crept up on me like a shadow.
One moment I was in Iowa working with my comrades Dustin and Brian of Novice Industries; the next, rushing to hair and make-up with my pal Aldo o’ the Vento.
Aldo volunteered to assist me with Door Duty for the event, a favor which proved much needed the moment we stepped from what was intended as a brief “helloing” sesh — as pictured below, kicking off the evening with the lovely Jenelle Rensch, graphic design whiz [ and incidentally the mastermind responsible for my CC logo in its final incarnation ], Mssr. Aldo Vento Himselfness, model and co-star in Matthew Mishory’s biopic Delphinum: A Childhood Portrait of Derek Jarman : a beautiful, lyrical portrayal of the phenomenonicon, which is currently winding its way about the international film festival circuit. [ Not that you asked, though as I'm proud for all parties involved...let the record hereby note : the world premiere was 5 September 2009, at the Portobello Film Festival in London. ]
And oh, but oh : from one photograph to the moment that followed, how swift a shift in decorum. Namely, when AnnaLynne and Rachel McCord arrived at the venue, any semblance of order was tossed out the window like a stale copy of Us Weekly.
Image of AnnaLynne McCord and Clint Catalyst courtesy of
Deeply Shallow: One Man’s Adventure in L.A., by Albert Domasin
As rabid 90210 fanatics attempted to claw their way towards the living, breathing version of “Naomi” they recognized from their living rooms, I did my best to sneak the party of pretty-pretties into the inner sanctum : a seated area complete with Goodie Bags [ sponsored by Janome sewing machines, Fiji water, Tarina Tarantino jewelry, Amtrak, Josie Cotton, and Sebastian Hair Care Products ] that lived up to the name — incidentally, the precise locale where soon enough, leather metallic fabric † stitching nipped and tailored † silkscreened paintings † tricked-out hair with neon nets † make-up more surreal than real, and the spirit of unfettered creativity and unapologetic flamboyance would reign.
After all, why was everyone at the Social Club?
The MOST CORRECT runway debut of the retina-shattering, cardiac arrest-inducing atelier extraordinaire Jared Gold‘s latest collection : a collaborative effort with mega-watt visual artist Joshua Petker.
Above : Rockin’ some ‘tude, with pop legend Josie Cotton
A Brief : my first interaction with Mssr. Gold hearkens back to a bleak time in American history. We met shortly after his 2001 debut in Manhattan on September the 10th — an inauspicious moment for anyone to premiere clothing design, as it transpired mere hours before the atrocity known as 9/11.
Eight years have passed in the interim, and still: the creative outpourings of this inimitable virtuoso never cease to amaze.
That being said, it should come as no surprise that for his latest effort — a pairing of superpowers with painter Joshua Petker — my expectations were anything but low.
Pictured above : Petker with photographer Cyn Yen
Per chance you aren’t familiar : Mr. Petker’s art is most God, indeed. Over the span of the last few years, I’ve admired his murky-canvased beauties from afar — so when the opportunity presented itself this Christmas past, I was stoked to make his acquaintance and bear witness to a bit of the brainstorms and dark-clouded creative rumblings between these two masterminds.
All due respect, before I venture into the particulars of the Gold x Petker mash-up, please allow me to praise the work of this inventive gentleman . . .
Up first : two images pilfered from an interview in Fecal Face, a.k.a. the art-blog equivalent of masticating a corpus callosum.
“[Petker's] work is like that girl you know will destroy you but somehow you just can’t resist.” — Manuel Bello
Entitled “Hunting For Witches,” the painting [ above ] slaughters me, maing…SLAUGHTERS me!
And next, A portrait from Petker’s recent watercolor series [ 2009 ] :
So. Much. Gorgeous!
Fine art from a fine fellow : truly . . . truly.
At any rate, speaking of ‘fine’—there was no shortage of squealing over Twilight‘s hunkasaurus
among the crowd at the Gold versus Petker extravaganza.
