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August 27, 2014

L’Avenue Shanghai: Rencontre

An After-Hours Romance in the Luxury Destination’s Second Fashion Film

Radiant model Amber Anderson and menswear face Hao Yun Xiang plunge into the bright lights and dark corners of L’Avenue Shanghai in Rencontre, the second short directed by Nathalie Canguilhem. Inspired by the luxury mall’s illuminated exterior and architecture centered around its hemispherical dome, the film is set to a hypnotic score by emerging French artist Liza Manili and maverick producer 1963. “I wanted to create a sense of commotion,” says Canguilhem, who spliced together voyeuristic footage taken from L’Avenue Shanghai’s CCTV cameras, which shows the loved-up protagonists getting lost in the mall’s French-style gardens in looks from Dries Van Noten, Marc Jacobs and Saint Laurent by Hedi Slimane. “The shape of the building is naturally cinematic,” says the director of the cinematography, which referenced Chris Marker’s La Jetée and the contrasting hues of Blade Runner. “The nighttime Shanghai light is really vivid. It’s not silver, it’s white, and the reflection travels.”

Watch part one of our L’Avenue Shanghai double bill: Desir.

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Spotlight

New York La La La

Hollywood Skaters Prowl the Set in an Aaron Rose and André Saraiva Film for L'Officiel Hommes

“Paramount Studios is fantastical by nature,” says artist and filmmaker Aaron Rose of the faux New York City streets and sun-baked Los Angeles location of today’s cinematic fashion short. Sweeping through the vacant lot, Rose and his co-director, L'Officiel Hommes editor André Saraiva shot a dreamlike portrait of professional skateboarders Jerry Hsu, Austyn Gillette, and Josh Harmony, besuited in Dior Homme, Saint Laurent, and Prada. Set to the epic pop of Duran Duran’s “The Chauffeur,” the slow-motion skaters are confronted by a trio of models in lace lingerie led by Belgian beauty Anouck Lepere, in a touch that echoes the band's 1980s videos. “It is his bicoastal perspective which started the idea for the film,” explains Saraiva of Rose’s past as founder of downtown New York institution Alleged Gallery, that is juxtaposed with his recent experience as a West Coast-dwelling artist. “We share a similar evolutionary process as creators, so it was natural to work together,” says Rose of his multidisciplinary Paris-based collaborator. “We were shooting two elements simultaneously, this film and a photo editorial. André would be shooting photos, then all of a sudden, he would hand me the stills camera. It was a wonderfully creative ping-pong volley.”

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Spotlight

Laura Pannack: Natural Selection

The Photographer's Young British Naturists Series is Given an Illustrated Dressing Up

Laura Pannack’s intimate portraits of the wistful day-to-day life at naturist retreats are transformed by illustrator Micah Lidberg. Taken from Pannack’s latest exhibition at White Cloth gallery in Leeds, England, the series saw the photographer immerse herself in the life of the Young British Naturists, a group for unclothed under 30s. Following the end of the exhibition last week, today’s protagonists—who until now have been displayed undressed on the Leeds gallery wall—are clothed in the latest from designers such as Marc Jacobs, Jake & Dinos Chapman’s collaboration with Louis Vuitton and Comme des Garçons. One group play boules in restrictive get-up from J.W. Anderson while another eat bags of chips in outfits and sunglasses by Prada, all drawn by Lidberg whose recent work includes collaborating on the music video for Coldplay’s “Atlas.” “It’s only natural to use clothing as an indication of what someone will be like,” says London-based Pannack, who has shown in the National Portrait Gallery and was the recipient of the The Royal Photographic Society’s Vic Odden Award. Exploring the group’s decision to bring forth a practice usually reserved for moments of privacy into a more public domain, she immersed herself in their collective liberation by meeting them unclothed herself. “It was a rare opportunity for me to be more vulnerable than my subjects and experience a unique situation of meeting people, with no signals or clues that may encourage me to judge or pigeonhole them.”

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