15 posts tagged "Bill Cunningham"
The New York Times‘ Bill Cunningham is the founding father of street-style photography, not to mention a legend among the style set. But the 84-year-old lensman, whose warm smile and signature blue windbreaker somehow manage to melt even the iciest hearts during fashion week, isn’t skilled at snapping only the impossibly chic on the fly, as will be evidenced by an upcoming exhibition at the New-York Historical Society. Back in 1968, the photographer began working on Facades, an eight-year project through which he aimed to document New York’s architectural and sartorial history. Cunningham snatched up Victorian-style wares from the city’s vintage markets and thrift stores, and hunted for shoot locations while riding his trusty bicycle (how else?). The result was a series of black-and-white snaps featuring models (including his muse and former neighbor, the late photographer Editta Sherman) dressed up in front of iconic New York backdrops and graffitied subway cars. Featuring eighty-eight silver gelatin prints, the show opens on March 14.
It’s no secret that Phaidon’s epic The Fashion Book, first released in 1998, is an authoritative resource for industry insiders and fans alike. Now the coffee-table tome has been given new life with a definitive updated addition. Among the seventy-two new entries are Style.com and sartorial luminaries like Bill Cunningham, Nicolas Ghesquière, and Tilda Swinton. To fete the book’s release, Phaidon will be hosting a panel discussion at Topshop’s Soho outpost on Thursday, October 10, at 6 p.m. Iris Apfel, Vera Wang, and Style.com’s own Dirk Standen will be on hand to talk fashion history and the new guard of style alongside moderator Simon Collins, dean of fashion at Parsons the New School for Design. Need another reason to turn out? You’ll have a chance to pick up the new book (as well as a limited edition tote bag and a signed print by cover illustrator Mats Gustafson) four days in advance of its official release.
The Fashion Book New Edition, $59.95, will be available from Phaidon beginning October 14.
Little-known fact: Pratt Institute boasts America’s longest-running fashion-education program. With alums such as Betsey Johnson and Jeremy Scott, Pratt reps a unique vanguard in the world of design—and last night, at its 114th annual senior fashion show, some talented new names were added to its stable.
Pratt headlines its yearly runways with the bestowal of its Visionary Award—an accolade honoring fashion-world luminaries, who needn’t be directly linked to the school. Last night’s recipient? The singular Thom Browne. “It’s overwhelming,” Browne told Style.com, “when you get to do what you do, and have an important institution, with such a strong reputation in the world of design, recognize it, it’s…it’s humbling.” Presenting the award, Hamish Bowles teased his friend. Referring to Browne’s growth over the aughts, he said, “Thom became something of a performance piece himself, a one-man Gilbert & George, in his stiff, tailored buttoned-up suits with the odd proportions.” Expect to see the designer in exactly this silhouette at the Costume Institute’s upcoming Met Ball—though likely with a punk twist. “I’m going with Taylor Tomasi Hill,” Browne revealed with a smile.
After the ceremony, it was on to the show, where front-rowers, including Fern Mallis, Bill Cunningham, and Bibhu Mohapatra, were treated to a lineup heavy on digital prints, washed-out pastels, a lot of white, and ultra-long silhouettes. Two designers stood out in particular: Raya Kassisieh (above, left), with her sometimes soft, sometimes sharp Brave New World brides (“It’s kind of like nouveau Mugler,” whispered Patrick McMullan), and Madeline Gruen (above, right), with her indigo colonial toile prints and glittering embroideries that blended humor with notes of Alexander McQueen and Liberace. Gruen won the night’s other big prize—a $25,000 grant funded by the Liz Claiborne Art Ortenberg Foundation.
“I think what the students have in common is that they each have an individual voice,” said Shelley Fox, the director of the new MFA Fashion Design and Society course at Parsons School of Design. The course is the first of its kind in New York. And on Saturday, at Made Fashion Week at Milk Studios, its first 18 graduates (hailing from 13 countries) sent the fruits of their labor down the catwalk. Donna Karan, who was a strong supporter of the course and instrumental in its inception, turned up to cheer on the grads. “Although I was a student at Parsons, I found myself hiring a lot of people from Louise Wilson at Central Saint Martins in London and I said, ‘Wait, how come we don’t have a graduate program in New York?’ ” said Karan. Wilson herself crossed the pond to attend the show. She shared the front row with the likes of Fern Mallis, Julie Gilhart, and Bill Cunningham—not a bad turnout for a student production.
The show opened with looks by Lucia Cuba. With a background in social psychology, the Peruvian designer created a sartorial expression of activism, commenting on women’s issues and politics in Lima. The clothes combined 1950s silhouettes with prints of women’s crotches or pictures of a young Alberto Fujimori (a dictator who has been jailed for human rights abuses). Paula Cheng’s collection of webbed, multitextural silver and gray knits was another standout (pictured).
Students explored concepts of deconstruction and reconstruction (like show-closer Talia Shuvalov’s sweatshirts embellished with vintage tees that she took apart and rewove, or Jun Juyeon Hong’s impeccable wool suiting that featured unexpected lines, layers, and cutouts) and minimalism (like Beckett Fogg’s embossed leather and chiffon collection, or Noriko Kikuchi’s ethereal white looks based on emptiness) and showed no fear when it came to color. Liverpool native Carly Ellis was particularly courageous in her sporty, techno looks. Backstage, the purple-haired designer explained that she was inspired by vivid tourist pictures she snapped in New York as well as fragmented Skype images and the geometric painting rituals of South Africa’s Ndebele tribe. Sinéad Lawlor’s tailored button-photo print collection, which featured smart suiting combined with knitting techniques and lace, was another colorful offering. Each of the collections was conceptually rich and, at times, complicated, but many of the designs seemed not only wearable but sellable, too.