British Fashion Awards 2013 - Outside Arrivals
Posted on March 17, 2014 by

Designer L’wren Scott Hangs Herself In NYC Apartment (DETAILS)

Noted designer and girlfriend of Mick Jagger, L’wren Scott was found dead by suicide this morning in her NY apartment, reports multiple sources. One of Scott ‘ s assistants found the designer hanging by a scarf around 10 am today. Police do not suspect foul play.

Scott, born Luann Bambrough, was raised by adoptive parents in the US state of Utah.

She began her career as a model in Paris, then moved to Los Angeles to become a fashion stylist, according to a biography on her company’s website.

She and Sir Mick, the singer of the Rolling Stones, began dating in 2001.

More to come.

NYDN

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Sofia Vergara
Posted on March 12, 2014 by

Sofia Vergara When She Was Younger Greater Than Present One (PHOTOS)

Before her penchant for tight fitting mermaid dresses at award shiws and an overblown Latin accent that borders on a cartoon, Modern Family star Sofia Vergara was an up and coming starlet who wore the hell out of a bikini in her native Colombia.
So nice, we had to show her twice. Thanks, Reddit!

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Posted on March 10, 2014 by

Jourdan Dunn Talks Racism In Fashion In Miss Vogue (PHOTOS)

23 year old English supermodel Jourdan Dunn isn’t one for mincing words when talking about the racism she encounters in fashion. The mother of one, who covers the April issue of Miss Vogue, cut to the chase in an interview where she describes the rampant ignorance in the industry.

“I don’t know why people applaud designers for having just one ethnic model. It’s not like only one type of woman loves fashion,” she tells the magazine.
“I find it weird when [model] agents say, ‘You’re the only black girl booked for the show. Isn’t it great?’ Why is it great?” she adds, recalling how one white make up artist refused to do her make up because Dunn is black.

Dunn backed Iman and Naomi Campbell last fall when the two giants came out swinging against the fashion industry’s lack of diversity, choosing to speak out instead of remaining silent.

“I want to talk about what goes on. A lot of people are scared to speak up.”

More of Dunn’s interview here.

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Posted on March 6, 2014 by

#TBT: On Lee Quinones, Vietnam, Puerto Ricans & Graffiti (DETAILS)

Originally published in Winter 05 in the now defunct Fuego Magazine. ***
_____
Contrary to the sickle shaped scar on his nose, famed Puerto Rican artist Lee Quinones is not a communist. A concerned artist? Yes. A communist? No.

New York City artists have become as ordinary as tattoos and terrorists. Glorified in magazines and fashionable toyshops, they are a nickel a bakers dozen with delusions of sovereignty saying nothing to everyone. For Quinones saying no is just as important as saying yes. This is what separates him from the herd, his choices.

“I am not against money,” Quinones explained last winter while parking his old school Dodge, a former cop car, on his way to a Williamsburg cantina. “This [society’s] is an infrastructure of capitalism, built to keep the machine going.”

Quiñones is best remembered as LEE, the protagonist of the seminal hip hop film Wild Style directed by Charlie Ahearn, and the documentary Style Wars by Tony Silver which introduced to the world the phenomenon of graffiti art and rap music. There wasn’t much of a story line or acting in both films as the artists improvised their lines. Still, the films did something that mainstream media was 20 years late in achieving: pivoting Latinos as influential artists and trendsetters.

As LEE, Quiñones has the distinction of being one of two artists who painted all ten subway cars of New York transit system in 1977, the equivalent of carving the Grand Canyon with a coke spoon. Quinones grew up in the Lower East Side of Manhattan, in the Alfred E. Smith Projects, with two parents and three siblings. His obsession with painting moved him from the trains to handball courts, from millions of viewers to a few hundred, allowing him time to pay more attention to details often lost in the dark, enabling him intimacy with a small controlled space and with his audience. In 2005, dozens of years after he conquered the Metropolitan Transit Authority, his popularity and his collect ability has gained momentum. His paintings are in the permanent collection of The Whitney Museum of Contemporary Art. At the adidas store in SoHo New York last February, his limited edition shell toe shoe, part of adidas’ 35th Anniversary celebration of their Superstar brand, sold out in an half an hour.
 #TBT: On Lee Quinones,  Vietnam, Puerto Ricans & Graffiti (DETAILS)

