44 posts tagged "Steven Meisel"
Curator Alistair O’Neill only met the late Isabella Blow once. He was at an art opening with designer Julien Macdonald, one of the late, great Blow’s charges, whom he studied with at the Royal College of Art. “Isabella was wearing a famous Philip Treacy hat, which is in the exhibition. It had feathers around the eyes, which covered her nose and her mouth and her forehead,” he recalled. “I spent the evening talking to her and was completely fascinated. But all that I could concentrate on were her eyes, because I couldn’t really see her mouth. I could only just about listen to what she was saying, and I was just mesmerized by this image of these eyes being framed by the feathers. The combination of her intelligence and her laughing was really intoxicating,” he continued. “I’ve never forgotten that.”
On November 20, O’Neill, along with Shonagh Marshall and Central Saint Martins, will aim to bring the editor, patron, and muse’s work and wardrobe to life with the opening of Isabella Blow: Fashion Galore! at the Somerset House in London. Before her tragic suicide, in 2007, Blow was a pillar of London’s emerging fashion community. Having worked everywhere—from British and American Vogue to The Sunday Times to Tatler—Blow is credited with discovering such designers as Alexander McQueen (as the story goes, she bought his entire graduate collection after it walked down the Central Saint Martins Runway in 1992), milliner Philip Treacy, Jeremy Scott, and Hussein Chalayan, as well as models Sophie Dahl (whom she once described as a “blow-up doll with brains”) and Stella Tennant.
Aside from being a steadfast supporter of young talents (Treacy and McQueen both lived with her at one point, and she not only gave the designers financial and editorial support but also fed them ideas from her wealth of historical knowledge—fashion and otherwise), Blow, who came from a complicated aristocratic background, was known as a great eccentric—both in her behavior and her dress. Her infamous wardrobe comprised the most extreme pieces by all of the conceptual up-and-comers she helped along the way. And, of course, Treacy’s hats were her screaming signature. Following her death, her sartorial collection was to be sold at Christie’s to settle her estate, but Blow’s friend Daphne Guinness swooped in at the last minute and purchased every piece, because that’s how Isabella—or Issy, as she was known—would have wanted it.
O’Neill, however, did not want to simply paint Blow as an eccentric. “I thought it was important to distance Isabella from those literary ideas of the English eccentric, because they’re often quite tragic,” he explained. “And I’m not sure Isabella was fully tragic—she was quite brave, and very funny. She had a very bored and black humor.” Furthermore, Blow always wore her outfits—whether it be a metallic McQueen corset or an ensemble crafted from brightly hued garbage bags—in a deeply considered manner. “Isabella used her clothes, her hats, and her accessories as a means to modify and transform herself,” said O’Neill. “She had a great eye for silhouette, and her hats were almost a means of plastic surgery for her face, without going under the knife,” added Marshall. “She said they can lift you, they can make you look different, and I think that was something that she really indulged in.” Continue Reading “Isabella Blow: Beyond the Eccentric” »
If you’ve picked up an issue of W, Vogue Italia, or Vanity Fair in the last thirty-five years, you’ve probably seen the work of Lori Goldstein. Famed for her expertly piled-on, more-is-more aesthetic (with the exception of that iconic Demi Moore cover, on which the actress appeared nude, pregnant, and accessorized only with diamonds), Goldstein has collaborated with all the greats—from Donatella Versace to Annie Leibovitz to Mario Testino. On November 1, the New York-based stylist (along with Harpers Design) will release Style Is Instinct, a retrospective tome comprising her most memorable photographs, with a heartfelt introduction from close friend Steven Meisel. “It’s kind of the crescendo of my styling career,” offered Goldstein, who currently serves as the editor at large at Elle and designs her own line for QVC. While sitting in her closet, which Goldstein told us is filled with “every Proenza tie-dye shirt, Dries Van Noten’s entire Fall collection, and plenty of print and embellishment,” the image-maker talks the art of styling, how the industry has changed, and why, “after 400 years” in the biz, she’s still excited.
In Steven Meisel’s introduction to the book, he calls you an artist. Do you feel that styling is an art?
You know, if you had asked me that ten years ago, I probably would have laughed. I do, and honestly, not to use that term loosely, but I think that I’ve learned that when you follow your heart and you do something that you love and you’re creative, that you have an artist’s mind, and that your lifestyle is very different. I think tapping into that for all of us is so important. So today, I have to say, yes.
The title of the book is Style Is Instinct. When did you first realize that you had the instinct for style? When I was born. That’s been my gift through life. I’ve just always loved beautiful things; I was always attracted to putting things together; I always loved playing with clothes; I loved, loved, loved clothes. I didn’t even call it “fashion,” because that’s a whole other thing. I was drawn to sparkly, gorgeous things. I was born in Ohio, and somehow I just saw the beauty in it all, thank God.
How do you feel that the role of the stylist has changed throughout the course of your career?
That’s one of the reasons I wanted to do the book. We all know how it’s changed—it’s become much more of a business. When I started going to shows, it was like Helmut Lang and Ann Demeulemeester, and this really organic, just awesome creative time; I was so lucky. I worked at Allure. We did Vogue Italia. And there was really no such thing as credits. We just did whatever we wanted, which was amazing. But I love the time now because I also love a challenge. Today there are parameters and there are rules, but within that, you’ve got to make something incredible. Continue Reading “Thirty-Five Years Later, Lori Goldstein Is Still Excited” »
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.
“It changed the way that I started dressing,” reveals Karlie Kloss. The supermodel du jour is referring to a Steven Meisel photograph from the nineties, featuring supes of yore in decade-appropriate matching Chanel tweed miniskirts, jackets, and hats. For Kloss, it was the look that “got away.”
Debuting exclusively above, The One That Got Away is a video series produced by online luxury retailer Moda Operandi, in partnership with St. Regis Hotels & Resorts, detailing fashion heartbreak—that one runway or editorial outfit that you just had to have but could never locate—and how the site can mend your sartorial melancholy.
In addition to the beauty from St. Louis, Moda Operandi has tapped an impressive roster of industry tastemakers to lend their own testimonials, including Anna Dello Russo, Caroline Issa, and Poppy Delevingne (you can also shop the ladies’ latest fashion obsessions). Although, for these women, we’d imagine that the coveted and the wait-listed are never too far out of reach.
Few people captured the zeitgeist of the 1980s fashion and club scene as expressively as fashion illustrator Tony Viramontes. His work explodes off the pages of an extensive new monograph, Bold, Beautiful and Damned – the World of 1980s Fashion Illustrator Tony Viramontes, which, authored by Dean Rhys Morgan, will be released by Laurence King Publishing on October 7. Viramontes—who was educated in fashion illustration under Steven Meisel at Parsons, was mentored by Antonio Lopez, and made his debut in The New York Times in 1979—had a firm grasp on the eighties fascination with the androgynous, transgressive, and performative. He drew male and female models with wide shoulders, large mouths, marked eyebrows, and empowered stances in a constant state of vivid expression. The artist worked for and with everyone from The Face, Vogue, Yves Saint Laurent (above, top right), Valentino (above, top left), Chanel, Claude Montana, and Jean Paul Gaultier, who wrote the forward to Rhys Morgan’s tome. Viramontes’ models included the likes of Naomi Campbell (above, bottom left), Isabella Rossellini, Rene Russo, and Janice Dickinson (below), and he even did the album covers for Arcadia’s So Red the Rose and Janet Jackson’s breakout Control (above, bottom right). Sadly, though, Viramontes’ work was largely forgotten after his passing in 1988. Continue Reading “Vibrant Viramontes” »