3 posts tagged "Jo-Ann Furniss"
“Style is knowing who you are, what you want to say, and not giving a damn.” So said Gore Vidal, yet this statement could easily be applied to the best of the designers at London fashion week’s Man Day.
There was something peculiarly British and personal about much that was on offer this season. Our particular genre of sportswear was mined mercilessly. It is something that many of the young designers showing here were weaned on from school age, and it was always much more about style in its appropriation rather than fashion. Christopher Shannon, Martine Rose, Matthew Miller, and New Power Studio were all treading on this territory. Yet at its best, this initial inspiration took flight into something much less nostalgic and into something much more personal and fashion focused—these are fashion shows and collections, after all—spliced together in a hybridized way to become much more theatrical.
This was true of the best elements in Christopher Shannon’s collection (above), which lifted them away from just going through the sportswear motions of “scally drag.” His tasseled pieces had that decorative and tribal element that was also emerging in many of the shows (he explained he had been looking at the African photography of Pieter Hugo), and his “comb crowns” reinforced this peculiar point. Continue Reading “Jo-Ann Furniss On London’s Man Day” »
Never mind their guest lists of the avant-garde’s great, good, and badly behaved, Charles and Marie-Laure de Noailles’ villa on a hill above the town of Hyères in the South of France must have seemed to the locals like a bemusing glimpse of the future when it was built in the mid-1920′s. Its blocky modernism is still incredibly striking in the pink-shaded and shuttered context of a typical Riviera town, and you couldn’t wish for a better setting if you were an arts festival looking to stage a competition that celebrates creativity untrammeled by the forces of Mammon. Which, for the fashion end of the festival, translates into exhibitions of work by recent graduates from around Europe, for whom Hyères offers one final attempt to Truly Express Themselves. It might be their one last grasp at the high-concept ring before they’re subjected to the external disciplines of internships, studio assistant positions, and judgmental barb-tongues telling them to get real.
Except the judges at Hyères this year weren’t like that at all. The composition of the jury embraced a universe of sensibilities, from the rigorous thought processes of chair Raf Simons and editrix Jo-Ann Furniss, through the not-much-older-than-the-finalists Christopher Kane, Lazaro Hernandez, and Jack McCollough, to the well-seasoned industry perspectives of Carla Sozzani, Floriane de Saint-Pierre, Cathy Horyn, and Michel Gaubert, with my rosé connoisseurship bringing up the rear. Juries are a challenging proposition. In both numbers and gender equity, we were nowhere near 12 angry men, but the differences of opinion—and the passion with which they were aired—were a surprise, especially given that there was genuine agreement on one thing: This was not a bumper fashion year in Hyères. In the spirit of the place, it was bemusing, and even blocky hyères and thyères. But bumper? No.
The jury saw the finalists’ clothes three ways: as a presentation, on the catwalk, and in a showroom. It was fascinating how our appreciation of the designers ebbed and flowed according to the mode in which we were encountering them. Here, the fabrics ruled, there, the showmanship. The eventual winner was Lea Peckre from France. Her collection, Cemeteries Are Fields of Flowers (above), was polished in its execution, intriguing in its fabrication. I’m a sucker for wood sequins—and she also used GodSpeed You! Black Emperor as her show music, which can’t hurt. The attention to structure and the concierge color palette of Peckre’s clothes also had hints of Jean Paul Gaultier, with whom she interned. That too can’t hurt.
The jury’s honorable mention—and the competition’s most polarizing designer—was Emilie Meldem from Switzerland. Some members of the jury were utterly seduced by her directness, her drollness, and what she referred to as “the minimal eccentricity” of the Swiss aesthetic. What I loved most were the showpieces woven from twigs. (“Half my village helped on the dress,” she said with what might have been a chuckle, but could have been a choke.) Each stick was, according to Meldem, treated like a piece of jewelry. The result was so pagan, so ritualistic, that I felt like I was looking at The Wicker Man à la mode. Which can’t be bad.
One final note: Hyères is open to independent applicants from all over the world, which seems to be a well-kept secret. It doesn’t matter where you live, where you received your fashion education. So one word of advice to fashion students everywhere: Apply! Hyères at this time of year? A small patch of heaven.
According to Internet speculation, he also goes by the name Lady Gaga. That’s certainly the easiest way to explain his never-before-seen presence on the cover of September’s Vogue Hommes Japan, shot by Gaga go-to Nick Knight and styled by her own stylist, Nicola Formichetti, who leaked a few preview images on his blog this morning. (In fairness, he’s also Vogue Hommes Japan’s fashion editor.) Whoever Calderone is, he/she gave an interview to Jo-Ann Furniss explaining his background (maybe):
How would you describe what you do/your occupation?
Mechanic for my dad’s business. This is the first time I’ve had my picture taken.
What are your ambitions?
I’d love to own my own car shop; I have a bunch of my own “muscle” cars. Maybe if I take some more pictures I can afford it.
What is your relationship to Lady Gaga?
I met her at a shoot Nick Knight was doing. She’s fuckin’ beautiful, and funny, and interesting. I was a little nervous for Nick to start shooting. She said, “Don’t be, baby, you were ‘born this way. ” I took her out after. The rest is private ; )
If he’s got anything to do with Lady G., it won’t be private for long.