Deerhunter x Proenza Schouler: Monomania

Band Members Become the Unlikely Faces of the Ever-Current New York Womenswear Line

Indie rocker androgyny finds a kindred spirit in women's ready-to-wear courtesy of Proenza Schouler in this series of photographs featuring Deerhunter, accompanied by an eponymous track taken from the recently released album Monomania. The unlikely collaboration was born from mutual admiration between Bradford Cox, the provocative lead singer of the psychedelic noise-rock band, and the New York fashion label’s Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez. “Bradford had all these themes and ideas he was playing with during the recording of the album. He was obsessed with primitive and African art, fur and animal prints,” explains photographer Robert Semmer, who is working with the Atlanta-born band on a bigger visual project, including a film and music video around the release of this latest album. “Bradford and the drummer Moses were already huge fans of Proenza Schouler and when they saw the Autumn/Winter 2013 show they freaked out because it was exactly the same vibe that they were obsessing over.” NOWNESS caught up with the designers to discover more about this brand new alliance.

What makes Deerhunter the perfect Proenza muse?
Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez: Bradford is fiercely driven to explore his craft and is possessed by it, something we find incredibly intoxicating and inspiring. It makes us want to push harder, to think bigger.

Were you surprised to hear that the band are big fans of Proenza Schouler A/W13?
JM and LH: It was definitely unexpected and funny since it’s a women’s fashion brand.

How did your collaboration come about?
JM and LH: We went to a performance they gave at MoMA PS1 in Queens a few weeks before our fall runway show. Afterwards we went backstage to meet Bradford; he mentioned that he and the band were fans of Proenza Schouler and that it might be interesting to work on something together. We invited them to the show in February and the next day they called us up and asked us to dress them for their album cover shoot.

Is it important to connect with interesting bands?
JM and LH: We’ve been listening to both Deerhunter and Atlas Sound [Cox’s solo project] on repeat. Music is really important to us—it formulates ideas when we’re drawing and working in the studio. We’re constantly looking for new music online and going off on tangents searching for things. 

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    On Replay

    WIZ: Strait Street

    The Acclaimed Filmmaker Uncovers Malta’s Bawdy Past in a New Video for Dark Horses

    Vintage footage of sailors and the pleasures of the Maltese harbor punctuate this premiere from British director WIZ, who follows local performer Ira Melkonyan as she wanders hypnotized through the shadows of a rundown palazzo in Valetta’s Old Town, towards the sounds of the Brighton-based art rockers Dark Horses. With a music videography including shorts for David Bowie, Dizzee Rascal and Marilyn Manson, WIZ himself sets the scene for his latest work in a prose poem written to accompany “Anna Minor”, a track from Black Music, the band’s debut album: "Strait Street, known to British servicemen as ‘the Gut’, was Malta’s notorious red light district up until the early 1970s. A choice destination for drunken sailors when the street sprung into life in the long hours of darkness— barmaids would lean on doorways touting for business, musicians, entertainers and prostitutes would spill from every bar." This summer, Dark Horses was invited to perform and record in Malta and the studio space where they found themselves was high up on the infamous row. A close friend of the band, WIZ mixed their menacing guitars with voiceover recollections from a Maltese transvestite who used to work the strip, meshed with the sordid sounds of the world’s oldest profession. “An orgasm is one of the most intense experiences,” he says, reflecting on Dark Horses frontwoman Lisa Elle’s vocal climax, captured on stage at the Valetta venue Floriana Ditch. “There must be some kind of residue here, the amount of sex that was going on over a hundred years. Perhaps Dark Horses’ music somehow activated the sensations from the past.”
    (Read More)
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    Technicolor Dream

    Director Lisa Paclet’s Spellbinding Short Launches Luisa Via Roma’s Firenze4Ever Film Festival

    Charismatic music director and DJ Mimi Xu, AKA Misty Rabbit, models clothes by rising fashion talents in director Lisa Paclet’s short, created for the fifth edition of iconic Italian boutique Luisa Via Roma’s Firenze4Ever festival, which kicks off in Florence today. Inspired by the surrealist work of influential mid-century photographer Erwin Blumenfeld, Technicolor Dream is a close collaboration between Paclet and Xu, with the latter masterminding an original score for the hypnotizing visuals. “Another reference was Piet Mondrian,” explains Paclet, whose recent work includes films for Kenzo and Dior. “We built a set inspired by his paintings to frame Mimi’s body in different ways.” The film showcases designers from five Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week cities: Sheguang Hu (Shanghai), Michael Sontag (Berlin), Maria Escoté (Madrid), Stine Riis (Stockholm) and Charlotte Ronson (New York). A leading luxury e-commerce platform known for its on-the-pulse collections and limited-edition exclusives by revered designers such as Karl Lagerfeld, Luisa Via Roma will stock the designers from the film for the first time. “Young, up-and-coming designers represent the future of fashion,” says Luisa Via Roma CEO Andrea Panconesi. “It is important to recognize this and give them a space alongside the historic fashion houses.”

    (Read More)

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