i-Dhttps://i-d.vice.com/en_usRSS feed for https://i-d.vice.comenTue, 13 Nov 2018 22:58:14 +0000<![CDATA[watch céline dion liberate babies from the gender binary with glitter]]>https://i-d.vice.com/en_us/article/mbyew4/watch-celine-dion-liberate-babies-from-the-gender-binary-with-glitterTue, 13 Nov 2018 22:58:14 +0000We’ve finally figured out why on earth Céline Dion ended her Las Vegas Residency after eight years at Caesars Palace. She’s been plotting to overturn the gender binary. How? By breaking into children’s hospitals, and sprinkling black glitter on newborn boys and girls, to the point where their symbols of oppression (pink and blue male/female symbols on the wall) are turned into black and white plus signs. The babies are also magically outfitted in new digs, touting a “new order.” A genderless order, we suspect. At least, that’s according to the video for her gender-neutral kids clothing line, CELINUNUNU, that dropped today. In the video, Céline with an é is quickly found by security guards, chased through the hospital and arrested, before uttering these last words: “Guys relax, easy. I’m Céline Dion.”

The brand is a partnership between Céline and the co-founders and designers of the kids fashion brand nununu, Iris Adler and Tali Milchberg. “CELINUNUNU liberates children from the traditional roles of boy/girl, and enables younger people to grow on values of equality with the freedom to strengthen their own power of personality based on mutual respect,” their website says, in case you were wondering what on earth is going on. Hopefully the line for adults is forthcoming.

mbyew4Nicole DeMarcoJack SunnucksNewsceline dionGender NeutralCELINUNUNU
<![CDATA[naomi campbell and her mom are too cool for xmas dinner in burberry's new film]]>https://i-d.vice.com/en_us/article/wj35kb/naomi-campbell-and-her-mom-are-too-cool-for-xmas-dinner-in-burberrys-new-filmTue, 13 Nov 2018 20:49:48 +0000 Burberry just released a short film debuting its holiday collection, which also marks the British house’s first Christmas campaign under artistic director Riccardo Tisci. Close Your Eyes and Think of Christmas opens with a fabulous, trench-wearing M.I.A., stirring her tea, whilst seated with a pensive, paper-reading Matt Smith at a café table. The video then pans out in a whirlwind through frosted windows and Burberry train cars — with seats upholstered in the new Peter Saville monogrammed print — to a festively-clad Kristin Scott Thomas. Fast forward to mere seconds later when the stars come together to share a curious Christmas dinner — one in which Naomi Campbell and her mom appear not to participate in, as their eyes are glued to the TV screen in another room where Naomi’s splayed out on the floor. The two are, however, modeling looks from Burberry’s collaboration with Vivienne Westwood, on sale December 6. The entire thing is punctuated by “Carol of the Bells” and the ASMR-like rattling of precious crystal chandeliers.

“I wanted to portray a more realistic British Christmas, but still shot through a fantasy lens,” artist and photographer Juno Calypso said. “The campaign takes you through all the key seasonal rituals, both good and bad. That’s what brings us together.”

Watch the film below.

wj35kbNicole DeMarcoHannah OngleyNewsNAOMI CAMPBELLHOLIDAYm.i.aburberryRiccardo Tisci
<![CDATA[chase hall paints the intimate bonds between black jockeys and their horses]]>https://i-d.vice.com/en_us/article/7xyvmg/artist-chase-hall-paints-black-jockeys-and-their-horsesTue, 13 Nov 2018 20:23:36 +0000Entering the studio of New York-based artist Chase Hall is like entering a shrine of African-American history and culture. Obama’s picture sits framed on a bookshelf, opposite photos of his grandparents, Michael Jackson handkerchiefs, Uncle Remus and Mammy towel holders, and countless collected ornaments and books all neatly archived.

The 25-year-old’s work continues to deep-dive into racial injustices in the US. Reclaiming loaded memorabilia and symbols, Hall’s work forces America to confront the painful realities of the past and present. A statue of Jocko Graves, the young slave George Washington put in charge of the horses while he and his soldiers ventured off to fight against the British in the Battle of Trenton, sits in one corner of the studio. Deemed too young to join the fight against the British, Graves ended up frozen to death with his lantern still in his hand.

