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Top 25 Art Blog - Creative Tourist

Graduate Fashion Week: Gala Show and Awards

Earls Court 2, London , 11 June 2008

Written by Melinda Neunie

Not as impressive as their first output, more about mind not as depressive as their comeback, ask their third album manages to have some really solid hits while they explore their own roots and bring the angular guitars back. Unfortunately, site the excessive number of fillers making the experience less pleasant than it should be. You can’t blame them for trying. Their new songs see them trying to sound like their old selves – back when they had enough dancefloor anthems to make Franz Ferdinand jealous, and a major behind after them. After being dropped by their label because of News And Tributes, the second album which lacked the material which made them interesting in the first place, they had no option but to go back and give us their best impression of The Jam playing punk versions of Beach Boys songs. In The Beginning of the Twist, Radio Heart and Broke Up the Time they show that they still have what it takes to create shiny pop-dance songs. So what am I forgetting to mention? Oh, yes, the bad songs on the album. The ones that sound like a pastiche of themselves; soulless use of guitar and drums (as well as their accent – which we all liked) making me wonder where the energetic, meaningful two minutes of punk madness went. It could’ve been their chance to make it via their self made label, but regrettably This is Not the World could only be a good if it was an EP.

The member of Black Ghosts‘ solo project Lord Skywave is steeped in biographical influences and sways into the worlds of pop, and dub reggae and avant-garde electronica. Then again, order when you look at Simon Lord’s musical career you can see why his solo project is such a multi-genre mish mash.

Perhaps the most heartwarming part of this album is his extensive use of his families musical past. He samples the music his grandmother used to make so many moons ago. After a summer of visiting his grandfather’s house and going through his collection of old reel-to-reel tape recordings and 78′s, pilule he had an entire archive of her fantastically composed sweep off-your-feet instrumentals to work with.

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As well as this, all the electronic bass sounds on the album were produced using the Lord Skywave synthesizer which was built by Simon’s dad in the 70′s, and only 10 were made. Which I find hard to believe with such a tantalizing name, surely there must have been more demand!

I don’t know about you, but I find all this absolutely fascinating, and such a refreshing change from the majority of music, which can sometimes can appear to be something of a soulless, money grabbing, dried out husk.

It’s so hard to pinpoint my favourite tracks on this album because it’s all so diverse and to start comparing them makes my retinas hurt. I think what I find so gripping about his style is his voice. At points it’s heartbreak in a sound wave and at others it‘s the happy morning shower singing that I thought only really occured in plays set in New York in the 1950′s.

Even though Simon Lord is an established musician, as both an ex-member of Simian and current half of The Black Ghosts, this album sets him apart from all his previous endeavors. It sounds like Prince if he was quintessentially British. What more can I say?
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I’d seen the Amarylas a couple of weeks ago at an Oxjam night at Brixton’s Windmill and had been pleasantly surprised. Heading over to Islington’s hallowed pharmacy +Greater+London, what is ed +UK&fb=1&view=text&latlng=469594232395886090″target=”_blank”>Hope & Anchor, it was time to reacquaint myself with their psychedelia infused sound.

Tonight they were the opening act on the bill, so the venue was still pretty quiet, which was a shame. A guitar based four-piece, led by mop haired singer Luke Segura, they blend that classic, slightly psychedelic pop whimsy of Syd Barrett or Ogden’s Nut Gone Flake-era Small Faces with a Clash inspired New Wave edge. Basically, what Pete Doherty might sound like if he didn’t have quite so many, er, distractions!

For all of you still mourning the passing of the Libertines, make sure you check out the Amarylas when they play a venue near you.

Calling all budding fashion designer’s, adiposity Carla Fernandez, medicine founder of the leading ethical label, there Taller Flora, is giving designers the opportunity to jet over to Mexico to become part of her team for five months.

After winning the British Council’sInternational Young Fashion Entrepreneur Award, Carla has been rewarded with a cash prize to spend on a project which both tailors to her specific interests and contributes to developing the relationship between her country and the UK. The Mexican designer has chosen to give a printed textile designer and menswear designer from the UK the fantastic opportunity of working with herself and the Taller Flora team on two lines of clothing in Mexico in August 2008.

