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July 25 2014

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2 posts tagged "Linder Sterling"

Three’s A Trend: Naked Ambition

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Nude-printed looks by Sibling, Christopher Kane, and Richard Nicoll

Nudes on clothes. It’s a novel concept, and one that’s emerging as a trend on the London runways. Richard Nicoll has long collaborated with Linder Sterling—a British artist informed by Manchester’s seventies punk scene—and for Spring, the latter whipped up a montage of reptile and avian patterns atop vintage gay pornography. “I found the source material in a bookshop in Barcelona, and Linder treated it with snakes and birds of prey,” Nicoll told Style.com. “She almost always uses the body as a canvas for her collages. Look three—the bomber jacket—is my favorite.”

In both his men’s Spring and women’s Resort ’14 collections, Christopher Kane webbed 3-D grids to create naked female torsos and male skulls. The images lent a lo-fi, diagrammatic pop to simple T-shirts and sweatshirts.

And finally, Sibling—the riotous knitwear label founded by East End cool kids Joe Bates, Sid Bryan and Cozette McCreery—anchored its collection around a pinup-girl theme. At times, that girl found herself undressed and in various states of undulation across a number of allover prints. “We found the inspiration through World War II plane imagery, as well as vintage T-shirts,” McCreery told Style.com. “We were also after that West Side Story feel of young guys and girlie images. It’s almost quite innocent.”

Photo: Yannis Vlamos/InDigital/GoRunway (Sibling and Richard Nicoll); Courtesy of Christopher Kane

Naughty Nicoll

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The decor at London’s new House of Voltaire pop-up shop, sponsored by the nonprofit Studio Voltaire gallery and nestled above footwear designer Rupert Sanderson’s Mayfair flagship, is traditional. The merchandise you’ll find there? Not so much.

Designed by the young U.K.-based architecture firm 6a, the shop is meant to evoke a Victorian Bond Street boutique, with rich hunter green walls and classic white-paned windows. But its stock, curated by Studio Voltaire’s artistic director, Joe Scotland, would raise Victorian eyebrows. Take Richard Nicoll’s tees and scarves, created in collaboration with the feminist artist Linder Sterling. A new spin on the graphic-printed dresses the duo turned out a few seasons back, the limited-edition items have a collage of shots from vintage porn, modestly covered up by blossoming flowers. “Porn in the seventies and early eighties was a lot more romantic than it is now,” Nicoll offered about his risqué inspiration. “Linder and I both wanted to support the charity, but on a selfish note, this was an opportunity to have a bit of fun and create something that my friends and I might want to wear. And it’s completely different from your average day designing womenswear.” (Are erotically themed shirts enjoying a moment right now? The Nicoll/Sterling tees call to mind the sexy Robert Mapplethorpe-screened ones Chloë Sevigny included in her Resort ’11 collection for Opening Ceremony.)

Reserved shoppers shouldn’t fear, though. The Studio Voltaire shop has plenty of more subdued items, too, from a brick-printed jacquard suit by the installation artist Anthea Hamilton to a teapot by YBA star Tracey Emin. Her most famous piece may have been a tent embroidered with the names of her lovers, but schoolmarms can rest easy. Sometimes a teapot is just a teapot.

House of Voltaire is open through December 4 at 19 Burton Place, London.

Photo: Courtesy of Studio Voltaire