“As a young kid in school, I was taught my ancestors were not much more than a bunch of kidnapped chained-up numbers,” Hall says. “Through research and stories like Jocko’s, you are able to further the conversation of our inclusion and replenish the humanity we have been denied for so long.”

Chase Hall

Hall’s solo exhibition earlier this year, You Can Lead a Horse to Water, curated by Lolita Cros, was dedicated to this exploration. Bringing to life the famous idiom “You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink,” the exhibition led viewers through a painful past with hope for the future. Judging by the reaction of those in attendance, he’s building an audience that not only wants to drink this powerful message, but to have another glass of it.

Hall is self-taught, and it’s clear painting comes naturally to him. Pairing primary blues and greens with deep browns, he is less worried about portraying every detail perfectly than he is about creative expression, as someone who was “always listening and looking.” Growing up with a single mother living across Minnesota, Chicago, Las Vegas, Colorado, Dubai, and Los Angeles, he spent much of his time watching movies, skating, and hanging out at friends’ houses, on a quest to ask as many questions as possible. Inspired by entertainment, art, and cartoons, Hall realized the potential for expression in these mediums once he was older. He decided to use art to articulate the “more nuanced realities of racism and life in general” as authentically as possible.

“I asked myself, ‘How can I talk about this in a true and authentic way?’ Pursuing politics or becoming a lawyer or those routes didn’t seem honest but rather corrupt to me growing up,” he explains. “Then I started to realize there’s actually more truth in Tupac or Prince than in these lobbyists and sideways politicians pushing their cryptic agenda on people.”

Since You Can Lead a Horse to Water, Hall has continued to work on the series. He also recently shot Trevor Noah for the New York Times’ Sunday newspaper, as Noah was nominated to be the first black talk show host to win an Emmy, and is currently is part of No Name exhibition at Museo Nacional de San Carlos in Mexico City.

And, of course, Hall is always focused on growing his collection of archived memorabilia, which he is now working into forms of sculpture. “I am interested in finding proof of racism in our recent past,” he says. “Once you realize that there are postcards and advertisements of black babies being eaten by alligators, and records of that happening at Central Park Zoo in 1908, you’re like, ‘Oh wait, that’s why cops are killing our people for no reason. That’s why racism is so deeply ingrained.'”

7xyvmgLaura PitcherHannah OngleyRACISMNYCArthorseshistorySportKentucky Derbychase hall
<![CDATA[why 'big mouth' is the best coming-of-age tv right now]]>https://i-d.vice.com/en_us/article/nepbvz/why-big-mouth-is-the-best-coming-of-age-tv-right-nowTue, 13 Nov 2018 19:45:57 +0000Puberty isn’t easy. This is an understatement, but still something worth remembering; the physical and emotional changes that you go through can be terrifying to deal with; it’s no wonder that the mutants in X-Men tend to develop their mutations during puberty, and adolescence becomes literal body horror in films like Ginger Snaps. But Big Mouth, an animated comedy about the agony and ecstasy of adolescence created by Nick Kroll, uses Hormone Monsters, talking pubes, and the ghost of Duke Ellington as a way to bring puberty to life.

On the surface, Big Mouth begins and ends with its crassness, something that culminates in the season one finale, when Nick (voiced by Nick Kroll) and the Hormone Monster (also Nick Kroll) travel to the alternate dimension of the Pornscape in order to search for fellow student Andrew (John Mulaney). This alternate world is exactly what it sounds like, a place that’s entirely inhabited by Andrew’s deviant search history. But Big Mouth doesn’t just coast on blue humor; it challenges the Pornscape -- something Andrew falls into after becoming increasingly desensitized to porn -- by drawing a line between healthy and unhealthy explorations of sexuality. The Pornscape is a Bosch-like hell of warped desire; the Hormone Monster even goes so far as to say that if Andrew isn’t rescued from the Pornscape, he won’t be able to form lasting physical or emotional connections with other people. When he’s just about to leave, Andrew is given a choice by the dildo-footed object of his desire: leave and return to reality, or stay with her in the Pornscape. Big Mouth forces its characters to deal with not just their changing bodies, but their emotions; by putting Andrew in a face-to-face confrontation with a pornographic fantasy, the show illustrates what a person needs to do in order to be healthy in both body and mind. This is the bizarre beauty of Big Mouth; it uses dick jokes as a way to talk sincerely about genuinely difficult issues faced in real life.

