal person would get annoyed. I’m not saying don’t do that every once in a while, but I don’t know one person who has come to visit me in the city (NYC) that doesn’t love to grab a 2$ beer at the deli, put it in a cup, and sit on the corner bench, talking, while watching people walk by. I live here and I’d take that over sitting in a fancy bar any day. 2. Buy music CD’s. There’s no better way to share with your friends and family. I know your not supposed to, but give me a fucken break. I’m that dude that hates downloading music. I need the actual, physical CD in my hand. It feels real to me. Like when I was younger and had that record in my lap. Looking at it and reading it while the music played. Just having something downloaded on my computer or phone, etc... doesn’t feel real. And with a CD I can give it to everyone to download for themselves. That’s where the saving comes in. I can play it in my car. I can play it at a party without having to leave my phone hooked up in another room somewhere. Or I can give it away once I’ve downloaded it. Everyone gets to live. 3. Never buy Blu-ray, anything. Can you really tell the difference from a regular HD DVD? I’m like the Disney/Pixar movie king

with my kids. I’m part of the Disney DVD Club and probably own almost ever fucken DVD they’ve ever made (even the shit that’s ‘in the vault’). I even bought a Blu-ray player because ‘that’s where the world is going’, I was told. But I can’t see why I would ever pay an extra 10$ every time I bought a new movie. They say it last’s longer (more scratch resistant), but I take care of my shit. I have CD’s from the fucken 80’s that still work great. 4. Use matches, or take someone’s lighter. Matches are free. But if you need to have lighter, don’t buy one. That’s a total waste of money. It’s is an unwritten law that lighters are free game. People take yours, you take theirs. No one keeps a lighter from start to finish. It is what it is. I don’t think I’ve actually ever bought a lighter in my life. 5. Same thing with umbrellas. Who the fuck buys umbrellas. People forget umbrellas. You acquire them. Then you forget them, etc... I think I still have umbrellas from my summertime job at the local movie theater as a teenager. 6. Let your infant grab some things while sitting in their stroller. I know this is bad. No one should steal. But if they’re still in diapers, and they want to grab some candy while your at the register paying, turn the other way. It’s payback for the millions of dollars it feels like it costs to raise kids. And it’s not like your teaching them anything bad. They won’t remember shit at that age. Fuck it. 7. Listen to concerts for free. If it’s summertime, there’s bound to be an outdoor concert somewhere in your neighborhood. You can either pay 50-100$ to go hang out all the way in the back and not see shit (I’m to old to push my way to the front anymore), or you can save your money, buy a bottle, and go sit

on the lawn next door (or parking lot) and listen for free. You definitely won’t be the only one doing it. And the music all sounds the same. Actually, probably better since you just saved mad money. 8. Go with white undershirts as your everyday tees. They go with everything, and it’s only like 12$ for a 5-pack. If you have to have a graphic (because that’s how you roll), take out a sharpie and get to work. My kids write on my shirts all the time. And I get a compliment each and every time I’m rocking one. Custom is the way to go, yo. 9. Work out at home. I know joining a fancy gym seems super cool, and a lot of people say that if they didn’t go to the gym they would never work out, but have some discipline people. If you want to get in shape, you can do everything you do at the gym, in the privacy of your own home or around your neighborhood. If you want to look at people’s asses while they work out, that’s one thing... Pay the money every month. But in reality, you don’t even need weights or machines. Save that money and use your body weight to do exercises. Sit-ups, push-ups, pull-ups... Jailhouse style. There’s a reason dudes in solitary confinement come out looking fucken diesel (and if the jailhouse reference makes you feel uncomfortable, look at yoga instructors. The only exercise tool for them is their body as well). Remember, this is not about being cheap. I’m not into that, and I don’t like cheapskates. I actually hate people that are fucken cheap. But I definitely don’t like to waste money or feel like I’m getting scammed in any way. This is just about being smart. I like the feeling of getting over on the system, don’t you?

*


[011]

VOICE No.2

SAVE MONEY THE OLD FASHION WAY IN HAND-PAINTED EARTHENWARE PIGGY BANKS FROM TIFFANY & CO. LIKE I TEACH MY KIDS TO DO


ED LEIGH

[012]

MY YOUNGER BROTHER PHOTO BY BRUCE LEIGH

M

y family is late for everything, it’s undoubtedly an inherited genetic disorder and it is the reason why, at fourteen years old I had it driven home just how fragile life is.

I used to catch a bus to school, the journey would take an hour and half every day and I learned more on that bus than I ever did at school. I learned what a dildo was, I felt my first pair of breasts and perfected the art of inflicting physical pain with a pack of cards. Sex, violence and insults all in one mobile classroom, social education at it’s finest. My mum would invariably have to yell at us to get out of the house. ‘Us’ was my older brother Alex, younger brother Tom and me and we would ride our bikes up the lane to the bus stop on the main road. The road in question is the A48 and during rush hour it gets clogged like a smokers artery. It didn’t happen often, mainly because we knew the bus would be stuck in the glacially slow moving traffic, but every now and then we would miss the bus. On the morning of the 12th of October 1989 we had missed the bus, but when we finally made the decision to head back home it was an uneasy one because we all knew the scale of the bollocking that awaited us. Shoe gazing as only teenagers can I began drifting up the road looking for a gap in the traffic where I could cross the road. Alex was ten metres in front of me, Tom fifteen metres behind me. I know these distances because I’ve been back since and paced them out in disbelief, checking to see if my brain has exaggerated the facts like it does most other things. I heard the screech of the brakes before I saw any thing, I remember turning my head but the dull crunching thud of the impact came before

I could see the source of the noise. The first thing I saw was Tom being catapulted off the windscreen of a small blue car. The windscreen had acted like a glass trampoline, shattering and absorbing the energy of the impact and then using the momentum of the car to spit him out with an unimaginable pace. Tom was still in the air when he came past me, when he did touch down, only the side of his face was in contact with the road. The rest of his body was still vertical above him. Remembering it now it reminds me of a Wile E Coyote cartoon stop, where his chin digs a trench in the dirt. Tom finally came to a stop five metres past Alex and I expected him to leap up and scream, to cry, to unleash the biggest display of pain my short life had ever witnessed. But he didn’t. He lay there, crumpled and broken, quiet and still and it terrified me. It was very obvious where his head had gone through the windscreen, there was a fist sized purple lump on his forehead. There were no cuts from the glass but the right side of his face had been worn down to the bone from the slide up the road. His legs sat in such a hap hazard way that we knew before the paramedic cut his trousers off that his legs were very badly broken. Al ran home to get my mum, I ran to the pub to call the ambulance. When I look back it still surprises me how little hysteria there was, I remember at the time feeling that it would be totally acceptable, but it never came. Tom’s left leg got the worst of it, both his tibia and fibula shattered, the ligaments and cartilage in his knee were vaporized and his femur broke in two places. His lower right leg was broken in three places. But his head was the miracle, it turned out it looked much worse than it was.

The bottom of his left leg was rebuilt using pins and a titanium cage. He had lost so much bone that it needed to be regrown. To do this they separated the existing breaks encouraging bone to grow between them, then they repeated this process until the leg was the right length. The hard part was that they couldn’t cast or set his femur during this process, so Tom sat for 6 weeks with two open breaks in his femur. My most vivid memory of this period is visiting him and hearing those loose bones clicking against each other. To combat the incredible amount of pain he was in this eleven year old was given more morphine than anyone could ever need, to the point that as a family we regularly debate the permanent legacy it has on his personality. He is virtually horizontal he’s so laid back. My mum argues that it’s because when you’ve endured that degree of trauma the rest of life is comparatively easy to deal with. I learned a lot on that day, I learned what real pain is. Not the visceral kind that Tom felt, that in time fades and can be managed with morphine. But the torturous mental kind that flooded from my mum and dad and threatened, if Tom had died, to drown us all. I also learned that life is a short, fragile gift. Don’t squander it. I forget and do, but I remind myself of this day and like a mental defibrillator it wakes me from my digitally induced slumber.

*


[013]

VOICE No.3

TOM FIRST DAY HOME AFTER THREE MONTHS IN HOSPITAL


EDINA SULTANIK

[014]

MENSWEAR MUSINGS PHOTO BY PASCAL MELIN

I

am writing this from the airport in Paris. The middle-aged man sitting next to me is wearing a big old rayon Hawaiian shirt and a denim jacket by Wrangler that’s definitely got a few decades behind it. He looks like your typical American tourist.

