- RSS Channel Showcase 7263854
- RSS Channel Showcase 5636114
- RSS Channel Showcase 6487316
- RSS Channel Showcase 8518133
Articles on this Page
- 07/08/15--06:30: _Inside Patrick McMu...
- 07/09/15--09:00: _Check Out These Ins...
- 07/13/15--08:30: _Scenes from the Buo...
- 07/16/15--08:30: _Scenes from Gypsy S...
- 07/17/15--07:00: _Scenes from Jeffrey...
- 07/20/15--08:00: _Models-Turned-Jocks...
- 10/01/15--03:30: _Watch Petite Meller...
- 10/02/15--02:00: _A New Instagram Doc...
- 10/02/15--04:35: _Sing Along To Janet...
- 10/02/15--11:13: _The 10 Best Scary D...
- 10/02/15--12:00: _The Best, Worst, an...
- 10/07/15--05:05: _"In Praise Of Fat" ...
- 10/07/15--06:03: _PREMIERE: Jennie Ve...
- 10/07/15--06:33: _The Future Is Here,...
- 10/07/15--07:30: _13 Republican Night...
- 10/07/15--08:15: _Tosh.0's "Ladies Em...
- 10/07/15--09:20: _Exploring The Under...
- 10/07/15--09:30: _Chatting With Direc...
- 10/07/15--09:56: _Fund a Male Sex Toy...
- 10/07/15--10:24: _Peen Patrol: Here I...
- 07/13/15--08:30: Scenes from the Buoy R+R, a Post-Feminist Art Retreat and Residency
- 07/16/15--08:30: Scenes from Gypsy Sport's Insane NYFW: Men's Show
- 10/02/15--02:00: A New Instagram Documents Your Best Drug Dealer Texts
- 10/02/15--11:13: The 10 Best Scary Doll Movies Of All Time
- 10/02/15--12:00: The Best, Worst, and Weirdest of the Week
- 10/07/15--05:05: "In Praise Of Fat" Is A Short Film Examining The Sensuality of Fat
- 10/07/15--06:33: The Future Is Here, and It's FKA Twigs
- 10/07/15--07:30: 13 Republican Nightmares to Dress Up As for Halloween
- 10/07/15--09:20: Exploring The Underbelly of Food Tinder With User "Everything Bagel"
- 10/07/15--09:56: Fund a Male Sex Toy Called "3Fap" (or Don't!)
- 10/07/15--10:24: Peen Patrol: Here Is Justin Bieber Going Skinny-Dipping On Vacation
The first celebrity Patrick McMullan ever snapped was of future President Richard Nixon at the Walt Whitman Shopping Mall on Long Island in 1966 when the budding photographer was only 11 years old. “The Secret Service people saw me there with a camera and brought me right up to his car. I took his picture and shook his hand, but when I had the film developed, that photo, the last picture in the roll, was clipped off,” remembers the famed nightlife photog. “That was devastating to me.”
McMullan seems to have recovered rather resiliently from that first disappointment. At this stage in his thirty-year career, he's shot pretty much every famous person on Earth outside of the current Pope, the Dali Lama, and the Royal Family. “I think it could be a good excuse to get them all in a room together,” says the photographer from inside Salomon Contemporary in Chelsea, which is hosting a new exhibit titled Pictures from the Patrick McMullan Collection.
The show came about after the gallery’s owner, James Salomon, visited McMullan’s apartment with his son Matias to have their portrait taken. “I went wild over what I saw hanging on the walls,” says Salomon, who’s known McMullan for almost fifteen years. “I thought it could be a rare, insightful glimpse into his world. Such an ensemble we thought would make a great gallery show."
The exhibit, which will run until July 31st, features a sprinkling of Patrick’s own work, but mostly includes over 200 images from other famous photographers and artists, as well as items McMullan has purchased, traded, bartered or found throughout his fabulous life. In fact, McMullan is still adding to the exhibit as we speak. “They kept saying, ‘We have enough stuff!’ but I keep bringing in more,” McMullan says. “I see blank space on a gallery wall and in my mind it’s Manifest Destiny!”
The photographer was gracious enough to spend a recent afternoon walking us through a selection of works from the likes of David LaChapelle, Steven Klein, Harry Benson, Mary Ellen Mark, Bruce Weber, and more. Take a look at photos from the show and read McMullan's recollections, below.
Kate Moss -Paris -1994
"I never met a model I didn’t like. I respect models because it’s not so easy to turn it on and off. Kate, she’s never been anything but sweet to me, even when she didn’t need to be. She’s very Marc Jacobs in the sense that she’d break away from Anna Wintour at a party just to come give me a hug. And this image…Harry Benson is my favorite living photographer today."
$6.95 USMC Boy in Briefs
"I bought this in Providence. It’s just this young boy-very Americana. He’s right at that age where he’s becoming a man. It says a lot about America’s view on war and sex. Also, there’s something a little taboo, very intimate, and very powerful and I love the price tag; I had to leave it on."
Madonna Summer, 1998
"I remember David LaChapelle from when he was a child, like 16 or 17 at the Palladium or Studio 54. He was always a lot of fun and naturally glamorous. He liked to dress up -- a true participant. He’s fearless and similar to Annie Leibovitz in that he’s more like Scorsese than your average photographer. They’ll both have twenty-five people on a set! It’s crazy.
This was around the period when David did Rise -- that dance film. And Madonna. Here she is again -- the queen of the world. She just is, whatever she is. She’s our Elvis. I want her to play the Bette Davis role in All About Eve. She’d kill as a modern rock 'n' roll version of Margo Channing."