His unique mark in the form of a poem made its way to the laces, not just the body of the shoe. Its details like these that set him apart from his peers and induce his fans and collectors into frenzies. Last fall they devoured 250 custom designed and hand crafted wooden display cases that contained vintage spray paint cans from his personal studio collection, all of which were acquired during the height of his subway graffiti career: 1974-1984. Last year he made his first trip to Japan after contributing live painting for a benefit for the Jam Master Jay Foundation, and biking down south to raise interests and funds for Hurricaine Katrina survivors. His first book, a coffee-table book with literary sprinklings, will be released in the near future.

“I am glad I didn’t do it,” he says of the book he’d thought about releasing in 1979. “Now, I can take that time as a chapter. I have no regrets because [since I left the trains] my work gravitated to another level.”

The US National Archives and Records list 345 the number of Puerto Ricans killed or missing in action during the Vietnam War. How accurate that number is remains to be seen. The war began in March 1965 and lasted well into the 1970’s as New York City was battling its own crisis of bankruptcy, poverty, and corruption under mayor John Lindsay and a maniacal urban developer named Robert Moses. Thousands of mostly black and Puerto Rican (and some whites) adolescents and teenagers were protesting against the machine of neglect perpetuated by city administrators: their weapon was paint and markers and fragments of popular culture. Though unorganized, their messenger was the passenger trains which transported millions of working adults between the boroughs while two wars, one in Asia for “democracy,” the other at home called “apartheid” recognized now as Civil Rights, were fought. For a few years the teenagers, unorganized, were winning, eventually costing Lindsay his bid to run for president.
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“I don’t like when people call me legend,” Lee says before the black beans arrive. “I am here as a voice box, a black box recorder. I am not a king,” he says humbly.

Quinones’ allusion to the black box device is not unconscious. In fact it’s part and parcel of a motif that is constant in a few of his paintings and murals: helicopters and Vietnam.

The MTA’s early attempt to permanently eradicate graffiti has direct ties to Vietnam. The chemical used to erase graffiti from the trains was dubbed “Orange Crush” by graffiti artists, after Agent Orange, the chemical used to annihilate the Viet Congs and, subsequentially, parcels of American GI’s over time.

“We thought the Vietnam war would never end” Quinones explains. “It seemed like it was just gonna go on forever”. And in a way it has. All wars have resonance and the Vietnam war is still echoing in Quinones’ aerosol and canvases.
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One of Quinones large scale works is a mural of a chopper flying over a Vietnamese rice field. The black box recorder is witness in the helicopter, surveying and/or destroying a field. Titled “Securing the Requiem” the mural occupied 5 stories of a building in Manhattan in August of 1999. The new world is represented by the chopper and is “technology” demolishing the old world, “nature.” Statutes, figurines and ultimately the people who created these artifacts and fields, lends credence to the notion of impermanence of things espoused by Buddhism one of Vietnam’s many religions. What Lee was saying via “Requiem” is that war is nature, and like people and culture, all suffering, is impermanent. The mural will be either buffed by nature or rubbed out by man who is also of nature, therefore the depiction of impermanence is impermanent also. 
“Boomerang” is more direct.Simply put it is the equivalent of Malcolm X’s famous rebuttal upon hearing about the assassination of John F. Kennedy: “The chickens have come home to roost.”
Quinones was asked by the designer and art partron Agnes B to organize a show in response to the September 11th attacks of 2001. Quinones recruited Jose EASE Parla and Ramon ROSTAR Yang to be apart of “Boomerang” where they proposed that the US deserved what it got in the guise of September 11th, feelings, impressions, words no one wanted to hear considering the wound hadn’t yet scabbed. Of the three artists LEE’s “Chapter 11”
spoke volumes in its depiction of a city, as its title suggest, on the verge of bankruptcy, a title perhaps taken from an earlier decade when president Gerald Ford gave NYC, with barbed wire gloves, the middle finger when it asked for economic relief. Quinones was living in the Lower East Side with two parents, his father a chef, and an understanding but patient mother who knew her son would return home after late nights of painting.