Ironically, across town, one of the major menswear events of the season is taking place, and there are hundreds of men wearing vintage Hawaiiana getting street-styled by some of the world’s most famous fashion photographers. This middle American tourist in Paris is on the cutting edge of style this season, and he has absolutely no idea…. I am on my way home from Italy and France where I was attending the men’s fashion collections presentations for next summer. These events have been called the “ultimate menswear circle jerk,” by some industry insiders because an elite crew of buyers, editors and commentators hit the show circuit in the same cities season after season, go to dozens of shows, share hundreds of drinks. And it’s all being documented on Twitter, Instagram and the blogs. Pitti Uomo in Florence, Milan Men’s Fashion Week and Capsule in Paris mark the kick off of the European men’s fashion season, where new collections are launched, and the world’s menswear heads get together to exchange ideas, and sell some clothes. One night over a cocktail at Bar Gilli in Florence, my friend, a buyer for a Japanese store remarked, “Menswear isn’t something you design, it’s something you wear. There’s nothing new under the sun when it comes to menswear.” That’s what ran through my head when I saw the tourist in the Hawaiian shirt. He’s been wearing that shirt on vacation for years. And just now the fashion flock has deemed it cool

again, tweaked the fit and the color, topped it with some crazy pants and we’ve got some progressive style. What I noticed this season is that now more than ever fashion is not strictly a designer’s game. And while movie stars and rock stars influenced fashion for decades, now might be the age of the Fashion Star. I’m talking about the handful of men worldwide who are recognized as the most influential stylemakers – these guys are famous not because they are celebs in the traditional Hollywood sense. They’ve become celebrities because they show up to work impeccably dressed, groomed and accessorized, and they’ve gathered a following of menswear-obsessed guys who want to nerd out on every detail. At the recent menswear shows in Europe, dozens of paparazzi-style street fashion photographers, were on hand not to shoot the collections being shown, but to see what the real style makers were proposing for the season. And while you may not know it, they may be the reason you’re dappering up like Peewee Herman one year, and a few months later you’re dressing like you’re about to climb Mt Everest, or sifting through eBay for that perfect Hawaiian print shirt. Many of these photographers are now household names themselves, like Tommy Ton, Guerre and Scott Schuman, as well as Richard Haines, the illustrator. And many of the people they capture in their images have become widely known as well. If Nick Wooster is wearing a traditional navy blue linen suit, we know it instantly. Pesko’s got his beads on – should we try a variation on that? How is Angelo Flaccavento spinning the traditional suit look this time? Every look, accessory, and flourish of sprezzatura is documented, posted, retweeted,

commented on. I personally like what happening in menswearthe immediacy and instruction these guys provide has helped millions of men step up their game and that’s great. Guys who want to up their style have the world’s best-dressed men as their mentors – with dozens of photos of them to study from. At the end of the day though, it’s all about how you decide to present yourself – whether your look is dirtbag surfer, or debonair suit guy, you’ve gotta own it. Make sure you feel comfortable, and that your clothes fit the way they should and that you’re pulling off the look. You may study the Web for styling tips, or you may just dress how you feel. Anyway, since I just came back, I thought I’d share some of the stuff I saw or didn’t see at the shows [Note: These are not endorsements just observations]... I saw a lot of: 1.Birkenstocks with nubby socks; 2.Patterned shirts – specifically, Hawaiian prints, often worn with printed shorts or pants; 3.Loafers with tassels – worn without socks; 4.Suits worn with sneakers. Socks optional; 5.Popover linen shirts worn under blazers; 6.Details: neckerchiefs, scarves, boutonnieres and pocket squares; 7.Pop color socks; 8.Casual elegance; 9.Pattern mixing / emphasis on color and texture; 10.Mixing it up-- technical pieces meet tailored; 11.Enormous, luscious beards; 12.Piled on bracelets. Stuff that’s getting played out: 1.Bow ties; 2.Super deliberate looking outfits; 3.Double monk shoes; 4.Words like curate, craft, and heritage; 5.Shorts suits; 6.Ironic / retro facial hair; 7.Retro/ironic faux vintage.

*


[015]

VOICE No.4

THE SCENE AT CAPSULE PARIS JULY 2012


CHILD RUNAWAY / LUCKY EXPRESS WORDS BY LAUREN GEORGE & ANNA FISCHER PHOTOS BY ANNA FISCHER

Trains serve as a tool for transportation for the majority of people all over the world - an efficient and convenient way of travel. Then there is the other side to it - the side that Anna Fischer, a Swedish filmmaker and journalist, has documented in the documentary “Lucky Express” - where runaway children in India use the train stations and rails as their home, playground and offices. It’s a surreal life and it’s these kids’ reality. Anna Fischer travelled across India whilst documenting these children’s life and reality and she shares their story - as it needs to be told. Welcome to “Lucky Express”.

Swedish born New Yorker, Anna Fischer, straddles many worlds, striving to help those suffering where she finds them. Since graduating NYU, Anna always preferred working directly with the people of the slums, helping those less fortunate, as she only feels good when she is “hands-on” with the people, rather than working at her desk. After studies in International Relations and Journalism, she spent many years traveling and helping those in need. Some of the places she worked were less than welcoming. She was a construction worker in war torn Yugoslavia rebuilding bombed houses brick by brick; in Afghanistan she worked with WHO, teaching hygiene to new mothers during the height of the Taliban rule; and in Pakistan she worked at Sar Shahi Refugee Camp with Afghan refugee children. It was when she arrived in India, however, that she knew she had come home. “It was with the children of the street that I really connected”, Anna explains. Often seeing them scurrying around the train platforms like little phantoms amidst the thousands of busy passengers on Indian Railways,

[016]


[017]

CURRENT


CURRENT

[018]


CURRENT

[019]

Anna’s concern for the children’s safety and welfare grew. She went from buying them tea and food on the platforms to creating an award winning documentary illuminating their plight. So far, the 86 minute feature documentary, LUCKY EXPRESS, has won an award for “Best Director of a Documentary” at the ITN Film Festival in Los Angeles. During many months filming and living on trains in India, Anna was shocked to find out that, each year, an estimated 120,000 abandoned and run-away children come to live on the platforms. According to UNICEF, there are approximately eleven million child runaways in India, of which most, at some point, wind up on the train platforms. More than 70% of these children are less than fourteen years old, and it is not uncommon to see children as young as three years old among them. Having traveled thousands of miles on Indian trains, within three years, Anna finished this film, her second feature documentary, LUCKY EXPRESS. She named the film after Lucky, the young man she traveled with and who ended up being the main character of the film. At the age of five, Lucky had run away from an abusive family in the Himalayan foothills in Nepal, and survived five years in Delhi train stations before a local children’s organization, Salaam Baalak Trust, took him in and off the streets. In a dilapidated room behind a Delhi train station, at a humble little dinner, Anna first met Lucky. He told her his greatest wish was to one day become a filmmaker and to make documentaries to spread awareness of the children he had grown up with. From that moment on, the two never left each other. A week later this unusual pair, criss-crossed India together aboard Indian Railways, interviewing and filming thousands of children who chose the platforms to be their homes. Why are these children drawn to the train stations? The stations provide access to public toilets, water, and most importantly, leftover food and opportunities to make money. Children are involved in a variety of different tasks and kinds of work at the train stations, which include begging, vending, rag-picking, performing for travelers, cleaning and sweeping, shoe shining, and selling refilled bottles of water. Bottle collecting is one of the most common enterprises. Empty water bottles are abandoned by passengers, gathered by the children, and brought to local recycling houses, where the kids receive no more than a pittance for their efforts. At the very most, children might make 150 rupees (approximately $3 US) a day from bottle collecting, then immediately spent it either on food or on such goods as glue for sniffing. Money can never be saved, because what isn’t spent is usually stolen by other children, or gang members, or pimps. An estimated 90% of the children are engaged in substance abuse. These children are in constant danger. It takes an average of twenty minutes after arrival at a station before a child is approached by an older sexual predator, or is offered drugs in exchange for sex. Some children have to prostitute themselves to gang members in order to ensure themselves a somewhat safe place to sleep at the station. Life is hard, a daily struggle to survive. As the children get older, their only chance of survival is to join a gang. Life at the train stations is as tough as it gets for a kid in India. Well covered in her documentary, Anna and Lucky were often surrounded by gang members and pimps at the train stations, and there were many instances in which they feared for their personal safety. There was no film team, no extra security and no others on the film crew. It was just Lucky and Anna. She explains, “If we would have had a big film crew, we would never have gotten the shots and footage that we did get. We had to take

the risk and travel alone, otherwise the children never would have talked to us”. At the end of the film, against all odds, Anna and Lucky wove their way up the foothills of the Himalayas in search of Lucky’s family, making the remainder of their trip by foot. Right now, Anna is paying for Lucky’s film school expenses and monthly rent and food. The two of them chat regularly on Facebook. Anna travels around America and Europe screening her documentary in the hopes of creating awareness of this phenomenon. Her ultimate goal is to enlighten and move people to donate to various Indian NGOs which will create “platform schools” for these children, so that they can have at least a basic education while living on the platforms. This would be a promising beginning that would go a long way in helping to change these children’s lives. In addition to creating platform schools, Anna’s wish is to be given permission to screen the film on train platforms in India, so that the children themselves can see the film. Rightfully, she says, “If these kids see this film, they will be inspired to leave the platforms and go to school. Lucky will be their inspiration.” luckyexpress.org

*


TUNE OUT & TUNE IN WORDS BY CHRIS PASTRAS PHOTOS BY AARON SMITH / ALEX SCHMIDT [B&W IMAGE]

I’ve always had the unique talent of barely listening to someone, and hearing the gist of what they had to say. It’s like my brain does a simple math equation, and tunes out the rest of the unnecessary babble. This gives me free time to still use my brain for my own purposes simultaneously, and also gives me insurance that if their story is pointless or sucks, those minutes are not totally lost. I can proudly trace this gift back to my years In school spent finger boarding (with my actual fingers), drawing imaginary skate graphics on my notepads, and generally daydreaming about skateboarding.