Rescue at Rabaul,
PBY Blister Gunner, 1944
"Horace Bristol was a Life Magazine photographer. This gunner jumped into the water to rescue a marine pilot who was shot down. He then climbs back up, sopping wet and hot, and gets right back to his gun. No time for clothes. You know, as a photographer, you have to be in love with the people in the picture a little bit, no matter who they are, even if it’s avuncular. Horace treated this shot will love. This man in the image is a movie star."
Nickel Tailings #34
Sudbury, Ontario, 1996
"One of my most expensive buys. Burtynsky is a very famous photographer. This is the aftermath of a meltdown in China I believe. The orange river is so beautiful. I love everything he does, so odd. If I had the money I’d buy five more of his pieces."
Jessica Craig Martin
Casa Rosada, Buenos Aires, 1998
"Jessica Craig Martin is a friend and she such a wonderful eye-so different from my own and she’s great at editing down. I shoot a thousand images and like 900, whereas she’ll only keep twenty. She also really knew how to get that close crop and make it magical. I bought this because it acknowledges that I have a fetish or fascination, I guess you could say, a 'fetish-nation' for chandeliers."
Madonna In Love With Herself, 1986
"Interview Magazine once ran a photo of mine of a little baby horse running around. Bruce Weber told me how much he loved that image. I traded him for this photo of Madonna kissing the mirror. This image is so not Bruce Weber to me, which is why I like it. Also, I really idolize Madonna. No, the word idolize is wrong. It’s more like respect. I 'respectalize' Madonna. Here she is in her prime. Perfection.
We were at a party once and I said to her, 'Hey Madonna, I’m a father now.' She said, 'You’re a father? Then I guess I can be a mother.' I said, 'You’ll love it. You’ll fall in love.'"
Horse Neck II, 1995
Gelatin Silver Print
"I don’t know what’s up with Steven Klein cutting heads off. I guess he’s sick of faces. It’s not even a horse to me; it’s just a fun shape. He’s so talented."
Mary Ellen Mark
Elise Collins with Flags
Union, South Carolina 1992
"Mary Ellen Mark was one of the first photographers I ever met when I did PR back in 1979. I really wanted one of her Mother Teresa pictures. She was so in demand at the time. She would do print runs like, 1 of 150, which is crazy. I do 1 of 5 at most."
Mike wäscht sich mit anderen 1963 Translation: "Mike washes with others"
Schule Schloss Salem
Boarding school in Salem, Baden-Württemberg, Germany
"I absolutely love, love, love Will McBride. He is a hero of mine. This, it’s something sexy, fun and boyish. I saw it on the cover of a book, and fell in love. So when the opportunity came up to by a print, I couldn’t pass it up."
Vineyard, Late Afternoon Autumn, 2002
"I collect a lot of what I call quiet, silent, empty, lonely, peaceful photos. I’m not an extrovert, I’m an introvert. I had to work hard to be outgoing. I had a very intimate and quiet relationship with the darkroom. I would spend 14, 15 hours a day in there. I used to use my hands and in 1981 I came down with cancer. I was sleeping above the chemicals. Just like cigarettes, who knew?"
James Salomon and Patrick McMullan
Inside the exhibit
"I've always been intrigued by the pageant concept and the participants," photographer Everett Meissner tells us. "The idea of putting yourself out there to be judged on your appearance, personality and talent is something I think most people try to avoid in their lives." Meissner recently shot a photo series called "Senior Beauty Pageant," featuring AARP-approved beauty queens vying for the tiara instead of twentysomething college students. His images were taken at the Ms. Senior Massachusetts pageant, part of the Ms. Senior America pageant where all participants have "reached the 'Age of Elegance'" (or are 60-years old or more). Below, we take a look at several photos from Meissner's series and hear what he learned about the pageant experience and aging gracefully.
"While doing some research I discovered the Senior America Pageant, which I didn’t know existed. I thought it would be an interesting project to shoot in the sense that there seems to be a tremendous amount of pressure on women these days to look as young as possible and here's this pageant celebrating their age."
"The pageant was held at Holyoke High School in Holyoke, Massachusetts. It was the state finals for Miss Senior Massachusetts. I took the portraits in a hallway of the high school during the event. I thought of several different ways to photograph them, but in the end I decided to eliminate the environment with the white background so the viewer would be forced to just focus on these women. I photographed the contestants between their time on stage and also the past winners who were participating in the event."
"My original thought [for this series] was not to name the photos so it's more about the idea of older women competing in a pageant than certain individuals."
"We talked about age and beauty and what I picked up on the most was how often the women would compliment each other. While I was shooting someone, their friend would say something like 'doesn’t she look good! You know she’s 80!' or whatever their age was. It was a very supportive atmosphere."
"I was shooting a previous winner who was one of the older women there, and while she was getting ready for me to photograph her she said 'oh wait' and moved the slit in her dress a little to expose some leg. I thought that was great and took that as her showing she's still got it."
"Ruth Harcovitz was great to photograph and ended up winning the pageant. She will now advance to the Nationals."
"I came away thinking these women are pretty badass. They were very confident and direct. When you spoke with them, you would get the sense that they were very proud of themselves and their age. They were direct when they wanted to do something a certain way."
"I found their attitudes inspiring. Instead of slowing down and letting life pass them by these woman are charging forward in life."
Viva Soudan and Bailey Nolan, aka the movement-oriented artist team Buoy, caught our attention this spring with their announcement that they were accepting applications for a residency and retreat at an 11-acre property in Deep River, Connecticut, catering chiefly to post-feminist performance art duos.
