vendredi 24 juillet 2015

Louche woman

For more than a year the twisted Soul Sister Sue Kreitzman and Caroline Smith are hosting the "Monty Pythoniesque night Louche Women 
"A  wickedly funny club night and growing community that addresses the issues facing older women. Through events, poetry, music, performance and discussion, Louche Women makes the experiences and opinions of older women visible in a provocative and entertaining way."

I AM Louche, "disreputable or sordid in rakish or appealing way", lacking respectability in character or behavior or appearance.
 My style is dubious, sometimes bad taste borderline. I adorn myself with gaudy colours and maximalist kitsch and showy accessories. 

By Anthony Lycett 

Even the artist Gavin Turk said my jewellery "are very weird but in a good way 
I am messy, unpredictable, uncontrollable  the kind of girl boys don't like because I am not so sweet and quiet.  The kind of girl that scare men but fascinate them at the same time.  I defy people who want to put a label on me, even if somehow I still belong to a category determined by precise socio-economical background.  

I am not always politically correct while trying to stay polite and unconventional as long as I don't infringe the freedom of another (unfortunately some narrow minded people will take eccentric look as a visual aggression and I can do nothing for this hopeless sad grey people).  
The kind of girl that never follow Women press patronising advice or girly "youtouber" or mainstream fashion blogger  and don't feel  guilty about it. 

In Middle Age times,  I am the kind of woman people would have taken for a witch and   have burn alive. 
I could never been part of the popular girls in school, not the pretty one, or the sporty one…but   I am proud to be part of the louche tribe.  "I am one of us" a glorious freak.  

At the Lights of Soho picture by Peter Wallis 
Because the Night happen in the Poetry place in the heart of Soho, and it was for the "Sex edition" I decided to create a Sexy Soho dress that I style with my favourite Piers Atkinson hat attempting to revive the old Soho spirit slowly but surely by Property developer and the closing down of world renown clubs like Madame Jojo.  

Sulphurous Soho know as the red light district, with its outdated sex shop, colourful neon lights . The world of endless parties, glorious drags, sequins and glitters.  

The nipple tassels remind the burlesque scene of Soho. They are quite an ironic statement, diverting the erotic function as they are usually sticked on the bare skin and not stitched on a dress. 

A glorious casual encounter, the flamboyant Alexandra Bravoure, dress in Alexander MacQueen style  matching with her Royal Poodle headpiece just to "have a tea", the kind of character you can only meet in Soho 

At Louche Women with Deidre Macken came specially from Dublin to celebrate her birthday in London. 

She asked me to make a headpiece, she has an amazing vintage shop Lycy's Lounge  in Dublin that I wish to visit one day. 

The louchest of the psychedelic babe, the amazing performer and artist Gaffy Gaffiero
With one of the fellow my Louche women, one of her most faithful and glorious member, the inimitable wearable art maker Diane Goldie. Sometimes we meet with Sue after Spitafields market.  This crazy bunch of colourful ladies make a tourist attraction for curious onlookers  and  9 to 5 City worker on their lunch break.  

This kimono is designed between tradition and modernity.  It is a traditional silk japanese fabric  with printed flowers and birds that I embroidered over with beads.  But it also refer to the kawaii and hyper japan of manga words with  hand-stitched moshi monsters.   
by Anthony Lycett 
I styled it with my colourful rubber dress that I worn for the Vaslpar advert. 
To immortalise this psychedelic pagan priestess look, with Anthony Lycett,we  decide to shoot it in front of a stone circle in Dartmoor in Devon, famous for its  mysterious stones bronze age. 
This series of pictures is part of a larger scale photographic project, a collaboration with the photographer Anthony Lycett taking picture of my costumes in natural British landscape all over UK, maybe will be turned into an exhibition… stay tuned! 

By Anthony Lycet
As in experimented tourists from London, we were naively thinking we can just find the stone circle, but Dartmoor National Park is huge and we didn't have a map.  We walked for 6 hours around the Heath carrying photographic equipment and 15kilo of costumes. After coming back to the visitor centre, we found some stones but disappointedly small so we decided to take the picture in front of a Neolithic former settlement.  