I would often tune out my school teachers lectures, absorbing only key material, while I stared out the window... thinking about tricks I was going to do at the skatepark that night. This was not a local town skatepark like we often see these days, this was THE ONE skatepark in the entire TriState area. Yep... a dingy, dusty warehouse in Line Lexington, Pennsylvania called Cheapskates. An hour and a half drive from my home, with no traffic, on a good day. When the bell rang, I would race home, quickly eat something, and anxiously wait for my Mom to get home from work (she was a school teacher) so I could borrow her car and begin the trek to the park. Oftentimes while I awaited my chariot of freedom... I would skate with my local buddies in my hometown at the train station, our one decent spot, The Golf Banks (as seen in Rubbish Heap and Public Domain), or run from the cops on our tiny downtown Main Street, Metuchen. But little did my hometown buddies know, the REAL session was about to go down that evening. Oh they had no idea, maybe their brains wouldn’t even comprehend the radness?! Only the truly dedicated Northeast skate rats got to witness the late night, weekday sessions on the Cheapskates ramps. The “not so serious” skaters stuck to their hometown scene, rarely leaving the safety of their parents home cooking and their parkway exit. As soon as I could get Mom’s keys I’d throw my pads and my board in the car, and begin my drive, traffic or no traffic. Once there at the park, I’d see my bros, and the sessions would begin and last for hours and hours. Barker Barrett, Rob Crowe, Dan Tag, Sean Miller (R.I.P.), Ben Miller, the Sigafoos brothers, Mark Podgurski, Mike Vallely, Felix A., Coco, Bill Weiss, Thomas Morgan and the crazy Canadians, Brian Schaefer, baby Bam Margera, Ricky Oyola… with even the occasional Bucky Lasek and/ or guest pro heated sessions. The list goes on and on and could last for three pages. Quite a few of the people I skated with and hung out with on the decks of those ramps became my lifelong friends. Barker would be blasting King Diamond at full volume, and Dag Tag would be heckling and spitting on kids too scared to drop into the vert ramp. We’d skate the mini, the bowl, pad up for the vert, and then skate the flatground of the ramp once the pads came off. This went on until the park closed about 10pm, sometimes later depending on Bob the owner’s mood that night. Bob never skated a day in his life, drove a Porsche, had a “porn star” style mustache, and had a really young girlfriend who worked at the park… strange, strange man. But thank god for him and his park. You never wanted the sessions to end, but when they did... I would jump back in the car covered in sweat and masonite dust, and drive through rural Pennsylvania to get home at 12-1am. My alarm for school would go off at 7am, and I’d wake up sore and tired, but ready to do the whole thing over again.

[020]


[021]

SKATE


SKATE

[022]


SKATE

[023]

I’d made a deal with myself early on to learn a trick every time I went to the park, and I managed to pull that off almost every night. Not only did I learn to seriously skateboard at these late night sessions, I learned how to work for it. You really had to “want it” to get in on a weekday session at a skatepark warehouse in the middle of the country in PA, and believe me, we wanted it. That place definitely helped shape what would turn into a 20+ year career in skateboarding. So thankful. Once back in “reality” at school the next day, people thought me a bit antisocial, but once again, I felt they just couldn’t understand. Much like Fight Club…. The first rule of Fight Club, is you don’t talk about Fight Club. Better they don’t know at all. And what they don’t know, COULD hurt them. You’d be sitting at your desk blooded, exhausted, but proud as hell. Well, things have changed just a bit. Nowadays we’re all “grown up”, grown up jobs, grown up homes, some of us with kids, in fact most… it gets harder and harder to “want it”. Now, we have to “schedule it”. I have roughly a 1-2 hour window I can potentially skate, on a good day. Juggling 3 or 4 jobs will do that to a man. That is… unless I hit the road. Getting out on the road with a good crew is one of the few things that gives me that same energy those Cheapskates sessions did, and our Arizona trip with the WeSC/Stereo posse was certainly no different. Even though I hurt my knee early on (was battling a partially torn meniscus for a year), the few good days were just that good. There is nothing like leaving behind your desk, and all your day to day, to get out on the road and skate with your boys. I always seem to forget how much I need it, until I’m doing it. We had a solid crew with Clint Peterson, Benny Fairfax, Jack Sabback, Raymond Molinar, Eli Reed, Ray Barbee, Alex Schmidt, Kyle Leeper, Steven Webb, Tommy Fynn, Christian Maloof, Steven Snyder, our TM Sully, lensman Aaron Smith, Christian Senrud, and even my legendary exteamate from the World Days, Randy Colvin, who’s still ripping. Especially honored to have WeSC Activist Ray Barbee join us for this one. Ray is someone I grew up idolizing, even sketching his graphics on my notebooks way back in those High School daydreaming days, so to become his friend in adulthood has been really special. What a class act, and Ray is just as talented on his board as he is off it. If you ever see his photos, or hear him play music, you’ll know what I mean. We battled the hot sun, got some clips, drank some beers, and skated some epic parks, ditches and spots. Arizona is the one place with quite possibly more to skate then California. I would highly suggest a trip there if you haven’t been in awhile, it’s Epic. And when I start to get down, or not motivated to travel, work or skate, I still think of those 2 hour drives and late night sessions at Cheapskates with Barker blasting King Diamond from the vert ramp. When we had to really want it, and had to do it for ourselves. To think, there was not even cameras present for the majority of the sessions. Bummer, but also makes this time even more magical, it’s all in our memories. We’ve come a long way. Now get out there!

*

--You can see more of the trip in the upcoming issue of Skateboarder Magazine and at skateboardermag.com.


ZHALA - MUSIC FOR THE PEOPLE IN THE MIDDLE

[024]

WORDS BY DECIDA PHOTOS BY IRIKA

When we meet we “bubble”, at least that’s what Zhala, pronounced [za:la:] as the sch- sound in usual to be exact, calls it. “Bubbling” is part hating on things we can’t change part making plans about what we can do, part spitting out frustration, another part sounding hella childish, and one last part sounding like megalomaniacs with plans bigger than the Game Of Thrones budget. But we never puddle. Next bubble session starts out where the one before ended. That’s part of Zhala’s excellence, she’s on the move. Never standing still. Never stopping her own evolution. Never stiff in her form. And that’s also why we are so fortunate because Ms. Zhala decided to make a soundtrack to her journey. And it just started.

Zhala’s debut single “Slippin Around” had me sliding down a black hole, but that is minus the black, because it’s a rather trippy rainbow-colored journey in spirals further down the psychedelic tunnel. I was slipping, but there was something possible to cling on to. The distinct sound of Zhala’s voice, sometimes hidden in soundwaves, but sometimes sharp and stunningly clear, cutting through every other layer of noise. I was sticking to it all the way through the song. We’ve known each other for a while now. She was only about eighteen when I got to meet her via Sweden’s very own street legend Mapei, and yes, no surprise, Zhala’s still all those years younger than me. But it never feels like it. The lady’s got what one would call an old soul, sitting on that sort of wiseness ol’ folks got, even though the bubbling we do, might not always come out as an act of maturity exactly... --DECIDA: You say that the sound of the artist Zhala, recollects the shimmery times when Pop Music was bloody serious and there were no barriers between fine arts and popular culture. ZHALA: I really, really, love Pop Music because I’ve grown up on it and Pop Music can reach so many people. But I don’t love what a so-called Pop Star is seen as today, with a few exceptions. When did it become watered down, something else, something divided from real artistry?... I want to put back the Art in Artist, ‘cause there is an urgent need to do it...!

Rave, Bollywood Film Music or RnB. For example you maybe can’t trace it in my music at the first glance but I love old school soul singing techniques as much as I love going out to rave nights! But I think it’s possible to trace it in the range of your voice. “Slippin Around” still keeps that voice range a bit on the downlow, but the ones who have seen you live know what I’m talking about for sure! Curious readers should go up on the Internet and watch your acoustic version of “Slippin Around” that you did exclusively for Swedish PSL, the one you did in a bath house! Concerning the sound I’d say your music is music for the 2FACED1s, the people in the middle with one foot in each world, feeling at home in the space inbetween! Yes and 2FACED1 is such a good word because it describes how it is to live in a system that is not made for you. For instance if you’re a woman or not white, or you’re gay, you’re not the norm. One has to develop strategies to cope with it, to be able to move forward. And one has to be able to see oneself from more than one perspective... It takes strategy, it’s not enough to just be driven as some (privileged) people say. As a self-conscious person you do care what people think of you, and it is not necessarily a bad thing, as long as it doesn’t prevent your development...

[With Stockholm as the physical base raised by an immigrant mother from Kurdistan, but with the mindset of a modern day Transnational net-native, Zhala’s music is, as she herself calls it, “something like futuristic, Cosmic Pop mixed up with Witchcraft Indie”. It’s a mash-up of many things.]