At the Buoy R+R, which took place from July 6th to 12th and was co-directed by Wesley Flash and fluct's Monica Mirabile, participants were invited to use their bodies to develop site-specific performance pieces inspired by the land itself and conceptual prompts (e.g. manipulation, nurture, anxiety, joy, danger) provided by Buoy. On the final day, they invited the public to witness their creations in a “gallery” walk, which was part guided, part choose-your-own-adventure style.
Transported via a magical blue, Buoy-chartered converted school bus from Bushwick, we were lucky enough to be a part of the audience at the culminating event, which was also attended by Deep River locals. Below, check out some of our favorite moments from this unique exercise in creative collaboration.
Alexandra Marzella, Claire Christerson and India Menuez performing as the Buoy R+R’s only trio
On the bus, which ran from the Junxion gallery in Bushwick
Scenes from the bus en route to Deep River
Scenes from the bus en route to Deep River
Buoy greeting the arriving audience
Even the Buoy port-o-potty is uplifting and magical
Claire Christerson, leading the audience
Ella Robin Rosenberg and Angela Whitehead, invoking a waterfall
India Menuez, guiding the audience
Alexandra Marzella, India Menuez, Claire Christerson
Go! Push Pops - a queer, transnational, feminist radical art collective run by Elisa Garcia De La Huerta and Katie Cercone
Viva and Bailey beckon
Go! Push Pops
Alexandra Marzella and Claire Christerson
Ellen Robin Rosenberg and Angela Whitehead
Admiral Gray and Katie Harrington
India Menuez, Claire Christerson and Alexandra Marzella coax the audience through an s+m-tinged limbo moment
Roxanne Crocker and Kiera Jaffin made food for the week
Buoy’s version of a campfire
Following the performances, Buoy led an artist talk and q+a during dinner
The bus was an adventure in its own right, especially when it broke down in a rest stop parking lot. Here, passengers kill time with some 2am stretches before ultimately finding alternate modes of transport back to Brooklyn.
Yesterday, Paper Beautiful Person and Gyspy Sport Designer, Rio Uribe, transported us to a post-apocalyptic world of men's athleisure at his NYFW: Men's show. With a mix of materials that spanned everything from basketball net rope and puka shells to mesh and raw denim, the basketball and football uniforms, safari gear, '90s ravers and more. It's by far the most original show we've seen so far at NYFW: Men's as these photos by Rebecca Smeyne can attest. Take a look, below.
This week Jeff Rüdes invited his most fashionable friends to the opening of his first boutique in Soho. Rüdes, who was previously the founder/owner of J Brand jeans, has turned his sartorial eye to menswear and the party also served as a preview of the Spring 2016 collection whose look is sharp, tailored and expensive. The revelers included Amar'e Stoudmire, Atlanta de Cadenet Taylor, Nick Wooster and Jim Moore. Check out photos from the night, below.
Jeffrey Rüdes (center) flanked by models
Atlanta de Cadenet Taylor
Brendan Monaghan and Mark Lloyd
PAPER's Kim Hastreiter and David Hershkovits sandwich Jeff Rüdes
Lauren Joseph and Eric Rutherford
It was hot in every sense of the word at the annual Adidas Fanatic soccer tournament, held at Pier 5 in Brooklyn Bridge park, this past sweltering Saturday. The invite-only event offers all kinds of complimentary delights: beer, copious BBQ, an ice cream truck, limited-edition 'Fanatic' tank tops and blankets. Add to this a spectacular skyline view, and eye candy for miles, in the form of models, athletes, and the almost painfully chic friends and family comprising teams from style-forward institutions such as Acne, V Mag, Ace Hotel, Vice, Opening Ceremony, Momofuku, and Kinfolk, and we have ourselves a winner.
In a beloved episode of the "Twilight Zone" called "Living Doll," a girl's baby doll threatens her hateful stepdad, played by Telly Savalas, icily declaring "my name is Talky Tina and I'm going to kill you" before sending him careening down a flight of stairs. That episode majorly freaked out kids for years and I have to admit the idea of dolls coming to life and creepy-crawling around the house is unsettling. Here are 10 other examples of a movie genre I call BadDollicore. See all of these with children you hate:
The Conjuring (2013)
A surprisingly scary movie based on the real life "paranormal investigators" Ed and Lorraine Warren who try to help a family who buy a majorly haunted house in Rhode Island. But most people remember the side story about the possessed Annabelle doll. Whoever designed this doll was brilliant. It looked damn frightening and was effective in setting the tone of the movie. (There was a later spinoff movie about the doll that was disappointing. Skip it.)
Trilogy Of Terror (1975)
A great TV movie by Dan Curtis based on stories by Richard Matheson. The favorite from the anthology, however, was a film featuring Karen Black as a woman who buys a Zuni fetish doll for her boyfriend only to have it come to life and viciously chase her around her apartment. Scary and silly at the same time but the final image of the episode is genius.
An underappreciated movie by Stuart Gordon, the director of "Re-Animator." On a dark and stormy night a bunch of stranded strangers end up in the mysterious mansion of a weird old couple of toy makers. During the course of the evening the toys come to life and don't play nice. The stop-motion scenes were the dolls re-animate are pretty wonderful and a beautiful new Blu-ray is now available from Shout! Factory.
"They're Heeere..." Terrific haunted house thriller by Tobe Hooper where a family comes under attack in their home by unexplained phenomena. The young boy's clown doll grabbing him from under the bed is every kid's worst nightmare.
Black Devil Doll From Hell (1984)
Director Chester Novell Turner's outrageous movie about a church lady who buys a Rick James-looking dummy from a thrift store only to have it attack her in the middle of the night. This straight-to-video oddity will unhinge your jaw.
