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July 31 2014

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1 posts tagged "Panos Yiapanis"

Back to the Dark Side: Panos Yiapanis on Love and His Creative Evolution

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You can’t miss a Panos Yiapanis photograph. Since beginning his career in the late nineties—working alongside photographer Corinne Day—the 38-year-old stylist has honed a dark, gritty, raw-to-the-bone aesthetic that is distinctly his own. His particular vision has led to a longstanding creative relationship with Rick Owens, as well as countless spreads in such magazines as i-D, W, and Vogue Italia shot by the likes of Steven Meisel, Inez & Vinoodh, and Mert & Marcus. To add to his accomplishments, last week, Katie Grand tapped him to become Love‘s fashion director-at-large. Here, Yiapanis talks to Style.com about the new gig, the state of fashion, and staying true to his look.

Why did now feel like the right time to join a magazine?
I feel like I’ve come full circle in terms of what I do. I’ve kind of been nomadic, which is putting it nicely. I’ve been a gypsy, going from one magazine to another. I feel like I’m back to where I was aesthetically when I first started out in terms of what I want to say, so having this position now gives me a new way of conveying that message. When I first started out, a lot of what I did was very personal and I had evolved away from doing that. People would say, “Well, maybe that’s a little too creative for us,” so I started to clean up what I did, which didn ‘t work for me. I’m happier doing what I enjoy, so it felt right to go back to my messier aesthetic.

How do you balance art and commerciality?
I don’t think you have to. I always argue that the best results are when both of them are at their height. I always yap about the nineties, when brands were willing to put out campaigns that captured the spirit of the brand as opposed to the product. That seems to have gotten lost somewhere along the way. So I don’t think creativity and commercialism are mutually exclusive. I honestly think they’re best when they both collide. But that doesn’t seem to be a thought that’s shared widely right now.

Your aesthetic is usually described as dark and moody. Do you feel that’s accurate?
It’s funny because when the Love announcement was made, I saw this tweet that said, “Love just got darker.” And I don’t know if that’s necessarily true; maybe I just got a bit brighter. There is a darkness to what I do, but it’s never macabre or unpleasant and I always try to adapt to the situation. The clients I’ve worked with vary from pure brands like Calvin to flashy brands like Cavalli. And I enjoy that diversity. I enjoy sitting in a room full of embroidery and fur and gold trimmings one day, and then going into a different setting the following day where it’s all about stripping things away. Love is a very positive publication. So on the one hand, it kind of works to go against that and give it another voice, but at the same time, I’m not going in there to paint the walls black. Continue Reading “Back to the Dark Side: Panos Yiapanis on Love and His Creative Evolution” »