#dieselvenice

Over the past year or so one major fashion brand has gone through an intense transformation thanks to the bold moves by the Creative Director at the helm. Nicola Formichetti has moulded Diesel into a creative powerhouse and put it back on the map. From new campaigns to collaborations, Formichetti has made his mark with each new creative idea.

His latest piece has me pretty excited because it is in collaborating with one of my favourite creatives, Nick Knight. Formichetti and Knight have teamed up (yet again) to unleash a new fashion/art video for Diesel’s show in Venice (#dieselvenice). The video is a lengthy 16 minutes long and is split up into four parts all alluding to a different aspect of the brand (ie, leather, denim etc). It is presented in a triptych form featuring statuesque bodies as a nod to a traditional Italian painting.

Photo via SHOWstudio

Another interesting aspect of this project is the literal reference to advertising methods. Knight & Formichetti are projecting images onto bodies as to influence or represent a culture and ideologies that are associated with their brand. If you think about it the body is often used as a vessel to metaphorically project onto but in this video the body is stripped down into a blank canvas for diesel to project their branding onto (literally). From heavy metal music, burning churches, nature, and hard core porn it is no mystery why they call Formichetti a creative master. Check out the video on SHOWstudio.

#dieselvenice

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Stories Retold

Wendy Red Star, The Four Seasons, 2006

Many different stories are told through the works on display at the 2nd edition of The Contemporary Native Art Biennial at Art Mûr in Montreal, aptly titled Storytelling. Some are familiar, some radically unique, and others are retold in ways that critique their original meaning and significance. What unites the varied narratives is a focus on identity; at the heart of the exhibition is the question of what it means to be of an Indigenous background in contemporary North America.

Meryl McMaster, Fawn, 2010

Interweaving cultural heritage, traditional knowledge and contemporary practices, the exhibition presents dynamic explorations of identity. In Meryl McMaster’s eerily beautiful portrait photography spiritually significant animals have been digitally projected onto her father’s face, emphasizing the interconnectedness of Aboriginal identity, nature and the mythologies that unite the two. Leonard Getinthecar’s (Nicholas & Jerrod Galanin) Space Invaders combines pop culture references from the duo’s youth with traditional elements of their heritage in a portrayal of the conflict between colonial powers and Aboriginal peoples painted onto a deer hide canvas in the style of the iconic 80s video game of the same name.

The Contemporary Native Art Biennial

Leonard Getinthecar (Nicholas & Jerrod Galanin), Space Invaders, 2013

Kent Monkman and Wendy Red Star’s works compliment each other as critical interpretations of familiar narratives. Monkman’s paintings serve as re-tellings of Canadian history, which emphasize an Aboriginal presence and challenge colonial, Eurocentric narratives that have excluded the oppression of Aboriginal peoples and traditions. Similarly, Wendy Red Star’s self-portraits in glaringly artificial nature scenes target the dioramas commonly seen in natural history museums. The artificiality of her own dioramas asks us to consider the integrity of those we see in museums, to question what might be missing.

Kent Monkman, East vs. West, 2011

As a whole, the exhibition serves as an evocative expression of Indigenous identity and mounts a strong critique against the incomplete and sometimes fictitious identities that have too often been projected onto the Indigenous peoples of North America.

Canadian history

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