By Anthony Lycett 

lundi 6 juillet 2015

J'ai deux amours: art & fashion

picture by Anthony Lycett 

Sue Kreitzman  opened my eyes on the beauty of african fashion when I went with her to the African fabric market in Spitafields. She uses a lot of this amazingly detailed colourful beaded necklace as base for her own art.   Before I had this vision of "primitive" art associated with tourist fake wooden sculpture  incrusted with plastic shells next to a Bob Marley t-shirt on market stool.   

The headpiece was commissioned by Deirdre from Lucy Lounge vintage shop in Dublin, with some customised tribal baby face and reason feathers kept by Mum grandmother from my uncle hunting.  

African style coming strong this few past seasons mingling with more western aesthetic, adopted by festival looks for his colourful patterns, eco-fashion connotation   mixed with other tribal and ethnic inspirations.  

Like in this editorial for Vogue where the african ethic fashion is styled on a white model.  

My idea was to create an African aesthetic necklace inspired by colourful folk african fairy tales of my childhood.  With a naive touch in a good way,  but trying to avoid any "colonialism" or "primitive art" connotation.

picture by Anthony Lycett 

   I glued a lot of rhinestones on savannah animals to give them a bit of glam and bling, with this necklace you are ready for a chic safari trip! 

 My Mum found two figurines of the sorceress in Kirikou a French cartoon, I knew Sue would like this strong powerful woman character, half goddess, half witch
Sue Kreitzman, pensive surrounded by her art with my African style necklace on her blue mannequin.  

I always feel really privileged to meet an artist and they have always been very generous with me. When I met John Baldwin in his studio,  he gave me a lot canvas he wanted to to get rid of.  I could have just stick them on my wall as they are so beautiful but that wasn't the purpose of it.  

picture by Anthony Lycett 
I've done some experiments with paint and garment before in interactive performance (read the article about it) But I've never used someone else paintings in my work before.  
Aiming to make "wearable art" I've always been interested in the link between fine art and fashion.  How something that should be "Art for art's sake" could be "downgraded" (according to Platoon theory on art)  into something useful, with a precise function as being worn? Could you be a walking painting or is art meant to stay on the wall?  
 I don't know a lot about print making.  At fashion school  degree shows,  I am always fascinated by experimental techniques that student use in order to create new pattern.  
But what could be better than a master painting?  This dress is the first experiment of I hope a larger scale one.  I had to tame the rigidity and tackiness of the canvas  to work with that suppress the smooth flow of a garment and make the shape more contrived. 

picture by Anthony Lycett 
I also met the pop artist Marthy Thonrton who gave me this "My little pony Burger" that he made during the horse meat scandal. I turned this witty piece into a fascinating. What could be best than wearing a art piece as a headpiece?  I like to think that lot of the accessory that I am wearing have a meaning, a deeper concept than just being cloth, a sentimental and artistic value.  

picture by Anthony Lycett 

I've already made a lot of dresses with baby faces in the past. But this time I wanted to push the experiment further by painting the face with arcylic paint, primary colours and the mix of 2 of this colours.  I wanted to create a kind of pop art baby dolls face…why?  just for fun.  

I worn it for the Art car boot fair where a lot of artists come to exhibit  and sells their work in Bricklane, far from the pretentiousness  of the white wall gallery but more in spirit of a  a sunday market.  Wearing a wearable piece of art, I felt more legitimacy mingling with the artist and it was my way to contribute to the event.  

I feel so honoured to strike the pose with the amazing Molly Parkin.  You can see theses people on TV and the net day have your picture taken with them, this is the magic of London.  

picture by Anthony Lycett 

I grant it to you, shooting in brick lane is a bit overdone. I watched this programme on BBC  about the artists Tim Noble & Sue Webster who own a building in Shoreditch saying that if she got one pound for all the photoshoot down in front  of her building she will be another millionaire .  

