Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Shot by Kern.

Richard Kern cuts the crotch out of transparent thongs and puts them on 18-year-old girls. He makes use of soap suds, patent leather and empty fields. He has made films with titles like 'Death Valley 69' and 'Detachable Penis'. No, Richard Kern is not a paedophile - he is a world famous underground photographer. While his work can appear tasteless and extreme, it is supported by a raw artistic quality. The girls look comfortable, the shots appear natural. The proof that he is not just in it for the nudity is exemplified by his fully-clothed photograph of the wonderful Eva Green, despite her tendency to whip off her bra for films...

Vice magazine's is currently making a series of videos about Kern called 'Shot By Kern: Europe'. The first episode from London is now available to watch here. He is surprisingly charming!

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Red Bull Flying Bach.

Red Bull Reporter sent me to Berlin on the 30th April to review a breakdancing group called the Flying Steps. It turned out to be amazing, with some serious B-Boy moves being thrown about to...Bach music!? Oh yep. My report is on the Flavour Magazine website, plus an interview with one of the Flying Steps, and an interview with the director Christoph Hagel.

I love how it says 'exclusive report'. :D

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Dear Everybody.

You are invited to
A poster exhibtion and open studio.

Brought to you by TBA magazine and one69A collective.
Forgetting the past of manchester and celebrating the new city and the talent it hosts.

Friday 14th May. Isllington Mill, Salford
7p.m - 11p.m
Free refreshments and Dj's

Monday, 10 May 2010

They are Rainbowarriors.

CocoRosie. Manchester Cathedral. May 7th.

CocoRosie could melt your heart in a second. Sisters Bianca (‘Coco’) and Sierra (‘Rosie’) flaunt a fascinating tale of disconnected parents and a separate upbringing, meaning that Sierra grew up training opera in Paris while Bianca chased hip-hop and visual arts in New York. In 2003 the girls reunited in Paris, spending the following couple of months trapped in Sierra’s bedroom making a quirky lo-fi record which would later be released as La Maison de Mon Reve. Now on their fourth album, CocoRosie have selected the unconventional location of Manchester cathedral, and they are about to show the world how to mix oil and water.
The cathedral is initially transformed into a dark 1980s nightmare as support act Lights Asylum perform some sort of fusion between a Casio keyboard drum machine and Nina Simone. Ideally suited to a more intimate venue, Lights Asylum lose their potential magic amongst the stained glass windows and open space, leaving the audience feeling somewhat tentative.
A harp is carted onto an empty stage and the aura of CocoRosie can already be anticipated. The band generate electrical waves through every single body in the building as they make an understated entrance, with Sierra, Bianca and their two male accomplices all sporting the loveliest facial glitter reminiscent of early 1970s David Bowie.
Any uncertainty regarding the building’s acoustics is instantly dissolved as CocoRosie’s classically trained Sierra opens up in perfect pitch, even behind a distorted microphone, with the aptly selected ‘God Has A Voice, She Speaks Through Me’. Bianca is lying on the floor, waiting for favourites such as ‘Black Rainbow’ and ‘By Your Side’ to show up in the assorted set-list so she can show off her distinctive acapella sound. It seems that their trademark clash of kindergarten vs. opera will indeed be nourished onstage, completed by an array of obscure instrumental features. CocoRosie have scrapped a conventional drum kit in favour of a human beat-box and a duct-taped rhythm cart, Sierra nurtures a hand-powered harmonium to accentuate her flawless soprano, Bianca makes use of a penny whistle and a clarinet - Manchester cathedral is bearing the gift of the most artistic circus you could ever wish to encounter.
Sierra and Bianca’s cultural differences are at the forefront of this musical demonstration, resulting in a spiritual and occasionally chilling destruction of performance conventions. And just when you think it can’t possibly get any more bizzarre, they do a cover of Kevin Little ft. Sean Paul’s ‘Turn Me On’ in absolute CocoRosie character, proving that their sophisticated and melancholy art is in fact far from scholarly. Like a real life Disneyanimation, CocoRosie have the ability make you weep and love and dance all at once.

Friday, 7 May 2010

A Greek Tragedy.

Everyone's talking about British politics this week. Even school kids on election day were like 'yeah, our school is closed because it's a polling station' - I'm pretty sure that when I was 9 years old the only political thing in my life was the percentage price increase on Toys'R'Us products. But anyway, forget that. Let's talk about the Greeks! They're totally having the worst time ever, and reading about their nightmare economic crisis makes our hung parliament situation feel pretty darn good. The basic issue is that Greece is in debt to a lot of countries right now, which means they are experiencing heavy budget cuts, riots, protests, people are burning things...the country is basically throwing a huge tantrum. The mistakes made by powerful members of parliament and rich little aristocrats have gotten Greece into a suitably sized disaster, which sadly means that non-rich people + wage cuts + tax increase = CHAOS. Germany has been persuaded to offer a 110 billion euro bail-out package for them, which implies that Greece is now too desperate to even control itself. Regular people formulated a national strike on May 5th to oppose all the money being taken from them in various ways, and then it got violent and three deaths occurred in banks which had been set on fire. See - madness.

There's always something philosophically enriching about watching a horrific scenario unfold elsewhere, as it makes home appear infinitely better. But while we're a fair few miles away, we have to remember that Greece was a cheerful European nation just like us not too long ago. So with all the recent voting problems and an ultimately indecisive nation, Britain had best watch its back. I love how before the election the newspapers were using Greece as a 'look guys, this WILL happen if Conservative get in power!' tactic, whereas now, after realising that Britain has absolutely no no idea what it wants, the general media consensus is more like 'ok, so, just thank God we're not in this much shit'.

Just for a taste of what's going on over there, Vice magazine got in contact with their Greek office and posted up a nice interview here with a bit of inside information on the state of things. Imagine 'Carrie' eating hummus and feta cheese and it's probably a good allegorical representation. Banks are smashed up, there are confused Nazi symbols on industrial dustbins, people are dying from the anarchy - the gentleman at Greek Vice also took a few pictures for public viewing:

Word on the street is that photography in Greece is now being regulated by an emergency law enforced by police, so anyone who can get out a shot of what's going on is very talented/brave/sneaky. Things have started to involve tear gas and riot police, which...yep, it makes me a little bit worried about who becomes the next British Prime Minister. I'm thinking maybe we should be a bit more terrified, as Greece was previously quite sane and stable - imagine the recession happening all over again with a new government, and suddenly your neighbours are throwing hand grenades at ice cream vans because their pension got slashed.

A Greek collection of photographers known as Redeye Connection managed to steal a few photographical glimpses into what is now happening over there.

People were snapped smashing the windows of a bookshop and throwing plant pots at other plant pots, which suggests that maybe things have just dissolved into complete uncontrollable panic. The police have started to get a bit irritated as people are ignoring rules, and so a few beatings have occurred. There's a rather gory shot of somebody's arms...

A civil servant called Stella Stamou screamed and screamed about how angry the people are, boulevards of Athens lay in flames and carnage, and my favourite inspirational bit came from an old jeweller who was quoted in the Guardian as saying "What people forget is that we Greeks don't like authority. We have always resisted when we think something is unfair. We fought against the Persians at Marathon, the Germans during the second world war and we will fight the IMF because in reality we no longer have a government. It is foreign forces who are in charge of us now."'s not all plain sailing for us on our little British island away from the violent madness of smashed up Athens - if Greece doesn't get some sort of debt relief, our own banks could be affected. Hello 'credit crunch' number two...