The ways in which characters talk to the strange and surreal things that surround them as they go through puberty is a way for the characters to talk to, and understand, parts of themselves. In one of the show’s flourishes of self-awareness -- in an episode titled Girls Are Horny Too, we’re told that “Jessi discovers her vagina, its very sex-positive.” And that’s exactly what happens; Jessi (Jessi Klein) has a conversation with her Kristen Wiig voiced vagina. For all of the visual strangeness of this sequence, and similar ones (Nick talks to his two pubes in a season two episode), the message and earnestness of it are crystal clear: exploring your sexuality is healthy and normal.

Big Mouth never endorses a shameless bacchanal, but it believes sincerely that exploring yourself and your desires is nothing to be ashamed of, as long as they’re explored in a healthy way.

But not everything in Big Mouth is about healthy development and exploration. Socially and psychologically as much as biologically, puberty can be a bitch, and the show refuses to offer easy answers to the difficult questions that adolescents ask themselves and each other. Season two introduces the Shame Wizard (or Shane Lizard, depending on who he’s talking to). The mission of this evil magician is right there in his name: he makes the characters feel ashamed of what they’ve done, first appearing when Andrew is caught masturbating to thoughts of Nick’s sister -- followed by Andrew’s appearance at the court of shame, where a room full of Andrews tell him to be, you guessed it, ashamed. His presence looms large throughout the second season, and he even gets a musical number during a particularly fraught class sleepover. Big Mouth never endorses a shameless bacchanal, but it believes sincerely that exploring yourself and your desires is nothing to be ashamed of, as long as they’re explored in a healthy way. The fact that the characters try to physically and verbally articulate their desires to others and themselves is played dead straight: Jessi talking to her vagina allows for literal self-exploration, just like Nick’s conversation with his pubes allows him to try and find an answer to the question “Am I normal?”

The difficult social territory of adolescence is also examined through everything from double dates to the morality of a “hump and dump” (you don’t need me to define this one for you). The show gets how teens actually communicate; the idea that the character Gina is a “slut” spreads like wildfire over an endless cycle of text messages. Being young is hard, and the show approaches this with nuance. The onset of Jessi’s depression is treated with visual inventiveness and emotional sensitivity in the form of the Depression Kitty, a large, sweet-voiced feline who tries to take care of Jessi. For all of the absurdity of Jessi talking to a giant cat, and being almost literally smothered in a padded room, this analogy for the often oppressive nature of mental illness works. Jessi is literally losing herself as she becomes physically and emotionally overwhelmed by depression.

Big Mouth Netflix

The show is, of course, imperfect. It has a narrow, pretty heteronormative focus. The season one episode Am I Gay? ends without offering a satisfactory answer to its title question; and in having the Ghost of Freddie Mercury sing “you’re gay/totally gay,” continues the seemingly endless erasure of bisexuality. The second season does a little better on this; in what feels like another one of Big Mouth’s moments of self-awareness, it seems to criticize itself for underwriting the one gay character when he’s told that “being young, gay, and mean is not a personality”. The final episodes of season two look like another interesting step forward, explicitly referencing the loneliness of being the “one queer kid, trying to fit in”.

Big Mouth is gross, weird, funny, and moving. It dresses up didacticism through a strange and wonderful visual palette -- bi erasure is shown through cushions and pillows warring for affection, and depression is brought to life as a giant cat -- but still manages to communicate these issues as deeply important. Perhaps most importantly, Big Mouth never loses faith in either its audience or characters. These talking objects and strange creatures exist to do more than just generate laughs; they allow for the characters to see (sometimes literally) themselves. Broad humor, like exploding heads, is used as a vehicle to explore female sexuality, and an evil wizard shows people just how hard it is to grow up. By striking this balance between crassness and sincerity, Big Mouth, to put it simply, understands.

