SOUND & VISION

Recently, all I’ve been listening to is the sound of my fingers hitting the keyboard and the rustle of pages as I turn them. As a soon-to-graduate serial intern suffering something of a quarter-life crisis, I’ve decided to tear myself away from the library and re-immerse myself in the audiovisual Now. The sun is getting sunnier, the days are getting dayier, and summer is pretty much upon us; therefore, having acquired a foot tan through your Birkenstock straps, take a while to enjoy what the internet has to offer in the way of #totallyyoungandcool sound and vision:

KNOW WAVE

Online radio station Know Wave is the project of Aaron Bondaroff, founder of L.A.’s OHWOW gallery. You’ll find an interview with Bandaroff in the latest issue of i-D, during which he describes Know Wave as a way to ‘tap into conversations, into atmosphere’, bringing together interesting people and interesting music. It’s a lot of fun, and it’s growing: having begun in L.A., the station now has an established outpost in NYC, and there is one set to open in London. As a fan of writer/blogger Karley Sciortino and photographer Petra Collins, the first thing I listened to on Know Wave was their one-hour show, Sex Logic. Check it out below.

 

PURE FLESH / ALLDAYEVERYDAY

Pure Flesh is a series of DJ mixes found on Alldayeveryday, an arts blog and purveyor of “creative services” with clients ranging from Nike to Alexander Wang. Maybe I’m just a technologically inept and my research skills are failing me, but I can’t seem to work out what or who Pure Flesh actually is. Maybe its just a blog by Alldayeveryday; maybe its a DJ; maybe its a top secret government organisation. I just don’t know, but I like it, and that’s what’s important. The mix below was released three days ago, and has some good summer vibes (original post here). See all previous mixes here.

 

VFILES’ SUCH FASHION

The greatest export of VFILES, that uncategorisable fashion brand/shop/channel/social network/thing, is its videos. VFILES series Model Files (starring Preston Chaunsumlit) and What the F*shion? (starring Casey Jane Ellison) make my life worth living, and are possibly the best things on Youtube (WATCH. THEM.). Attempting to fill the gaping hole their absence has left in my heart is new series Such Fashion, which debuted on Tuesday. I have no idea what it will have in store over the coming weeks, but chillis and tanned abs are a good start. This video is basically like looking in the mirror for me, though, so I hope they’ll push the envelope in coming episodes.

 

JAMES ST. JAMES’ TRANSFORMATIONS

I watch notorious club kid James St. James’ Youtube show Transformations every week. The premise is this: each week, someone well versed in the art of makeup visits the studio and paints all over James’ big, smooth, hairless, slightly lecherous-looking face. Recently his guest of honour was Rupaul’s Drag Race royalty Alaska Thunderfuck. If your not familiar with her increasingly slow valley girl vowel-sounds, make their acquaintance here. And here.

 

M.I.A.’S BEYONCÉ REMIX

M.I.A. dropped her remix of Beyoncé‘s ‘Flawless’ just a couple of days after the internet went all-out mental over a video showing Solange and Jay-Z fighting in an elevator. Being released during the four days prior to any official statement about the video, which saw the entire world suspended in a suffocating jelly of emotional confusion, I like to think it capitalised on the new attention directed at Bey (even more than usual, if that’s possible). I am totally in love with it, and listening to it whilst watching a loop of the aforementioned video is a real winner. Try to time it so the beat drops exactly when Solange drops the shit and gets real.

 

THE 90S BUTTON

Click on the button, watch a 90s music video.

90sbutton

 

THINGS TO LOOK AT

Before I begin, remember my embarrassing incident involving a toilet and a builder? Well, this morning a builder watched through my window as I combed a wig in front of my mirror. Normal? Yeah, I thought so. Don’t know why he looked surprised.

Yesterday evening, just before leaving work, I had a sudden urge to go out. I was in London, the weather was great, it was a Friday and I’d had a long week. This weekend, however, the social landscape is a sort of post-university wasteland across which everybody has been scattered well beyond walking distance (e.g. Australia). So, instead of having a wild one last night I ate an inordinate quantity of falafel on the sofa with my sleeping dog.

