102 posts tagged "Madonna"
You may not have eaten there, but you’ve definitely seen the Empire Diner—that lovely hunk of metal stationed on the corner of 22nd Street and 10th Avenue in New York’s Chelsea neighborhood. The 1940s eatery made a cameo in Manhattan, and even appeared in a vintage Heinz Ketchup ad. Perhaps more impressive, though, is the fact that in its heyday, the retro diner, which served as the backdrop for Robert Farbers’ iconic 1970s Bloomingdale’s campaign (above), was a favorite grub hub for everyone from Madonna to Steven Spielberg to Barbra Streisand. After a tumultuous half decade (due to some complicated lease negotiations, it closed in 2010, briefly reopened as a horribly touristy joint dubbed the Highliner, and then closed again), Empire has risen once more under the direction of executive chef Amanda Freitag. According to WWD, the new menu offers old-school favorites (think pancakes and milkshakes) as well as more highbrow bites, like gravlax with caviar. Between the food and the history, it sounds like the new Empire has achieved the perfect balance of flash and nostalgia to attract the area’s lofty gallery set.
Last week, i-D rolled out its eye-popping new Web site, i-d.co. Having launched with a collaborative M.I.A. x Kenzo music video, the iconic magazine’s new online home will offer full-bleed imagery, quirky videos starring personalities such as Rick Owens, Lily McMenamy, Sky Ferreira, and more, and, soon, an interactive social-media component. The Web venture, which was feted at a veritable runway rave in New York last night, is a decidedly high-tech move for the publication, which, founded by Terry Jones in 1980, earned cult status because of its gritty fanzine approach to documenting London’s creative culture. Of course, it also helped that, early in their careers, photographers such as Nick Knight, Mario Testino, and Juergen Teller shot for the publication, and Kate Moss, Naomi Campbell, and even Madonna winked for its covers in their youth.
The site is thanks in part to Vice—the forward-thinking, in-your-face, Brooklyn-based media company that acquired i-D last December. “Vice’s whole push was to take i-D into the digital realm, which it wasn’t. We had a Web site, but it’s nothing like what we have now,” offered i-D editor Holly Shackleton. “Vice has been incredibly respectful. They haven’t been involved in our editorial choices,” she added. “They’ve just given us the digital know-how and business sense to start something new and launch the site.” More developments are on the horizon. i-D will soon open an office here in New York, and Jones, who’s been with the publication for the past thirty-three years, will take a notable step back. “He’ll always be on the masthead as founder,” offered Shackleton, stressing that while he’ll still be somewhat involved, he’s looking to spend more time with his family.
The Web site’s launch party in West Chelsea was a fitting display of fresh, edgy clothes and pioneering technology. In partnership with Samsung, the magazine flew over three of London’s hottest new talents—Ryan LO, Claire Barrow, and Ashley Williams (all Fashion East alums)—and had them present their collections in a holographic show. It was one-part IRL models (including Hanne Gaby Odiele), one-part virtual projections. Audience members (M.I.A. among them) could hardly tell who was real and who was simulated as the catwalkers danced amid computer-generated acid rain and floating gemstones. The crowd bounced and, at some points, fist-pumped to the EDM runway tunes. And even though partygoers were sipping champagne, the event exuded the underground cool that made i-D a force in the first place. “i-D has always been a global fashion community, and we hope the new site will encourage that,” said Shackleton. “We wanted to introduce these young British talents to a New York audience. They’re all future stars, without a doubt.”
Take a look at i-D‘s new online digs at www.i-d.vice.com.
“These are pictures that I’ve had sitting around in my archives for thirty years—I’ve never really felt like they were relevant until now,” explained New York-based photographer Richard Corman. He’s talking about the series of shoots he did with Madonna back in 1983, when he was “just a guy who was running around with Keith Haring and Basquiat” and the original Material Girl was “kind of a deity downtown, on her own block.”
Tonight at Milk Studios, Corman will unveil Madonna NYC83—an exhibition consisting of images he took of a young Madonna in her Alphabet City flat (“The neighborhood was absolutely a ghetto back then”), glamming it up for the camera as a modern-day Cinderella in “this incredible vintage dress she probably bought for four dollars,” or posing on her roof in ripped-up denim and a boom box in hand.
