Category: Film

24
Nov
A still from Repugnantam by Charles de Vilmorin
A still from “Repugnantam” by Charles de VilmorinPhoto: Courtesy of Charles de Vilmorin

Each day, Vogue Runway will be chronicling the young designers’ films here.

“Advent” by Stefan Cooke

British duo Stefan Cooke and Jake Burt showcase their new menswear in a black-and-white film directed by Eddie Whelan. The short, which is dialogue-free, features silhouetted models walking in front of traditional British scenes to a pulsing soundtrack by Lukas Heerich. “Part of the magic of this label is how it sweetly strips the underlying brutality from British masculine clothing traditions,” wrote Vogue’s Sarah Mower in her review. The film does the same, offering an un-stuffy, human take on the male dress codes that Cooke and Burt so beautifully subvert.

“Morn came and went—and came, and brought no day / And men forgot their passions in the dread / Of this their desolation; and all hearts / Were chill’d into a selfish prayer for light.” Depressing pandemic poetry or a snippet of Lord Byron’s “Darkness?” That quote is from the latter, which inspired the duo’s film, though it feels especially apt considering the global lockdowns. JordanLuca’s Jordan Bowen and Luca Marchetto offer a salve in their new film directed by Conor Clinch that imagines “a world where darkness becomes light.” A boyish protagonist discovers a hidden rave in London, and gets a moment of reprieve from isolation and the bleakness of night.

“Import Settings” by Shanel Campbell

New York-born and raised artist Shanel Campbell created a film of juxtapositions for #GucciFest. Combining her fashion work with collage, film, illustration, and photography, Campbell’s film “Import Settings” is a powerful display of her aesthetic taste and an uncanny ability to meld her own past with a futuristic vision. “I am simultaneously communicating with my ancestors and descendants,” she has said of her label Bed on Water. On Instagram, Campbell expanded on her ideas, describing the project as “a short film about whatever you want it to be about featuring femmewear from a future collection.” Chances are you will be seeing much more of this femme futurewear very soon.

Like any good fantasy film, Boramy Viguier’s “Lord Sky Dungeon” opens with a hefty tome that is magically set ablaze. The Lord of the Rings font of the title cards immediately declares this to be a mythic quest of sorts, and over the span of two minutes, Viguier’s heroes journey through a fantastical world with all the trappings of sci-fi classics. “Unsettling, to be sure, but also visually hypnotic,” wrote Vogue’s Mark Holgate of Viguier’s spring 2021 collection earlier this year—and the same could be said of this film, directed by Samuel Rixon.

“Taro Buddha” by Yueqi Qi

“This film is based on real memories of my hometown, Kaiping, China,” begins Yueqi Qi’s film “Taro Buddha.” Over the course of a day, the protagonist gets dressed and celebrates her birthday, visiting friends, family, and marketplaces, before ending up at a small dance party. The titular taro buddha makes an appearance mid-way through as a part of the heroine’s supper, complementing Qi’s brightly colored garments, which fuse Chinese traditions with new silhouettes and ideas. “The intention was to distinguish any embarrassment of humble beginnings and to champion home (even if best loved at a distance),” the brand posted on social media. “You can find your God anywhere; even on a plate with some chicken.”

“A trailer for a video game that doesn’t exist,” is how Gareth Wrighton and Zach Beech describe their short film. (In this, it provides a nice counter to Collina Strada’s own video game film.) Scenes of rich forests zoom out to become theaters or malls, while Wrighton’s zoomorphic characters lackadaisically navigate the space. His well-known knit rabbit hat makes a starring appearance, as do his send-ups of popular characters like Sailor Moon. In the end, the film reveals that the “mall” of the video game is a sort of post-apocalyptic store where everyone is just trying to survive. Too real?

“Repugnantam” by Charles de Vilmorin

French designer Charles de Vilmorin begins his short film by sketching demonic creatures from his imagination. Over the next four minutes, those fantastical and quite fabulous demons become real, haunting de Vilmorin within his Parisian apartment. They have glimmering skin, crystal piercings, and prod the designer while wearing his over-the-top creations. “Would you not say that we created you?” one creature asks the designer. It’s a clever take on the creation myth: wondering if maybe the muses are the makers, after all.