*IRRELEVANT, GRATUITOUS STILL FROM PINK NARCISSUS BECAUSE I COULDN’T FIND ANYTHING ELSE AND WHY NOT*

I can’t complain too much, though, because last weekend I went to the wonderfully debauched panvestite wig-fest that was Miss Sink the Pink 2013. It was a beauty pageant for the weirder breed of drag queens, which, if you know me or have been on my blog recently, you’ll know is my idea of amazing. Ben Wishaw and Ollie Locke were both there to judge, looking totally incongruous with the huge amounts of glitter,  fish-netted flesh and multi-coloured polyester hair on show, but were probably dying to go mad themselves.

The whole night was one long fit of glitter-strewn laughter. My friends and I danced on vomit (which we took to be cous cous and praised for its power to lubricate our footwork), I had my face painted by a completely off-her-face makeup artist, we did some pole-dancing, watched a drag queen lip-synch to a song from The Little Mermaid whilst holding a dead squid, and my friend got her nipple out only for a stranger to immediately begin painting a glittery blue starfish onto it.

Much to my distress, nobody took photos of these goings-on, so you’ll have to use your imagination, which is probably more powerful anyway. In your head, the starfish nipple can take any form you’d like it to – that’s the beauty of storytelling. Here’s a rudimentary sketch to help you along. Pin the starfish on the nipple!

Untitled-1

In other news, I’m currently interning at the beautiful NOWNESS (it’s always written in capitals for some reason; I’m not shouting at you)  and luvvin it. Part of my job is researching art/design/culture etc, and I’ve been discovering so much beautiful stuff that sometimes I feel like my eyes are going to melt. It seems selfish to hold onto all that gorgeousness for myself, so here are a few golden cultural nuggets which you may or may not know about already:

CARMODY GROARKE

Kevin Carmody and Andrew Groarke opened their architectural studio in 2006, and they’ve already one a tonne of awards and landed big jobs such as the Frieze London gallery space and the Windermere Steamboat Museum. They also designed the private underground spa which I’ve pictured below (that’s a swimming pool A SWIMMING POOL), which is situated in the basement of a nineteenth century family mansion. Who else is practically combusting with jealousy? The only way I’ll ever be able to afford an architectural commission like that is if I become an international drug baron or a high-end escort. Possibly both.

Private home in Limerick, Ireland

Frieze London 2011

The Filling Station in King's Cross

The Filling Station in King’s Cross

UP THE ASSOULINE

Sorry, I couldn’t help but squeeze that vulgar wordplay in somewhere. Assouline is one of the many incredible book publishers that I’ve been discovering on my research quests. I used to think there was just Taschen, but it turns out it’s not always the best. Some other greats I’ve discovered include Morel, Mousse, Etude and Hatje Cantz. If their books were human they’d look like a young Joan Didion, perhaps. I intend to make the pilgrimage to the bookartbookshop down the road from my office very soon. Goodbye, money. Hello, high-end, heavy-weight, limited release photobooks.

cats 2 cats

PHILIP LORCA DICORCIA

The kind of fine art photography which really does make life look frozen and beautiful. Cringe. Give me a shout if you want me to write your press release, Mr. DiCorcia.

USED MAGAZINE

I didn’t discover fashion and art magazine USED at NOWNESS (SO MANY CAPITALISED LETTERS), but it is another recent discovery which I’m a bit obsessed with. I enjoy it mostly for the superluxe photography and perfect styling, but the heavy presence of Birkenstocks in the latest issue is great, as it confirms the fashion-worthiness of my own. I’ve had them two years. Ahead of the trend oh yeeaah.

Issue 5, issue 4

Issue 5, issue 4

Craig Lawrence, Charlie Le Mindu

ASGER CARLSEN

I was already vaguely aware of Carlsen’s work, having seen what he did for Garage magazine no. 4, but I didn’t know his name or anything about him. Turns out his black and white photographs, which utilise photo-manipulation techniques as a mean to distort rather than perfect, are pretty great. He released a book called ‘Worng’ with Morel Books, who I’ve already mentioned, which looks like a total dream.

