Book corner #5: 'David Hockney' by David Hockney - Kenzine, the Kenzo official blog

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To launch the KENZO Fall/Winter 2014 collection, Carol and Humberto enlisted directors Partel Oliva and web/3D designers Kim Boutin and David Broner to create an interactive 3D and video experience. The result of their collaboration was available online. Since yesterday, it is also a show in Paris at Galerie 12Mail.

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Over the course of a few nights before the opening of Grace To The Nth Power, a solo show inspired by Sudanese-American model Grace Bol, all but one of the artworks are stolen from the gallery. Still, the exhibition opens, with the missing pieces replaced by videos showing the thieves at work. Visitors are admitted one by one into the darkened gallery, to witness the unmaking of the old show and the making of the new.

The gallery exists online on a dedicated website, as a 3D space the user navigates using their mobile device which is tethered to the site. The story is deployed recursively on many levels, across the WebGL 3D site, the artworks, the videos.

Grace Bol plays herself and Sang Woo Kim plays her accomplice.




A dedicated gallery shop has been created for visitors who wish to purchase garments seen in the videos.


The videos and artworks are displayed until tomorrow at Galerie 12Mail / Red Bull Space, 12 rue du Mail, Paris.



If you computer is not powerful enough to support the program please use your mouse and click.

The book corner section highlights the most original aspects of this season's themes and culture, through works selected from our KENZO boutiques and reviewed by Angelo Cirimele. This week, he chosed 'The Invisibles', a moving book of vintage photographs.

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'What’s more familiar than a souvenir photograph? A picnic, a ball or a stroll… we have all seen dozens of them, and even if the heroes in the pictures are unknown to us, the situations look familiar and we can relate to them. Well, I am writing this for those who are not « digital native » and know about photographs on paper. Sebastien Lifshitz’s book plays with this familiarity, but there’s something, an element, disrupting our nostalgia: are the couples brothers? Friends? Lovers? Page after page, it starts dawning upon us that these are gay couples, in daily or festive situations, sometimes transvestites, who fix on paper what  society did not want to see in the 50s or 60s. Amateur photographs, found in fleamarkets here or there, with the same leitmotiv: happy together. Sébastien Lifshitz is also a director and he made a documentary out of this corpus, tracking down some of the protagonists who then told their story.'

'The Invisibles' –  Sébastien Lifshitz ,2013, 144 p. Ed. Rizzoli.

Kenzo - 60, rue de Rennes, Paris.


Read all our Book Corner articles here.

The book corner section highlights the most original aspects of this season's themes and culture, through works selected from our KENZO boutiques and reviewed by Angelo Cirimele. This week, he chosed the exhibition catalog of one of the most emblematic figure of pop art: Tom Wesselmann.

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Tom Wesselmann may not be the most well-known Pop Art artist, but his work encapsulates what the U.S. is all about: a certain energy, consumer products, gaudy colors. Known for his illustrations, the artist also stepped outside the medium by mixing objects and painting, daily life and intimacy. I like the freedom with which Tom Wesselmann revisits art history and makes it his own; reinterpreting it by cutting it into pieces and playing with it like a child, or so it seems. His images are highly sensual and he knows how to capture feminine glamour, like this red mouth exhaling smoke. In Wesselman’s art, everything is fake and shiny, even when he adds a manufactured object to his composition. The artist interrogates the essence of an image and also of our our gaze, when presented with many desirable objects. This luxurious book is an exhibition catalog and includes many critical essays as well as artists’ views on this singular work. 

'Tom Wesselmann',2013, 200 p. Ed. Prestel.
Kenzo - 60, rue de Rennes, Paris.

Waves are a significant theme of the KENZO Spring/Summer 2014 collection, both in the engineered ‘Wave crest’ tailoring and in the waves prints across the men and women’s collections.

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Carol and Humberto have managed to collate a plethora of influences from Orange County ‘80s punk culture to 19th century Japanese engravings,  drawing together California and Japan; two areas separated only by the Pacific Ocean. Japan’s peculiar geographic situation as a volcanic archepalago surrounded by water has meant that the wave is one of the most popular motifs of its artists’ engravings and paintings. The most famous ones are those by the artist Hokusaï (1760-1889), including ‘The Great Wave off Kanagawa’, which depicts a natural phenomenon that is as beautiful as it is hypnotic and intimidating.  