This article originally appeared on i-D UK.

nepbvzSam MooreClementine de PressignyCulturetvNETFLIXcoming of ageTeenagebig mouth
<![CDATA[how symonds pearmain became the most buzzed-about brand for fashion insiders]]>https://i-d.vice.com/en_us/article/59vpxx/symonds-pearmain-fashion-storyTue, 13 Nov 2018 19:43:53 +0000 This article originally appeared in i-D's The Superstar Issue, no. 354, Winter 2018

Symonds Pearmain’s autumn/winter 18 collection opened with Edie Campbell in a blue and red Breton striped top with an elegantly relaxed swooping shoulder, a white pencil skirt with a romantically kitschy rose in needlepoint embroidery, vertically striped red socks and gold shoes.

It closed with the boisterous and exuberant music of the can-can, Jacques Offenbach’s overture from the Orphée aux Enfers. The music, a little earlier, a little anachronistically, had been a megamix of early NYC hip-hop, featuring The World’s Famous Supreme Team and Malcolm McLaren’s Buffalo Gals, tracks a world apart from, but just as boisterous and exuberant as Offenbach’s overture.

On Edie’s head as she walked out was a T-shirt wrapped up like a headscarf. Some words from the collection’s press release were printed on it, just about visible. It was written by video artist Ed Atkins in a stream of impressionistic nonsense – “Imagine a cabal of ad execs dry-humping in the dark?” it read, “Ragging on one another to weft some meagre measure of I think rayon or ham” – that mimicked the impressionistic nonsense of the usual fashion show press release.

Those various stylistic references and aesthetic nods just about sum up the world designer Anthony Symonds and stylist Max Pearmain have created with their brand. Symonds Pearmain is fun, spirited, a little satirical maybe, in that it is against the empty banality of a lot of luxury fashion. It is as comfortable with referencing 80s NYC streetwear as it is with French Second Empire Romanticism. The collection was titled Matchy Un-Matchy, a reference to their magpie-ish sensibility to pick and chose and find inspiration in a thousand places – high and low, good and bad taste, the kitsch and the beautiful, the prim and the sexy – and build something that felt complete and honest out of those fragments. Most importantly, the show cemented them as creators of incredible fashion – fashion that feels a world apart from so many dominant and boring trends in the industry. It didn’t look like anything else happening at that moment in London fashion, and it felt confident and assured in its difference.

symonds pearmain


Hair Neil Moodie at Bryant Artists. Make Up Lauren Parsons at Art Partner. Models Lily McMenamy at Next. Christine Willis at Storm. Georgiana Zloteanu at Elite. Special thanks to Martin McGowan and Charles Asprey. Models wear all clothing Symonds Pearmain spring/summer 19. Shoes Manolo Blahnik. Images Courtesy of Symonds Pearmain and Cabinet Gallery

This article originally appeared on i-D UK.

59vpxxFelix Pettyi-D StaffFashionlily mcmenamysymonds pearmainThe Superstar Issue
<![CDATA[netflix’s new horror will make you put tape over your computer camera]]>https://i-d.vice.com/en_us/article/wj3584/netflix-horror-cam-trailerTue, 13 Nov 2018 19:41:54 +0000You know when people put tape over their computer camera and you think, alright, mate, you’re not that interesting, who’s going to spend their precious hacking time hacking you while you sit through three episodes of Narcos and a Grey’s Anatomy?

Well, we’ll be the first to hold our hands up and say maybe those people were right. Maybe we should all put tape over our cameras. In fact, maybe we should put tape over our cameras, then tape our laptops shut and throw them in a big box somewhere sealed with tape. Because if new Netflix horror, Cam, is anything to go by, the consequences are not worth considering.

The feature debut from director Daniel Goldhaber, Cam stars Handmaid's Tale actress Madeline Brewer as Alice, a sex worker who wakes up one day to find her account has been hijacked by a mysterious lookalike. Inspired by writer Isa Mazzei’s own history of working as a camgirl, the film has already been described as “a clever and unnerving mindfuck of a movie” by Indiewire, and a “brilliant take on the Hitchcockian identity thriller” by AV/Club. Which makes it sound quite good really, doesn’t it?

Watch the trailer below. Just make sure you do it with your camera off.

This article originally appeared on i-D UK.

wj3584Matthew WhitehouseFrankie DunnCultureHORRORCamgirlcamwebcamNetlix
<![CDATA[how an episode of 'black mirror' became a creepy reality]]>https://i-d.vice.com/en_us/article/nepbdg/black-mirror-artificial-intelligence-roman-mazurenkoTue, 13 Nov 2018 17:36:27 +0000On November 28 2015, a 34-year-old man called Roman Mazurenko was hit by a speeding Jeep in central Moscow. He was rushed to the nearest hospital but died of his injuries. His best friend Eugenia Kuyda arrived just before he passed, just missing the chance to speak with him one last time.