The colors of “Chapter 11” are candy colored and juxtaposed against sharp lines of hyper skyscrapers, phallic symbols erected by money and dubious actions unknown to the public. The perspective is suicidal. A note reads “What Goes Around Is Already Here.”

“People forget the foundations in their lives,” he says, explaining his stance on material acquisitions and his motivations. As an artist and concerned human being “there should be no fear in saying no. I’ve said no many times more than yes.” For Quinones, it’s a matter of knowing when and to whom.

At 45 years old, feeling Smurfy, Quinones dives into his rice and beans.
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brucelee_jacket07
Posted on March 5, 2014 by

Yay or Nay: Ltd Edition Bruce Lee Melton Jacket (PHOTOS)

Angry Asian Man teased his Instagram followers with the above image yesterday.  Turns out it was a detailed image of a limited edition Melton jacket released and authorized by the family of legendary martial artist Bruce Lee. Only 150 of these were made and, according to AAM, it’s similar to the style Lee wore when he was alive. Peep the words of wisdom printed inside.

Via The Bruce Lee Store:

This Limited Edition jacket has a fully sublimated lining made up of iconic Bruce Lee images and features old style finishes including intricate chain stitching and felt lettering. Each of the 150 Jackets is personally signed and numbered by Shannon Lee. The quote inside of the jacket reads:

Always be yourself
express yourself,
have faith in yourself.
Start in the very root of your begin, which is “How can I be me?”

**A portion of the proceeds from all merchandise purchased in the Bruce Lee Official Store benefits The Bruce Lee Foundation

$270.00
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Adams Upward Mobility 2014 web
Posted on March 5, 2014 by

Derrick Adams’ “Borough” Opens In Chicago (PHOTOS)

 Derrick Adams Borough Opens In Chicago (PHOTOS)

Friend to the site Derrick Adams opened “Borough,” his latest solo show,  at the Rhona Hoffman Gallery in Chicago over the weekend.
“Borough,” according to a press release, continues upon Adams’ ongoing Deconstruction Worker series, motivated by architectural vocabulary and presentation strategies.

Adams began his exploration of the urban dweller using a floor plan, elevation, and presentation as his framework. He now explores the idea of “footprint” – the figure and structure’s existence within their community. Ink, pencil, paint, crayon, printed shelf-liner and other faux surfaces create geometric constructions of human figures in an ambiguous state between construction and deconstruction.

We saw some of these collages before they were shipped to Chicago and they are impressive as well as layered. Trust us when we say you’ve never seen anything like this. Some of the work on view below.

 Derrick Adams Borough Opens In Chicago (PHOTOS)

 Derrick Adams Borough Opens In Chicago (PHOTOS)

 Derrick Adams Borough Opens In Chicago (PHOTOS)
 Derrick Adams Borough Opens In Chicago (PHOTOS)
 Derrick Adams Borough Opens In Chicago (PHOTOS)
 Derrick Adams Borough Opens In Chicago (PHOTOS)
 Derrick Adams Borough Opens In Chicago (PHOTOS)
 Derrick Adams Borough Opens In Chicago (PHOTOS)
 Derrick Adams Borough Opens In Chicago (PHOTOS)
 Derrick Adams Borough Opens In Chicago (PHOTOS)

 Derrick Adams Borough Opens In Chicago (PHOTOS)

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chrissy-teigen
Posted on March 4, 2014 by

It’s Freezing In NYC But Chrissy Teigen Is Holding Us Down (PHOTOS)

wpid imageprocessor Its Freezing In NYC But Chrissy Teigen Is Holding Us Down (PHOTOS)

My Twitter crush Chrissy Teigen shared the coveted 2014 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit cover last week and looked Damn good at the Oscars on Sunday night.

In 2010 the budding chef and newlywed (she married John Legend a few months back) was named Rookie of The Year by SI. Since then she’s appeared in consecutive issues of the $40 Million mag.

It’s freezing in NYC but Teigen warms us up in all the right places.