But I particularly like this wall washed out with colours as if they were dripping from the paintings as the expression of a overflow of creativity.  

lundi 18 mai 2015

Self Styled

by Anthony Lycett 
My day look for Self styled London, the amazing photo-project that capture the individual looks of the British capital.  
the troll jacket made for Yve Blake for her show Lie collector, hundreds of 90s troll stitched one by one on a leather cowboy jacket with glittery leggings, shiny and funny, bad taste borderline... all what I like in an outfit! 

by Anthony Lycett 
The headpiece is made out of two ring display  stands shaped as hand, I put them on a head band like two translucent  horns holdings a pink beads as a kind of offering to style.  

Moshi monster necklace available on my online shop 

The hyper-japan kawai lolcore necklace is made out with moshi monsters that the amazing artist Scorpio gave me in enhance of a Star Wars brooch mixed with 90s dummy and translucent beads stitched on a fabric & foam plastron base.  
vampire dolls Santiags available on my online shop 

I customised theses  blacks Santiags with imitation snake skin by stitching one vampire dolls heads, colourful fringes, sequins and beads, you won't see any shoes like mine, anywhere! 

by Anthony Lycett 
My night outfit is my bingo hostess costume. If I spend the day working in my studio, on the night, I put on my more sparkly dress and go to host the crazy kitsch Hackney Bingo club in Bar 90
by Anthony Lycett 
On the purple sequins base dress I stitched the red sparkly letters of the word Bingo and a customised dolls holding  glittery pink bingo balls with silver numbers.  I added a big pink tulle collar….because MORE IS MORE.  
with this costume I am wearing a Piers Atkinson golden hat with crystals that I had for my birthday.  
With Simon  Dodi from Luxuriouxsnacksx by Anthony Lycett 

by Anthony Lycett 

by Anthony Lycett 

The costume in action: raising money for Charity at Hackney Bingo Club in Bar 90 

by Anthony Lycett 

The challenge was to customise a dress for Deirdre the owner of the amazing vintage shop Lucy Lounge in Dublin (have a look if you go pass the city). 

wearing my circus elephants earrings available at Fee Fee La Fou shop in Dalston 
I  tried to include all the elements she liked and that were important in her life. So for example she really like dolls so I incorporated 5 plastic toys dogs with beads necklaces and rhinestones.
by Anthony Lycett 
 She liked arms and legs from dolls but found heads a bit creepy so I selected theses parts of the vampire dolls bodies.
by Anthony Lycett 

by Anthony Lycett 
She wanted to wear it for festival so I went for more of a bohemian-hippie look with a fashion twist with for example the holographic fabric.
by Anthony Lycett 

vendredi 15 mai 2015

Marie-Antoinette on Acid

For the shoot we went to the Lakes district, the biggest National Park in the UK located in North West England.  In the 19th century, its famous lakes and mountains inspired Romantic Lakes poets like William Wordsworth. 

by Anthony Lycett 
For this Marie Antoinette  costume I worked around the element of laces. Using vintage laces,  faded and yellow with age, my aim wasn't to produce an historical reconstitution but more an archaeological relic, a dress as  you will find is in a museum, battered by the passing of years, and note re-made in a brand new duchess satin.  

By Anthony Lycett 
I  liked to subvert the function of the corset in this outfit. Seen  before as an object of constraint and  feminine body restriction, with the advent of burlesque if became a fashion accessory and an object of fantasy and desire. 
I included porcelain dolls on the dress to add to the fragility and the vulnerability of the costume; ancient beauty from another time.  
For the head piece I used a an actual tomatoes plant support to structure the wigs, it was so heavy that I think Marie Antoinette may have suffered from a permanent torticollis ! 

And of course the beautiful Baroque's roll shoes are from Natacha Marro

Post-baroque shoot inspiration

 have always been fascinated by the controversial figure of Marie-Antoinette disliked by French people as the "l'Autrichienne" and "Madame Déficit" but  worshiped as a cultural icon associated with glamour and luxury.  