This is not, however, for someone who just likes the idea of sipping tequilas in the sun. The menswear candidate will work with Carla to develop tailoring within the range while the textile designer will help out on her printed textile designs.

Requirements for the menswear applicants:

Should have a BA or MA in fashion or be a talented designer.
Demonstrable competence of pattern cutting is mandatory
Ability to work independently
Team player with good interpersonal and communication skills
Knowledge of and an interest in ethical fashion
Knowledge of Spanish would be an asset
Must be a resident in the UK.

And the requirements for the textile applicants:

Should have a BA or MA in textile design or be a talented print designer
Excellent freehand drawing skills
Knowledge of Photoshop is mandatory
Silk screening experience
Ability to work independently
Team player with good interpersonal and communication skills
Knowledge of and an interest in ethical fashion
Knowledge of Spanish would be an asset
Must be a resident in the UK.

Sound like you? Designers interested in the project are asked to send a short (no longer than 300 words) written statement outlining why they want to be part of this project, up to 12 images of their work, their CV and the details of one of their references, to Alison.Moloney@britishcouncil.org or Carla Fernandez at carla@flora2.com by 16th June 2008.

For more info visit the British Council website.

Good Luck!

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JUNE

Wednesday 11th

HEALTH at Korova, abortion Liverpool
Emmy the Great, web Diane Cluck, buy information pills younghusband at Cargo, London
White Williams at Puregroove Records, London
The Dodos at Night and Day Cafe, Manchester
I Was A Cub Scout at Wedgewood Rooms, Portsmouth
Semifinalists at Amersham Arms, London
Beach House, Fleet Foxes at ULU, London

Thursday 12th

Gnarls Barkley at Bush Hall, London
The Dodos at Crawdaddy, Dubin
O Children, S.C.U.M. at Puregroove Records, London

Friday 13th

Little Boots at Club Pony w/Midfield General, Sheffield
Sportsday Megaphone at Club NME @ Sin City, Swansea
Wild Beasts at Cross Keys, London

Saturday 14th

Deerhunter, High Places at Dublin Vicar Street
Leonard Cohen at Irish Museum Of Modern Art, Dublin
Meltdown – Massive Attack, Fuck Buttons at Royal Festival Hall, London
Sportsday Megaphone at Club NME at Welly Club, Hull

Sunday 15th

The Twilight Sad at Edinburgh Bongo Club
The Sugars at Fleece, Bristol

On Monday evening Ethic held the award ceremony for it’s annual ethical fashion competition in London.

Being one of the hottest days this year, buy I arrived at the uba trendy Fashion and Textile Museum feeling slightly harassed having endured 10 minutes of the rush hour on London’s sweaty central line. Thankfully I quickly located the bar and after gladly helping myself to a chilled white wine and tasty mini tuna baguette I was ready to fully immerse myself in the show

Now in its second year, more about The Ethic Competition is a contest open to over 150 fashion courses in the UK. Students were given the brief of designing a garment under £100 which addressed a key issue surrounding ethical fashion (eg fair-trade, organic materials, recycling, animal friendly or innovative environmentally friendly new materials), while still maintaining elements of current trends.

While I’d admit that none of the finalist’s work could be worn beyond the museums four walls, credit has to be given to the students for managing to produce garments that were at least visually appealing and a pleasure to watch on the catwalk. Design team Reduce, Reuse, Recycle managed to create a strapless full skirted gown using just newspaper, bubble wrap, bin bags and scrap pieces of recycled material.

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The winners, and admittedly my favourites, were Nicole Da Silva and Phong Nguyen from Hackney Community College, who used second hand materials and clippings from the BBC website to address the issue of recycling while still managing to incorporate this season’s obsession with volume and ruffles in an extravagant tiered wedding gown.

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Once the winners had taken their lap of honor and the buffet started to fizzle out, I made tracks to leave feeling very inspired and I must admit, a little merry!
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Whether you’re eco-minded, page bemused by the concept, price or like me, help just generally confused; scribble down in your diaries ‘Climate Forum’, which is happening this weekend! The event includes a huge range of 50+ seminars with speakers varying from Michael Meacher MP, Tony Jupiter (Director Friends of the Earth UK) to George Galloway MP. But, you’ll not be listening to others all day as workshops, art, music, performance, stalls and exhibitions allow you to get stuck in straight away. There’s even a Saturday night party ‘Climate Caper’ at the Synergy Centre for those groovy rebel campaigners wanting to throw some shapes.