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Posted on March 3, 2014 by

Lupita Nyong’o Wins Best Supporting Actress Oscars (PHOTOS)

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Lupita Nyong’o won! Lupita won! Lupita won!
In an eloquent speech filled with tears, the Yale Drama graduate, 31, and 12 Years A Slave actress took home Oscar gold tonight in LA while dressed in a Nairobi Blue custom Prada gown. 

12 Years is Lupita ‘ s first major film after making her own films and starring on television in Kenya.

This is epic. Lupita is the 7th Black woman to win an Oscar. She won exactly 75 years after Hattie McDaniel became the first. Lupita’s reaction below.
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Posted on March 3, 2014 by

Here’s What Some of Your Favorite Actors Wore to the 2014 Oscars (PHOTOS)

The 2014 Oscars Red Carpet was on fire in Los Angeles tonight. All eyes were on Lupita Nyong’o,  wondering what or who she would wear. Nyong’o didn’t disappoint as you’ll see further on in the post. The night’s head scratcher was Pharrell who left his big hat at home but opted to wear shorts with his tuxedo.

Truth be told, not one actor wowed us so far. Below, some predictable yet interesting looks.

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Liza Minnelli looked cray in her pajamas.
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Cameron Diaz
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Anne Hathaway
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Halle Berry

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Portia Di Rossi
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Amy Adams
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Christian Chenoweth
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Meryl Street
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Leonardo Dicaprio
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Jennifer Lawrence.
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Angelina Jolie
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Kate Hudson
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Pharrell and his wife and shorts.
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Charlize Theron
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Jared Leto brought his hair game again.
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Kerry Washington
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Michael B. Jordan

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Lupita Nyong’o in Niro Blue custom Prada.
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Lupita Nyong’o

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Chrissy Tiegen in Monique Lhuillier.

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Viola Davis wore the exact color last year. This year she wore her wig.

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jeff-staple-lead
Posted on February 27, 2014 by

Jef Staple: A Conversation (PHOTOS)

wpid jeff staple lead Jef Staple: A Conversation (PHOTOS)

Jeff Staple. The name, if you travel in some circles, conjures cool, New York and pigeons; a monster tastemaker flocked by the likes of Beats By Dre, Nike and all of your favorite brands.

Two years ago I spoke to Staple, whom I’ve known professionally since his time with The Fader, whose clothes I’ve photographed on the bodies of up and coming rappers, whose visage envokes a Buddha-like calm served with a side of smirk, via email two years ago on the occasion of Staple Designs 15 year anniversary.

This interview was originally for Mass Appeal around the time Staple collabo’d with Beats.Somehow it got lost in the process. I’m glad I kept it. Jump in below to discover streetwear history.
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Describe how the Beats collaboration came about. Who contacted whom? Were you surprised by the interest Beats showed? (If Beats reached out to you.)

Jeff:

This all started because Beats by Dre was opening their flagship store in SoHo, and as part of that store, they wanted to have some apparel product. So they reached out to Staple to see if we could design some items, that’s how the conversation started between us. From there I think just because of what Beats is known for, the conversation just naturally went to well, can we do a headphone? Luckily they said yes.

Were you surprised by the interest?
Not surprised, I felt happy.  I know what we bring for Staple holds a lot of equity in the minds of streetwear heads, design heads, sneaker heads, shoppers etc. We have a lot of crossover demographic so it felt like a good marriage for me. I wouldn’t have really offered it if it didn’t feel natural, but a Beats x Staple thing feels really natural for our fan-base and our customer-base. So I wasn’t shocked. I don’t think it was such an out-of-the-box concept to understand. But I felt blessed and happy that they accepted.

Why limit the run the run at 500 headphones?

500 is actually one of the most quantities they’ve ever done in a collaboration. They’ve done quantities of 10, or 12, or 24 for their collabs. Beats is not really so well versed in doing wildly distributed collaborations. I think that comes from the fact it’s such a high-ticketed item. So 500 is actually quite a lot of $350 headphones.

Except for some circles, the pigeon, a noble bird, is maligned in NYS and beyond. Are you worried that your brand will be forever identified with its image?