Full disclosure: I’ve never seen Twilight , nor have I read any of the books. Said another way? I wasn’t aware Who He Is—but not to worry…it’s not as if frenetic whispering girls and paparazzi flashbulbs going pop! were in short supply.
Short of the long? Mr. Lutz was a complete gentleman: there was none of the “Don’t You Know Who…” routine that’s as played-out as clunky monster boots. (Seriously, kids? Just. Don’t.) Equal parts accessible any coy, Lutz maintained a genteel decorum I often refer to as From The School of ‘Leave-Them-Longing.’
A rare trait in today’s tabloid-congested society, unfortunately. With yellow journalism the norm rather than the exception, these days it’s as if the lump sum of Tinseltown’s silver lining is tinged with rust.
I mean, let’s face it: once one is inundated with images of our ‘stars’ being— well, — as flawed and human as the rest of us? There’s a natural tendency for audience members to be less willing to accept Coleridge’s “Willing Suspension of Disbelief” in terms of an implausible premise.
However, the academic vernacular? Hereby duly noted. (Apologies for the yawnage, please.&.thanks!)
Instead, a shifting of gears to that hotness known as AnnaLynne. As for The CW’s “90210,” I did, in fact, see the two-hour premiere—though can’t say I remember much about the episode other than Cory Kennedy and Mark The Cobra Snake‘s cameo appearance.
*Appearances? I’ve been staring at this blue screen far too long, I’m afraid.
Whatever the case, congrats to the duo—both of whom have graduated from their former status as ‘fixtures’ among L.A.’s nightlife to full-fledged international phenomenons quite successfully.
As for AnnaLynne, her role as Eden Lord in Nip/Tuck’s fifth season was no mere incident of (envision air quotes) scene-stealing; it nabbed the entire season. Seriously? But seriously… Upon discovery of her 2009 win as “Greatest Break-Through Talent” at the Teen Choice Awards, my opine is succinct: well-deserved.
Oh yes…and since this is a city fueled by the mythic power of Celebrity,
pictured here with the Cute-As-They-Come Kim Bruder
More images await “beneath the cut…”
However, since both the event and amount of photos collected –cough!STOLEN cough!–is of epic proportions, I’ve decided to divvy the lot up into three parts: Before The Madness (on which your gaze is fixed at this moment), Petker’s Paintings In Stiletto Pumps (the catwalk-stalking and crowd-gawking), and Dance.Music.Sweat.Romance (the after-party).
That being stated, Please! Click Away– for More Gore Gore Gorgeousness…
Also of great import: the evening’s hosts and high-falutin’ D.J.s
Collected here–in no particular order–peel back those lashes and LOOK UPON:
Transgender Juggernaut and Glamorpuss (S)Extraordinaire Calpernia Addams
with The Gender-Bent Ongina (from RuPaul’s reality series “Drag Race”)
Christian (of Scarling.), A Most DrumSexy Samantha Maloney, and vocalist Jessicka
(Check out the duo’s latest project, The Ingenues ♥)
music (and trouble!)-maker Giddle Partridge of The Partridge Family Temple
photo credit: Amanda Brooks
Style Fiends Anna Estella and Audrey Kitching with Rio, from the indie boutique Beauty Is Pain
Have I mentioned how much I effing adore that Nick Verreos?
“Project Runway” notwithstanding, he’s a dapper gent with a keen sense of diction.
(Seriously? Home boy “gives good blog.”)
Be it Yay or Nay, here he is with Audrey and Rio (yet again!)
In the midst of all this madness, models were getting “gussied-up” in a public area…
(What usually would be a ‘backstage area’ for hair teasing, face-beating and getting ‘in outfit’
was actually center stage in one of the rooms.)
James St. James was in the house, as well
doin’ his thang with camera man Michael Lucid of Pretty Thingsss in tow.
The roll-call continues with
Shutterbugs Mike Mead and Debbi Rotkowitz
The Ever-Ebullient Performance Artist Phae-Dra with partner-in-crime/one-off designer Hesham
Michele Mills, who’s fiercer than a cholita shiv copped at 5th & Bonnie Brae,
and cracks a vitriolic sense of humor effortlessly as upwardly-mobile white girls exhale into pale pink wads of chewing gum;
then sigh in borgie bordedom. *yawn*
Here’s to aspartame explosions to jolt the freon pumping from my shriveled little heart!