She spent the next three months collecting text messages that Mazurenko’s friends had stored on their phones and handed them over to the engineers at her software company Luka. After some computer wizardry, involving algorithms and artificial intelligence, Kuyda’s engineers had developed an app that would let her speak to Mazurenko once again. It sounds like an eerie science fiction story and that’s because it originally was…

Two years earlier, Charlie Brooker’s nightmarish TV series Black Mirror had given Kuyda the fictional version. Having made a name for itself with all too realistic stories of a dystopian future, the show’s second series began with an episode that challenged the very nature of death in the digitalized world.

Be Right Back tells the story of a woman called Martha, struggling to come to terms with the death of her social media-addicted boyfriend Ash – who also died in a car accident. She’s introduced to a service that can resurrect Ash as a digital avatar by harvesting his social media posts and text messages.


Although reluctant at first, Martha begins to use the service on her laptop, chatting to digital Ash, who appears as a sort of instant messenger. The more comfortable Martha becomes, the more digital Ash evolves. He goes from app to voice assistant, to robot within the first 30-minutes. But, as Ash develops, it soon becomes apparent that it’s not the real thing. He’s just a collection of data; an echo of thoughts posted online that cannot think freely or for itself. Almost like a digital zombie.

Ever since George Romeo’s classic horror, Night of the Living Dead, the Zombie genre has given us simple guidelines for bringing the dead back to life. Usually, it’s a virus or some sort of radiation exposure, but the Black Mirror version — though it doesn’t strictly define it as a zombie — hit upon an idea for resurrecting the dead that’s unnervingly real.

Real, because the technology is actually available; artificial intelligence and formats like machine learning, where an algorithm reads and translates data or information into actions, are widely used in society and business. It’s powering everything from smartphones to medical equipment. It’s the same technology that’s enabling self-driving cars and voice assistants such as Alexa and Siri on your iPhone.

Eugenia Kuyda is fully aware of this because her company, Luka, specializes in building AI-powered software, mostly chatbots, but when she watched Be Right Back, it left her with mixed feelings, particularly with how far it went.

"She found herself going through the endless text messages Mazurenko had sent her over the years she felt like there was something to work from. She realized she could build a different kind of bot based on Mazurenko, one that simply mimicked his speech patterns."

“It’s definitely the future and I’m always for the future,” she said. “But is it really what’s beneficial for us? Is it letting go, by forcing you to actually feel everything? Or is it just having a dead person in your attic? Where is the line? Where are we? It screws with your brain.”

For two years, Kuyda had been building her tech company, and its first real chatbot was for online retail. But when she found herself going through the endless text messages Mazurenko had sent her over the years she felt like there was something to work from. She realized she could build a different kind of bot based on Mazurenko, one that simply mimicked his speech patterns.

“On his Facebook page, there really were just a few links,” she says. “I went on his Instagram page and there were no photos. The only thing I could do to remember him was to go to our messenger history, scroll and read it all. That was the closest I could get to feel him. I felt I still had a lot to say, but it’s just kind of weird we don’t have a ritual to say any of that stuff.”

Having taken some 8,000 lines of text from friends and family, the app was shared with them first. Many found the likeness uncanny and felt Kuyda had hit upon something special; chatbots offer a service, either commercial, like bots on retail websites, or novelty household devices like Alexa, but the Roman bot offered a digital ear for users to say something private — in this case, something to Mazurenko that they needed to let out.

This idea, for a chatbot to confide in, has seen the same technology that underpins the ‘Roman’ bot turned around to create Luka’s new app, ‘Replika’, which is an AI like Roman, but one you can build yourself by texting it. The more you chat, the more it learns to be you. Meaning that when you die, you’ll have a Black Mirror-style bot avatar ready to go.

Describing the episode in the book Inside Black Mirror, Brooker seemed to realize the importance of data, long before Mark Zuckerberg was selling yours for advertising. He had an epiphany about digitized memories in the mid-90s after his former flatmate died in a diving accident.