“Ironically, I met her through my mother, of all places,” recalled Corman. “She had been casting The Last Temptation of Christ with Martin Scorsese, and she called me and said, ‘Look. This woman walked in and she is an absolute original.’ I called Madonna twenty minutes later.”
What transpired were five or six shoots, all in a brief period of time, that capture the moment just before Madonna hit it big. “I think she was beginning to develop an image,” said Corman. “But she had that thing that iconic people in front of the camera have: It isn’t necessarily about beauty; it’s just a charisma.”
So why does he feel these images are so resonant now? “Because everybody that I see walking down the street reminds me of the ’80s—whether I’m walking into Opening Ceremony or VFiles or Urban Outfitters,” exclaimed Corman. “These are the sweaters, this is the denim. I mean, the way she did her hair with the dark hair and the blond streaks—people are going in to have this done. Those cat-eyes and that red mouth. And her absolute beauty and jewelry. Everything about her style,” he explained. “But it’s her attitude that feels now. She was always fearless and provocative. There were no boundaries with her, and she had this wonderfully ruthless ambition to make it in the boldest way. And the other thing that makes [the photos] relevant is that she’s more than relevant today. She’s as hot now as she’s ever been.”
Madonna NYC83 will run through December 15 at Milk Gallery.
Sex and streetwear aren’t the most obvious bedfellows, but editor, stylist, and all-around provocateur Andrew Richardson has united them in his new store, Richardson. “I don’t know if there is a logical connection between sex and streetwear, but I always thought that streetwear was sexy and cool,” he mused between puffs on a cigarette. “There’s always an attitude, and I think that’s sexy—sexy confidence.” That may be so, but his shop, which opens this Friday at 325 Broome Street in New York, sells swag that’s arguably more perverse than confidence-boosting hoodies.
Best known for his cerebral, self-titled sex magazine, also called Richardson, Andrew is well versed in the streetwear subculture—he’s even done a bevy of projects with cult label (or, as some would argue, lifestyle) Supreme. In his store, Andrew presents his liberated take on sex and bondage via clever T-shirts, bomber jackets, swim trunks, caps, and towels—many of which were created in collaboration with such artists as Christopher Wool, Bjarne Melgaard, and Aaron Bondaroff. Some highlights include a melting snowman shirt by Nate Lowman; a tee printed with a car that reads “Blow Jobs”; totes scribed with the store’s ethos, “Work hard, play nice, communicate”; and a sweatsuit by artist Mark Gonzales. Embellished with images of lady parts and a cowboy flaunting his impressive member, the latter is guaranteed to inspire stares.
The shop goes beyond threads, though. For instance, good pal Olympia Le-Tan designed a signature patch for Richardson’s club car jacket—more intriguing, though, is her capsule of erotic minaudières (think bags embroidered with busty femmes and titles like Fanny Hill, Cutter Girl, Carnal Cargo, or Sweet and 20.) Above the clutches’ case hang drawings by Japanese artist Hauro Namaikawa that depict couples in compromising, albeit comical, positions. And, across the room, shelves are lined with an A-to-Z collection of erotic tomes, which was curated by Idea Books, London. Richardson is, of course, on sale, too. “There are going to be guys who are my age who are going to come in and spend $1,800 on an original drawing, and I think we’ll have 25-year-old skaters who want to wear fucked-up T-shirts to scare their parents,” said Andrew of his clientele. “There’ll be a range.”
When the editor—whose résumé, it should be noted, includes working on Madonna’s Sex book, as well as shoots with heavyweights like Terry Richardson, Steven Meisel, and Ellen von Unwerth—was asked about the thinking behind his sex-themed products, he told us, “I was always into that idea of idolizing women through sexual provocation…and I’m trying to find that fine line between palatability and provocation. If you’re too provocative, you end the debate.” Ultimately, his patrons will be the ones to decide whether he’s found that balance; however, no matter how explicit or ridiculous Richardson’s offerings may be, everything is done with a wink, a smile, and a streetwise attitude. And somehow, that makes it seem all the sexier.