MODEL FILES

Model Files is an online mockumentary series by fashion website V Files. I don’t really have anything insightful to say about it; it’s just great. You’ll recognise it’s slightly tragic protagonist, Preston, from the Asger Carlsen photographs above. I know that this is just a little Youtube series, but by the end of the second series it has reached absolutely genius heights.  Have a little watch — you’ve nothing better to do.

HOUSE OF ZEMBLA

2-horz

If you’ve visited this blog at any point during the past few months, you’ll be familiar with my increasingly monomaniacal obsession with drag and Paris is Burning ball culture. Please refer to this video of Friday night’s debauchery. Yes, I was that cunt wearing sunglasses in a dark corner of the club. I couldn’t see a thing, but boy oh boy, if you could have seen me you’d be all “who’s that beguiling, enigmatic, beshaded boy!? How do I penetrate his chic, expressionless exterior and get to know him?!”.

You might also be familiar with Exetera, the magazine which I will officially edit come September, taking over from the great and often late Max Benwell.

Are you enjoying all the links?

For the upcoming edition of Exetera, I finally managed to indulge my drag aspirations and lady myself up in front of the lens of the talented Felix McCabe. My botched attempt at makeup, involving budget high-street buys and an excessive amount of pink glue in my eyebrows, shaped me into a perverse hybrid of Marlene Dietrich, Marylin Monroe, Myra Hindley and one of Toulouse-Lautrec’s syphilitic prostitute muses. So, I decided to name my creation Myra Le Monstra, obviously.

REALNESS

#FISH

The photographs accompanied an article about the legacy of power dressing, called ‘Standing on the Shoulder Pads of Giants’, into which a managed to weave quotations from RuPaul, Simone de Beauvoir, and, every english student’s wet dream, Judith Butler. They were, respectively, ‘We are born naked and the rest is drag’, ‘One is not born a woman but rather becomes one’, and ‘In imitating gender, drag implicitly reveals the imitative structure of gender itself’. See, being fierce and vaguely intelligent are in no way mutually exclusive.

The Political Issue of Exetera is currently being printed and will be available for free in Exeter, and shortly afterwards online. Myra Le Monstra is unavailable for bookings; she broke a nail.

INSTAGLAM

Originally posted on the blog I run for Exeter Fashion Society

Instagram has quickly become one of the most popular forms of social media out there, and there’s more to it than gratuitous photos of salad and cups of coffee. We’ve become shamelessly addicted to stalking models on Instagram, so if you’re looking for some procrastination material and the chance to imagine a life lived through a succession of luxury hotel rooms and big-name parties, look no further than this list by the Fashion Spot, which provides you with every important model’s Instagram screen name. First, though, check out some of our favourites below:

CARA DELEVINGNE (caradelevingne)
Cara Delevingne is undoubtedly the model of the moment, as well as several prior moments, and many more moments to come. Check out her instagram for irreverent humour and notably non-model-like poses. She’s also the only model to Instagram a photo of herself with bird s**t on her forehead.

3

JOURDAN DUNN (officialjdunn)
She’s Cara Delevingne’s best friend, the first woman of colour to be the face of Burberry, and she’s one of the most in-demand models in the world. Therefore, she’s an absolute must follow. Also, she was scouted in Primark, which evokes a perfect rags-to-riches story.

9

JOAN SMALLS (joansmalls)
We love Joan Smalls, and so does the fashion industry. She’s been ranked the #1 model in the world since September 2012, and it’s no surprise why. We’ve been hooked since she became the first Latino face of Estee Lauder cosmetics.

2

COCO ROCHA (cocorocha)
Coco Rocha’s parents are both in the airline industry — her mother is a flight attendant and her father is a ticket manager — and she’s living the life of a real high-flyer. See what I did there? Thanks, Wikipedia, for the fascinating facts.

6

DREE HEMINGWAY (dreelouise)
Dree Hemingway is the image of health, and admittedly, we really enjoy her gratuitous images of salad and other wholesome delights. It’s inspirational when all you really want is a tower of indulgent brownies dripping with steaming melted chocolate…. and ice cream… and chopped nuts… and… okay, maybe just go for those brownies anyway.

