Jey Perie, and Gogy Esparza, a New York-based artist, photographer, and videographer, arrived in Beirut with little more than a tentative plan to capture the lives of young people, both the affluent and the disenfranchised, and left with a deeper insight into the people living in a city known as much for its war-torn history as its nightlife. It seems no matter a person’s background, living conditions, or ideology, there are deep cultural commonalities found in the language of pop culture; through music, sports, and even a pair of sneakers.
When we first started to plan for issue 7, I spoke with André D. Wagner about doing a group of images that might be very personal to him. I suggested the possibility of traveling somewhere, or maybe retracing a few steps of his life. He said, “absolutely not!” Because, for him, the streets of New York, now more than ever, are the basis for what he feels is the most personal work he has ever done. We discuss the weight of the city on us all and how he is just hitting what he calls a new stride.
The Culture Crush is out in Hollywood with Bryan Rabin, who, along with DJ Adam12, is the mastermind behind Giorgio's, a special nightclub space, named for legendary producer Giorgio Moroder, which is devoted to the idea of the discotheque and the values of pre bottle service club culture, where connections are made and tribes are formed. We worked with Bryan on issue 7 and were just setting up for the launch party when we sat down (on the floor) to discuss the important role nightlife plays in both the creation and reflection of culture.
On this episode, Jey Perie returns to the studio to share his story of the almost mythological streetwear designer Barnzley Armitage, who Jey had the pleasure of interviewing earlier this year for a special Culture Crush story. They discussed the '80's London club scene and how streetwear was organically grown out of a back and forth between kids trying to outdo each other in terms of being in the know. It wasn't fashion, it wasn't even a business, yet. With excerpts from the original interview, we talk about the way style evolved in the scene before there was the hyper communication we live with now. In fact, according to Barnzley, at the time, clubs were the internet.
The Culture Crush’ Debra Scherer sat down with Yodit Eklund, founder of the African surf brand Bantu Wax to talk about her evolving company and African youth culture. Yodit, an Ethiopian native, eloquently shares her goal to create positive images of Africa through Bantu's own ethos and sense of community. She shows us that, contrary to popular belief, Africa is more than just a poverty-stricken continent filled with expensive safari opportunities; it is actually a dense hub of remix culture. Though many industry behemoths talk the talk of Made in Africa, Yodit's guiding force is basically, "if it can't be made in Africa, we don't make it."
Join the Culture Crush for a discussion about photography and street casting with documentary photographer André D. Wagner and casting director David Milosevich just after they had finished a collaboration for issue six of our print magazine. Though they both hit the streets looking for that special someone, it would normally be something they did solo. For this special story, they went out as a duo all over New York City to see who they could find and shoot them on the spot. Now that's what we call real street style.
On this month’s episode we sat down with Michael Faso out in Los Angeles just as he was about to go and shoot his first Culture Crush feature story. Michael, a.k.a. @deconstrct grew up in the valley around ‘zines and early visual internet culture. We discuss his evolving interests in photography, graphics and media, the making of his own 'zine, and the way he and his friends respond to these industries from their unique point of view.
Britta Phillips is a vocalist, songwriter, and actress, best known for her role as the singing voice of Jem, the title character of the ‘80’s animated TV series Jem and the Holograms. She also starred in the girl band movie Satisfaction alongside Julia Roberts and Justine Bateman and is the bass player in ‘90’s indie pop band Luna. In 2007, she married Luna and Galaxie 500 frontman Dean Wareham. They have performed together as the duo Dean & Britta since 2003, and have jointly composed film scores for Mistress America and The Squid and the Whale. In addition, they wrote 13 Most Beautiful...Songs for Andy Warhol’s Screen Tests, a series of scores that correspond to a selection of Warhol’s screen tests. In tis episode, we talk to Britta about making her upcoming solo album, how she rescued her waning passion for music, and what makes for a good cover song. She also shares her thoughts on the joys of performing live, and dispels the current societal panic about a supposed dearth of exciting new music.
Tierney Finster is a writer, editor, and actor who prefers to unify her variety of creative talents and projects under the title ‘storyteller.’ We spoke to Tierney about growing up in Los Angeles, her obsession with video girls, and her undying love for Britney Spears.
On this week's episode, documentary photographer Andre D. Wagner pays a visit to The Culture Crush studio just as we are finishing the Gotham City issue of the magazine. For this special issue, we focused on New York City, and Andre took to the streets during the summer months to create a portfolio of images just for us.
discuss his arrival in the city and first experiences with the
overwhelming qualities of scale and diversity inherent in taking your
Leica and pointing it just about anywhere here. Bringing up the
inevitable juxtapositions of race, class and all of the other subjects
not meant for polite conversation, we go deep into the process of
photographing the comic book of society we are experiencing every
surreal day here in Gotham.