That’s the thing, you can envy the ‘don’t give a fuck’ attitude that gets so rewarded in all, mostly male driven, subcultures. But, people seldom think about who can afford to not give a fuck, not giving a fuck doesn’t automatically become attractive and cool for everyone. You have to start in a certain position to make that equation work. In my book, the ‘not giving a fuck’ attitude is somewhat overrated, but to think outside reigning social structures is not. The problem is that way too many mix up the two... ‘What’s really cool?’ Anyway I’m thinking about what you did some months ago and how it’s way more hardcore than eating cockroaches and stuff. The “Kurdish Lesbian Wedding” performance at the queer club Donna Scam, including bloody sheets as decoration, that was fecking ace and I loved every minute of it! And nothing like that has ever been going down in Sweden before as far as I know? Yeah we got some death threats and stuff from religious people...But what we didn’t expect was that there were also criticism coming from the established mostly white, Swedish Lesbian Scene, because we didn’t use their generic vocabulary...so they didn’t think we were real enough I guess... I will go back to what we talked about earlier again - It takes the interaction, skipping in and out of the big and small picture. There are situations when you got to stick to your thing no matter what people think about it, too. And my whole life has always been about shifting perspectives, my mom’s house is so different compared to inner city arty Stockholm, just as one simple example.

It’s for the ones who grew up with a little bit of everything whether it was

I never asked you about it cause you embody music in such a natural way

So what’s is this thing called Art to you? A language to describe things you can’t put into words and write down on paper and call knowledge! If you don’t understand the importance of Art you wont understand my music. You’d probably call it weird... The video to “Slippin Around” was made by now world renowned artist Makode Linde, the man behind the Painful Cake installation. How come Makode Linde made your video? Makode and I are very good friends and I love his mindset. I trust in him and feel like he knows how to express my music visually. It’s just a natural collaboration and it feels important for me to work with people whose work I feel a strong connection to.


[025]

MUSIC


MUSIC

[026]


MUSIC

[027]

for me, but where does your music interest come from in the beginning? I’ve always been singing... Actually my father used to sing. He was never really a part of my childhood though, I used to meet him about once a year, he lived and still lives in Kurdistan. I used to listen a lot to his recordings when I was a kid and he wasn’t around. I think the privity of it affected me in some way... but it was my mother who always encouraged the actual singing. I’d love to hear him some time, I’m so curious to hear if you can trace something of your voice in his...So what’s up next for you? I’m recording, recording and recording at the moment. That’s full focus and I’m trying to spend as much time as possible in the studio making my debut album. There are so many years about to get boiled down in a couple of songs... how to do oneself justice? Except that I’m also working on making new videos, it’s of the highest importance to create a visual world that adds to my music. And you are all so welcome to stay tuned! --That’s it for this bubble session though, next one will start where this one ended and I think it will be behind closed doors. But the soundtrack to it will be yours to follow, dear readers!

*

[Single Cover Artwork by Makode Linde]


TWO QUESTIONS THAT OFTEN COME UP WHEN PEOPLE ENCOUNTER THE DRAWINGS OF TRAVIS MILLARD WORDS BY LOUIS M SCHMIDT PHOTO BY THEO JEMISON

1. How does Millard reconcile the highly contested relationship between illustration and fine art? Well, I’m not Travis, but I’m sure he would say that he doesn’t feel compelled to reconcile anything. He loves what he does and is at peace within this debate. I will say this: there are illustrators and there are illustrators. There are those who simply “do the job” and those whose process and production can only be deemed an “art practice.” This rarified breed of fine artist/commercial illustrator, when not preparing work for publication and exhibition, chooses commercial illustration jobs selectively and grapples with each in the same manner as they would a concept for a “proper” work of fine art. However, even in 2012, we (lay-person and art cognoscenti alike) still have problems distinguishing between illustrator and fine artist, so in case there’s any confusion regarding the work of Travis Millard, allow me to state for the record that he is indeed an artist, and a damn fine one at that. 2. He’s really influenced by Robert Crumb, right? Not really. But hold on a second, that question makes me think of something… Infused as it is with the history of comics, the fine art world nonetheless continues to sideline the comics genre to the margins of major surveys of 20th century art. Even iconic, profoundly influential artists like Robert Crumb and Art Spiegelman, when included in these surveys, are nearly always contextualized only in terms of comics, instead of finding a place among the lineage of the Expressionists or the Social Realists, for example. All this is perhaps a moot point, as Millard doesn’t consider himself a comics artist in the strict sense of the term. However, he does acknowledge a formidable debt to Mad Magazine and especially early Mad artist Mort Drucker. Also, humor is a vital key to understanding the pathos that permeates many of Millard’s drawings. Outside of those two common questions, if I had to summarize Millard’s work, I would say this: Travis Millard regularly explores the figure of the “common man,” displacing the mundane and the mythic from everyday life, weaving threads between past and present. His search for the sublime in this densely hyper-visual yet vacuous post-industrial age is rife with humor, longing and discovery, as is apparent throughout much of his work.

*

--About the author: Louis M Schmidt is an artist and gallery owner based in San Diego, CA. He runs a gallery/shop called Double Break, where Travis Millard recently did a two-person show (with Michael Krueger) called Digging a Hole, Looking for Something.

AT THE DESK IN LOS ANGELES

[028]


[029]

ART


ART

BURGER MEDITATION INK ON PAPER 10 X 8 INCHES 2012

[030]


[031]

ART

OH LORD, ARE YOU IN NEED? INK ON PAPER 9 X 12 INCHES 2011


ART

[032]


[033]

ART

STREET MOB INK ON PAPER 20 X 15 INCHES 2012


ART

NEW EYES INK ON PAPER 10 X 13 INCHES 2012

[034]


[035]

ART

NIGHT DUDE INK ON PAPER 8 X 10 INCHES 2012


DREAMING IN COLOR

[036]

WORDS BY VANESSA PRAGER [Q&A] / DANIELLE KRASSE [INTRO] PHOTOS BY GEOFF MOORE STYLED BY LIZETTE PENA HAIR BY LOTTIE STANNARD FOR THE WALL GROUP MAKEUP BY TROY PEPPIN FOR OPUS BEAUTY USING SERGE NORMANT

Alex Prager - self taught photographer and film maker - is one of the photography and art world’s most prominent up and coming individuals. Her cinematic style and references, vivid colors and flawless heroines and heroes make her work as interesting as it is beautiful and captivating. Alex has been a part of the Superlative Conspiracy for years and we have seen her style and work evolve - always remaining true to Alex’s visions. We’re only halfway through 2012 but Ms Prager has already showed us her creativity as well as productivity in more ways than we could ever have imagined: with the exhibition ”Compulsion” – an image series as well as a short film – that received praise and hurrahs from the press, visitors and art lovers worldwide. The series of short films “Touch of Evil” that Alex created for The New York Times in late 2011 just received an Emmy nomination and it’s safe to say that the future of Alex Prager is looking bright. We wanted to tell you more about her and we figured who better to do that than her artist sister, WeActivist Vanessa Prager – and with that we introduce a conversation between two of the most impressive, creative and talented sisters we know.

VANESSA PRAGER: What do you see when you close your eyes? ALEX PRAGER: Turtles. Do you dream in color? I think I do, yeah. Okay, because I know color plays a large part in your work, I was wondering if it played a large part in your life. Definitely. In my awake life. In my dreams not so much, it’s more about physical feelings and things that I’m seeing unrelated to color, shapes and things. But in my real life, yeah, I definitely notice color all the time. What did you want to be when you grew up? I wanted to be a dancer. Initially. Then as I got older I started refining that, but in the beginning it was all about dance.

So since you’re self taught, how’d you get started with photography, where did you imagine this all going when you first picked up the camera? I didn’t really think about it. I didn’t think about the future very much. the first time I specifically remember having the thought about any kind of future in relation to photography was about 8 months in when my friend asked me if I ever saw myself earning a living off of it. and then I was like “oh, interesting concept”. literally that was the first time it ever even came into my mind that I might earn a living off of it. and then I was like well, I enjoy it so much, why not, why not try and have that be a goal? but it came from someone else. What did you do before photography? I was kind of just hanging out, like all teenagers do. hanging out in parking lots, shopping malls, and movie theaters. I was traveling a lot because I didn’t end up going to high school, so instead I was traveling


[037]

COVER


COVER

[038]


COVER

[039]

Europe on trains. but no specific path for my life at that point. just living. Who are the people in your stories? Do you ever just want to borrow their clothes? I mean to be honest I wish that people actually dressed the way the characters in my stories do because I find it really fun and colorful and it gives life a sense of playfulness just looking at the outfits they’re wearing. but whenever I try on the costumes it’s very rare that I can actually wear it to a party that night, unless its themed. It’s a little too over the top for real life. I know the answer to this already, but this is something every art student wonders, how did you develop a style? Is this something you plan for? I wasn’t thinking about developing a style at all for about the first six years. I was just taking pictures of everything that interested me and anything that caught my attention. and then there was a moment about six years in that I decided I needed to give myself some sort of discipline so that I could hone in what I was trying to communicate, because I was all over the place and it wasn’t necessarily leading me in any particular direction. I was going forward but I was gathering a whole bunch of debris with me. So it was a moment right before The Book of Disquiet when I decided to give myself a theme and work within that theme. And I remember it being really difficult. But once I did I saw how much stronger the images were, so decided to work within themes from then on.