4

SASHA LUSS (sashaluss)
Sasha Luss is a slightly lesser known model, but her Instagram account is one of the best. If it’s anything to go by, she really loves food, champagne and TV shows. Don’t we all?

90

MARK IZATT (mrizatt)
This rare beauty can be spotted around the Exeter campus sipping on black coffee and eating hun cal salads, wishing they were carbs. (Just to confirm, he also wrote this article and is featured ironically / in a desperate bid for more followers).

cats

Happy instastalking!

WEEKDAY WILL SAVE YOUR WARDROBE

Weekday is a Swedish fashion brand, probably best known for founding Cheap Monday in 2004, originally an in-house line of denim which has since expanded its scope an opened independent stores worldwide. Weekday itself has stores across Europe, and mostly Scandinavia. Much to my despair, there are no English branches, and until recently it was impossible to shop via the internet. As you can imagine, after a couple of years ogling their collections (often worn impeccably in the street style photography of Hel-Looks), I was a little over-excited to discover that they now sell online and proceeded to wound my back account with a considerable spending spree. I now own a silver t-shirt. Guilty as charged. I imagine that you’re doubling over with joy, and so you should be, because now it isn’t just the Scandis that can have all the fun; we can all enjoy a comfortable seat on the Weekday bandwagon.

For well-cut, stylish (and surprisingly affordable) basics as well as fashion-forward statement pieces, look no further. The collection for S/S13 harks back to all the best things about nineties and early noughties fashion, and its accompanying editorials communicate this perfectly. I’ve never been so happy to see cornrows.

If you check out the brand’s website, you’ll see that they’re made up of several in-house lines: MTWTFSS Weekday, Cheap Monday, MTWTFSS Weekday Collection, Fade to W, BACK, and whichever designer collaboration is currently on sale. When you buy online you’re given a complimentary canvas bag and Weekday magazine (from which I took the dodgy scans included above). It’s a win win situation, so if you’ve enjoyed my slightly desperate psuedo-press release and like what you see, then get shopping.

Left: Cheap Monday jeans. Right: Weekday coat. Both images by Hel-Looks.com

Left: Cheap Monday jeans. Right: Weekday coat. Both images by Hel-Looks.com

HOW TO BETTER YOURSELF

A lot of people don’t want you to know this, but becoming who you want to be isn’t always about eating kale, responding to your partner’s sexual needs and getting in touch with your soul via horoscope hotlines. The Zemblan is here to show you the easy way out; the elevator bypassing the stairway of life, the no-win no-fee 0% typical APR path to your dreams, a shortcut to spiritual contentment. First, decide exactly who it is that you want to see in the mirror every day. Remember, you can be absolutely anyone you desire (as long as they’re one of three included in this little list — if not then sorry, I can’t help you).

1. THE SUAVE LITERARY FRANCOPHILE 

LISTEN: To early Serge Gainsbourg and pretty much everything pre-1960. Anything after that is out, unless Yoko Ono or Björk had something to do with it. Expect to say things like: “Oh, I wouldn’t know; I don’t listen to the radio.” “Rihanna? Who’s Rihanna? Is she a hairdresser? Because I think a girl called Rihanna did my short-back-and-sides last week.” and “let’s get naked and listen to the final movement of Tchaikovksy’s Symphony Pathetique over a glass of merlot.”

HANG: At Shakespeare and Co. in Paris. If you can’t afford the travel then The Book Club in Shoreditch will have to do, I suppose. But only if you really really can’t afford to cross the channel.

WEAR: You need to strike a delicate balance between looking characterfully unwashed and sartorially sharp. Think expensive but unironed shirts, scuffed brogues, second-hand suits and a vetiver-heavy fragrance that will make you choke when you spray it. Oh, and you always need a cigarette between your fingers.

READ: Kafka, Nabokov, Borges, Ginsberg, Foucault, and various obscure first-edition novels which will jut scruffily out of your jacket pocket and can only be found in smoky second-hand bookstores; preferably one with a fat, bespectacled owner splayed out on an armchair scrutinising your choices. Learn from him, because you’ll need to master the art of the judgmental stare.