Up next/Up next/Up next…
Michelle Star with performance artist/perv extraordinaire, Thistle Harlequin
Actress, Juggler and YouTube phenomenon Olga Kay with Bridget a.k.a. LilyLuLay
Spot-check Olga Kay’s ‘Totally Tubular Ways’ as well as
(I like, totally dare you and stuff… so there!)
Testament to the axiom that there are three types of people in life:
Those who make things happen; those who watch things happen, and those who ask (envision delivery a lá the archetypal ‘Mouth-Breather’ for full effect): “What happened?”
Freelance journalist and Eternal Girl-Of-The-Moment Lina Lecaro and lens-meister Josh “Curious Josh” Reissepitomize what it is to exist bulls-eye in the (dialated) pupil of SmogCity’s night-life.
Neither Lecaro nor Reiss are neophytes to How Things Burn At 1 a.m.,
And for that I am grateful: Unless one has ‘Scene El Al’; truly, what barometer can exist for What’s Next?
Adding to that riff of 20/10 among a town full of faux bespectacled visionaries?
Counter-culture Hyper-Hyphenate Amelia G, whose myriad of talents include
writing, public speaking, niche identification, internet marketing, photography and editing–
the latter two duties of which she shares with counter-culture conspirator Forrest Black of Blue Blood:
Fashion mavens Kit Scarbo (née Pistol), Rhea Cortado, Sweet P, and Alison Nieder.
The lovely Scarbo and Sweet P are designers and fellow “Project Runway” alums, while
Wordsmiths Cortado and Nieder keep a keen eye–and poised pen!–for The California Apparel News
Mad respect for all four ladies… REPRESENT!
The band Motionless In White , like kohl-colored Post-It notes…
Visual reminders that relationship between music and fashion is a symbiotic one
(The “Mary Kate” to that “Ashley,” yo! )
Kat Lee a.k.a. Kitt E. Katt and Kaila Yu of the Nylon Pink empire:
It’s a band; it’s a Stickam show—add in their jewelry line Hello Drama,
And it’s a way of life. Period.
As if your head weren’t already spinning around like a majorette’s baton at half-time,
(Or so goes the case with me and mine!)
Trailing Left to Right in the following 5-Up are:
Visual Artists, Bandmates and Husband/Wife creative powerhouse Morgan Slade and Elizabeth McGrath
(whose band Miss Derringer produces aural fixations on-par with Slade’s awe-inducing photographs
and “Bloodbath McGrath”s bone-crushingly beautiful dioramas)
~whereas dead and center, we have Plastigod and his Plasticgoddess , featuring
Colleen Duffy from the band Devil Doll to complete this Pentagram of Creative Power.*
* Phrase used with a fierce wriggling of tongue-in cheek, chitlins: i.e., don’t freak; don’t freak! ;D
Visual Artists Natalia Fabia and Gary Baseman
further luminaries from the Los Angeles art world
(as Velveeta-laden as the term “heavy-hitters” may be, it applies here, maing; it applies!)
Tim Biskup, his sweetness Nicki,
Gary Baseman, and another ‘double-threat’:
Marion Peck and Mark Ryden
Whereas ever the embodiment of art, she is:
Tarina Tarantino, Reigning Queen of Sparkly Bijoux
exudes boundless enthusiasm and an undiluted insight that life is meant for living :
(No need to dial whine one one for a waaaahmbulance, but still…it’s a trait I esteem, the ol’ “Lust For Life.” So be it.)
I mean, C’mon–the smileage from that head-dress alone? Slaughtering with Swarovskis and over-statement…Love Love Love It!)
And on the tip of “Over-Statement”?