Child's Play (1988)
A mother buys her son a popular Chucky Doll -- a red-headed blue-eyed boy doll in overalls that promises he'll "be your friend to the end." Unfortunately the soul of a serial killer (Brad Dourif) is trapped inside the doll and he gets up to his old tricks. This was a more straightforward thriller than the later films, but "Bride Of Chucky"(1998) and "Seed Of Chucky" (2004) are also a scream.
Tales From The Hood (1995)
A refreshingly fun spin on the omnibus horror film. Clarence Williams III plays a mortician who tells four macabre stories to some boys from the neighborhood. My favorite stars Corbin Bernsen as a loathsome politician and Klu Klux Klan bigwig living in a Southern mansion who gets his bloody comeuppance when dolls buried under the floorboards housing the souls of abused slaves come roaring to life.
Devil Doll (1964)
There have been some great movies about puppets coming to life like "Dead Of Night" (1945) but I get a kick of out this junky one starring Bryant Haliday as "The Great Vorelli,"-a renowned ventriloquist and hypnotist who sets his sights on an heiress's fortune. But his dummy "Hugo" has other plans.
Puppet Master (1989)
This was the beginning of a huge franchise for Charles Band's Full Moon Entertainment and starred the late, great, William Hickey as Andre Toulon, a puppeteer who can breathe life into his weird puppets. Chased by the Nazis, he shoots himself and years later a group of psychics meet at a hotel and unwittingly bring the creatures back to life. "Pinhead,""Ms. Leech,""Blade,""Jester," and "Tunneler" were well loved by morbid kids.
Dolly Dearest (1991)
Trying too hard to make a female "Chucky" movie, this is about a little girl who goes to Mexico with her daddy and brings home a pretty, possessed doll who runs around the house wielding a pair of scissors and shrieking, "It's time to play!"
Read only the subject lines and pretend I'm in a secret relationship with President Obama pic.twitter.com/xz7LDJnJOc-- Kate Kiefer Lee (@katekiefer) October 1, 2015
One month before we meet, FKA twigs, sitting in an east London café, threatened to quit interviews for good. "I can't do it," she told an alarmed Sunday Times writer, staking out the border between her public and private lives. "It makes me feel nutty."
The dispute, sparked by a question about her rumored engagement to actor Robert Pattinson, testifies to a mounting frenzy around Tahliah Barnett. A former backup dancer for Kylie Minogue and Ed Sheeran, the 27-year-old has harnessed underground subcultures past and present -- from '80s NYC vogueing to Tricky's trip-hop mysticism to the dreamier outskirts of UK grime -- to radically reinterpret pop. Despite her inventive tastes, she's found a broad fan base spanning Tumblr diehards and mainstream dabblers -- some drawn to her vulnerability, others to the boldness with which she performs it. In addition to three virtuosic EPs and a well-loved full-length, last year's LP1, twigs recently expanded her pop culture empire with two multidisciplinary projects: Soundtrack 7, an ambitious dance endeavor encompassing the rehearsal, performance and real-time documentation of a new piece every day, and Congregata, her celebration of vogue, krump and bone-breaking staged in London and New York.
Born in rural Gloucestershire, South West England, Barnett is a self-described "country girl" whose capacity for creative expression vastly exceeds her desire to discuss it. In her videos, which she often directs or co-directs, twigs alternately satirizes and subverts sexual dynamics, presenting herself as a helpless porcelain doll ("Water Me"), a matriarch ("Glass & Patron") or a gilded goddess ("Two Weeks"), as if to demonstrate her total mastery over her own body. Sometimes, as her visuals challenge gendered notions of power and control, the music induces a state of ecstatic surrender. Her work feels utopian, hinting at a safe space for radical self-invention. The songs threaten to climax but more often collapse suddenly into negative space, where they're resurrected from the sparest elements. To listen in is to hover in a space of constant becoming. "I could take you over the edge," she seems to tease, "but you couldn't handle it." She's probably right.
We spoke on a Tuesday evening in the dressing room of a North London photo studio. Right now, twigs is hunkered over a takeout dish of steamed fish and vegetables, winding down from a five-hour shoot. In spite of her music, Barnett avoids addressing the political subtexts of race and sexuality in her art, preferring such tangible subjects as her peers and process. As a result, her most animated moments come when you least expect them. At one point, midway into a sermon on the virtues of health food -- "Being on tour, you have to be strict: sushi, tuna, sea bass and vegetables" -- she suddenly yanks the handbrake, saying, "But I do love cake." It's clearly a point of pride, because she elaborates on the theme -- "I mean, I love it" -- before leaning forward and catching my gaze with a look that says: "Please accept this deep truth." Seconds pass, and her expression melts into a dreamy sort of yearning before she concludes, "Cake's amazing."
PAPER: We're talking about Nowstalgia in this issue, and the way the past continually informs the present. Since you've been wary of appropriation in the past, I'm interested in how you went about respectfully incorporating vogue culture into Congregata and the "Glass & Patron" video.
FKA TWIGS: With vogue, it's because I've done the roots properly. I made friends with a guy called Derek Prodigy, and I said, "Will you show me some moves?" So I got a studio, and I started going to Kiki balls [an entry-level vogue subculture], dancing a little bit, but not competing. I've never done a battle, because I'm not good enough yet. If I went and walked in a ball, I'd get chopped. You have to freestyle for so long, sometimes for 15 minutes. It's been two years and I can probably only do two and a half minutes. And then I'd be like, [imitates drowning person] "Sorry, I ran out of moves!"
PAPER: Were there precedents in pop for your performance? Early Björk comes up a lot in your press.
TWIGS: Obviously Björk is a very sexual and beautiful woman, but she often keeps her sexy on a down-low. I don't really do that. I throb. Do you know what I mean? I have that throbbing energy, and I accept it, and I harness it when I need to. It's not even a conscious thing.