WATCH: Truffaut, Truffaut, Truffaut, Truffaut, Truffaut, Truffaut, Bergman, Truffaut, Truffaut, Haneke, Truffaut, Truffaut, Truffaut, Buñuel, Cocteau, Cocteau, Cocteau, Truffaut.

EAT: Anything that sounds unusual but tastes delicious and sort of Autumnal, eg. venison and hazelnut, pork and chocolate,  lamb and lavender. If you can’t afford the type of culinary artisanship which you so require, you’ll have to settle for some miserly porridge and dream of the day when your literary talents are finally recognised and you’re bagging six figure book advances.

2. THE GIRL WHO GETS HER PICTURE ON THE SARTORIALIST

(video by Adam Levett and Chloe Wise)

LISTEN: To all those, like, super-hot, sort of indie-ish hipster-ish bands that explode onto the scene in a cloud of frenzied PR girls and hack journalists before disappearing into obscurity once we’re all bored of them, and realise that they sound exactly like that one band that did that thing that they’re doing now way back in the 80s.

HANG: On the street. You don’t want to get caught doing anything but walking across roads or standing outside pretty old buildings and fashion shows. You’re going to have to employ a PA to get that coffee which is eternally glued to your left hand, because what if you miss The Sartorialist’s roving eye as you dash into starbucks for a skinny frappuccino?

WEAR: Now, this is a tricky one. Firstly, you need to spend several days trawling through all the street style blogs on the web, absorbing each and every style, trend and minute detail into your mind (a bit like this). Then, you should spend every penny you own on JW Anderson, Christopher Kane and Acne, combining them with vintage clothes that would be ridiculed were they new, but are ultra-stylish due to their old age. Or, you could take the Susie Bubble approach and run through Opening Ceremony covered in superglue. Next, lurk outside fashion shows for all your worth with a cigarette in one hand and an iphone in the other. Sure, it looks like you might be organising a meeting with Grimes’ ‘people’, but you’re actually playing Angry Birds and waiting for Tommy Ton to tap you on the shoulder.

READ: You don’t really read, but you’re really into, like, looking at the pictures? Your coffee table is a treasure trove of thick hardbacks filled with black and white photographs of Hollywood icons. Oh, but Grace Coddington’s autobiography is a big fat exception to your no-words rule. It’s okay, there’s no need to panic; it’s printed in extra big letters so you don’t even need the help of that magnifying glass you got in a super-cute little vintage christmas cracker last year!

WATCH: Anything by Wes Anderson, Quentin Tarantino, or starring Tilda Swinton. Like, films that really, you know, connect with your emotions and stuff. Plus Gwyneth Paltrow is SOOO cool in The Royal Tenenbaums. Don’t you totally want to be her?

EAT: Nothing, unless that little voice starts telling you to go towards the bright light, in which case you curb your hunger with half an almond. Your instagram followers don’t need to know this detail, however, and you can successfully jade them by photographing the pages of Nigella’s new cookbook and passing off her creations as your own.

3. THE WORDLY, RICH CREATIVE

Fred and Marcia Weisman by Hockney

LISTEN: You’re not fussy. You’ll listen to anything as long as it’s GOOD, you know, none of this auto-tuned  electronic nonsense which everybody is so caught up in these days. You love all the great singers with whom we’re on first name terms, like Ella, Billie, Nina, and Barbara, and though you don’t like to admit it, Cher. You’re also partial to a little Depeche Mode at times, or maybe a little Siouxsie and the Banshees. What really rings your bell, though, is classical. Think Wagner, Richard Strauss, Puccini and Verdi. You saw the most fabulous production of ‘La Traviata’ at the Royal Opera last year, and you’ve got a couple of seats booked for ‘Lohengrin’ in the winter.

HANG: In your spacious old house in Chelsea. All of the walls which aren’t bookshelves are painted white, and your living room is so big that the sofas don’t even touch the walls. Instead, they’re back to back with antique wooden chests covered in Diptyque candles and letter-writing apparatus given to you by the Norwegian Ambassador after you dined with him at Glyndebourne.