The event is organised by the group CCC (‘Campaign against Climate Change’) who seek to raise awareness about the gravity and urgency of global warming. They aim to get people together, forming street campaigns, pushing for a reduction in global emissions. The first day’s plenary is: ‘Are we losing the race against climate catastrophe?’ where workshops will investigate solutions such as climate justice, biodiversity and even ‘Youth and climate change: Campaigning for our future’ (so all you raging student activists with burning questions to ask-note this down)! Sunday will consequently focus on ‘Climate change from around the world’ where speakers will be holding a selection of workshops, including: ‘direct action’, ‘climate change, energy and health’, ‘combined networks’ and many more.

One workshop that pinpricked my interest was: ‘Youth and climate change: Campaigning for our future’ with Abigail Jabines of Greenpeace on Saturday. In a 2007 seminar in Sydney she stated that a one-metre sea level rise would result in 700 million square metres of land where 15 out of 16 regions’ coastlines would be affected. Not only does risen sea levels effect eco systems but it also has immediate consequences for small communities ill equipped to deal with climate changes.

The assortment of workshops happening throughout the weekend range from the political (‘Energy and Anarchy: why we need to escape from market-based thinking’), economical (‘Climate change and your bank’), political (‘Direct Action’), to spiritual (‘Faith and Climate Change’). One organiser told me the objective of the Weekend was to ‘raise awareness and forge a community of people who care about these issues; through political action as well as individual choices’. Her sunny outlook imparted a sense of positivity in me, as in the words of Abigail Jabines in her lecture; ‘We can do something. The window for action is getting very slim and the time to act is now.’

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The line-up tonight does appear a little bit thrown together, page as all the bands don’t really lead on from one another. What Would Jesus Drive kick off the night’s proceedings. I’ve yet to decide on how feel about bands who get their names from bumper stickers, but judging a band by their favored car trinkets should always be avoided. This duo and their drum machine manage to put on a quirky live show of American tinged indie rock that seems to entertain this crowd at least.

Next on the bill is Polka Party, who offer a perfectly enjoyable bunch of pop songs with more southern drawl and dandy temperament than you could shake a stick at. Their latest single ‘Japanese Haircut’ is almost perfect indie disco fodder and it certainly had one girl at the front pulling Agyness Dean style pouts for the camera. I think this must be how indie music is rated nowadays.

Dananananaykroyd stole the show quite easily, though it’s not their style to do things effortlessly. The energy from their live show was infectious, and I’d have to say the catalyst for this was their duo of drummers. Facing opposite ways they dual perpetually, and the effect is almost hypnotic. Thankfully there is a large distraction from all the fun drumming in the form of the ever so brash lead singer. His microphone seemed to be broken for the majority of the set, but he truly didn’t care, and neither did I. He was shouting so loud that you could get the jist of what he might sound like if the microphone was working, and his flailing was for more interesting than any type of lyrics. I’d like to think of him as a lead flailer than a lead singer.

They also do this strange crowd interaction part in their set where an eerie silence is created and a guitar is handed to one lady in the crowd. The drummer also tried to hand me his sticks and pull me onto the stage. I’m sorry to say I didn’t react positively to his request though; in fact I pretty much rooted myself to the spot. I’m sorry but it was a Tuesday night, I wasn’t drunk and I can’t play the drums. The only outcome of this would have been some uneasy silence followed by an embarrassing, resounding tap on one of the cymbals. It was definitely for the best.

They are definitely a deservedly hyped band, their musicianship and vigorously bounding presence won me over, and I just hope this transpires onto record in their new mini album ‘Sissy Hits’.
I’ll start by saying a huge ‘Thanks and about time’ for the brain behind the change of location for GFW. I’ve been going for 5 years now and Battersea Park’s tent was just awful. Too hot, story too sweaty and just generally quite uncomfortable. Hurrah! It’s now in a real building, sildenafil Earl’s Court 2. It’s got bricks and everything! Even the loos have real plumbing! About time GFW sorted this, it’s only been running 17 years. Bring on the sweat-free fashion!