“Jord, Luft, Eld, Vatten” by Rave Review

The title of Rave Review’s new film translates from Swedish to “Fire, Air, Earth, Water.” The four elements are represented more abstractly than literally in the short, directed by Jens Löfgren. A gaggle of models wearing the brand’s new capsule collection of upcycled outerwear stomp through Sweden, their bodies morphing and transforming in Löfgren’s surreal lens. The overall effect is one of strangeness, but don’t let that distract from the message of designers Josephine Bergqvist and Livia Schück. Their bed sheet and quilt coats have a realistic, universal appeal, with prints and patterns for every aesthetic. If the film paints them in a dramatic light, know that their ready-to-wear is exactly that—ready for wear in the twisted modern world.

“La Tassinara” by Cormio

Jezabelle Cormio and Gucci’s Alessandro Michele are kindred spirits. Raised in Rome to Italian-American and Italian-Croatian parents, Cormio has a deep affinity for history and its more emotional resonances. After graduating from Antwerp’s Royal Academy of Fine Art she launched a collection with a decidedly Tyrolean vibe—see the dirndl and trachten dresses and the delicate Austrian embroideries for proof. Communing between European cultures is just one of Cormio’s strengths; “La Tassinara” also shows her compassion for the everyday. In the Gregorio Franchetti-directed film, a taxi driver becomes the unlikely companion to a trio embarking on a night on the town. The strange karaoke sequence that follows is David Lynchian in its bringing together of disparate characters and suspicious serenity. Michele would surely love it.

“The Pedestrian” by Bianca Saunders

“Three words to describe me,” says a handsome model at the start of Bianca Saunders’s pre-fall 2021 film, “fun, spontaneous, and pretty.” Smirk! The concept for the Akinola Davies Jr.-directed short is a low-fi dating show. Their contestants’ style is intentionally heightened, courtesy of fashionable hairdos and Saunders’s garb, but their casual pick-up lines don’t lose any of their dingy club charm. Perfect dates range from a game of laser tag to a sandwich in Deptford, and the dudes clutch cellphones, bouquets, and a small espresso cup in their hands as they make nice to the camera. The film follows Saunders’s much-admired spring 2021 collection titled “The Ideal Man,” which drew on photographer Hans Eijkelboom’s 1970s pictures. “I found this work Eijkelboom had done, where he interviewed women about what they considered their ideal man to be, then dressed himself up as that, and photographed himself with them,” she told Vogue’s Sarah Mower about that collection. Suffice to say the ideal man of Saunders’s new collection is as dapper and alluring as ever.

“Drip City” by Mowalola

A neon crescent moon sets on Mowalola’s animated short and then a comet crashes into the sea. Designed by Mowalola Ogunlesi and David Killingsworth, the 3-D animations shown in the film push Ogunlesi’s creations into a super-human form. On a Super Smash Bros-esque floating arena, amphibian and mammalian creatures convene wearing acid-hued versions of Mowalola garments with hefty, lug soled—and radiantly lilac—boots. As a character traverses an interstellar runway to meet a silvery alien that looks strangely like a rabbit, the screen reads “SLATT: Slime Love All the Time.” What to make of it? That Ogunlesi, who was named the design director of Kanye West’s Yeezy x Gap endeavor earlier this year, knows no bounds.

Til Death Do Us Ride by Gui Rosa

If Gui Rosa’s short film Til Death Do Us Ride gives you John Waters vibes, well, that’s sort of the point. Together Rosa and his director, fellow Central Saint Martins grad Harry Freegard, have adapted Waters’s OTT, “pope of trash” style for today through their previous films and roles as muses to fellow Londoners Rottingdean Bazaar. Rosa’s film for #GucciFest is a kitschy road trip that translates the tongue-in-cheek aesthetic of his designs into dialogue and visuals. It’s bizarre, funny, outrageous—six minutes of pure LOLs! The mood complements Rosa’s garments. An expert knitter and crocheter, he makes vibrant pieces that send up gender norms and fashion traditions. Make special note of his truly wild ruffle creations mid film—and place some bets on which celebrity wears them first.