“In the days when you still had limited numbers you could store in a phone, sometimes you’d have to delete things,” he said. “So, I was going through the list, and there was this guy’s name and number. I thought I should delete that, but suddenly I couldn’t. To do that would’ve felt disrespectful, callous and wrong. It was a memento, so I should keep it and find someone else’s number to delete. It was a very ‘Black Mirror’ moment. A lot of Be Right Back stemmed from that: the notion of a souvenir that you know is not real, but which reminds you enough of somebody that it’s painful.”

Today, we call these ‘painful souvenirs’ data, and we’re leaving an unprecedented amount of it online. We post endless pictures and Stories on Instagram, and we tweet multiple times a day. But, while Kuyda and her team only needed text messages to build a digital Roman Mazurenko, the Ash from Black Mirror is created using a wider selection of online communications. His text, his images and even his voice. This is something of a controversial subject within the tech industry at the moment. Earlier this year Google unveiled a creepy voice assistant that could book appointments by mimicking a human voice, simply by adding ‘erm’ between sentences.

A Swedish funeral home caught the attention of the press this year when it announced plans to use voice recognition software and virtual reality to create digital replacements of the dead to help people grieve. “What we would like to find is the voice,” says Charlotte Runius, the CEO and founder of Fenix (pronounced Phoenix). “The goal is to be able to make a conversation, one that feels like a real conversation, but in the beginning, it definitely won’t be able to cover all aspects of human speech and be quite limited to certain topics, like what you would talk about at breakfast for example.

“We have this vision, that when you are old and lonely because your spouse has passed away, you can put on your virtual reality goggles and go have breakfast with them. Of course, you know it’s not for real, but we see it more like a computer game really.” Although still in the planning stage, Fenix has been looking for developers and engineers to help build this haunting service, which they think is more important than making a chatbot that’s just based on simple text alone.

But Kuyda’s text-based chatbot has come uncomfortably close to making Black Mirror a reality. Since announcing the existence of the Roman bot in a post on Facebook, millions have downloaded it to their iPhone. “It’s still a shadow of a person, but that wasn’t possible just a year ago, and in the very close future we will be able to do a lot more,” Kuyda wrote.

This article originally appeared on i-D UK.
nepbdgBobby HellardClementine de PressignyCultureAITechnologyroboticsblack mirrorCharlie Brooker
<![CDATA[virgil abloh is unveiling a new art installation in milan]]>https://i-d.vice.com/en_us/article/d3bvxx/virgil-abloh-spazio-maiocchi-art-installation-kaleidoscopeTue, 13 Nov 2018 17:15:53 +0000Founded by Carhartt WIP and Slam Jam, Spazio Maiocchi is a new art-design-fashion space in Milan aiming to “shape new cultural experiences”. Which makes it the perfect place to play host to the work of Virgil Abloh, a similarly boundary-crossing figure, whose work relentlessly shapes new cultural experiences.

A trained architect, Virgil is most famous for his work as a fashion designer, with his own label Off-White, and as Creative Director of menswear at Louis Vuitton. On top of that he’s also a DJ and an artist. His latest project sees him collaborate with Milanese art magazine Kaleidoscope for their autumn/winter issue, which will debut at Spazio Maiocchi on November 30.

Virgil Abloh at Crown Hall Chicago
Photography Richard Anderson

Virgil will be presenting a special edition of Kaleidoscope’s new issue, which will include a T-shirt and signed artwork, as well as an installation and billboard commission. He’ll also unveil a manifesto for “streetwear as the next global art movement” — proposing the youth fashion movement as “a way of making across disciplines, and ultimately a new Renaissance breaking the barrier between high culture and real life.”

The space will also be exhibiting a retrospective of work by the incredible photographer Collier Schorr, a new work by French artist Camille Henrot — fresh from her takeover of the Palais de Tokyo last year — work by the sculptor and Grace Wales Bonner collaborator, Eric N Mack, and a performance by Polish-Lithuanian queer arts collective, Young Girl Reading Group.

It will all run for just one night only and will be open to the public from 7pm to 9pm. Book your tickets to Milan now.