Read Alice Cavanagh’s inspiration piece on the wave crest in the collection here.

The book corner section highlights the most original aspects of culture all summer long, through works selected and reviewed by Angelo Cirimele. The Showa period in Japan under Emperor Hirohito lasted from 1926 to 1989, but most of the illustrations in this charming and at times hilarious picture book are from the 1950s to 1970s. The collection of futuristic imaginings anticipated what life might be like in the 21st century for Japanese children, and are grouped into six categories: everyday life, modes of transportation, robots, computers, space and, optimistically... the end of the world!

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Futuristic Illustrations

"It may sound strange to us, but the 21st century has been the stuff of dreams of many fantasies. With wild visions of transportation, architecture, robots, computers, previous generations really overinvested in the future we are living now. A quick check around today will confirm that there are as yet no flying cars (even if budget travel might resemble it); computers are indeed high-powered but tiny and not very impressive, and as for houses, they are very similar to the old ones. Dreams are manifested principally through images and as here, through drawings. Thus, this book is a collection of the Japanese futuristic imagination from the fifties to the seventies: creative, colorful and hungry for innovation. It is quite delightful to turn these pages, you experience a kind of nostalgia (even though we are talking about the future) for a childish outlook free from barriers and ulterior motives. A bit like with Daft Punk and Goldorak."

Futuristic Illustrations for Kids of the Showa Era — Our 21st century, 2012, 260 p. Ed. Seigensha.

KENZO - 60, rue de Rennes, Paris.

KENZINE first met Gia Coppola at the launch party of the Kalifornia bag in L.A back in November. A native of Los Angeles, we thought the young director would be the person to talk movies with. Here are Gia’s favourite Californian films.

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The Long Good-bye: the best example of a movie that knows not to take itself too seriously. A Raymond Chandler novel as slapstick comedy.


Los Angeles Plays Itself: The truest portrait of my hometown


The Conversation: I love the score and sound editing. I like movies that take place in San Francisco.


American Graffiti: I like movies about teenagers just driving around.


Sunset Boulevard: A movie told from the perspective of a dead guy. What Hollywood can do to a person.


Double Indemnity: Barbara Stanyick is one of my favorites. Good old classic.


Heat: Best heist movie & best shoot out scene. Val Kilmer.


Zodiac: A movie about a serial killer that's really a story about obsession.


Chinatown: Makes the history of Los Angeles into a Greek myth. The birth of LA. The story of LA can be whittled down to the search for water.


"For some reason, they're mostly crime movies!" 

Toni Halonen is the Finnish designer who has illuminated this season's KENZOPEDIA with the vivid colours of his digital paintbox. We caught up with him to find out what makes him tick...

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KENZINE: Which was your favorite letter to illustrate? Why?
Toni Halonen: This far my favorite has been letter ‘I’. It was fun to mix KENZO's aesthetics with elements from iconography.

K: Which word would you like to hear used more?
T.H.: Lentokonesuihkuturbiinimoottoriapumekaanikkoaliupseerioppilas. Thats the longest word in the Finnish language. It translates as ‘airplane jet turbine engine auxiliary mechanic non-commissioned officer student’. I would love to see someone pull that one off in a casual conversation.


K: How did you approach your designs?
T.H.: Well how it usually goes is that I read the brief and try to come up with some ideas without much of success. Then when I am doing something completely different the idea strikes me. I drop everything else, pick up my stylus and start sketching.

K: What values or aesthetic elements do you share with KENZO?
T.H.: Bright colors, twisted humor, hand-sketched rawness. I never had to ‘work’ on doing something KENZO. It came quite naturally.

K: What's your KENZO spirit animal? Tiger or Fish?
T.H.: Tiger. It’s actually my Japanese Zodiac sight.

K: Describe yourself in one sentence.
T.H.: Cool cat living up north, trying to make a living.


K: What is your favorite thing to draw?
T.H.: I would love to do more abstract works. That’s definitely something I want to concentrate more on future.

K: Your favorite font?
T.H.: Only one?! That’s like asking a DJ for his favorite song. My song could be Phil Collins in the air tonight and the font has to be Futura (the old version) even though I don't use it much anymore.