Emerald by Rui

Parsons MFA graduate Rui Zhou explores the magical aspect of fashion in her new film, Emerald. Written as a parable, the short features a rabbit with an emerald eye as its protagonist. Other animals obsess over the rabbit and its mystical powers, and seeing the effect it has over the animal kingdom, the rabbit aims to bake a cake with an emerald inside to share the beauty with a cast of animal friends. The creatures are played by human models wearing layered bodysuits and tops from Zhou’s collections. “I really like a peaceful world—a very soft, gentle emotion,” Zhou told Vogue earlier this year. The film and her subtle, interlocking pieces send that message. So many bodysuits on the market overtly objectify the body inside them. With subtle metal closures and translucent materials, Zhou’s second skins telegraph tenderness. What a nice emotion for now.

Joy by Ahluwalia

The London-based designer Priya Ahluwalia was an LVMH Prize finalist in 2020 and has gained international acclaim for her sustainably made designs. In her short film, Ahluwalia brings together British communities that reflect her own, from Nigeria, Jamaica, and India. Directed by Samona Olanipekun, the five-minute short spotlights more than a dozen people in England discussing how their cultures intersect and inform their lives. Ahluwalia’s thoughtful clothes provide a through line between scenes of female boxers and direct-to-camera interviews, offering a wardrobe of upcycled materials that honors her own story as a young woman raised in South London.

Collina Land by Collina Strada

Hillary Taymour one-upped her spring 2021 video by creating a video game for her latest collection. The interactive platform she created with photographer Charlie Engman and multimedia artist Freeka Tet turns many of Taymour’s favorite models into avatars who navigate a hyperrealistic terrain, collecting points and engaging in live game chats along the way. It’s as psychedelic as any Collina Strada film, giving Taymour’s deadstock and upcycled garments a virtual life. Her vibrant aesthetic and inclusive message pairs nicely with the themes of Gucci’s own films, celebrating individuality, inclusivity, and dressing up—even if you have nowhere to go.

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13
Oct

@Instagram has transformed the way we interact, take photos, shop, and read the news. From being able to connect with our favorite celebrities to sharing memes with friends, the app has changed our methods of communication and connection. In honor of Instagram celebrating its 10 year anniversary, revisit some of W’s best-performing Instagram posts over the years, including Brad Pitt from our 2020 Best Performances issue, our 2019 @lilireinhart and @colesprouse cover and Kate Moss baring it all.

Photography: Brad Pitt by Juergen Teller, @lilireinhart and @colesprouse by @stevenkleinstudio@naomi by @stevenkleinstudio@katemossagency by @inezandvinoodh, Adam Driver by Juergen Teller, @iammariaborges by @inezandvinoodh@karllagerfeld@camerondiaz by @mertalas + @macpiggott, George Clooney by @EmmaSummerton with Yayoi Kusama
Styling: @saramoonves@ariannephillips@edward_enninful@amandaharlech@alexwhiteedits

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25
Sep
GP_The Reconstruction_Finn Love as The Firestarter
Finn Love as The Firestarter, The Reconstruction© Nick Knight

 

As Gareth Pugh launches a new project over London Fashion Week, Hannah Tindle talks to the designer about his latest project and how fashion is responding to the times in which we live

This article is published as part of a series of Designer Interviews, where we’re speaking to some of the industry’s most crucial voices about this current – and highly unique – moment in fashion history.

 

Gareth Pugh has always been known for ruffling feathers and pushing buttons. Ever since he burst onto the London stage in 2004 – a graduate of Central Saint Martins’ star-making MA course – with surreal, club kid-inspired designs, it was clear that he was a natural leader of fashion’s avant garde.