PAPER:People seem to connect viscerally, even though the shows are quite abstract. You seem to cultivate a different relationship from, say, the Taylor Swift model, where the hook is how much you want to be her friend.
TWIGS: I think Taylor Swift is great, but I wouldn't necessarily think, "Oh my god, I have to be friends with her." When I meet fans, they're quite creative and intelligent, kind, sensitive. Some are old ladies, witch doctors from Louisiana, kids that have just left art school. Gay or lesbian couples, straight middle-aged couples...
PAPER: Does that breadth reflect something about your work?
TWIGS: I'm honest, and that comes out. Honest people come in lots of different types and they relate to things that aren't straightforward. I'm happy that people can roll with me, give me a chance, and let me explain my songs through my visuals. But I don't even like calling fans "fans." It's like, [pulls face ] Ugh, fans. [laughs] It's just people that like your music.
PAPER:When you're a fan, though, you feel like one. You're in awe and you feel secondary.
PAPER: Do you remember hanging around after shows to meet famous people?
TWIGS: I never did that! I never went to any shows. I went to ballet class, or opera lessons. I was a bit too focused when I was a kid.
PAPER:What were you obsessed with outside your own stuff?
TWIGS: Probably Marlon Brando or someone like that. Even then, half those people were dead, so I knew the limitations of that relationship. I've never had that, "Oh my god, I've gotta wait backstage!" There is one person: I met Prince when he did a little show at Paisley Park in Minneapolis, where I supported him. I was a little bit like, "Wow. I met Prince." Because he is, obviously, so epic. But even then, he just gave me some black currant juice and we played table tennis.
PAPER: You've said you were always a confident performer, even though you're naturally quite shy.
TWIGS: Once you get over the initial shock that the world could potentially be watching, it's fine. Obviously, there's that moment where your first video goes viral, and before you know it, 500,000 people have watched you. You freak out about it, you go and tell your best friend... but then you start chatting about something else and you forget. I'm not affected by what fans would think, or by people critiquing what I do.
PAPER: Who are you doing it for, if not fans?
TWIGS: For my kids, probably.
PAPER: In the Michael Jackson-at-the-Super Bowl sense?
TWIGS: Not the children of the world; I mean the children that I haven't had yet. [pats her stomach] I'm quite traditional. You know that saying, "You can take the girl out of the country but you can't take the country out of the girl"? I grew up in Gloucestershire, and there's a certain format that people fit into. And I'm actually quite happy with that format. I'm quite happy to say, "Go to school, work hard on your GCSEs, do your A-Levels, get married, have children. Send your kids to a nice school. Make sure you're in the right catchment area."
PAPER:Have you always been like that?
TWIGS: I think so. I just like working hard and learning things. I do this because I want my children to have a nice life, and I want my children's children to have a nice life. And I want my grandkids to be proud of what I've achieved. And I want to be a role model, but not for the world. I don't mind about that -- that'll come or it won't come. It's no different from being a car salesman. Imagine if I said to a car salesman, "Why are you doing that?" [They'd say] ''Cos I want to work hard, and I want to have a nice life, and when I have kids, I want to be able to buy a house." It's still the same values. You're looking at me like I'm mad.
PAPER:I don't think you're mad. I'm surprised though.
PAPER:Because your art seems to raise questions beyond yourself.
TWIGS: What kind of questions?
PAPER:The way you present yourself in your music and videos -- your body, feelings, desires -- feels sort of radical. When you mentioned kids, I assumed you wanted to shift an ideal for future generations. To make the world a more welcoming place for somebody like you.
TWIGS: I don't really look at it in terms of the world. It's amazing to create a platform for people I think are talented, whether it's my dancers or other musicians I know, but it's not a drive. It's just something that feels fun with your friends. It makes you less lonely.
PAPER: As you get more popular, is it tempting to think about those friends in terms of what they represent, rather than as individuals?
TWIGS: The thing is, I'm not a heavy person. Imagine it's this simple: someone is really good at fixing cars, and you're going to quiz them about how they fix a car. They'd be, like, [mimicking a Dickensian urchin] "Cor, I dunno, really. Me dad taught me this when I was a kid and then I got my first motor when I was 15..." That is literally how it is for me. Which isn't to say I don't take great care over what I do. I know what I'm good at and I know what I need to get better at. But I don't think in terms of a movement.
PAPER:What do you want to get better at?
TWIGS: Probably writing songs, or producing. Or classical dancing, contemporary dancing. Vogueing. I need to get better at being in front of the camera, not feeling awkward if I go on the red carpet. Or when it's one of those moments where you're suddenly the center of attention. It's fine like this -- if you're talking to me, I don't feel awkward. But if it's loads of people, like, "twigs! twigs!" I don't... I need to get better at that. I need to get better at talking to people in groups. If I go to a party or dinner party, not feeling like I have to be really quiet. I need to get better at texting people back. I need to get better at relaxing. I don't get much time off, but even if I get one evening, I'm like, "I will hand wash everything I own."
PAPER: When you covered Sia's "Elastic Heart" on Radio1 earlier this month month, I saw some Internet dude tweet, "Nah, not feeling FKA twigs. Bit of a wet blanket." The fact that that was a voice of dissent, rather than the status quo, felt like some kind of victory.
TWIGS: Totally. I mean, to do what I do, to put out music into the world and put yourself at the forefront of a feeling, you've got to be so brave anyway. Let alone to not just write a song [that is] like, "Baby baby, I love you maybe maybe/ Can I be your girl, let me rock your world." To write things that are, like, "Fuck, that was inside, now it's out," you have to be so brave, because ultimately you're going to get people throwing rocks at your babies -- throwing rocks at your songs, your feelings.
