The Wall

Aerial Menswear with Extreme Trampolinists Flippenout

The Guinness World Record-breaking American athletic troupe Flippenout show off their aerial feats in photographer Dominick Sheldon’s directorial debut, The Wall. Having trained under the conceptual eye of Steven Klein, Sheldon fuses the trampolinist stars of NBA and NFL half-time shows’ performance gear with the military-inflected styling of creative director and former editor of Russh, Stevie Dance. The filmmaker shot brothers Sean and Eric Kennedy while they flew through the air at heights up to 22 feet, clad in designers including 3.1 Phillip Lim, J.W. Anderson and Tim Coppens. Captured on the runway of Floyd Bene Fields, a derelict airspace outside of New York, the bouncing showmen are soundtracked to the pulsating “Paradiso,” an original score by bass-heavy producer Feral, AKA Caleb Halter. “My background in fashion spurred me to take them out their typical environment,” says Sheldon. “When they enter and exit a frame they’re in a different outfit yet they’re still in routine. It’s a performance.”

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    A CFDA Shakedown

    Up-and-Coming New York Designers Battle it Out Ahead of American Fashion’s Biggest Night

    Ahead of tonight’s annual Council of Fashion Designers of America awards—presented by the Pope of Trash himself, John Waters, and where Rihanna will walk away with the Fashion Icon Award—the fantastical vignette Shakedown celebrates this year's Swarovski Awards for Emerging Talent. The first time a film has been commissioned exclusively by CFDA, NOWNESS enlisted filmmaker and frequent contributor Clara Cullen, whose visual grammar blends contemporary art with an irreverent approach to fashion. Cullen cast half a dozen new-wave ballers in handcrafted animal masks to go head to head in a playful dance-off clad in the nominees’ show-stopping designs, from the streetwear cult of Shayne Oliver’s Hood by Air to red-carpet regular Rosie Assoulin and menswear wunderkind Tim Coppens. “Each routine corresponds to the identity that I had in mind for the designers and the personality of the animal,” explains the Argentine director, who brought to life NOWNESS' interactive voguing experience. Taking cues from French literary classic Les Fables de La Fontaine, Cullen collaborated with set and costume designer Andy Byers of Isabella Rossellini’s trailblazing Green Porno series. “I’m always attracted to things that don’t correspond to the right box,” she says. “I wanted to contrast high fashion with a dorky, somewhat naïve idea.”

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    Beyond the Skin

    Jonas Åkerlund Takes Model Shaun Ross on a Hyperkinetic Trip Through LA in the Final #DefineBeauty Film

    “Hollywood is so good at only seeing what’s on the outside, and using that first impression instead of going deeper,” says Jonas Åkerlund of the location of the final film in the #DefineBeauty series, in which he follows American model and actor Shaun Ross around the back streets and freeways of Los Angeles. “I think Shaun has spent all his life with those reactions. Look again and you see that this guy is really beautiful.” The Swedish filmmaker is known for music videos that span over 25 years—from Madonna to Beyonce, Iggy Pop to U2—and feature films including the darkly comic 2002 release, Spun. His gothic style is apparent in today’s portrait of the famed albino model, who recently starred in Lana Del Rey’s 30 minute film, Tropico. “When Shaun showed up on Hollywood Boulevard, Darth Vader and Mickey Mouse were affronted,” the filmmaker says of filming Ross, who was styled by his wife B. Åkerlund. “Like, ‘What the fuck is this guy doing here?’” Elements of Beyond the Skin were shot by Ross himself with a camera provided by the director, whose cat was given a supporting role. “She’s also albino so I thought they might have a connection,” says Åkerlund. “They actually did. She wouldn't stop sitting on his head.”

    Look one: Top & skirt by Yuima Nakazato.
    Look two: Head piece by Maiko Takeda, cape & pants by Yuima Nakazato, shoes by Nereku.
    Look three: Leather jacket by Bohemian Society, metal mesh top & bracelets by Michael Schmidt Studios, boots by Gasoline Glamour.
    Look four: Jacket by, Hyein Seo, top & shorts by Yuima Nakazato, shoes by Nereku.

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