Dressed for Excess, Marie Antoinette is like the performer of her life, she always has to be fabulous and have to adopt the appropriate external honors in order to  maintain her prestigious position,  becoming a fashion icon  all French society at the time where imitated her famous coiffure "the pouf" "a la mode de la reine".  

"In postmodernist popular culture Marie-Antoinette is viewed in a favorable light because she defied stereotype. Today she tends to be seen as a thoroughly (post)modern woman who was punished on all sides because of it. The image of Marie-Antoinette today epitomizes strength, sexuality, and the allure of the female. Evoking Marie-Antoinette as a symbol of empowerment is to move her from one category to another, portraying her as positive because she exhibited the same traits that she was condemned for.  The images of pop-icon Madonna are not ones of opulence for its own sake, but ones of female sexuality, control and power. "

Kristen Dunst as Marie Antoinette in Sofia Coppola 2006 movie

The reported extravagances of Marie-Antoinette are so "well known" that her image is recognized often as symbol of excess and used in advertising campaigns for companies such as Juicy Couture, and as an extravagant display in a New York City shop window. The display maker, Linda Fargo, Vice President of Visual Merchandising at Bergdorf Goodman noted that "Enough is never enough for Marie Antoinette, it has to be more, it has to be more!" (Fargo)." Mylynka Kilgore 

"No bread?  Let them eat burger! " Casual Marie Antoinette meal at bar 90 before Bingo 

I started working on this character of Marie Antoinette with this headpiece  with a floral ark, chrysalis of a pink barbie dolls. 

By Paul Saint Bris 
When I went to Paris who took this picture with Paul Saint Bris in Park Monceau where I become a kind of psychedelic pantomime character from a Watteau painting.  

By Paul Saint Bris 
I actually forgot my amazing headpiece in the park and when I cam back the day after it was gone so if you see an eccentric parisian lady wearing my hat in the street, let me know! 

By Paul Saint Bris 

By Paul Saint Bris 

Going backward in my creative process again, the barbie legs costume was originally made for the Love toilet movie at the Dalston Superstore.  

Contrary to  what a lot lot of people think, I am not really a party animal. As I am often employed as a party entertained, party is more like  a job for me.  I am more an early bird, working from the early morning  in my studio and then too tired in the evening to go anywhere. 
 But love the crowd of London club scene that I often meet in other context like collaborative creative projects.  

You can also see my valentine heart dress at 0:43 min

The idea for the video was to create a surrealistic series of flash images with different tableaux. 

I like collaborating with Loulou Reloulou as she reveals a more crazy side of my work and bring me on other creative territories.  

For the video I used my barbie legs cancan costume for my performance at the Loudest Whispers exhibition.  

I needed four people to have 6 ribbon each in order to take the trousers off.  If it take less than a second  to pull them all off, you need more than 20 min to put them on.  

Getting ready in Daston Superstore backstage
Last but not least, As you all know, I appeared on the French programme Sept à Huit on TF1 in the frame of a documentary on French people in London. So you have the guy working in luxury property development, the banker, the guy running is technologic start up...and you have me! 

 A TV crew filmed me for two days following me in my every day life. At the end they focused more on the fashion side of my work. They didn't kept my meeting with Sue Kreitzman, the visit of my exhibition at Saint Pancras gallery or the filming of the Bingo but I didn't really had any bad feedback from this portrait so I guess it is ok.

If one day someone would have told me I will be on TF1 I would have call him crazy! 

I had a very positive response from the audience after the broadcast, strangers writing to me on my Facebook page telling me they love my work or wishing me luck! 

On  my bike (they loved filming me on my bike, I think they had never seen a girl cycling in heels) -, the majority of my portrait is actually me cycling on my bike. For this take, the TV crew was filming from a cab (the taxi driver wasn't really understanding what we were doing) and they asked me to go up and down 5 times in the same street! 

At the fashion week (they forced me to say having a show at London fashion week would be my absolute dream whereas I don't really care) 

Working in my studio 

Presenting my creation, the colourful rubber dress I worn in Valspar advert  

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