“ ...OUR CLOSE FAMILY HAS ALWAYS BEEN REALLY OPEN TO IDEAS. ANY IDEAS, NEW IDEAS, WEIRD IDEAS, BAD IDEAS, THEY’VE ALWAYS SUPPORTED THEM. I THINK THAT’S REALLY IMPORTANT WHEN YOU’RE RAISING KIDS, SO IT’S PRETTY COOL THE WAY OUR PARENTS RAISED US WITH THAT SORT OF FREEDOM TO CONTRIBUTE.” It was such a challenge because it wasn’t something I’d necessarily want to stick to, whereas before I was giving myself full freedom to move in whatever direction my impulse took me. Also it was very literal so it was even harder than anything I’d ever done. But from that I realized how much more powerful the images were, and I felt like they communicated something more focused than ever before, that’s when I decided to try Polyester. And Polyester was kind of like close my eyes, be myself and be as free as possible, but within a specific theme. What is it that you think has made us both choose the arts, the family genes? I think the family frame of mind more like it, because our close family has always been really open to ideas. Any ideas, new ideas, weird ideas, bad ideas, they’ve always supported them. I think that’s really important when you’re raising kids, so it’s pretty cool the way our parents raised us with that sort of freedom to contribute. Does it make you happy that we both work in art? Yes, very.


COVER

[040]


[041]

COVER


COVER

Me too. What’s it like being a professional in a world where photography can be such an accessible medium and practically anyone can consider themselves a photographer? There’s more opportunity to get inspired by other peoples work. I find it really annoying sometimes, like everybody does, when you see mediocre work, or when you can just tell the person didn’t even try. Thats always been annoying even before the onset of amateur professionals, but the good side of it is there’s more out there to potentially be inspired by. What do you consider most important in making a picture, the story? colors? a hidden plot where all your characters converge? It’s all equally important. I never have a specific start, it’s all just whatever comes first.

“I WOULD CHOOSE TO EITHER DESIGN CLOTHING, OR IF MY BRAIN COULD WORK THAT WAY, TO BE AN ARCHITECT. I THINK THAT GREAT ARCHITECTS ARE REALLY IMPORTANT AND VALUABLE TO SOCIETY, ESPECIALLY RIGHT NOW.” How about your last show, you did your second short film, what is it about film that inspires you to work in another medium? It came very naturally, I wanted to see one of my still pictures move and from there I got interested in film. I like the challenge of it, and it seems like something I’ve already been doing for a very long time, but just way harder. Do you watch a lot of movies? Yeah I think so, normal amount I guess. I’m definitely not what you would call a film buff. Do your everyday personal experiences play into your work at all? yeah, everything plays into my work. But if you go through personal emotional experiences, does it feel cathartic at all when you make a picture or a series? Do your emotions play out directly into your art? Oh yeah, absolutely. In a semi-conscious sort of way. Because if you look at my whole last series, everything that was going on in the world, I felt very kind of helpless towards and also what was going on in my relationship was very fucked up, so I definitely think you can see the underlying emotion in there. This is the darkest series I’ve done. I went though some heavy stuff and it played out there a bit, but I wasn’t directly intending to do that at all. How do you feel about people analyzing your art, doesn’t it feel strange? No, because it’s so indirect the way that I get involved in the pictures personally that it doesn’t feel like they’re analyzing me when they’re looking at it. Like you’re able to totally separate it out. Yeah, to separate my personal life, absolutely. But obviously criticism is never easy to take.

[042]

What do you do with your days when you’re not shooting? I like to go shopping, ride my bike a lot, hiking in Griffith park. that’s where I get most of my ideas actually. Me too. Really? Yeah there’s something about seeing all that space that loosens up the mind or something. Yeah and I like how within the city its an element that’s completely opposing it’s surroundings Yeah, and it’s very fairy tale. Totally. An oasis. It definitely puts you in a little bubble of make believe. Yeah that’s interesting that you do too. What else do we do? Make cookies and eat them. Travel, visit friends, you know the usual, totally normal stuff that everyone does to enjoy life. If you had to chose another profession, what would it be? It couldn’t be directing? No. I would choose to either design clothing, or if my brain could work that way, to be an architect. I think that great architects are really important and valuable to society, especially right now. I agree, that’s a good one. Yeah, that would be the one I would choose to do if I could actually go through eight years of school and come out the other side of it still having fresh ideas. I think that would be a very challenging part of it. Do you collect art of your own? Yes! I collect Vanessa Prager, Mercedes Helnwein, Arthur Conway Hubbard, Asger Carlson, Joakim Eskildsen, Mel Kadel, William Rugen, and Dallas Clayton. I’m always looking for new art that I can afford or trade. What does the future hold? Well hopefully it will hold a film with dialogue, an art book and....

*


[043]

COVER


SUPERLATIVE

SPACES PHOTOS BY GIOVANNI REDA


[045]

FASHION


“This is it. If I am stressed out, or things aren’t going well with the painting or the colors are all messed up or whatever, I just throw the brushes down and brake ’em in half and go sit outside with these guys. It gets pretty zen. ” - CHAD ROBERTSON [ARTIST STUDIO / SILVER LAKE, CALIFORNIA] My paintings strive to represent a visual piece of music. The images become the words of a lyric or the sentence. It sets the scenario for the viewer to put together a story, but it’s important that it is their story. The physical layering of the painting also suggests a conceptual narrative. I never wanted to set out and paint a static image; I didn’t want to freeze a moment. The whole world is constantly moving in one way or another. And we, as human beings, as conscious thinkers, are always changing and growing inside as well. Society is changing, moving along in time and space — history evolving. As a starting point, I have always wanted to paint the depiction of movement and multiple events, and not just the physical but a representation of the psychological as well.

“The scenery here is just so cool and inspiring. They have all kinds of interesting little shops, restaurants, art and fashion… and ninja suits. Usable stuff for a band.” - STEED LORD [CHINATOWN / DOWNTOWN CALIFORNIA] Steed Lord is a music and art collective from Iceland based in Los Angeles creating electronic synthesizer pop music and experimental visual art. They have toured all over the world for the past 6 years with their amazing, unique and energetic live shows. Steed Lord is a band you have to experience live on-stage to understand the power of their performance and visual world.


“Once you get into that vibe and stuff starts happening out of thin air. It’s addictive...” - TIGRA [RECORDING STUDIO / ECHO PARK, CALIFORNIA] An original member of L’Trimm, one of hip hops earliest, sassiest female duos, Lady Tigra has influenced everyone from Peaches and Fannypack to Gwen Stefani. Having had a top 40 US hit and released three acclaimed albums, Tigra quit to manage New York night-clubs before returning to make music with friends, her only rule that it must always be fun. Splitting her time between LA, Miami and NY, Tigra’s sound is similarly hybrid - heavy on the funk as well as the dance floor, something which has led her to support names such as Gnarls Barkley and Kanye West.

...But in this booth here, in this booth especially, Guns n Roses, Led Zeppelin, The Who, Motley Crue... they all used to sit here and f*ck chicks. You can sit here, and if you sit here long enough, you harness their energy and spirit, so to speak…” - DOM DELUCA [RAINBOW ROOM / HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA] Born in brooklyn. Accomplished bmxer. Roadie for Slayer, Metallica and Anthrax. Was a VJ for MTV. Worked at Def Jam, amongst other record labels... put together the Anthrax/Public Enemy collab and tour. Started with Brooklyn House in Brooklyn in ‘92. Founded ‘Brooklyn Projects’ in 2002. Fact: LA Confidential listed him as #88 out of ‘100 People To Know In LA’... above Morgan Freeman.


“I always hear stories from older guys that grew up around here... It was just wild like cardboard box homes and cars on fire. It was just rage. I want to bring that back... ” - BEKIM TRENOVA [TOMPKINS SQUARE PARK / E. VILLAGE, NEW YORK CITY] A Southern born Albanian that is becoming an adult in NYC’s East village Tompkins Park area, Bekim Trenova doesn’t take making his stamp lightly. Model, actor, Dj, Founder of EDM event company Patchwork NYC, and head of the infamous NYC Underground Fight Night parties, Bekim noticed a slip in the Night life world through the mid 2000’s and knew NYC needed and deserved more. The Fight Night events were very driven to make a change and push people to have a one of a kind real life experience with emotion, blood and sweat attached. Everything on the line, but with a full on ‘party atmoshere. “I just wanted to do my part for NYC history. To let everyone down the line know that those kids weren’t gonna go quietly and settle for shitty rock bands and model/bottle parties. I’ve heard too many wild stories about the 80’s and 90’s here. We had to at least try and make our own stamp.”