Over a decade on, Pugh remains an iconoclast. After taking a break from London Fashion Week for a couple of seasons, he has returned for Spring/Summer 2021 with a new collection in the form of a non-profit visual concept album. Titled The Reconstruction, the project comprises 13 stills and short films shot by Nick Knight and Jon Emmony (starring an ensemble cast including the likes of Rina Sawayama, Matthew Ball, and Sakeema Crook), a feature-length documentary that goes behind the scenes of making the work, and an exhibition of the collection showing at Christie’s. The project is raising money for Refuge, which helps women and children affected by domestic violence.
We owed it to ourselves and to fashion in general to be part of a conversation that feels a little bit sad at the moment,” says Pugh. “London Fashion Week feels like it could come and go without much fanfare. So it requires people to do things bigger and better than we’ve ever done before. People need something that they can be hopeful about right now.” Here, as part of AnOther’s Designer Interviews series, we have a frank conversation with Pugh about the way that fashion has been reacting to the current climate – and the uncertainty of its future.

Hannah Tindle: For S/S18 you screened a film at the BFI in lieu of a runway show. In light of the current season, does it feel like you had the gift of foresight?

Gareth Pugh: Actually, we started doing things off the runway almost a decade ago in 2009 with a film we produced with Ruth Hogben. I was showing in Paris at the time, and you’re only ever listed on the main schedule if you have a physical presentation and I had to tell a lot of white lies to the Chambre Syndicale. But Didier Grombach was the president of the organisation at the time, and he was obviously quite a trailblazer in his time, introducing a new way of working to the Paris schedule early on with the likes of Claude MontanaTheirry Mugler, and Rei Kawakubo. Luckily, he came to the presentation and left with a smile on his face. We also showed a film with Kristen McMenamy for S/S11. But it’s amazing how much push back from a lot of others we got from doing this at the time. And now, in 2020, everyone’s like ‘let’s make a film!’

HT: It’s the ‘new normal’ this season. How do you think that’s going to work out for everyone? 

GP: I think it’s difficult for some designers. For example, if your clothes don’t lend themselves to film that well, it might be a difficult thing to work around. We’re lucky enough that our clothes work very well on screen and with moving imagery. Fashion films are obviously something that we like to harness to tell a story. I often equate a live fashion show with a tennis match; a lot of back and forth. It’s quite formulaic. With a fashion film, you can portray something bigger than the clothes. It’s much more democratic, too – more people are able to see it.

HT: The behind-the-scenes documentary produced as part of The Reconstruction offers a real window into your process. What was your thinking behind making this? 

GP: What we wanted to do was to create a film that documented us getting our hands dirty at the studio, mixed with high-fashion moments created by Nick Knight and Jon Emmony. It’s a little bit like pulling back the curtain on the Wizard of Oz, I guess, inviting people to see what really goes on. It’s quite exposing, but we’re comfortable with that. This film runs alongside the stills by Nick in the exhibition at Christie’s right in the middle of the room. I like the idea of referencing the gritty making process within such a ‘hallowed’ art space.

HT: What were other conversations that you had during the making of The Reconstruction

GP: In February, Nick Knight asked me to do a screening of Cabaret at SHOWstudio, which is one of my favourite films. That evening, I asked Nick if we would maybe talk about doing something together for the next fashion week. It was time for me to return to the schedule, after securing my trademark back from Rick Owens and my Italian partners. Not that I was held back much before, but this was going to be the first time in ten years that I was going to have complete freedom.

HT: And then lockdown hit … 

GP: Yes and we had to close everything down, including our studio, and I was suddenly stuck in my small London flat. This really highlighted to me how much I love the studio and making with my hands. Also, seeing how other people in fashion were reacting to what was going on around us, it all felt a little bit sad. I just thought, we, as in fashion as a whole, can do better than that. Designers are an adaptable bunch, and what the world needs right now in particular is creative problem solvers.

HT: At the beginning of the documentary, you have included a clip of Nina Simone saying her famous quote: “It’s an artist’s duty to reflect the times in which we live.” How do you think fashion can reflect the times we live authentically and honestly? 