PAPER: You have to keep putting your babies out there.
TWIGS: Yeah, because it doesn't matter, you know? And because you can't do anything that everybody likes. You can't make shoes everybody likes. Me and my mates, we do whatever we wanna do. And actually, I think there's something quite punk about that. Not screaming into a mic or wearing leather straps every day, but doing whatever the fuck I wanna do. So to me, that's punk. That's not a wet blanket.
Read our second cover story with Grace Jones here!
Go here for more about our Nowstalgia issue, on stands October 20th.
The Republican campaign for Presidency has not only been providing miles of fabulous entertainment, it's also serving up a template for the best scary Halloween costumes to glom onto this year. Here are the 13 spookiest, if you want to ward off the throngs -- and by the way, I will include some candidates who've fallen out of the race or who ran in previous ones; they're all still scary and besides, there's always 2020, when they'll be going up against Kanye West.
Wear clothes from China, carry a satchel from Mexico, bronze your skin the color of autumn leaves, and shave off all your hair except for one, which you should contort into a winding shoelace of horror on your head. And bronze that, too. Voila -- you're Trump! Still want to go out in public?
Want to be the New Jersey Governor with aspirations? Wear a dizzying striped tie (make sure the stripes are at an angle) to distract from your various scandals and your utter lack of viability as a candidate. Whatever else you put on is of no consequence. Just make sure to get your hands on that mind blowing necktie, and wear it real tight.
As with Christie, it doesn't matter much what you wear. All that matters is that you talk Spanish -- nonstop Spanish, even more so than Bloomberg used to spout it at press conferences. This will prove that you're multilingual, married, and totally accepting of legal immigrants. And if a sizeable portion of the population just stands there going, "What the fuck did he just say?" that's even better.
I've looked at an array of photos of the imposing businesswoman, and here's what I feel is imperative in order to look like her: First off, iron your hair! You'll never find a wig that's as fine and curl-free as Carly's tamed tresses, so you need to literally apply an iron to your head, no matter what the price. Secondly, go for basic, solid colored outfits -- red or blue shit that you can find at middlebrow places like Bolton's. Accessorize those with minimal, understated jewelry which you can find by scouring bins in the back of thrift stores or picking out the least eye catching items on QVC. And add a serious, squinty eyed look that will enable you to lay off scads of people.
The most notorious thing about the ex-Texas governor's campaign was that he ran out of money to pay his staff. So dressing like him would be easier than discounted pie. Wear nothing but shorts! And be surrounded by no one! Any good Rick Perry wannabe should be barely dressed and totally alone. Better yet, don't go out at all. Do a Rick Perry and suspend your campaign.
A retired neurosurgeon, Carson famously separated conjoined twins in 1987, after working with scores of other medical professionals for 22 hours. He's also dividing the Republican party with his nutty remarks. And so, dressing like Carson would involve holding a scalpel in one hand and a bible wrapped in a flat tax plan in the other. Terrifying!
By now, this costume is a perennial, and it's really quite simple. Get yourself a Wicked Witch of the West ensemble, complete with makeup, and make it extra green. Oh, and be sure to talk "American" all day because that's the language we all understand. Um, I mean English.
To evoke the aura of the Louisiana Governor, smack the most insincere smile in history on your puss and sport short-ankled flood pants with which to constantly remember Katrina. And considering Jindal's obsession with not making same-sex wedding cakes, you should instead walk around handing out pieces of chocolate cake to Chris Christie lookalikes. It'll be even more delicious than the aforementioned discounted pie.
In order to be the Texas Senator, you should talk Spanish, which will come off even more effective than Jeb Bush doing so -- after all, Cruz really is a Cuban American. Furthermore, rail and scream about "maricons," since Cruz has avidly postured against gay marriage. But make sure to have a few wealthy gays with you all day, seeing as Cruz famously garnered the support of gay NYC hoteliers who clearly care about the right to party more than the right to marry. As for what to wear? A boring suit, a pale blue tie, and a sharky smile. Bueno? Oh, and steer clear of the Marco Rubio lookalikes, to avoid confusion for the Trump lookalikes.
If you have some dark desire to be the South Carolina Senator, wear a goofy grin and some sort of Meritorious Service Medal as you scream "War! Intervention! Kill 'em!" You'll be adorable.
As the Governor from Wisconsin, you should hold up the issue of the Nation with the headline, "Scott Walker is Trying To Save His Failing Campaign By Bashing Unions." Or, if you prefer irony, carry a "STRIKE" sign.
The ex-Pennsylvania Senator and repeat candidate who previously lost the nomination to Romney, Santorum is rabidly against same-sex rights and "artificial birth control." So anyone dressing up as the guy should march around accompanied by a pregnant straight woman, to show the world where your boundaries are. What to wear? The same boring suit all the other ones own, along with a wrinkled brow, a concerned mouth, and a big thumbs up for the person other than yourself who is going to get the nomination.
A stethoscope, tea bags, an American flag, and some painted-on dimples, and you're all set. Prepare to scare.
We all know that Tosh.0 is garbage. You will know this if you are a regular reader of this website, have even a glimmering of political awareness re: various systems of institutional oppression, and/or do not have the comedic sensibility of a six-year-old. But the show did something even more horrifying yesterday: a "Female Empowerment Episode," during which the show (still hosted solely by Tosh) would, in theory, make up for years of lazy and bad jokes about women.
No, but that's also the last thing I'm interested in. I can definitely sense that there is a potential for a possible romance stemming from a Tinder account as a food, if one were able to make a smooth transition from food to human without seeming like a total creep/sociopath. But let's just say I would rather find romance at a Walmart.