For the runway show, Janine Jarman and her obscenely talented team from Hairroin Salon
paired up with a posse of make-up maestros
under the direction of Noelle Nichols
(featuring one of my ‘repeat offenders,’ the phenomenal face-beater known as Stacey Hummell ).
Total transformation of the models into living embodiments of Petker’s artwork.
A case of life imitating art imitating life, one could say…
Here’s a shot of Joshua with Jared’s tour manager/chanteuse Jessicka to illustrate:
and another, in which Jessicka is flanked
by fetish model Courtney Cruz (L) and D.J. Victoria (R)
Pictured below, the aforementioned Beauty-Meisters
Noelle Nichols, Janine Jarman, and make-up artist Cambria Serrano
Cuteness Amped “To-The-Nth”
with DJ Filthy Rich and the Chica-Behind-My-Multiple-”Tags,” Irene Urias
of Hairroin Salon notoriety:
model Camille Waldorf, who induced a sharp inhale of
“Un-be-lieve-a-ble!” upon cursory glance of this perfect shot:
model Julia Boone, another stunning canvas the hair/make-up/design team imbued with Petker’s esprit de (cotton candy-hued) corpse:
Corpse, however? A neon-tinged take, insofar as her impeccable war-paint and directional styling, perhaps… though
that long-limbed beauty with tresses lapped by flames, Amanda Fields is a mega-model, as far as I’m concerned.
So much so, in fact, it’s a battle to post a mere mention of her based on a two-dimensional image: beauty in stasis. Of her ability to ‘Give Face,’ there is no question—though it’s when Fields steps onto the stage that she doesn’t just shine; she crackles, shredding the catwalk with an high-octane ~(interruption!)~
[PAUSE BUTTON, HEREBY PRESSED.]
As if I haven’t already exhausted the concept of a ‘blog’ beyond my *own* breaking point, fer F’s sake!
I mean: if I’m going to endure this torture again; I need to save some of the drool-worthy content…
The following of which includes…
After the smear of a few years/several months, [Oh.How.They.Bleed]
A supernatural force identified only as ‘Larva’ has returned, in a whirling dervish of
flailing limbs and quicksilver spine-snap, magick and cultivated madness:
Akin to this year’s triumphant return of The Legend-Upon-Legends, Kristen McMenamy,
Among the cognoscenti–an admitted minority, and unapologetically at that–there is a poetry implicit in the movement of these Girls Of All Ages, a cadence of secrets told in the rustle of leather embroidered on denim, the flash of a haunting visage Petker french-kissed stroke by brush stroke onto
this, a swish of fabric Gold fashioned into the most glorious wink or nudge in the ribs such a collection never gives.
For the myopic–MidWestern or elsewhere? Have no fear. There’s always another boatload of somniferous sweatshop beige en route plastered with illusory “luxury” tags boasting Michael Kors Lite, ad nauseum.
Besides, what a drag it would be if I saw a posse of pom-pom packin’ tweenage girls at the Glendale Galleria…
Merely the opinion of one, but here’s how mine goes: a full-throated bravo to Gold versus Petker , versus Gold .
Of the win? EPIC– and congrats!
(Whereas I? I am so blearly-eyed and eager to put this verbal monstrosity out of its misery; I can barely handle it…)
Ramblings of the downright adorable little sis, Angel McCord lie in wait for future days–
Instead, savor this: a final gallery post for the time being:
Gabriel Wischmeier and special guest on the catwalk, Miss Deena Marie
from Salt Lake City!
Whew! Again, I cannot emphasize enough what a pain in the posterior this HTML hell of “Save Draft”/”Preview” back-and-forth, back-and-forth,
back-and-forth has been for me…
(Clearly, this is the 21st Century’s message that THE TIME HAS COME TO CONSIDER PROSPECTIVE INTERNS. As in: not really…but REALLY.)
Whatever the case? As I mentioned earlier, the next blog I have “slotted” is of the runway show itself. To tide you over until then, however– Here’s a work of comic genius that was made by the aforementioned Walking Stick model, Miss Deena Marie (Channel name = BeanerLaRue on The ‘Tubes):