As a graduate from the AIB myself, I will always take an interest in what’s going on. Besides us graduates keep getting invited and when free booze is on the cards… well. Plus you get to have a real snoop around what everyone else is doing, which in turn inspires you to get a new job! There’s also the benefit of seeing a few long-lost gals.

So I ran (I was late) to the AIB’s Sunday show. First time ever I didn’t use my ticket as a fan once inside. The room temperature was quite comfortable. I remember the days when I used to dress the models as a tiny first year and it was a flustered affair I can tell you. Anyway, the room was packed and dark (lights down already, damn) and 14 lucky so-and-sos got to show on the catwalk.

First off down the crisp white runway with her collection of six was Camilla Sutton. Her garments were multi-layered with a hint of culture from everywhere. Evident was intricate embroidery, unique handiwork, weaving and leather inspired by Central America, China and capped off with Henry Holland Style tartan trousers. She’d used a lovely mix of prints, textures and a little bit of polka dot! My favourite was a floral embellished cape; I’d have that in a flash.

I really liked Anna Hirsch’s collection. This is the kind of stuff I would try on and want to buy in Topshop or Urban Outfitters. She had made some lovely summer dresses in pretty floral prints, retro indeed. She’d teamed her collection with 80′s chunky sunglasses but the cute print dresses with matching belts caught my eye. Brick lane eat your heart out!

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Chloe Rees-Williams did a ‘Seduced’ all-black collection. Her garments were skimpy but sophisticated. The lady is a vamp not a tramp! Each outfit picked out different areas to emphasize. Whether that was the narrow waist or fuller bum! Due to only using one colour, Chloe really played well with what she had. There were a whole number of fabrics in play, but I liked the layered lace tutu on a corset. Stunning silhouettes ruled this collection.

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Finally, last on was Amy Xiao Pan and she was last for a reason. The entire collection was… wait for it, canary yellow, orange, gold lamé and brocade. Pretty daring huh? Not only was each outfit over the top (in a good way) and heavily detailed, but she’d done this eight times! Quite an impact indeed. Respect to her, she must have been making that lot for months.

There wasn’t much flesh on show either. One in particular was an all-in-one gold metallic Lycra cat suit, including covering the hands! This outfit had it’s own cape with an interesting detail of knots, Amy’s theme (traditions of Chinese knotting). Teamed with the lamé cat suit was a sequined gold skullcap with peepholes for eyes. I cannot not mention the all-in-one florescent orange number. I’m talking not a single bit of skin showing! It went over the face and zipped up the back. Luckily the model wasn’t claustrophobic. There were awesome headdresses in bright yellow to match the patent 8-inch heels.

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My favourite was the peachy orange floral swimming cap. Now these should make a come back. As a swimmer, I’d be happy for this to return. The collection left the crowd’s mouths open. This girl really went for it and because of that, she’s made it on to Drapers 15 GFW stars of the future. You can never be too daring, especially in fashion daaaarling. Go Bournemouth! I’ll be coming back next year (maybe for the free booze but I’ll be on time one hopes).
The brand new puregroove store opened just over a week ago, sildenafil and it’s fantastic. They’ve ditched the endless aisles and racks that you usually have to sift through and now only stock the 100 CDs and vinyl that you really want. You don’t expect to find something innovative that isn’t music when you walk into a record store, but this truly is.

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Photos: Lucy Johnston

It’s also where we’re hosting the launch party for issue 9 of Amelia’s on the 18th June, which is only next week!

The 100 consist of all kinds of special editions with signatures or posters or other great stuff attached. It also links up with their website, and you can even go in and listen to tracks on some type of special computery thing.

As well as being a shop, the space also works as a venue. They have lots of in store gigs coming up which are definitely worth checking out, as they’re all totally free. There are some really great people coming up like Golden Silvers, Late of the Pier, Bumblebeez and O Children, to name just a few.