“I love this because its at most 25 feet from my main door. I don’t have to bring my cellphone here. I have a fax-machine and a telephone, but no one knows it’s number really, and no one calls here. When I close the door, its closed.” - PETER STORMARE [HOME RECORDING STUDIO / W. HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA] Peter Stormare is one hell of a man - he’s not your average Joe, and that’s a relief. World renowned for his acting, Peter’s also a musician - with his own band ‘Blond From Fargo’ that delivers tunes for you and your loved ones. To list his resume and projects would take up too much space (just Google the man, will you), so we conclude this by saying that Peter Stormare, WeActivist, friend and man/myth/legend embodies the spirit of the Superlative Conspiracy - going his own way, doing so with excellence and still remaining cool as ice yet hot as fire. Cheers for him! The Space Monkey is a living, breathing, organism and creature from outer space created by Peter Stormare - it’s a monkey in/from/around space that has a story and history longer than you or me. It’s damn intelligent and would most likely impress you if you meet sometime. Space Monkey is a friend - and you should get to know him!


“This space is inspirational because It’s kind of far removed yet its really close to where I spend all my time in in LA. I like that its industrial and no one around here is doing this… People are doing internet sales...” -VANESSA PRAGER [ARTIST STUDIO / GLENDALE, CALIFORNIA] With no formal education, LA-based artist Vanessa Prager has become widely exhibited - and praised - for her atmospheric, figurative oil paintings on linen, canvas or wood. Theatrical and bizarre, her youthful subjects take centre stage in these isolated performances, the lurid backgrounds fading into harsh shadows or a disconnective blur. Vegetation, candy and toys reoccur in her world as symbols, the artist having been a part of nearly thirty shows already in her young career.

“It’s really weird you know, you live in a place a long time and you don’t really pay attention... I don’t even notice it when I walk into the apartment. Like when people walk in and are like, ‘Oh that’s crazy you have that book from forever ago’…” - AMY GUNTHER [HOME STUDIO / LOWER EAST SIDE, NEW YORK CITY] Amy Gunther, owner of KCDC skate shop, is a luminary within the NYC scene. Actress and model as well as entreprneur, Brooklyn-based Gunther is a unique blend of femininity and forward-thinking, supportive and nurturing of the creative community she inhabits. Amy loves dancing and baking and has collaborated on a shoe with veiled artist and man-of-mystery Neckface, as well as designing both headphones and jeans for WeSC. She is a behind-the-scenes charismatic force who influences the influencers.


“First time I came here I must have been like 13 years old or something… It’s just a real inspirational spot for me. I learned to skate here you know...” - BENNY FAIRFAX [SOUTHBANK / LONDON] New Hampshire born Benny Fairfax is everyone’s favourite Englishman, especially after his almost-win in the Battle of The Berrics. Skateboarding with an effortless and intelligent style, with manners that would make the queen proud, he is pure joy to be, and have, around. Starring in EA Skate 3, Benny is a force to be reckoned with. Jolly good.

“Reggae is my life-force, my energy fuel, and this entire restaurant and variety store are all devoted to reggae Jamaican dancehall roots and culture.” - JASMIN SOLANO [MISS LILY’S / S. VILLAGE, NEW YORK CITY] DJ, Rapper and Mistress of Ceremonies, Jasmine Solano is a world-travelling, bonafide workaholic. Her anthem track, “That’s Not It” can be seen on MtvU. Jasmine was 2009′s only female to open for Rock The Bells and not long after, caught the ear of the Sr. Director of Marketing at Myspace. What followed was a slew of opening performances for Ghostface, Rakim, The Clipse and Sean Kingston. In 2010, Jasmine went on the road with Wiz Khalifa, as his official DJ for the “Deal Or No Deal Tour”, performing & DJing in a sold out, 60 city nation-wide tour. In 2011 she DJ’d for Beyonce in Harlem in conjunction with Beyonce’s album release & was featured in Jay Z’s “That’s Rocawear” fall campaign. In addition to Rocawear, Jasmine was featured in Dr. Jays and Married To The Mob campaigns. In working closely with Redbull, Jasmine was made an official “Redbull Opinion Leader”, as they sponsor many of her events. Aside from her overwhelming online presence, Jasmine has been featured in UK’s Mix Mag as well as Paper Magazine, two consecutive years. In December 2011, Nike Sportswear featured Jasmine in their Holiday Lookbook. Jasmine’s close ties to Burton, awarded her a place as featured blogger for BurtonGirls.com. In January 2012, Jasmine dropped her single, “One on One” ft. Yelawolf, off her upcoming EP, and received a flood of positive response throughout the blogosphere.


“Every time I come here I text all my fellow WeActivists and friends and tell them to meet up for a pingpong tournament. So its my regular... ” - DANIJEL JUGGA STANKOVIC [BOULE & BAR / SÖDERMALM, STOCKHOLM] Danijel ‘Jugga’ Stankovic is one of those people that everyone likes - he’s good hearted, fun, smart and definitely knows what he’s doing - all times, all places, all categories. Without trying to make him out as some sort of a saint, this is how we like to see and perceive him. A professional skateboarder with more POP than your grandma, Danijel is also active in other projects - such as most recently producing ‘One In A Million’ in Sweden, a format where they search across the country for five of the most talented, unsigned skateboarders, invite them down to Malmö for a week full of tutorials, activities, skateboarding and talks and eventually select one of the participants as the winner of a 1 year sponsorship from WeSC and Nike SB. Overall: fucking awesome person.

“Im a fighter and that’s what I do for a living. I fight... But I like tattoos. I got to do one a year ago. It was fun and I wanted to try again so I just finished my second one. Fun to try and do something else other than fighting... ” - JÖRGEN KRUTH [LIFESTYLE TATTOO / SUNDBYBURG, STOCKHOLM] Jörgen Kruth, born in -74, has been in martial arts since 1986. With a number of World Champion titles in Thaiboxing, Jörgen is very active in K1 and MMA, to say the least - being driven and motivated by the love for the sport and the culture surrounding it. A father, husband and genuinely nice man, Jörgen has also been featured in the Playstation 2 K-1 game. With his determination, passion and expertise in what he does, Jörgen can’t be stopped!


“If I go to another part of town and then come back, the second I get off the subway down here, I come out and my body relaxes and its like... ahhhhh.” - KIM MATULOVA [THE STREETS / LOWER EAST SIDE, NEW YORK CITY] Kim Matulova, aka lil’ Kimmi, hails from Sag Harbour, New York. Discovered by famous photographer Arthur Elgort, Kim Matulova launched a very early modeling career, but by the time she was 18 she preferred Thrasher over Vogue and skateboarding over heels. Kim was quickly adopted by the NYC artist elite and soon turned into what is also referred to as a ‘down town icon’. Starring in James Toback’s NYC feature “Black & White”, Nemo Librizzi’s “A Night at the Opera”, making jewellry, creating a book about medicinal and edible plants, muse for Ricky Powell - lil’ Kimmie is a down town fly girl who wants to grow up to be a wise woman healer of the earth. And we’re confident she’s gonna be that too. 

“I like places being under construction, ‘cause it doesn’t make an end to anything. It’s sort of in movement... But it turns me on in a strange way.” - MARCEL STRÜWER [INDUSTRIAL AREA / VÄRTAHARBOUR, STOCKHOLM] Marcel Strüwer is a WeActivist, artist and friend. His work is that of a modern mind with experience and knowledge of everything that is, can or should be referred to as art. His artwork is the result of his journeys across the world - hundreds of posters, messages, and thoughts, from people and places, merged together to create pieces that speak to you, with you - it’s material collected in the cities Marcel has visited that come together, in his studio, under his hands to turn into pieces of art with the help of gallons of glue, acrylic, oil-stick, spray-paint - resulting in what refers his art to: “messages from the people”.


“Chinatown is cool... It’s like you’re on New York City but in another country. No one speaks english here, and I don’t know anyone here, so when I go out to get eggs or milk or water, just normal day-to-day stuff, I feel like I’m somewhere else.” - SABIO [ARTIST STUDIO / CHINATOWN, NEW YORK CITY] Sabio, a Contemporary Cultural Documentarian, has been creating, painting, and documenting the urban landscape for over two decades. Living between New York City and Brasil, he draws inspiration from these two divergent cultures. The human experience, history, architecture, fashion, music, traveling and the people around Sabio are the driving force behind his expressions. Whether it’s developing the Interior Design of the Bowery Hotel, directing a Music video, producing a 30ft. sculpture premiere at the Rothko Chapel, or pushing the Graffiti street scene and giving his friends unique tattoos, Sabio is dedicated to the contemporary cutting edge. Sabio is simply “All around You.”

“Whenever I go to a city that I haven’t been in, or have been in, I like to stroll around with my camera and look at the views and find interesting things on the street… Thats what inspires me everywhere.” - SARAH MUERLE [THE LOOK-OUT SPOT / SÖDERMALM, STOCKHOLM] Sarah Muerle is one of our favorite ladies on this planet. Skateboarder and photographer who doesn’t shy away from a roadtrip or two, loves a good party and is one of the most down to earth people you could ever meet. With a big interest in photography and film, Sarah’s work has been featured in a bunch of magazines - and you should definitely have a look at her photos on http://smeurle.tumblr.com/. Beautiful as can be.


“It’s my favorite place in Sotckholm. I come here to relax and swim in the lake, do some yoga and listen to the birds. It’s perfect... ” - MIKA EDIN [NATURAL RESERVE / NACKA, STOCKHOLM] When you meet Mika you’re always surprised by the serenity and calm that surrounds him - until he starts skating that is. The passion for skateboarding, together with one for yoga, is pretty much apparent in everything he does. And there’s nothing better than watching him skate. You’ll see.

