Photography Marcus Cooper Styling Ethan Benjamin Cowley Styling Asst Damien Hairston Model Darwin Gray (SOUL) Location New York, USA
Tell us one breakfast essential that you need in the morning no matter what city you’re in
No matter what city I’m in I have to start the day with a cold glass of water to really wake me up. Of course followed by one of my favorites – pizza, chicken and something sweet. Kidding.. I don’t really have a breakfast essential, just the usual morning staples – eggs, toast, etc.
What other jobs have you had before?
I held a job as a cashier at a local shop in my town. I was also working in a pub kitchen washing dishes and preparing vegetables. I have to admit, I was happy to leave the dirty dishes behind for New York City.
If you could only eat 3 things in your entire lifetime, what would they be? If I could solely exist off of pizza, chicken and sweets – I would.
Do you have tattoos? If not, what would you get and why?
I don’t have any tattoos – they aren’t for me, so I don’t have plans to get any.
What is the best advice you’ve ever received from mum or dad?
My parents once told me you’re not growing up unless you lose friends.
Photography Donald Gjoka Styling Noey Park Model Kotryna (IMG Models) Location Project Calabinana Milan, via Calabiana 6
Bomber jacket / wide pants ACNE Studios Neckpiece Sansovino 6 Sandals Dr Martens
Project Calabinana Milan, via Calabiana 6, is a multifunctional space dedicated to the development of international business, born from a ‘creative ideas and entrepreneurial M.Seventy involving Marina Salomon as a partner, entrusting the desiging’s skills and opening projects to four different creatives: Antonio Hats (theatrical organizer), Carlo Mariani (owner designer), Massimiliano Bizzi (creator of White), and Mirko Rizzi (entrepeneur and artistic director Marsèlleria).
Text Elizabeth Patterson
The lines between high fashion and street wear have always been blurred. From Yohji Yamamoto’s 10 year old Y-3 line and recent street inspired shows from Parisian giants like Chanel and Balenciaga, it seems that the streets are having their high fashion moment. Marc Jacobs was an early figurehead of such thinking, with his infamous 1992 grunge collection for Perry Ellis, directly inspired by the grunge culture of the time and later, his collaborations with Stephen Sprouse and Takashi Murakami at Louis Vuitton. Both of these collaborations aided in the explosion of transference from clothing meant for an exclusive group to that meant for everyone. The rap luxury lifestyle provided a direct connection between the two, as celebrities with a wide scope popularized brands and clothing to their younger, easily influenced audience. This was especially manifested with Murakami’s later work for Kanye West, designing the cover and interior artwork for his 2007 album “Graduation” as well as the graphics for the “Good Morning” music video from the same disc. The trickle down phenomenon in fashion has always been evident, but never more than now.
Now. The digital age, where millennials have taken over Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr — social media platforms that allow for the instantaneous transmission of thoughts, ideas, and most importantly, style. In this perfect storm of the current social climate, designers have jumped at the chance to market their products to the younger generation. Alexander Wang, now commonly heralded as the King of Cool, found his New York niche doing so; likewise, Riccardo Tisci gave Givenchy new life with his turns in pricey t-shirts (a certain Rottweiler comes to mind) and a successful Nike collaboration. Rick Owens similarly is in his second run of a sell-out Adidas shoe collection, with a cult following of his main and secondary lines to boot. No longer are the Parisian runway looks only for the high fashion elite — and it shows. New brands and companies like VFiles, Hood by Air, Been Trill, Off-White, Kye and others are dominating the fashion conversation with their timely emergence and lightning-quick connection to today’s plugged in crowd.
Adidas x Rick Owens Tech Runner
VFiles, created by Julie Anne Quay (former executive editor for V Magazine) has alone established itself as a quickly growing company with a direct, collaborative link with their audience through their interactive membership sharing site. Alongside a New York Fashion Week showing (a collation of four designers from around the world) and an online store that stocks almost all new, cool, and Instagram-worthy designers, they’re the name on the tip of everyone’s tongue. Kathleen Kye’s eponymous label, Kye, have a lock on the Korean street market (regulars include G-Dragon and CL, KPOP artists with millions of fans) and are slowly expanding to the American market, with recent shows in New York Fashion Week. Been Trill, a favourite of rappers with money to blow, is self-described as “an art collective” that is “defined by the frenzy of new youth culture found on the pages of the deep web and on the blocks of big cities”. Virgil Abloh’s Off-White just revealed a one-off collection to be available exclusively at Rei Kawakubo’s Dover Street Market Ginza. Hood by Air, headed by Shayne Oliver, showed one part of his three part Spring 2015 collection in Paris. All boast an extensive celebrity clientele and a growing fan base that their respective 50,000+ Instagram followers can attest to.