Read more

This article originally appeared on i-D UK.

d3bvxxFelix PettyRyan WhiteNewsArtFashionMilanVirgil AblohCollier Schorrcamille henrotspazio maiocchieric n mackyoung girl reading group
<![CDATA[mowalola and robyn lynch join the fashion east gang]]>https://i-d.vice.com/en_us/article/gy7gjw/mowalola-robyn-lynch-fashion-east-menswear-autumn-winter-19Tue, 13 Nov 2018 17:09:44 +0000Last season, Art School and Rottingdean Bazaar graduated from the menswear section of the incredible talent incubator that is Fashion East, joining an illustrious roll call of just about everyone who has creatively pushed British menswear forward over the last 15 years; from Kim Jones to J.W. Anderson, Martine Rose to Grace Wales Bonner. And now we can reveal the latest designers to join this illustrious list — Mowalola Ogunlesi and Robyn Lynch. They’ll be joining Stefan Cooke, who is returning for his third season with Fashion East.

“With both girls, I love the back stories behind their collections and how confident they are in telling them,” Lulu Kennedy, Director of Fashion East explains to i-D, of what attracted her to the two young designers. “There's real passion and pride and love of their culture — and I'm so into designers being true to themselves.” Both designers have already marked themselves out as ones to watch with their graduate collections at CSM and Westminster respectively. Mowalola for her sexy, psychedelic, and gender-fluid take on Afro-futurist fashion, Robyn Lynch for her subtle plays on color, and fabric that reference her Irish upbringing, in greens, oranges and whites, and traditional Irish knits.

Robyn Lynch Lookbook Fashion East
Robyn Lynch

“Mowalola's CSM collection stood out a mile,” Lulu says. “Such a singular vision, super sexy, and intelligent, the casting was perfect and backstage her whole scene was friendly. I was like ‘Damn, I love this girl’. Robyn's graduate collection was an equally hardcore single vision and controlled in its execution — it felt fully formed for a student collection, in a way that I hadn't seen since Craig. I also love looking through her research — it's really on point.”

This also marks the first season that Fashion East are dropping the MAN branding from their menswear show, rethinking the way we categorize gender in fashion. Both editions will now simply be known as Fashion East. January’s incredible lineup couldn’t be a better way to ring in the new era. “The line-up is special and I know we can expect an incredible show,” Lulu says. “True individuality, full on flavor, elegance and wit. Getting to work with my heroes — it’s a dream scenario.”

Watch more

This article originally appeared on i-D UK.

gy7gjwFelix PettyFrankie DunnNewsFashionArt Schoolfashion eastrottingdean bazaarlfwmstefan cookeA/W 19mowalolarobyn lynchautumn/winter 19london fashion fashion week mens
<![CDATA[spellling's ominous disco speaks to the ghosts of slavery]]>https://i-d.vice.com/en_us/article/ev3n5n/spellling-tia-cabral-haunted-water-premiereTue, 13 Nov 2018 16:53:08 +0000 After releasing her critically acclaimed debut, Pantheon Of Me, in September last year, Tia Cabral, the artist known as SPELLLING, became the breakout star of an Oakland experimental music scene that Bandcamp championed for being “queerer, browner, and more femme.” Born in Sacramento, Cabral grew up in a musical household, but her journey to becoming one of the Bay Area’s brightest stars took years to manifest. Her father owns a “library” of violins (he collects and refurbishes them) and Cabral says that she “could pick them up and work out ideas and melodies,” but she was invariably too “scatterbrained” to commit to one thing. It was only after performing at an open mic in 2016 that she remembers thinking, “‘This is not a big deal, why am I so afraid?’… It propelled everything as far as, ‘Oh, this could be something that I really enjoy,’” she says.

A self-described romantic who’s obsessed with the supernatural, Cabral came up with the concept for her latest album, Mazy Fly (out February 2019 via Sacred Bones Records), after imagining her dog, an adorable border collie cross, as a spirit with wings. “[It’s] about this idea of progress or enlightenment, and wanting to ascend into something greater, bigger, or larger,” she explains on the phone from her apartment, which is situated in an old printing press just minutes from the Berkeley campus. “A lot of times we think about progress as a linear thing, something that involves one point to the next. I guess in my experience with trying to grow as a person, it’s been so much more twisty than that, and sort of moving down or falling before really achieving something. So I put these images together and I thought of this character as the Mazy Fly; a winged spirit who is exploring and taking on optimism and also going into really dark corners.”