No, that is my brand’s image. We’ve embraced the pigeon for what it means to us in its positive mannerisms, and when we first introduced the pigeon back in 2004 it was for those positive reasons that we really connected with the bird. Now it’s literally Staple Design’s registered trademark with the United States Patent And Trademark office. So you ask if I’m afraid it’ll be forever identified? No, I want it to be forever identified. I want us to own the pigeon, and we do own it, but we own it in the minds of the trademark office. I want it to be owned in the minds of every person in the world, and from what I see so far, it’s happening.  I get a tweet or instagram at least once a day with someone in the world taking a picture of a random pigeon and tagging it ‘@jeffstaple’. So people are more and more finding it difficult to look at a pigeon and not think of Staple Design. I think the mental takeover is working.
wpid malik abdul Jef Staple: A Conversation (PHOTOS)

Staple was one of the first brands to align itself with conscious capitalism, working with non-profits to clothes and to draw attention to homelessness. What new, non-profit projects are you working on if any?

If you knew that you’re definitely a day 1 fan, so I definitely appreciate it. You’re referencing our ad campaign that we did highlighting the homeless back in… I feel like that was the late 90’s or something. Yeah, we still do a lot of non-profit, community-based work. We actually just finished a pretty long-term project with Geoffrey Canada & Harlem Children Zone, where we worked with the kids that go there who are at-risk youth. We did a design project where I basically tutored the kids on how you design something, how you design a t-shirt, how you market it, how you promote it etc. Then we did a vote on our website and we let the entire world vote on their favorite designs and the winning design was actually produced and sold in Reed Space. So it allowed a kid from Harlem who’s at-risk, who really has very little opportunity and options in his life, to now have the opportunity to do a design that could be sold on a world stage, online, on our website, and in our store. That was a really successful and dope project and it meant a lot to me.
wpid isaac woodward Jef Staple: A Conversation (PHOTOS)

What are your thoughts on the state of streetwear today?

I think the state of streetwear is going through a lot of transition and it’s being redefined constantly, similar to hip-hop, if you will. Hip-hop is also (I think) going through similar things where you might have old-school heads sort of saying hip-hop is dead because it’s not what they thought it was, it’s not what they sort of remember it to be. And what people are calling hip-hop today is different so they think it shouldn’t be labeled hip-hop. I think the same thing is happening in streetwear/street-culture where the real birth of street culture in the late 80’s, early 90’s, had this sort of preset description of “street culture should be A, B, C, & D”, and now because it’s gotten so much bigger, and because so many people, corporations, organizations have gravitated towards this idea of street culture, it’s naturally changed because of that. So people think it’s dead, or it’s dying, when really it’s evolving and changing. So I feel like a great example is what we do, what The Hundreds does, what Stussy does, what Supreme does etc. I think we’re really redefining what a ‘streetwear brand’ is allowed to do, in a very similar way that Kanye West puts out a hip-hop album but it’s redefining what a hip-hop album used to be allowed to do.

Do you agree that the silhouette for urban males is played out? Why or why not.

Haha. Deep question. I don’t agree with that actually, because urban males really have very different styles now. I think maybe 15 years ago there was a very distinct silhouette for an urban male but now that same guy in that same age is allowed so much more flexibility in what he’s allowed to rock, and that came a lot from the musicians they listen to, and that they look up to. So you have guys like ASAP, Lupe, Kanye, Pharrell and Jay, each one is sort of style pioneer in their own right, but each one doing it differently, and each one doing it credibly. The young urban male is now able to sort of adapt and be like, maybe I still want to look like DMX, but then maybe I want to look like Kanye West as well, and he can switch it up on a day to day basis if he wanted to. It’s not like back in the day where if you were wearing even somewhat fitting jeans you’d be called out. Now you could go super tight, spandex denim if you wanted to, and it’s all good, you know? So I think the fashion sense and what people expect out of an urban male has been totally changed, and I think that’s a good thing too. I don’t think there’s a sort of stereotypical silhouette anymore.

repost bttn suprsd Jef Staple: A Conversation (PHOTOS)
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