So where does it all go from here? Nowhere but up it seems. Alexander Wang’s heavily anticipated H&M collection just showed last night at the Armory in New York. Shayne Oliver won a special prize from LVMH’s Young Designer Contest in May. From Lanvin x Acne to Undercover and Nike’s GYASKOU, collaborations between the luxe and the cool are here to stay. And with the new Spring 2015 shows bringing us even more to talk about (“The sunglasses at Balenciaga! The bags at Marni!”) and celebrities continuing to shine their über-bright spotlight on new brands (see: Rihanna’s MTV Movie Awards 2014 performance), the cycle goes on…
Text Hung Tran
“I’d clean out Vivienne Westwood in my Galliano gown,” she sung, as her arms held on anxiously to a swinging anchor. I was eleven years old when Gwen Stefani released “Rich Girl,” a catchy, gloriously choreographed video with lyrics written in the counterfactual conditional. Stefani, of course, had just embarked on what would become a hugely successful solo career. The irony flew straight over my head: her hypothetical penury, her culturally appropriative art direction, becoming clear only in hindsight. This was my first introduction to Galliano, and by extension, Dior. I spent the next few years researching and trying to make sense of this couturier, whose tinged, stately accent and flared moustache became its own caricature. And these weren’t exactly fun days for me—there was a lot of self-policing and self-preservation, as any boy who likes other boys would know. Galliano, to me, was the most magnificent, charismatic man in the world. Shameless about it, too.
Perhaps too shameless about it. His flamboyant flair wasn’t limited to the theatre of his runway presentations; theatre built itself around him. Prestige were mistook for promise, and mixed with alcohol, sleeping pills and stress—which Galliano claims contributed to his downward spiral—anti-Semitic vitriol was recorded on camera. Not just offensive, but cause for criminal conviction in France. Galliano’s departure from Dior has been well documented. No summary, and certainly no apologies, will be offered here. But since then, Galliano has undergone drug and alcohol rehabilitation; extended formal apologies to, and received welcome from, the Anti-Defamation League; as well as a brief residency at Oscar de la Renta’s studio. Earlier this year, Galliano became creative director of Russian perfume retailer L’Etoile.
Maison Martin Margiela, on the other hand, weaponized anonymity as a lucrative form of cultural cool. Kanye West dropped the name in a song, H&M dropped it in stores a year later, and the purists dropped their jaws. Some screamed sacrilege; some couldn’t wait to tell their friends that they had known about the brand pre-Kanye. And people actually suffered a sleepless night in the cold to buy the clothes in stores. Yet, it wasn’t the first time that the avant-garde lifted the smoke screen: Comme des Garcons and Viktor & Rolf—majority owned, with Maison Martin Margiela, by Italian company Only The Brave (OTB)—had already partnered with H&M. The difference this time, though, was that Martin Margiela himself had no influence over the operation, having departed from his namesake company in 2009. The founder would have detested the collection, the bastardisation of his genius watered down and hyped up for empty profit. All conjecture, of course—Martin doesn’t do interviews.
Maison Martin Margiela Fall/Winter 2007
This is precisely the current complaint: it’s about integrity and honour. Or something. Certainly, there must be some referential nod to founding designers, but there comes a point where retrospection turns reactionary. Alexander McQueen famously despised Givenchy, or at least, the aristocratic aestheticism that kept the house and its licenses buoyant. He later stated that his contract “was not conducive to creativity,” unsurprising for a brash Englishman at a company founded by French nobility. There was also controversy when Raf Simons, whose creative epiphany struck when he attended his first Maison Martin Margiela show in 1989, joined Jil Sander: Simons had never formally designed women’s ready-to-wear. Poetry, punk and pragmatism united beautifully. And, of course, there’s Hedi Slimane, whose borderline pathological disregard for the late Saint Laurent still raises eyebrows. That, and profits.
Maison Martin Margiela simply isn’t what it used to be. That spirit of collective contribution has been sullied by imperiousness; that organic sense of stealth has lost its gloss. Eric Wilson, fashion news director at InStyle, describes being banned by the company for reporting on Martin Margiela’s departure in 2009: “As an example of just how seriously the company took its policy of anonymity, after reporting on Margiela’s departure, I found myself banned from its presentations.” White has always been used by the design team to enforce uniformity, to erase individuality and specificity. The layers of context—of race, colour theory—can be unfolded endlessly, but it’s the lack of hierarchy that distinguishes the house. But even Margiela isn’t immune to the natural order. “When I returned after a few seasons in the penalty box…the mood had shifted,” Wilson writes. “Before, there had been no seating assignments, so the lowliest assistant could be in the front row, and editors in chief gladly sat in the back to witness whatever Margiela’s team had dreamed up. Now editors sit in assigned seats.”