WEAR: Your clothes are exceedingly pricey and only the best, but you don’t like to shout about it, so you stick to simple cashmeres, chambrays and jerseys. You always cut a classic silhouette, and your chosen outfits have been stylish for about a century, already. You’re happy, however, to take things up a notch with a Cartier piece when you go out for dinner with your friends at a private members club (you’re welcome in several, but some of them are becoming terribly trendy, attracting all those insufferable internet types).

READ: Everything. You’re extremely clever and you’ve been devouring novels since before you could walk. What’s more, you’ve still got the money to shop in Foyles, which is always a treat. To you, the word ‘amazon’ only brings to mind that sprawling South American jungle and an ancient race of burly female warriors. You’ve read several books about both. Oh, and remember to subscribe to The Paris Review and the TLS — you need to keep up with things in the literary sphere, if only to rush out and buy everything shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize. You never know when Hilary Mantel might enter conversation at a dinner party.

WATCH: Hollywood classics, Shakespeare adaptations, occasional BBC thrillers and a large dose of Hitchcock. They don’t make them like that anymore.

EAT: You’ve become very well-versed in fine dining over the years, so you know what you like. You employ a cook to deal with these matters, but when you’re in the mood you do like to step into the kitchen and cook up a rich, boozy casserole, or just a smoked salmon salad when you’re only a little peckish.

LIKE THE ZEMBLAN ON FACEBOOK

SUPERMODELS

A POST FOR EXETER FASHION SOCIETY

Inspired by the particularly luxe current edition of i-D magazine, the Role Models issue, we thought we’d take a moment to appreciate our favourite female models, because really, they’re more than glorified coat hangers. With bodies and jawlines like these we might deduce that they’re either superhumanly healthy, surviving on kale smoothies and decathlons, or they’ve ingested nothing but scraps of toilet paper and cocaine since the age of 15. Just go with whichever explanation you’re keenest on.

KATE MOSS

She popularised ‘heroin chic’ in the 90s, she descended into coke-fuelled oblivion and climbed back out of it again, she throws her favourite vintage clothes at Topshop’s hack designers and calls them her own, she shut down an entire village for her wedding, she’s one of the most beautiful models in the world and she still speaks like the wide-eyed Croydon teenager she was when she started out. She’s Kate Fucking Moss and at Exeter Fashion Society we don’t use her name in vain.

TWIGGY

Twiggy was and is the quintessential icon of 60s youth, but as the years progressed she became a reminder that we can’t be young forever, and that at some point our skin will sag and we’ll buy all of our cashmere in M&S. Still, I don’t mean to cuss her, because we have only fond feelings for that most motherly of models. Empty your mascara in libation.

CARA DELEVINGNE

Darling of social media and queen of the high-brow scousebrow, everyone’s a little bit in love with native Brit and general ball-of-fun Cara Delevingne. It might take a while to get to grips with her surname, and her acting skills in the recent movie adaptation of ‘Anna Karenina’ might not rival Streep and Winslet, but that’s all forgivable enough. Long live!

STEPHANIE SEYMOUR

Stephanie Seymour is one of our more seasoned supermodels, working with the world’s greatest photographers and still appearing in the most prestigious magazines at the age of 44. Perhaps more embarassingly, she published ‘Stephanie Seymour’s Beauty Secrets for Dummies’ and played an explosives expert in a video game called ‘Hell: A Cyberpunk Thriller’, but we’re willing to see past that for the sake of those majestic cheekbones.

ALEK WEK

First scouted by Models 1 whilst shopping at a London market, Alek Wek garnered worldwide attention after her appearance in the brilliantly outdated video for Tina Turner’s ‘Golden EyeSince then, the fashion world just hasn’t been the same. Herself a Sudanese refugee, Wek is using her influence to work with organisations such as the Refugee’s Advisory Council, World Vision and UNICEF. Good stuff, girl.

TYRA BANKS

(that’s not her nipple, that’s unfortunately placed hair)

Basically, just watch this. Talk about fierce…

Words by Mark Izatt  @mark_r_i