Still on the art meets beauty line, there is an American artist whom I didn’t see while I was in New York but who is absolutely worthy of praise and admiration: Anthony Goicolea.
I was immediately impressed with his photography work taken from the series Semptemberists, from 2006. I was soon to find out that the actual work is a short film in black and white mixing explosive elements such as male-exclusive beauty, religion and American rural traditions.
Done in collaboration with fashion designer Thom Browne, both the movie and the pictures evoke the ever-so-present subject of religion versus pleasure (in this case visual) and all their perhaps sinful connotations.
According to Goicolea,
The Septemberists is a thirty minute black and white film that chronicles the preparations and processes associated with traditional religious ceremonies. A group of boys harvests materials in a dream-like landscape in order to construct the clothing and elements necessary to enact a series of semi-sacrificial rites of passage. Taking inspiration from Prokofiev’s “Peter and the Wolf,” the musical score becomes a substitute for dialogue. Each group of boys functions as a pack of mute workers accompanied only by the sound of their designated musical instruments. Set on a farm reminiscent of an old southern plantation, the characters appear almost like a refined tribe or community living an existence removed from society; half military academy, half monastery. Like cloned worker bees, each group moves in silent, pre-choreographed unison, carrying out their individually assigned tasks. As one group herds and sheers sheep, another picks cotton growing in a steam filled greenhouse, while still a third group meets at a moonlit marsh to catch octopi and harvest their ink sacks.
I just love these sort of talented collaborations. It is truly inspiring when you see two different kinds of artists working together in creating something bigger than their own production. Magnificent.