Trends come and go in art & design. With the internet, it seems this is a day-to-day occurrence rather than something that takes months or even years to evolve, so when a new aesthetic, a new ‘look’ starts to stick and really hang around, it’s a pretty exciting thing to me. If you don’t already know Leif Podhajsky, you’ve probably at least seen his work somewhere already…seems like it pops up as the cover of one of the 5 daily Pitchfork-reviewed albums like once a week, I swear…Bonobo, The Horrors, Youth Lagoon, Foals, Tame Impala, Grimes, Shabazz Palaces…the list goes on. Anyways, there’s been a reemergence in recent years of I guess what I’d call a new psychadelic aesthetic. Trippy, choppy, hard to look at in a good way…it’s easy to see why Podhajsky has been tapped to work with so many of these bands. His work match up so well with the music. Probably the best compliment I can pay to his work is that you can easily get lost in looking at it much like you can get lost with a good song playing in your headphones. There’s a lot to discover. Totally unexpected color palettes, classic gothic, grungy, oily rainbows and golds and perfect symmetry and inverted imagery floating in desert landscapes with this beautiful sort of 70’s retro vibe but without the boring-ness that usually comes with ‘retro’ graphics these days…there are some other great artists doing work in this vein as well…Justin Blyth is always doing killer stuff, Sabrina Ratté, I’d even say Eric Wareheim (of Tim & Eric fame) has been one of the champions of this stuff with his videos for Major Lazer, MGMT, HEALTH…Anyways, check out Leif’s site and get inspired.
Kind of wild for our first new interview. And, ha, its so perfectly our style. Weird, irreverent, but kind of that perfect look at who Tom Sachs is in the way he responded - and maybe a perfect show of how we do stuff - just posting the actual picture. We’ve always cut-and-pasted the exact response we get from people we interview - ha, took this one to another level. Interviewing and artist and he gave us a piece of art as his answer to our questions. Like Virg said, we’re trying to get those actual pieces of paper! Crazy. Anyway, yeah, Tom Sachs, chats with us about what he had for breakfast, his first art purchase, if he ever met Steve Jobs, etc, etc, etc. Get hip to it, and honestly the best way to learn more about his is Google, ha.
As into Art and all that as I am it’s almost as hard to make time to see Art as it was to find time to read. I hate reading LOL. Rather rarely have time for it. But a few nights ago at the MET Ball I got a glimpse of what I have been missing with these A-level exhibitions. I love this particular exhibit first and foremost because I love the point of view of people behind it. Nick Knight and Riccardo Tisci entitled Punk: “Chaos to Couture”. What I love most is this is a perfect exhibition for those that ignore the medium because of the “Zoolander-ness” of fashion. Punk is the perfect platform because it came from kids that didn’t give a shit about fashion and looked at expressing themselves in a utilitarian sense which is perfect launch pad for the Art of fashion. This exhibition puts those places and things right next to the dream. Recreations of Vivienne Westwood and Malcolm McLaren’s famous SEX shop that started it all to a cigarette-to-cigerette replica of CBGBs bathroom. All adjacent to couture gowns from Riccardo and rare Alexander McQueen, Christopher Kane interpretations of that punk fashion spirit. We’ve seen it on the internet, but rarely seen it with our own eyes. This is an exhibition you can learn from. Cliff-notes for fashion. Walking thru it its one of those moments you realize learning off the internet has a ceiling. Just when I get tired of fashion its great to be reminded that fashion is Art. The medium is fabric. Sans canvas.
I’ve gotten like entirely too into cars. Always been into the brands, etc, but now it’s more about the details - I’ve become obsessed with the melding of design and technology in newer cars - dual-clutch transmissions, carbon-ceramic brakes on road-going cars, “negative” torque-vectoring, turbos vs naturally aspirated, all the tech around quattro, etc, etc, etc. I’m still quite new to it all. Cars are these insanely complex pieces of design and art that we get to interact with every-day. An insane amount of moving pieces need to come together perfectly to get from idea to the street, you know? I actually dug around and researched the designer behind the last car I got, ha. It’s like, I think getting a clothing line designed & manufactured is challenging, think about a car, just totally blows my mind. So yeah, this whole post was supposed to be about this amazing car company, Koenigsegg, and this brilliant little web-series showing behind the scenes of their design, testing, and manufacturing process. The attention to detail and innovation is too inspiring. Sure, the cars are like $1M+ in cost and they’ve only made 100 - but its this guys kind of crazy ambition to be the best super car company in the world that makes it all so fascinating - and with a staff of just FORTY FIVE people?!?!1 The show can be a bit over-the-top technical - best one’s to start with are these two. What if tumblr kids started car companies instead of clothing lines??
***All that said - I’m actually not a fan of the Koenigsegg’s design. Too much engineering, not enough sex. Love the company though.