It’s a stubborn allegiance to the “DNA” of a house that makes much of what we see on the runways look alarmingly familiar, tedious. Change is good; change is something we should welcome, especially if it comes in the gliding form of Galliano, who fuses social history with nuances of sartorial heresy. His work is layered and jagged and introspective, creative origami realised. Nothing good, or at the very least interesting, comes together because it “makes sense.” And really, if rationality is the metric of fashion moving forward, we’d have empty seats and empty ideas. The “DNA” of a house, it seems, is the relic of its early success: imagery immortalised in reference books—Dior’s New Look, Saint Laurent’s Le Smoking tuxedo suit. In basic biology, though, DNA is the genetic encryption that allows organisms to be self-regulating, and self-healing. Margiela could not and will not survive on its own. It needs new blood.
Photography Lucie Rox Model Matt Ardell (FM London) Location London, England
My aunt submitted my photos to DNA Models in New York.
When you wake up in the morning and look in the mirror, what’s the first thought that runs through your head?
I don’t know… I guess about how I want to shave my head or pop my pimples or something. Maybe I need to shave too that day lol.
I really like the emoji for the hearts and the glittery stars. The angel, cloud and pink flowers are my favorites!
If I was in a reality show, I would be in a new season of VH1′s I love New York and I would act as host of the show similar to Chris Harrison on the bachelorette!
Some characteristics I value in myself and others are caring for others and animals and sensitivity to others as well as the ability to stick up for yourself and be who you are. Being creative and having interesting ideas that are unique and your own as well.
What is one advice you would give to your 10-year-old self?
I would tell my 10 year old self to be patient and not grow up too fast because everything will happen when it is supposed to and I would say: your family loves you.
Matt Ardell lives in Brooklyn and attends Fashion Institute of Technology in New York with a major in Fine Art.
Photography Jasmine Maher Styling / Creative Direction Jamie-Maree Shipton Grooming Ellie Tseriotis Models Joel Barker / Luke C
Photography Kacey Jeffers Creative Direction Bianca Carosio Styling Askia Abdull Styling Asst James Scholsr Grooming Michael Chua Models Moses Gurman / Alexander Newman (RED NYC)
Leather trenchcoat Cockpit Tan Sweater BoohooMan Blazer and Mustard trousers HOWE Boots Rodd & Gunn / Navy Peacoat Cockpit Green Sweater BooHoo Man Green trousers HOWEHat and grey sweater Boohoo Man Oversized black coat Suzanne Rae / Oversized two-sided colour coat Suzanne Rae Grey Sweater Boohoo Man Grey Blazer ChapterWoven Coat HOWE Grey Sweater BooHoo Military Coat Cockpit Leather trenchcoat Cockpit Tan Sweater BoohooMan Blazer and Mustard trousers HOWE Boots Rodd & Gunn / Navy Peacoat Cockpit Green Sweater BooHoo Man Green trousers HOWE
Sweater Cockpit Buttonups Chapter Trousers HOWE Belt Calvin Klein Shoes Camper Tan Sweater Boohoo Man Blazer and Mustard trousers HOWE Boots Rodd & Gunn / Green Sweater Boohoo Man Green Trousers HOWE Boots Rodd & Gunn
Photography Virginie Khateeb Model Adrien Lesueur (Elite Models) Location Paris, France
How were you scouted?
At a street in Paris, by the fashion photographer Rainer Torrado. He approached me and presented me to the agencies!
French and English (but very poor!)
If you could be fluent in 3 langauges tomorrow, what will they be?
English, Mandarin and Russian.
I really like le quartier de la Bastille, de l’opéra Garnier and l’avenue des Champs-Elysée.
Who are some of your favourite directors and musicians?
My favourite directors are Hitchcock, Tarantino, Chaplin. Some of my favourite musicians are The Bloody Beetroots, Beny Benassi, Joris Delacroix….
My favourite websites are Youtube and Facebook.
How much time do you spend online each day?
I spend about 3 hours online each day… except when I am playing online games I might spend a little bit more time than usual!
At the moment, I don’t have any tattoos. But I definitely think I will not get a dolphin or “Maman pour la vie!” (laughs)