In case you were thinking they need anything more the store also showcases an excellent display of art and photography. Currently artwork by established illustrator Kate Moross is covering one of the walls. There is also a whole host of photographs of the band My Bloody Valentine by New York based photographer David Fisher on display. What I’m most excited about however is the work of Peter Saville, which is due to be exhibited at the store later in the year. He is the guy behind iconic artwork for Factory Records, including the artwork for ‘Unknown Pleasures’ by Joy Division.

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The Brick Lane Gallery, pilule ‘Burning Bridges Exhibition’, buy Alexandros Vasmoulakis, Dave The Chimp, Labrona, Cum*, Bruno 9LI, Case, Herakut, Other, Gawd, plus a whole range of other urban artists: 13th-22nd June.
Brick Lane Gallery, 196 Brick Lane, London E1 6SA
Scorching new street art talent from the UK and abroad, set to rustle your conceptions and blow your mind. “Capow”! indeedy.
www.burningbridges.co.uk
Also Bruno 9LI designed the cover for our next issue.
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The Rag Factory, ‘Stew’, Edward Ahlstrom, Ayla Akdemi, Michelle Anderson, Michael Anthony, Becky Beynon, Ben Bird and other artists: 13th-22ndJune.
16-18 Heneage Street, nearest tube stations: Aldgate East and Liverpool Street.
34 University College Creative Arts (Rochester and Kent) photographers, from UK and Europe tackling diverse themes such as journeys, memory, history, environment whilst questioning the place of photography in modern society.
www.stewphotography.co.uk

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Transition, ‘FAN FAIR’, Dominic Allan, Doug Jones, Cathy Lomax, Matt Rowe, Tabitha Moses:14th June-13th July.
Unit 25a Regent Studios?8 Andrews Road, London E8.
Deals with the ‘spectacle of seaside sensations’ including: a rock-dipped walking stick, delicate ceramic skittles, a deep-sea diver and souvenir hankies and Madam Sosostris will even read your tarot cards!
www.transitiongallery.co.uk

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Fieldgate Gallery, TERRY ATKINSON?STUART BRISLEY?TIM HEAD14th June-13th July.
14 Fieldgate Street, London E1 1ES.
Artists who came to prominence in the 60s and 70s; operating within: Conceptual Arts, Performance Arts and other modes. Their commentary on art and politics has influenced generations of students.
www.fieldgategallery.com

On Wednesday evening fellow art editor, troche Tanya, viagra approved and myself journeyed down to Earls Court for THE fashion event of the month – the Graduate Fashion Week Gala Show and Awards. Now – being a somewhat high profile event, treat we were prepared to spot the occasional celebrity, what we were not expecting was the bizarre scene that we were greeted with on our immediate arrival. Huddled together in a group, Pixie Geldof, Agyness Deyn and Henry Holland stood ‘casually’ chatting outside the main doors – which just so happened to be conviently situated in full view of the paparazzis’ lens. While shimmying our way past this attention-seeking spectacle, all the while wondering why their conversation couldn’t possibly take place inside, we desperately hoped that this show would centre on graduate talent and not just end up being another who’s who celebrity parade.

Fortunately I can admit the show was brilliant. Sixteen graduates had their collections displayed in a flawless runway show which I’m sure was breathtaking for them to watch. The standard was impeccable from the designs down to the faultless music changes and lighting.

One of my top favourites was Nabil El Nayal from Manchester School of Art, who was also the winner of Best Womenswear on the night. His black and white collection was all about volume, layering and ruffles combined with light sheer chiffon, silk and cotton materials. Think big floating dresses worn by ancient Greek damsels in distress thrown in with a couple of sleek skin-tight bottoms, and you’ll get the gist of his clothing.

Sarah Kennedy from Northumbria University was another of my favs. Her catwalk show reminded me of a trendy modern day puppet show, complete with bright pink blush and bold accessories. The doll-like collection was crammed with childlike one-piece garments and baby doll dresses all covered in a Japanese style print.

The final designer who really wowed me was Craig Fellows from the University of Northampton with his classic Little Bo Peep inspired skirts and dresses.

All in all it was a good evening. I Particularly liked the mini hamburger hors d’oeuvre’s and the band’s radical frontman who slyly used this opportunity to lecture a room full of fashionistas on sustainable clothing.

Highlight of the night? – definitely seeing Gok Wan…I just love him!

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