Let’s save the chat about how wild it is that since our 3 year hiatus “streetwear” totally did a back flip, came back and has like 3 different meanings depending on who your talking too. Could be a kid on Prince & Mercer, sales woman at a GIVENCHY buying appointment or London stylist. There’s differences from the glory days of ALIFE on Orchard St. and the GLOB days. I’ll get there in some way, I want to do a crazy roundtable interview surrounding it this summer. Back on track, sifting thru the lines that are classified in a broad sense as “streetwear” there is CAVEMPT. It reeks of being slept on. It’s what I call an open brand. Perfect for a rapper or female singer to only wear that to pin their identity against. What strikes me the most about the brand is the embedded art direction of the graphics and garment choices, the fact that its Skatething and the “bubbly” graphics are missing, and the lookbook videos fit in that rare category of fashion videos that don’t put you to sleep. Anyone that knows me know Im basically british and belong in Shoreditch or something. Little digging you’ll find the brand has many of roots there as well as Japan. To top it off producer Zomby is in the brain trust. Basically in this streetwear revival what attracts me to anything is that there is a real concept underneath arbitrary graphics. CAVEMPT. Leaders of a new streetwear.
“Digital Collage / Sculpture / Video / Painting” - the main navigation links on artist Kyle Williams’ site. Pretty normal stuff for an artists portfolio…alright, what do we have here, let’s see…”Lindsay Lohan’s 2010 Mugshot In Croutons”, “Classic TEVA Sandal Stuffed With 16 Hotdogs”, “Lana Del Rey Bass Guitar”, and my personal favorite and honestly one of the best things on the internet, “Eating A Salad Out of A Pair of Lady Air Jordans After Winning the Big Game”. (Seriously, click those)
See…this is why I love the internet. Where did this stuff exist before?? Maybe a conceptual artist like Erwin Wurm was doing these sort of blasé, weirdo, dry humor type things which I also really love but it would have been in the gallery realm. This particular brand of creativity exists best on the internet — Tumblr, Vine, Twitter…before all these platforms—just a few years ago, Kyle’s sort of work just didn’t exist to a larger audience. Take “Gummy Worm In A Drill”, one of his newest videos featuring…a gummy worm on a drill set to the theme music from ‘Home Improvement’. Without the immense platform that is the internet to post to, what’s the motivation to make that? Sure it’s funny to you and some friends…yeah…but you KNOW as soon as that goes on Tumblr people are going nuts for it. Anyways, I love what Kyle is doing. And you know we here at THE BRILLIANCE! love a good unchecked spelling error..so while we’re at it, go grab one of his ‘MICHAEL JODRAN’ tees and follow @keelayjams on Twitter. #VERY #VERY #VERY #INTETRNET
iTunes updates. For real. I avoid them like the plague. Usually out of a rush every time I plug in my phone into my laptop its a quick ‘cancel’ outta habit. The other day I hopped on Mike Will’s eardrummas…. laptop trying to navigate that new iTunes update…. whoa. It’s like super PC #vibes in there. That search function?? Who said the last update was broke by the way? In all those smart-kid conversations with the friends about wehter or not Apple has taken a downward spiral since Steve Jobs passing away I have always been the one to say, “Steve obviously left a roadmap for how the company should run for the next 10 years” and I have ignored the things like the weird ad campaigns and lackluster updates. But this one is gonna be hard to get over. Keep iTunes easy. Focus on making an all black skin of iTunes or something. Oh shit. I’m sounding like those crazy kids that comment on internet blog posts that I laugh at. I’ll stop LOL.
Man, the amount of hip-hip videos have we seen throughout our lives… It’s funny to think in like 50 years it is gonna be a genre of film-making that we grew up with. Thank the lord for Canon 5D’s. Of course there are like 30 per week and theres almost no rhyme or reason why one is amazing and why ones not. All it takes is an amazing shot or refreshing treatment and a video is amazing in my book. Like that Trinidad James puppy probably has its own twitter account. Google it. There has to be one… But Young Scooter Colombia has a magic to it. For me its that shot in the jungle. Of all the realistic drug visuals, this one is new. No extra people in the jungle, no extra people on the jet, no extra people in the pool. Nabil once told me, screw spending budgets on crazy sets, just buy a plane ticket instead. With that said, watch this video was shot in Miami. #whocares
There’s a post forever ago I made on here, 2006, it was about how I was using one of those PCMCIA (ha!!!) cards on my laptop that was basically a little cellphone from Sprint that gave you a web connection wirelessly. I was obsessed with this whole concept of properly wireless internet. Even since I was in high school when I wanted to make a Packet Ham Radio modem for my TI-80whatever calculator. Wow…nerd out. Google “packet radio”. Anyway, like 2 years ago I actually committed to this whole thing - cancelled internet at my condo and added the “tethering” service on my iPhone and bought a cellular iPad too. My friends were like?!!? It seemed silly until LTE became commonplace and now my cellphone has faster internet than most coffee shops and offices - everywhere I go. iPad and iPhone combined I go through like 16-18GB per month, so its not the most cost effective - but whatever - its not that far off in price. Remember when people were like “man, I don’t think I need a landline anymore…”??? #always #internet #everywhere
It’s cool to be posting again, first off…second off, all 3 of us - Chuck, Benjamin, & Virgil, have our own individual Twitters. But…we have the Twitter name @THEBRILLIANCE now too, and it cost us a TON of money, so help us recoup the costs by following us. You get paid every time you get a follower on Twitter right? That’s how it works right? I’m not seeing any more info about this anywhere…hmm…well, we’ll have to figure that out. We might be out like a million dollars…Let’s recap:
•Follow @THEBRILLIANCE on Twitter
•Benjamin on Twitter: @benjaminedgar
•Virgil on Twitter: @virgilabloh
•Chuck on Twitter: @nopattern