“This was one of the first places I came to when I arrived in London, and it has continued to be a source of inspiration, sanctuary and theraphy throughout the years... ” - MITCHY BWOY [HONEST JONS RECORD SHOP / PORTOBELLO RD, LONDON] Mitchy Bwoy (Homosapien Typographicus): A new and unique organism, the Typographicus (common name: Mitch) was discovered about a decade ago in West London, however his place of origin is thought to be somewhere around the Shires of Northern England. Generally friendly and good natured, Mitch enjoys work in equal measure to play. He requires constant visual stimulus and a strict diet of good music, in addition to supplements of irreverent humour and spontaneity. Mitch is a habitual creature, happily spending most of the day creating distinctive designs and illustrations for other discerning mammals. This is essential for the breed’s well-being. Neither overly dominant nor overly submissive, Mitch is usually well-behaved, but may have a tendency to snore and does experience flatulence on a regular basis..


“I love my friends, so its awesome to be able to have everyone over for a cookout or sometimes we play poker… I don’t know, it’s a lot of work but it’s all worth it.” - SHELLY ZANDER [HOME STUDIO / BROOKLYN, NEW YORK] Co-founder of Knowmore Productions and model, Shelly Zander is that girl you want to be friends with. Having a background in skateboarding yet now more transportation-skating, she’s also had a stint in directing and acting, besides being the muse of Marc Jacobs. With style and personality like few others, Brooklyn based Shelly truly embodies the NY spirit - going her own way, doing what she loves and surrounding herself with good people.

“For years, the last 15 years actually, we have been skating here. We used to come here at nighttime on Sundays and just skate... skate for days. Actually you can’t really skate here anymore, just the stairs. ” - MARK BAINES [ST. PAUL’S CATHEDRAL / LONDON] Hailing from the land of rain and tea, England and more specifically Sheffield native Mark Baines has been a part of WeSC for years - showing that yes, it is possible to be a great skateboarder even though you come from a land where the streets are always wet. With a smooth skate style that has taken him around the world and back, Mark’s bag of tricks is probably bigger than yours.


“I’ve been doing a lot of city shits for a long time… I always just think I would like nothing more than to be away from everything. So over the last couple of weeks I’ve gotten to chill out here and I dig it. I get totally clearheaded out here.” - SPOEK MATHAMBO [DEEP IN THE FOREST / MIDDLE OF NOWHERE, SWEDEN] Spoek Mathambo makes the Afro-futurists look old school, he’s one man building up an army to make his creative visions reality, rewriting any artistic laws in his way. Johannesburg’s Spoek Mathambo (real name: Nthato Mokgata) first hotwired our world with a series of collaborative projects – Sweat X, Playdoe – that placed his smart, dirty vocals on top of electro-rap bangers that activated dancefloors across the globe. Things went darker anddeeper with his 2010 debut album, Mshini Wam (translation: ‘bring me my machine’), a record which took Spoek’s love affair with South African culture and his coined ”township tech”as a starting point. As always, he pulled those influences in a direction all his own (think: a pitched-down wobble-house cover of Joy Divisions “She’s Lost Control Is Africa the future? Maybe. Probably. What I do know is that Africa is the now, and nobody is expressing that better than Spoek Mathambo.

“I like the water and I like that you can see a lot places in Stockholm from here. I get inspired from the water, from nature, and from the city... It makes me happy. It makes me calm. It gives me peace.” - TOVE HOLMGREN [BY THE WATER / HORNSTULL, STOCKHOLM] Tove won Transition Magazines prize for best Swedish park ripper this year for her riding during season 2010. But that will not make her slow down and settle. This year she stepped it up to streetrails, and has spent some time of january and february in Stockholm filming.


“This is a place where you play for the sanctuary of having just a great room with great people. Its kind of magic in that way. I guess in some ways It’s like church.” - STRETCH ARMSTRONG [SUBMERCER / SOHO, NEW YORK CITY] Native New Yorker Stretch Armstrong is a music impresario who has enjoyed a two-decade career in the industry. A DJ and producer that grew up on the edge of Spanish Harlem, surrounded by the heady sounds of hip-hop, disco and reggae, Armstrong has been recognized by The Source magazine for hosting the best hip-hop radio show of all time, The Stretch Armstrong Show, with his friend Bobbito The Barber. Having founded the labels Home, with cult DJ Duke of Denmark and Plant recordings with Dominique Keegan, Armstrong is the man who brought Mobb Deep to public attention, produced Lil’ Kim’s first hit record and fought on the front line as catalyst of today’s genre-bending electro/rock/dance club sound.

“I grew up and I used to live in the north of Sweden, in a town called Piteå, and there was nowhere to skate there... So I used to travel here, around 1000 kilometers by train, to come here and skate.” - INGEMAR BACKMAN [SHERATON GARAGE / CENTRAL STOCKHOLM] Ingemar Backman is one of the founders of WeSC, a world record holder for the highest air out of a quarter-pipe (8.5 meters) in 1996, a participant in the 1998 Winter Olympics, a professional poker player and a WeActivist. This humble, sweet guy who is as kind as can be is not only a talent and natural in snowboarding and poker but also one of the finest human beings on this planet. With a calm and serenity about him that makes even the most stressed out person at ease, Ingemar is a dear friend to anyone who’s ever had the pleasure of meeting him.


MY JANELL PHOTOS & WORDS BY CURTIS BUCHANAN


[095]

LIFESTYLE


Sometimes situations come into your life that improve things. They improve the way you look at things. They improve your motivation, And they increase the level of inspiration in your life. Janell is that current situation for me. There is always a photo to take. She is usually the first person I see in the morning and the last person I see before I go to sleep. I find absolute beauty in her no matter what emotion unfolds and in return I am left with images that leave me satisfied. There have been so many times in my life where I didn’t touch a camera for weeks. She constantly reminds me to always carry a camera without ever actually telling me to. We have an intense bond fueled with creativity and laughter. One that I hold dear to my heart and close to my camera.


PHOTOS

[102]

ANNA SHEFFIELD A TRUCK FROM MY PARENTS FARM IN NORTH CAROLINA [RED, WHITE, AND BLUE... SO ITS KIND OF MAGICAL].


PHOTOS

[103]

JONNIE CRAIG SHOT IN SWEDEN AT A CLIFFS EDGE THAT WE SPENT THE DAY JUMPING OFF WHILE SHOTGUNNING BEERS. WAS CASPER’S (LEFT) FIRST SHOTGUN. HE ALMOST THREW UP DIRECTLY AFTER AND ALSO PISSED HIMSELF AT THE EDGE OF THE HIGHEST CLIFF JUMP POINT. IT DIDN’T MAKE SENSE TO ANY OF US, BUT HE JUMPED. [FROM MY UPCOMING BOOK, ‘I’LL KICK YOU IN THE HEAD WITH MY ENERGY LEGS’]


PHOTOS

[104]

AMY GUNTHER SHOOTING SHOTGUNS AND BAKING CAKES ARE TWO VERY DIFFERENT WAYS OF SPENDING YOUR TIME, FOR ME THEY ARE THE TIMES I ENJOY MOST. THIS SEEMED LIKE AN IDEAL APPLICATION OF... SPRINKLES.


PHOTOS

[105]

KUNLE MARTINS YOU GOTTA WORK TO GET PAID BABY.


PHOTOS

[106]

JENS ANDERSSON THIS IS RAINE. HE´S A TALENTED, HOMELESS MAN WALKING THE STREETS IN MY NEIGHBORHOOD. THE PICTURE IS TAKEN IN MY STUDIO.


PHOTOS

[107]

CLAYTON PATTERSON IN THE VERY EARLY MORNING OF AUGUST 13, 1996, THE NEW YORK POLICE DEPARTMENT CARRIED OUT EVICTION ORDERS AT 535, 537, AND 539 EAST 13TH STREET.


PHOTOS

[108]

SIGNE SIEMSEN MY FRIENDS KATARINA AND RIKARD DRINKING THEIR MORNING MILK AFTER A HARD NIGHT TOURISTING IN BERLIN.


PHOTOS

[109]

CHRISTOPHER GLANCY 117 MILES OUTSIDE OF LOS ANGELES. EVERYBODY HAS A PLAN UNTIL THEY GET PUNCHED IN THE FACE.


PHOTOS

[110]

SAM ASHLEY SOME COLOURS SHINE THROUGH ON A GREY DAY IN WARSAW, POLAND.


PHOTOS

[111]

GEOFF MOORE EDEN. WONDERLAND DRIVE. HOLLYWOOD HILLS


PHOTOS

[112]

KAI REGAN THESE ARE MY LAST WORDS...


PHOTOS

[113]

SAGA BERLIN / NICEGUZZ MEU BEBE VIVE SEM AC. CARAGUATATUBA, SAO PAULO


IRAK CREW

[114]

WORDS BY EARSNOT [FOUNDER / PRESIDENT] PHOTOS BY RYAN MCGINLEY

“For us it’s always been about being on the streets and making shit happen. Nowadays, for most people, if shit isn’t gonna get 500 ‘likes’ online, it’s not worth doing. That’s not how we operate. We don’t look for approval. Being out there, observing and participating, keeps us one step ahead. The best inspiration comes from living life.”


