After a slight hiccup following its announcement earlier this week, Rick Owens’ new Web site is up and running. Owens’ collections for men and women, including his lower-priced DRKSHDW and Lilies lines and a selection of furs, will be available through e-commerce, shipping globally. The site also has an archive of Owens’ show photos, links to the labels’ various Instagram feeds, and a selection of the eternally quotable Owens’ favorite interviews—excerpted or distilled down to their key questions and answers. (Isn’t that what the Internet is for—reading shorter?) In that spirit, Style.com put a mere two questions to Owens, which he was kind enough to respond to via e-mail, with his usual all-caps zeal.
Why was it important to you to launch an online store?
IT’S IMPORTANT FOR EVERYONE TO LAUNCH AN ONLINE STORE. IT’S EVOLUTION.
Fair enough. Do you shop online?
I GET ALL MY BOOKS ON AMAZON. I LOVE BOOKSTORES BUT DON’T WANT TO CARRY A BAG OF BOOKS HOME.
By now, you’ve surely heard that Beyoncé broke the Internet on Friday when, without warning, she released her new self-titled album. Naturally, mania ensued following the unprecedented arrival of Queen Bey’s fourteen tracks and seventeen videos on iTunes. But she’s not the only pop star who’s carried out a musical sneak attack of late. Karl Lagerfeld’s favorite new talent, Lorde, dropped a surprise track, “No Better,” via iTunes on Friday (though Mrs. Carter kind of stole her thunder), and this morning rapper Angel Haze shocked her label when she unexpectedly leaked her entire debut album, Dirty Gold, on SoundCloud. The record was set for a March release. No doubt, this “Beyoncé Method” has gotten fans’ (and the music industry’s) attention. But perhaps we can’t give Bey all the credit—remember when David Bowie shocked us all by debuting his first single in a decade, “Where Are We Now?” via iTunes way back in January? After over forty years on the scene, Ziggy Stardust is still the “Queen Bitch.”
For the past two seasons, Jason Wu’s ads have explored New York’s most iconic eateries. With Inez & Vinoodh behind the lens, he took Stephanie Seymour to La Grenouille for Spring ’13 and dined with Christy Turlington at Mr. Chow last Fall. The restaurant tour continues for Spring ’14, as Wu’s latest campaign depicts show opener Karen Elson posing against the famed leafy wallpaper at Indochine. “There is something so unapologetically glamorous about these images that seem to embody everything that I adore and want to express through my clothes,” said Wu of the ongoing narrative.
The restaurant, which has hosted more art and fashion fetes than we have room to list since opening in 1984, is a fitting backdrop for Wu’s moody Spring snaps. And the designer has some particularly fond memories of the enduring hot spot. “I first went to Indochine when I was a student at Parsons. I snuck into a party there during fashion week and met Cindy Crawford. I was so starstruck!” Wu recalled. “As a child of the 90s, I’ve always idolized supermodels, and that was the first time I had ever met one. It was a religious experience.” The insider mainstay has since become one of Wu’s favorite places to grab a bite. “There’s never a dull night there! I always meet the most interesting people,” he said. These days, it’s safe to bet that Wu is always on the list.
Take a first look at Jason Wu’s Inez & Vinoodh-lensed Spring ’14 campaign here, exclusively on Style.com.
Last night in London, Christie’s South Kensington auction house played host to an exhibition and discussion orchestrated by the Fashion Illustration Gallery (FIG). And while the audience sat through the Issa London-sponsored talk, whose panel included Christie’s Meredith Etherington-Smith, illustrator David Downton (whose work is pictured above, top left), and Style.com’s Tim Blanks, they were left wondering: Should astute art investors buy up fashion illustration in the same way the world should have snatched up early Basquiat or Koons? “Before Andy Warhol was Andy Warhol, he was a fashion illustrator,” said Etherington-Smith. “Fifty years ago, the art world debated whether photography was a bona fide art form, and the same is happening now with fashion illustration. I believe there is no doubt fashion illustration is an art, but a vastly underappreciated one.”
The art on display last night represented the old guard like Cecil Beaton, Antonio Lopez (above, bottom left), and Andy Warhol, as well as such new talents as Gary Card (above, top right), Zoë Taylor (above, bottom right), and Tanya Ling. Strange bedfellows? Not according to Downton. “Some of the younger fashion illustrators out there are the most skilled draftsmen,” he said. “They very much should take their place alongside the great artists of days gone.”
Among the questions thrown out to an audience that included Suzy Menkes, Camilla Al Fayed, and Susie Bubble: Will fashion illustration ever be accepted as an art form? And will magazine editors ever replace celebs for illustrations? Downton, perhaps, answered these queries best. “The illustration I did a few years back of Cate Blanchett for Australian Vogue was, against all odds, the fastest-selling issue of the year. It also won the Maggie’s Magazine Cover of the Year. After that, there was no doubt for me that there is a place in the art world for fashion illustration.”
FIG’s exhibition at Christie’s South Kensington runs through December 19.