“Haunted Water,” premiering today on i-D, is one of the heaviest moments on Mazy Fly. Doomy disco beats, inspired by Kraftwerk and Michael Jackson’s Off The Wall, provide the song with a thumping current that empowers Cabral’s restless voice, as she cries out “I am your faith, but it’s not enough to build a bridge over haunted water.” With both ominous textures and silky layers, the song speaks of the haunted Middle Passage that bought slaves from Africa to the United States, and turns an eye to the current passage of refugees across the Mediterranean, the Rio Grande River, and parts of Asia.

There are a lot of light and dark themes on this new record. Where do they derive from?
I think I approach writing and I see the world from a very romantic perspective. Romance has very light and dark elements, and my obsession with romantic music, media, film, and literature definitely comes through. Themes of the supernatural, the surreal, and the sublime really speak to me. At the surface I think I try to evoke, through the sounds and through my voice, a sense of beauty and a sense discovery and excitement. [Though] there’s always this underlying layer of horror, and I think that’s because of this consideration of magic that makes things both beautiful and scary. The combination of what’s beautiful and scary is very romantic and seductive.

On “Haunted Water” you sing about how colonial violence haunts the historical slave ship routes of the Middle Passage. Can you explain your personal connection to that theme?
I wrote the song maybe two years ago. I was considering a lot of different things at the time, but mostly this idea of the ocean holding memory and holding trauma from historical events. I was studying The Middle Passage and the idea of the spectrality or the haunted middle passage, because so many millions of people died at sea due to the institution of slavery, [because of] greed and capitalism. So much happened in that state of betweenness, in the trade between Africa to America. It’s really complicated, but basically I was trying to insert myself into that space and the lyrics started coming out.

This [song] also considers other forms of passage in the current day, involving refugees and the global refugee crisis. People who are forced to flee and travel across the sea. I think a lot of the anxieties and fears around people coming to our country was really affecting me, and I was trying to translate all these areas and the anxiety I was feeling around the cruelty people have towards each other. All of those factors were swirling around in my head and the song came out sort of like a doomy, guitar droney song at first. It was a really heavy interpretation. I used to perform it that way, and I still do sometimes, but when I re-approached it this summer I liked the idea of how a pounding beat makes you feel it in a different way.

There’s definitely a disco vibe to this new record. What inspired that shift?
Before I recorded anything for this record I wanted to do a side project that was disco-themed, or sort of ghoulish disco. But trying to set certain limitations means that I just end up trying to ultimately destroy them. Maybe I picked up on that because I was listening to a lot of disco and funk, and watching Soul Train. I love the spirit of disco. Michael Jackson’s Off The Wall is my favorite record of all time. Just this idea of one nation under a groove or bodies moving, even just temporarily you have the chance to reach or create a certain utopia on the dancefloor. So I wanted that sort of spirit, of like, for this moment utopia is possible, or that this feeling can permeate everything. I think disco has that life and that brilliance to it.

I imagine people in the Bay Area are very open to that.
Yeah, last year when I was performing Pantheon stuff, this sounds stupid, but it’s music for listening. You are there to listen, and so a lot of times people would sit down or just circle around, and I would really appreciate that. But now that I’ve been performing some of the Mazy Fly stuff I see a lot more movement.

Last year you were featured in an article about ‘How Oakland’s Experimental Music Scene Became Queerer, Browner, and More Femme.’ Is the scene still evolving?
It’s constantly evolving and it’s definitely becoming queerer, browner, and more femme. Me, and I think two of the others that were interviewed in that [piece], are part of different collectives. Club Chai, who have been holding down the underground experimental club scene — I just see that expanding right before my eyes and inspiring a lot of other folks to start making their own noise. It’s beautiful, it’s opened up a lot of conversations that I see starting out at warehouse shows and house parties. I’ve been lending out stuff and having people over to do workshops and sessions, to just have a safe space to try things. I think that was one of my fears before I started making music; I never really had a space to try and learn around people who weren’t there with a certain agenda. Kohinoorgasm, Wizard Apprentice, Beast Nest, Earthbound, a lot of these Oakland folks are continuing to expand and take on different performative aspects to their work, and that’s inspiring to me, too.

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