Monday, August 19, 2013

Lady Gaga goes Surrealistically Avant-Garde for "Applause"


Mother Monster (a.k.a. Lady Gaga) has release her new video for "Applause," and I say let's definitely applause her for her magnificent, work of art, Inez & Vinoodh directed video. The duo photographed her for V Magazine's September 2013 Issue (you know, the one with the four different covers).  It is definitely different from all the videos out there, and that is what makes it so unique.  It has influences from surrealistic and avant-garde imagery, and I can definitely tell that she has been profoundly influenced by many contemporary artists - she practiced The Abramovic Method to help the Marina Abramovic Institute campaign on Kickstarter - and is partnering with other artists for ARTPOP as well. The ARTPOP Era has begun and it seems like it will be beyond words. Enough said. "Stop The Drama. Start The Music."

Check out the video below.

Watch Lady Gaga perform "Applause" at the 2013 Video Music Awards (VMAs) this upcoming Sunday, August 25th, 2013.

You can also read Vanessa Thorpe's interesting article titled "Pop star or avant-garde artist? Lady Gaga wants to be the next Warhol," in which she takes a closer look at the "pop star" and how she is challenging the meaning of the phrase by turning into a more contemporary artist influenced by the art world.

Until next time. As always, let me know what you think in the comments below.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Artistic Minds: McQueen - Part 2

A few weeks ago, I released the first part of my Artistic Minds series in which I talked about Frida Kahlo's life and work (read here).  This week, I want to continued the series with the second part, about the late designer Alexander McQueen and his great contributions to the fashion world, and in turn, the art world, through his creations.

Alexander McQueen

Lee Alexander McQueen was born in London, UK on March 17th, 1969.  He came from a "working class family" and had five siblings.  His mother was a "social science" teacher while his father was a taxi driver. When he was 16 years old, he left school and worked in tailor shops in the Mayfair district in London. Deciding to pursue his career and love for clothes, he went on to work with Angels and Bermans, who are "theatrical costume designers."  From these early years, he earned great skills in making "perfectly tailored clothing." All the great works that he did there became a great influence later on in his own collections. 

After coming back to London from Milan, he went to study at the Central Saint Martin's College of Art & Design, and in 1992 earned his M.A. in fashion design.  Isabella Blow, who would later on become a closed friend of his, purchased his entire collection that was inspired by "Jack The Ripper" as part of his last project upon completion of his degree.  A few years later, he ended up working for Givenchy and created his own business, the House of Alexander McQueen.  McQueen won the "British Designer of the Year Award" 4 times in his career (3 of those while at Givenchy), and in 2003 the CFDA honored him with the "International Designer of the Year" award.  

He is known for creating well elaborate clothes and for producing highly theatrical runway shows. His last show before his unexpected death, Plato's Atlantis, became one of his most recognized fashion shows. He passed away in 2010 (ruled as a suicide), shortly after his mother's death.  

In 2011, the Metropolitan Museum of Art (MET) in New York City hosted the exhibit Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty in honor of his work. This exhibit became of of the most successful exhibitions by the museum to date.  His house is now under the direction of Sarah Burton. (For more info:

"For me, what I do is an artistic expression which is channeled through me. Fashion is just the medium." --Alexander McQueen

Early Embrace of Technology
"Robot Paint Dress" is an iconic piece from the Spring/Summer  RTW 1999 Collection. This was the closing part of the show in which the two machines spray painted the dress while the model rotated "on a turntable."

Fall/Winter 2009 Collection
This collection was full of reds, black, whites and a million prints.  The models usually featured black or red lipstick that went beyond the lips.  It was a very dark but romantic collection at the same time.  Hats seem to come from recycled materials as seen below.

Fall/Winter 2009
Recyclable hat

"I never look at other people's work. My mind has to be completely focused on my own illusions."
--Alexander McQueen

Fall/Winter 2009
"Crow Dress"
Although the idea of this dress is very dark, there's seems to be something so romantic about the silhouette of this dress.  This piece was featured in the "Romantic Gothic" section of Savage Beauty.
Source: Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty (2011)

Fall/Winter 2008-2009
This is a wedding dress.  It was also featured on Savage Beauty book and the exhibition at the MET.
It is just simply beautiful.

This is probably one of my favorite McQueen's pieces.  The fact that the dress gives the illusion is put together just by flowers is extraordinary and demonstrates all the effort that went into his work.

"I want people to be afraid of the women I dress."
--Alexander McQueen

McQueen's pieces represented very dark and intimidating clothing that transforms women
 into very powerful figures, as seen above.

Photograph by Steven Meisel. Published in Vogue, May 2011.
Editorial Favorite: This macnificient dress is also featured on Savage Beauty

"I find beauty in the grotesque, like most artists. I have to force people to look at things." 
--Alexander McQueen

Unforgettable shows:  This dress, made out of "red bugle beads" from the collection Joan (Autumn/Winter 1998-1999) is also another amazing piece from McQueen. The pieces gives the illusion of blood dripping down from the head to the floor, very striking and artistic at the same time.  

Plato's Atlantis: His last collection




Plato's Atlantis was McQueen's last collection shown in Fashion Week while he was alive.  The collection mixed the natural with the unnatural.  Butterfly and Snake prints were a big part of this fantastic show as well as 12 in. heels in the form of high heeled ballerina boots and alien-taking-over-your-feet pumps.
The show was an unforgettable piece of art.

"My collections have always been autobiographical, a lot to do with my own sexuality and coming to terms with the person I am - it was like exorcising my ghosts in the collections. They were to do with my childhood, the way I think about life and the way I was brought up to think about life."
 --Alexander McQueen

As a tribute to Alexander McQueen, check out my Pinterest Board "McQueen: The King of Artistic Fashion".

For more on Alexander McQueen, you can check the beautiful book Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty (2011) and VOGUEPEDIA's profile on the brand (here).

Please feel free to leave your comments below. Until next time. A+F by AM.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

NY Creative Interns: #OppMixer

As you all know, I usually only write about the bridge between art and fashion. But I really wanted to talk about a great event I attended yesterday and hopefully more people will attend in the future.

On Wednesday, July 31st, NY Creative Interns hosted  its 1st Summer Opportunity Mixer (#OppMixer) at the Center for Social Innovation, in the Chelsea Neighborhood of New York City.  The almost 3-hour event (yes, it was supposed to be 2 hours and 30 minutes) brought together great young creatives and amazing companies together for a night of networking, showcasing resumes, and fabulous portfolios. Some of the companies that were present included startups such as Return on Change, industry giants such as AOL, VIACOM, and Time Inc., and other great companies including Make Meaning (you have to check their site since their stuff is so fun), Code and Theory, Momentum Worldwide, Gawker Media, and Harboring Hearts.  Most of the time, there were line to speak to the majority of the companies.

What made this event different is that it was not the typical job fair. It was a place where you could s tart conversations with recruiters and also meet other great people pursuing their dreams and new opportunities.

In addition, for the past few weeks, NY Creative Interns made a series of 3 videos, giving career tips such as improving your resume, your LinkedIn Profile, and how to use Social Media to land a job (Yes! It is possible and it has happened). You can check the videos here.

For more on NY Creative Interns and more about their upcoming events, please check:

Photo by Saira De La Cruz
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