K: If you were stranded on a desert island, what could you not live without?
T.H.: My record collection.

K: If you were a color in a paint box, which would you be and why?
T.H.: Maybe a crazy multicolored one. Like those multicolored pens that you had when you were a child. And when you pushed out all the colors at the same time you could draw some crazy stuff.

K: What was the last gift you received?
T.H.: I was playing records in St. Petersburg and got some great vinyl singles from the local record boss, Kirill. Unfortunately after playing the whole night and some russian vodka they mystically disappeared…

K: KENZO is all about traveling, which city or place most inspires you?
T.H.: I have to say even that I love travelling, my home city Helsinki is the most inspiring place for me.

K: Your next dream travel destination?
T.H.: I would love to visit Marrakech in Morroco, and  check out The Majorelle Garden. I also love Morroccan carpets. There's some beautiful rawness in those from which we can all learn something.

K: If you hadn't become a graphic artist, you would have been a...
T.H.: I already changed career once. I used to study architecture before following my heart and ventured into graphic arts. So don't make me go through that again!


Discover Toni's work bellow :

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

Our fifth installment of the Cityguide series is Arts. Last but not least, let’s take in a couple of film programs on offer at the LACMA.

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Everything needs a little lift now and again. With the huge monetary injection provided by super patron of the arts Eli Broad, LACMA has been undergoing a ten-year face-lift, also known as the Transformation. Designed by the Renzo Piano Building Workshop, the first phase of the project - the BP Grand Entrance open-air pavillon filled with lampposts and visible from Wilshire Boulevard, as well as the three-story, 60,000-square-foot Broad Contemporary Art Museum (BCAM) - opened in early 2008. The BCAM’s inaugural installation featured works by Richard Serra, John Baldessari, Ed Ruscha, Robert Rauschenberg, Jasper Johns, Jeff Koons (one of Broad’s favorites), and many more. 
Be sure to take some time and see the LACMA’s impressive collections of Asian and Islamic art, as they are amongst the most significant in the world. If you’re in the mood for different art forms, come enjoy the live jazz during summer months or take in a movie or two at the Bing Theater.

Note: With more than 100.000 art objects dating from the ancient times to the present day and located on twenty acres in a complex comprised of seven buildings, the LACMA is the largest museum in the western United-States.


From the book 'The best things to do in Los Angeles – 1001 ideas', by Joy Yoon (Universe / Rizzoli International).

See our map on Pinterest!


5905 Wiltshire Boulevard between Fairfax and Curson avenues. 323-857-6000


Our fifth installment of the Cityguide series is Arts. Next stop on our tour is LA><ART, an independent nonprofit art space presenting experimental exhibitions and public art initiatives.

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X marks the spot for the LA><ART space. Not only do you get to see emerging art and design, but it also has an amazing public programming schedule. From lectures and exhibitions to magic shows involving sawing a woman in half, the spontaneity of this place is what makes it a must-see.


From the book 'The best things to do in Los Angeles – 1001 ideas', by Joy Yoon (Universe / Rizzoli International).

See our map on Pinterest!

2640 South la Cienega Boulevard, Los Angeles 310-559-0166

The book corner section highlights the most original aspects of Californian culture all summer long, through works selected and commented by Angelo Cirimele. This week, he picked the autobiography of English painter David Hockney, who spent four years living in California in the 1960s. Upon arriving in the 'golden state', he decided to change from his ususal oils to more vivid acrylic paints, applying them in strokes of smooth, flat and brilliant colour.

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“I don’t read many biographies; I find that more often than not the works are more interesting than the actual life of the individual behind them. That being said, artists sometimes reinvent the genre. Enter David Hockey, who through telling the stories behind the works that he has created, succeeds in revealing his own story. The English painter painted his famous series of swimming pools in Los Angeles upon taking the advice of friend Andy Warhol. While his approach is classical, Hockney has a decisively contemporary flare because he uses the effect of photography to influence his paintings. His images, by their colors and framing, are strangely cinematographic. Written in the first person, this book of paintings and drawings tells us as much about art as it does about the man behind it.”

'David Hockney' by David Hockney, 1976, 312 p. Ed. Thames & Hudson.
Kenzo, 60, rue de Rennes, Paris.