Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Carnie Folk

Yes indeedy … we got to be carnival trash this year at the Institute of Modern Art (Queensland) Cocktail Party. Is it just me, or is it getting bigger every year?

The gallery really knows how to mix up their audience: Thea Basiliou and Matt Brady from Blonde Venus/Outpost, the divine IMA-ites: Vanessa, Anna and Robert L, artists such as Tony Albert, Richard Bell, Gemma Smith, loads of GOMA-ites, academics such as Anthony Gardner, Rex Butler and Andrew McNamara and mountains of gorgeous young artists: Drea, Sarah, William and Leecee, you know who you are!

It was all about sword swallowing, beautiful filmic projections, white trash food (hot dogs and popcorn) and gorgeously dressed people ready to let their art frustrations and conceptual personas run wild.

The party continued at Ric’s upstairs with a gaggle of arty types, including Anthony Gardner (performing Goth dance routines), Angela Goddard, Tony Albert (yes, he IS everywhere), Nic Chambers and Danius Kesminas "looking for love".

A well-known filmic type enjoyed her alcohol a little too much and proceeded to perform a Merce Cunningham style interpretative dance routine to the sounds of the “Slave Piano”. Merce, don’t give up your day job.

Britney ... we thought of it first.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

I, Robot

We were huge fans of Thierry Mugler in the 90’s when he was at his peak - remember his video collaboration with George Michael in “Too Funky” and his S&M style robot creations?

First the Met lauds him in its “Superheroes” exhibition and now everyone is discussing his new role as the artistic director and costumier for Beyonce’s tour. Shame it is Beyonce, but hey, who is going to argue against his return to the spotlight, whatever form it takes.

Given our obsession with vintage and how fast we are making things vintage, it does make total sense to now saturate ourselves with all things 90’s. It is interesting to note the enormous influence Mugler has had on modern day couture: think Balecangia's robot leggings and anything by Gareth Pugh.

It's Thierry's re-turn.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Metal Head

Finally, a piece in an Australian magazine re Banks Violette (this month’s Art World), who I have been a major fan of for years now.

Okay, so he’s hot and stylish (has anyone ever been tattooed that well?) and so is his art (death metal and teen suicide references), but I think he achieves what he intends to. It’s tawdry and lazy of me, but Wikipedia has a great quote:

I'm interested in a visual language that's over-determined, exhausted, or just over-burdened by meaning. The heavy-handed one-to-one of 'black-equals-wrong' is incredibly interesting to me -- less as something that has a meaning in itself, but more in how those visual codes can somehow become reanimated. That's constant throughout my work. All those images are like zombies -- they're stripped of vitality, yet sometimes they get life back in them ... and. like zombies, usually something goes wrong when they wake up again."

It's all so poetically dark and completely sublime.

If only someone would bring him to Australia. John (Kaldor) ... anyone?

Rock & Rule

I know it is hardly unique to feature Karen O (Yeah Yeah Yeahs) as a style icon, as she is featured regularly on blogs like this as “hot” and “totally cool” and oh yes, she is those things.

But it made me think the reason we keep returning to her is that there is a total deficit of replacement style icons in this world. "They" are tying to herald Moloko singer, Roison Murphy as the next coming, but at times, even when in Margiela head to toe, it looks a tad forced. Lady Gaga and M.I.A. try to mix it up and have a great look … but they don’t have the crucial grungy element required to lose the pretension.

Is it a bit early for the word "icon"?