"I was born in the ego jungle," laughs Gaspar Noé as we chat in a suite overlooking the Toronto skyline. It's the Toronto International Film Festival and the Argentinian director is poking fun of his home country ("you know how an Argentinian commits suicide? He jumps from the top of his ego!") amidst chatting with us about his latest film, Love, a 3D movie about a young couple's torrid romance (and subsequent ménage à trois) in Paris that's been getting buzz for its explicit sex scenes. He's joined by his lead actor, Karl Glusman, who gamely gets in a few Argentina digs of his own while opening up to us about the rollercoaster ride that was the film, one in which he did full-frontal nudity and ejaculation scenes. They're on a new rollercoaster ride now -- although one that seems to be on a steady ascent without any dips, twists or turns -- as the film rides a mounting wave of good press following its screenings at Cannes and TIFF. Ahead of its release on October 30th, we heard more about the film's rocky start, what it's like to have your family watch your sex scenes and their thoughts about falling in love. Read on but beware of spoilers.
Gaspar, what does love mean to you?
Gaspar Noé: The answer is in the movie: mainly love is the light. It's like a hardcore drug; you get addicted to it. You get addicted to being in love. It's like all these chemicals that get released in your brain: serotonin, endorphins, dopamine. They link to your brain and help you fall for a person's smell and their energy. You get stoned with the idea of falling in love. And the moment the relationship falls apart, you're in total pain like a junkie without his needle in his arm. You're shaking. It's extremely addictive. The best moments of my life have been moments of love. These carnal moments of hugging, kissing, fucking with someone you're obsessed with.
So then, what does hate mean to you?
GN: It's not the same but it's not really the opposite. When you hate something it's because you feel attacked so it's a protective mechanism. You feel the world is against you for one reason or another. When you're in love, you're going towards the world or space around you. And that becomes your obsession. It's weird because the word love can contain different meanings. You can love people you're not attracted to. You can love your father, mother, sister, brother, your friends, your son. You can also love your present girlfriend or ex girlfriend without being in love with the person. Yet you can be in love with a person without loving them as a human. If you can find the combination of the two, that would be great.
When I watched the film, it felt like the love between Electra and Murphy was so passionate, that it sometimes morphed into hate. You have Murphy scream "you fucking cunt" in an attempt to get Electra back, for instance.
GN: That's things people say in real life when they're in love and they turn angry! When you're in love -- you want to protect and be protected. You don't want to lose the object of your desire. You turn paranoid when you're in that moment of passion. Jealousy can be exciting but also very destructive. This movie didn't focus on the issues that destroy couples most nowadays: emails and cellphones that are checked by someone (in the relationship) who is suspicious. If you are suspicious you will always find a positive answer to your suspicion. You'll find a text that reads "I miss you" and that's when the monster is unleashed.
Karl, how was it to shoot these extremely sexual and passionate scenes?
Karl Glusman: Often when you're extremely emotional, you sort of black it all out. Especially with the way we were shooting with no scripted dialogue, Gaspar liked to surprise us. He wouldn't want to talk too much about what we were shooting that day. He'd just fiddle with the lights with our DP and then tell us what just happened in the film and it helped create this anxiety and excitement. And it's not nice to yell at someone as long as we were, especially when you become friends in real life. I found myself apologizing and hugging.
GN: I think the most horrible thing was what Karl said to Omi. The insult in the cab. He asked her "what is the meanest thing I could tell you?" and she said "that I'm going to be a bad mother to my baby." And I didn't know she said that to him and as we were shooting he yelled that at her.
KG: And she would say to me "you're stupid, stupid!" We'd leave the camera rolling for 45 minutes at a time sometimes. It was exhausting.
GN: The thing is with the 3D cameras, when you stop the camera, the technician would have to come on to recalibrate, and against his will would kill the mood. So I decided for us not to cut the camera and the takes. It was a way to keep the energy and mood flowing.
Karl, was there anything you wouldn't do sexually in the film?
KG: I don't want to offend anyone, it's my own personal preference and I don't want to discriminate against anyone's sexual orientation. I didn't want to be invaded in certain ways. Every day Gaspar would come to set and say "today is Christmas." And I drew an invisible line when Gaspar screamed on one specific night that "It was New Year's eve" and that's when I got scared.
What do you mean by that?
GN: In the film, the couple's relationship is going wrong. So they think if they add some fun, things will start to get better. They decide to pick up a transvestite. In the script it says nothing happens -- once Murphy sees her naked in the film he gets scared and can't have sex with her. But on the set, Stella was so funny and it was a joyful moment.
KG: I was intimidated by [the transvestite's] confidence.
GN: I decided to keep it a mystery in the film as to whether something happened between the two of them.
KG: I knew for sure, if anything did start to happen Gaspar would not call cut. He would throw me to the wolves.
GN: And I'm sure you were thinking of your mother. His mother is going to see the movie. And as an actor, it's a question to whether you think you can bring your family to the film or share it with your loved ones. And I'm sure when we started shooting that, he thought, can I bring my mother to this movie?
Karl, how did your family respond to your role in the film?
KG: My mother had tears of joy [for me] to be able to go and present a movie at the Cannes Film Festival and the Toronto International Film Festival. It boggled her mind. She's extremely proud. I did, however, talk to my sister and my mother ahead of time about it. I told them that there's going to be a lot of love scenes in this movie and it might be strange for you to see it. I told them they could sit this one out if they wanted to. I wasn't going to require them to see it.
GN: Also, the thing is nowadays everybody knows when you're making a movie you're playing a game. Things are not true -- they're imitated. Not everything is real. Most parents have never seen their son with an erection.