GP: Fashion exists within this strange space. It exists within a space where people understand it in a way that they can’t necessarily do with an artist’s work because it’s wearable. There’s a relatability to it. I think fashion is one of those mediums that can very quickly and very succinctly connect to the times in which we live. Although it can be slow at changing its actual bureaucratic structure, the creative content can. We should be able to move with the times in a very nimble way.

HT: Do you hope to see up-and-coming designers respond to the changing times by engaging with more experimental show formats?

GP: Yes, definitely. Putting on a show costs a huge amount of money and effort when perhaps they don’t have that at their disposal, and often young designers are doing something that is dancing to the beat of somebody else’s drum. But right now, there are no rules in a way, and there are no right and wrong answers to how you show your work. I’m sure that this is a nightmare for those responsible for the long-held structures in place, but it’s a great time for designers to take back control. Often people haven’t had space to even change how they want to communicate their work. The fashion show is a set structure and everyone knows how it rolls. But that’s been taken away, which is really exciting for the new guard.

HT: The worry is that everything will just return to the way it was as soon as it can. What are your thoughts on this? 

GP: There’s much talk of change and it’s a concern that people are just saying what everyone wants to hear right now. But, I was speaking to Nick about this and he really does get a sense that it isn’t just chat and that people are quite invested in it. Giorgio Armani wrote an amazing open letter in April that reflected this. With an Italian designer with a huge commercial hold in the industry to say things need to change and calling people of his stature to follow suit, I am hopeful. We’re glad to be part of that conversation, too, but there’s so much left for us to do.

HT: So what does the future hold for you and the Gareth Pugh studio?

GP: Fashion is always my first love, but we’re thinking of taking a bit of a sidestep from it. The reason why we stepped away from fashion in the first place is that we wanted to stretch our legs creatively. It also feels reckless at the moment to work so commercially, when retail and fashion production is on its knees. Which is why all the proceeds from The Reconstruction are going to Refuge. In regards to what next? Who knows. We don’t have a plan.

Key looks from the collection have been re-imagined in a series of T-shirts designed by Pugh in collaboration with emerging designer Melissa Mehrtens. Sold in exclusive partnership with HIT + RUN, with all proceeds going to Refuge UK, these T-shirts are available to shop here

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12
Jun

Missing parties and parades during Pride Month? These movies will fill your screen with joy, history and rainbows.

Marsha P. Johnson, in a 2017 documentary about her directed by David France.
Credit…Netflix

It’s June, and that normally means it’s time to celebrate Pride. But with protests, a deadly pandemic and record unemployment convulsing the country, it feels like there’s little reason to party.

That doesn’t mean Pride is over. Parades and events may have been canceled or postponed. But Pride Month festivities are moving online, with virtual drag shows, benefit concerts and many other events daily around the globe.

Movies are no substitute for a rainbow-drenched parade. But they can be entertaining and evocative — and let’s face it, shorter — ways to experience queer community and commune with the past. Here are seven films that will deliver the revolution, camaraderie and flirtatiousness of Pride right to your home.

 

‘Gay USA’ (1977)

Stream on Amazon Prime.

The director Arthur J. Bressan Jr. was an indie polyglot who made adult films and the under-the-radar 1985 AIDS drama “Buddies” (beautifully restored in 2018). But Bressan, who died from the disease in 1987, also made this carefully observed documentary about Pride in New York and other cities. It’s a fascinating, scrappy time capsule of queer life in post-Stonewall, pre-AIDS epidemic America that chronicles the revelry and protest that greeted the modern gay liberation movement. “Gay USA” also features footage, taken by the activist Lilli Vincenz, of New York’s first gay pride parade, in 1970, on what was then known as Christopher Street Liberation Day.

 

‘Before Stonewall’ (1984)

Stream on Fandor or Kanopy. Rent or buy on Amazon or iTunes.

The first Pride parades were revolutionary. But for the generation of L.G.B.T.Q. people who came of age before the Stonewall riots in 1969, a parade was only the latest, if most visible, sign of public resistance and self-respect. The uncovering of that past is the mission of this documentary, directed with tenderness and urgency by Greta Schiller and Robert Rosenberg (and selected for the National Film Registry). The movie is chockablock with grainy footage of early Pride parades. But even more fascinating are the Mod-style drag queens, the butch lesbian nuptials and the other people and moments that show how a future for queer life was being forged a future well before Pride officially took the parade route.