[115]

INSPIRATION


LONDON [ENGLAND] WORDS BY PETER TURVEY PHOTO BY HENRY KINGSFORD [PANORAMIC OPENER]

[116]


CITY GUIDE

[117]

London [England] - London - or as it’s known locally “The Big Smoke” - was founded in 50AD by the pesky Romans, history tells us that they built a bridge across the river Thames and then decided that it would be a good place to build a port and that was that, London was born. Today there are 200 bridges, over 20 tunnels and six public ferries crossing the river. Today, London is home to somewhere between 12 and 14 million people and has more than 300 languages

spoken within its boundaries. It has experienced plague, devastating fire, civil war, aerial bombardment and terrorist attacks. In 2012 London will become the first city to host the modern Summer Olympic Games three times. Here are some reasons why London is one of the most culturally vibrant cities in the world. There are more than 32,000 music performances a year in London – 621 a week, 17%

of which are free, London has 40,000 listed buildings and over 150 ancient monuments. London has 22 national museums and more than 200 other museums. London’s 395 public libraries stock 17 million books. There are more than 900 bookshops in London – twice as many as New York. London is home to The Shard, Western Europe’s highest building and it’s 62% likely to rain in London should you visit!


CITY GUIDE

RESTAURANTS Tramshed 32 Rivington Street London, EC2A 3EQ +44 (0)20 7749 0478 www.chickenandsteak.co.uk Moolis 50 Frith Street London, W1D 4SQ +44 (0)20 7494 9075 www.moolis.com The Mount Street Deli 100 Mount Street London, W1K 2TG +44 (0)20 7499 6843 www.themountstreetdeli.co.uk COFFEE SHOPS

[118]

The Kenton 38, Kenton Road, Hackney, London E9 7AB +44 (0)20 8533 5041 http://www.kentonpub.co.uk

WeSC London 43 Carnaby Street London, W1F 7EA +44 (0)20 7287 9548 www.wesc.com/in/united-kingdom

CULTURE [+ EVENTS]

Folk 49 Lambs Conduit Street London, WC1N 3NG +44 (0)20 7404 6458 http://www.folkclothing.com/

The Shard 32 London Bridge Street London, SE1 http://the-shard.com/ Design Museum Shad Thames Bermondsey London, SE1 2YD +44 (0)20 7940 8790 www.designmuseum.org

Sacred Coffee 13 Ganton Street London, W1F 9BL +44 (0)20 7734 1415 www.sacredcafe.co.uk

The Royal Academy Summer Exhibition Burlington House Piccadilly, London, W1J 0BD +44 (0)20 7300 8000 www.royalacademy.org.uk/exhibitions/ summer-exhibition-2012/

Nude Espresso 26 Hanbury Street London, E1 6QR +44 (0)7804 223590 www.nudeespresso.com/cafes/brick-lane/

One Love Festival The UK’s NO1 Reggae / Dub Festival 19th - 21st August Hainault Forest Country Park, London www.onelovefestival.co.uk

NIGHTTIME

SHOPS

The French House 49 Dean Street London, W1D 5BG +44 (0)20 7437 2477/2799 http://frenchhousesoho.com

HUH. 56 Stoke Newington Road London, N16 7XB +44 (0)20 7249 8239 http://store.huhmagazine.co.uk/

HUH.

FOLK

Footpatrol 80 Berwick Street W1F 8TU, London +44 (0)20 7287 8094 http://footpatrol.co.uk/ Supreme London 2-3 Peter Street Soho, London, W1F 0AA +44 (0)20 7437 0493 www.supremenewyork.com/stores/ Honest Jons Record Store 278 Portobello Road London, W10 5TE +44 (0)20 8969 9822 www.honestjons.com TATTOOISTS The Circle London 21 Noel Street London, W1F 8GP +44 (0)20 7734 3499 www.thecirclelondon.com

THE FRENCH HOUSE


CITY GUIDE

[119]

TOP TO BOTTOM: TRAMSHED [PHOTO ©DAMIEN HIRST 2012], THE KENTON

TOP TO BOTTOM: FOOTPATROL, MOOLIS

TOP TO BOTTOM: THE SHARD, SACRED COFFEE


LOCATIONS

[120]

In June, WeSC and Kanon Organic Vodka teamed up to present NYC with a proper MIDSUMMER PARTY at The Bowery! With performances by the A$AP Mob, Icona Pop and DJ sets by Andrew Wyatt (Miike Snow), Zebra Katz, J Scott and more, the night was fun to say the least! [photos: COBRASNAKE]


[121]

LOCATIONS FOLLOW US: facebook.com/superlativeconspiracy twitter.com/WeSC1999


LOCATIONS

[122]

With the artists REAS, EGS, PETRO, NUG, IKAROZ, KEGR, SWEET UNO, SABE, GHOST and PIKE, WeSC was proud to be a part of the exhibition STENDHAL SYNDROME.The title “Stendhal Syndrome” refers to a psychosomatic disease that causes increased heart activity, dizzyness and hallucinations when an individual is exposed to art. It usually occurs when the art is particularly beautiful or if it’s a large collection of art collected in one place. In preparations for the exhibition WeSC Kungsgatan Concept Store in Stockholm was visited by some of the participating artists who together created works of art on the windows. [photos: ROBIN ÅHLGREN]


[123]

LOCATIONS FOR MORE IMAGES & VIDEO: wesc.com


LOCATIONS

[124]

On July 5th WeSC, Sneakersnstuff and Vice threw a TRADESHOW AFTER PARTY in a World War II bunker in central Berlin, also celebrating the HOUSE OF FLORA collaboration between WeSC and Bread & Butter Berlin that had been presented on the Thursday including a shirt, 5-panel and bag in a special WeSC tropical, House of Flora pattern. We’re not sure if it was due to the venue, the relief that the tradeshows were almost over, that it was a huge thunderstorm in Berlin that night or just the 12 hour open bar and epic DJ sets that made it all the success it was - and we don’t need to know more than that. It was fun and we enjoyed ourselves as you can see in the pictures. Thank you and we hope to see you all at our next parties too. [photos: MAX JURISCH]


[125]

LOCATIONS FOLLOW US: facebook.com/superlativeconspiracy twitter.com/WeSC1999


RELEASE

[127]

JÖRGEN KRUTH NICKNAME: THE LAST VIKING FROM: STOCKHOLM SWEDEN FIGHTS OUT OF: STOCKHOLM SWEDEN AGE: 38 HEIGHT: 6’ 2” ( 187 CM ) WEIGHT: 205 LB ( 93 KG )

I

I

UFC SEPTEMBER 29 2012 NOTTINGHAM UNITED KINGDOM


WeAretheSuperlativeConspiracy symbolizes what we as a company represent: a group and family of good, creative minds working towards the same goals and ideals. The Superlative Conspiracy is the idea and philosophy behind our brand. We aim to address like-minded people, who are awake and aware, regardless of race, religion or financial background. People within the Superlative Conspiracy share the values and lifestyle of the WeSC founders who all have a background in skateboarding, snowboarding and street culture – which are the heritage and inspiration for the creation and making of WeSC. The people flying the flag of the Conspiracy are the people enjoying, wearing and representing the brand, and importantly also the WeActivists. Those great creatives, skateboarders, snowboarders, actors, musicians, chefs, models, artists and more who are all a part of the WeSC Family. Their representation of WeSC adds new and other dimensions; the things they do in their field of work and interest in the different genres of culture, sports, music and creativity. It all comes together and contributes to make WeSC the brand for intellectual slackers, creatives and supporters of streetfashion.

© 2012 We International AB All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced in any manner in any media, or transmitted by any means whatsoever, electronic or mechanical (including photocopy, film or video recording, internet posting or any other information storage and retrieval system) without the prior written permission of the publisher.

Made in Sweden by WeSC Karlavägen 108, Stockholm, Sweden tel. +46 8 46 50 50 00 www.wesc.com facebook.com/superlativeconspiracy twitter.com/WeSC1999 instagram: WeSC1999

CEO: GREGER HAGELIN GLOBAL BRAND DIRECTOR: THOMAS FLINN GLOBAL MARKETING MANAGER: HANNA LUNDGREN GLOBAL PR & WEB MANAGER: DANIELLE KRASSE EXECUTIVE ART DIRECTOR: TONY ARCABASCIO ART DIRECTOR: SIMON MÅRTELIUS WeSC, www.wesc.com, WeAretheSuperlativeConspiracy AND ‘THE ICON’ ARE REGISTRATED TRADEMARKS OF WE INTERNATIONAL AB®

Profile for WeSC

Superlative Conspiracy No.4  

Life is good. It is, because we have it. It’s easy to compare yourself and your possessions, your being and your reality with others but som...

Superlative Conspiracy No.4  

Life is good. It is, because we have it. It’s easy to compare yourself and your possessions, your being and your reality with others but som...

Profile for wesc1999
Advertisement