KG: I think my mother was just happy that I was working. [Laughs]
Karl, was this your first film?
KG: This was the first film that was released. I shot a movie right before this, which I'm actually presenting here at TIFF, called Stonewall with Roland Emmerich. But Gaspar edited his movie faster. He got it done and out before Roland.
How did you select the actors for this film?
GN: I met Aomi more than two years ago. I saw her in a party and then I briefly talked to her. I got her contact from a mutual friend. I ended up skyping with her and then she came to Paris. We met for dinner and we continued to talk after that. At the beginning she told me that she's not the person for this movie. She was very happy to meet me but didn't want to do the film. So I kept on casting for Murphy. I was looking for an American or British actor. I wanted him to be English speaking. I knew this girl who used to be a bouncer at a club and asked her if she knew anyone who would be good for my film. She told me she met this guy who was visiting Paris and lived in LA and thought he'd be a great fit. So I had him filmed with another girl I was casting from LA and flew them over. I introduced Karl to Aomi, who happened to also be in Paris at that time. Around the same time, I also met Klara. She was dancing in a club. So I took her number and introduced her to Karl. At that time, I was thinking it would be best to find a real life couple to star in the film but I couldn't find anyone with the energy I need. And then suddenly everything fell into place for casting. Aomi decided she wanted to be a part of it and Karl made a deal with his producer very quickly, jumped on a plane and decided to do it pretty last minute. And then five days before we started filming, the co-financier decided to pull out of the film. We had all the casting, the crew, the location and the camera but half of the money disappeared. I felt like I was on a plane and the grenade was ready to explode. For two days I thought the movie was over and that I was going to be in major debt. But then we found another producer to finance and just like that it all clicked.
KG: It was an emotional roller coaster leading up to that moment. I was nervous to meet him in the beginning and then so excited to just have the opportunity and then I thought I got the job. And Gaspar is such an honest and truthful person and he's telling me all these things as they are unfolding. It was going up and down like a roller coaster and it felt crazy. He was telling me everything about the money, and not having the money, and for awhile I felt like that ship sailed.
GN: Will moves a mountain. Collective energy made the movie.
Going back to the transgender story in the film, why was this an important addition to the movie?
GN: You could cut that scene out of the movie and it wouldn't change the movie. It was just part of the games they are playing. They are pushing the limits beyond their natural needs. In the beginning, they are talking about having a baby. They want to play the sweet couple yet keep it open minded. Towards the end, once the jealousy enters into their minds it's like once the worm is inside the apple. Then they get into more anarchy and their love story becomes power. They both start to suffer and that's when they have sex with the neighbor. You know, the transgender scene was the funnest day of shooting. It was very joyful. In situations like that, when you become partners in crime, sometimes you push your needs beyond to see if you can make it. They weren't standing on safe ground when they got there. That's why they can't handle it. But that wasn't the breaking point -- they didn't quit each other. The breaking point was when the neighbor got pregnant and asking for her to get an abortion. That's the real end of their love story.
The opening and closing of the film are both vulnerable depictions of Murphy. I'd love to hear more about them.
GN: Love is a mammal feeling. It's made of willing to be protected by protecting people. You do that with your kids, your parents, your best friend, your partner in life. Falling in love is a complex process in your brain with addictive feelings. Love is an obsession with tunnel vision and that's what the beginning and ending are about. A love story can last for long but passion cannot because it's physically exhausting. In the movie, at the end when you see Murphy hugging his baby -- he replaced his love for Electra that way.
What are your relationships to New York? Would you make a film there?
GN: Yes -- you know actually I was raised in New York. My father and mother are Argentinians. He got the Guggenheim grant as a painter. So when I was three or four months old my parents moved to New York and I was raised there until I was four or five years old. The first images I remember are of living on Bleecker St and of Fifth Avenue and of the Angelika Center. When my parents decided to move back to Argentina, my schoolmates called me 'the Yankee' because I had an American accent. Because they called me that, the truth is I had these other issues. My last name is Noé but initially it didn't feel like a real last name. I decided to tell people my last name was Murphy, which was my mother's first name (and the name of Karl's character in the film). I'd say Gaspar Murphy or Gaspar Noé Murphy. New York is the most natural city of the world because I lived there. Things have changed though. I guess the energy during that hippy time was very different from the more commercial energy that you have today in New York. Maybe it was a wilder, more dangerous city but also there was something crazier that now is sometimes missing. You know I found that crazy energy you can see for example in the movie Taxi Driver in Tokyo. Tokyo is very sleazy and dirty and rich. You have everything there.
My last question's a bit of a spoiler alert -- are we ever supposed to know what happens to Electra in the film?
GN: Actually, we shot some additional scenes that I cut from the movie. I thought maybe we'd need more footage of the present time. So I filmed Murphy talking with people, asking "Do you have any news from her?" and I added voices in the footage. In one of the versions, I had her leave with the shaman. But it was too funny so I cut it out. He already stole Murphy's first girlfriend so I thought it would be too much. Maybe she turned into a junkie. Maybe she survived it all. Maybe she committed suicide. Maybe it's better not to know. If there is an answer, then the problem is solved in your head. The fact of not knowing what happens creates a tension that stays with the audience.
KG: I think she went to Argentina for a better life.
GN: Maybe. Maybe, she turned lesbian and adopted a cute baby. Cuter than yours.
Yes, you read that right. And yes, you can probably see the screenshot from the video, which features the 3Fap with all three (yes, three!) orifices that you can deploy (and control on several dimensions) as part of this sex toy for dudes. "Your penis is in prison," this dude says, "and 3Fap is your way out." It's like Prison Break, but for dicks. Or something.