 

‘Jeffrey’ (1995)

Stream on Fandor or Hoopla. Rent or buy on Amazon or iTunes.

New York City Pride makes a cameo in Paul Rudnick’s snappy screen adaptation of his hit 1993 Off Broadway play, set in the uneasy years after the first panicked decade of the AIDS crisis. This sharp-tongued romantic comedy, directed by Christopher Ashley, is about a gay man (Steven Weber) whose plan to swear off sex grows complicated when he falls for an H.I.V.-positive muscle boy (Michael T. Weiss). The sunny, oh-so-’90s Pride scenes — did we really wear that much flannel? — were shot in Central Park and on the streets of Manhattan. They’ll make you wistful for queer marching bands and boastful moms, thanks to Olympia Dukakis’s cheeky appearance as the devoted mother of a transgender daughter.

 

Stream on Starz. Rent or buy on YouTube or iTunes.

Sean Penn won an Academy Award for his performance as Harvey Milk, the slain gay rights leader, in Gus Van Sant’s biopic set in 1970s San Francisco. In one memorable scene, the firebrand Milk, the first openly gay elected official in California, urges a Pride rally crowd to come out and “break down the myths and destroy the lies and distortions” perpetuated by homophobes. The Hollywood treatment is rousing, but it’s also worth checking out footage of Milk himself from the UCLA Film & Television Archive. A clip of Milk speaking at the Los Angeles Gay Pride Parade, just months before he was shot to death in 1978, is a glorious snapshot of how his fiery charisma lit a match under a movement.

 

Stream on Hulu or Kanopy.

The smiles: that’s what lifts a parade scene in Robin Campillo’s stirring drama about the Paris chapter of the AIDS activist group Act Up. Beyond a biography, the film is a remembrance of how L.G.B.T.Q. people found ways to love and celebrate despite death, despair and other bleak markers of a plague. In a joyous montage, beaming men bounce about in pink cheerleader skirts, waving pink pompoms. Yet they’re also wearing Act Up’s signature black T-shirts featuring pink triangles (the Nazi emblem identifying gays that was reclaimed as a pride symbol) and the urgent precept silence = mort (“silence = death”). The jarring juxtaposition of mortality and camp is a poignant reminder of how an afternoon of joy meant the world to a generation that didn’t have a minute of rage to spare.

 

The Death and Life of Marsha P. Johnson’ (2017)

Stream on Netflix.

Murder or suicide? That’s the heartbreaking question that fuels David France’s documentary about Marsha P. Johnson, the trailblazing transgender activist, performer and high-profile elder of the Stonewall uprising who was found dead in the Hudson River in 1992. Yet embedded among the investigative elements of the film is a treasure trove of archival footage of Johnson, described in a 2018 obituary in The New York Times as “a fixture of street life in Greenwich Village.” To watch Johnson resiliently parade down Christopher Street during Pride, her beaming smile accentuated by her signature glossy lip, is to see a revolution in heels.

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10
Jul

salonwithoutwalls artist on-location Miami: Photographer/Director Peter C. Christensen

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20
Nov
From Grace Wales Bonner to Kenzo, this season’s most successful video campaigns
shied away from the product-driven narrative, taking a more cinematic approach instead.
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10
Aug
Reiko Wakai participated in the latest Wix photography contest and won the chance to
capture a fashion photo shoot in midair. This video will make you fly!
WIX.COM
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01
Jul
This season’s best fashion videos included videos from Gucci, Nike and Gap.
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30
May
From Coco Chanel to Raf Simons, Karl Lagerfeld to YSL
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05
Nov
Tom Ford Brings His Singular Aesthetic to Film
WSJ.COM|BY LESLEY M.M. BLUME, PHOTOGRAPHY BY TERRY RICHARDSON
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