Tag Archives: sexy

SMILE AND DIE.


Charles Inottum has been studying bones all his life. The topic is unusual and interesting, but what makes it also intriguing is the fact Mr. Inottum is not a scientist but a philosopher. His almost naive dedication to the subject unearthed some controversial and, sometimes, creepy theories.  The bone-white brilliance of his reasoning, so far, has only been balanced by the obscurity of his persona. Most of his books are still unknown or unpublished. Which is a pity, given the originality of his ideas and the extravagant, random poetry of his writing. So, when Mr. Inottum showed up at the Brandpowder Studios asking for help, we truly did our best to promote his work.

Opening picture (top): Poster for the premiere of “The Visibile Skeleton”, an essay on the multiple metaphors of teeth: in the foreword the author suggests that “every time we smile, the only visible part of our skeleton comes to surface. Teeth are the epiphany of death and there is nothing to laugh about it.  At ancestral level, back to the primordial  night, man was certainly more hunted than hunter. The moonlighted teeth coming out of darkenss represented the fear of the wild beast, its power to inflict death by tearing human flesh apart.”

Below: “At The Roots of Laughter and Pain”. In this book Mr. Inottum speculates about the ambiguity of joy and sorrow saying that, at the very bottom, they are the same thing. Teeth are, again, central to his theories. He compares them to “enamel trees building a fence around the lying tongue, placing tenacious roots into the bed rock of blabbering jaws.”

“Fight, Feed, Fuck” is perhaps the most controversial book by Charles Inottum. The idea, here, is that the body can be imagined in three sections, or Mouths. Each one is specialised in one activity, indispensable for our survival. The three “F”s represent our need to Fight, to Feed (ourselves and our offspring) and to Fuck (for reproduction). We suggested the author to change this last word, a bit too graphic in our opinion, but he insisted to keep it: “it helps people to fix the concept”. The original work included also a section dedicated to Fugue, another key element for survival. Fugue, allegedly, is associated with the anus, which is a back-mouth. This explains why animals, before running for their life, literally  empty their bowels in order to be lighter and faster. The way of saying “I’m shitting in my pants” is also a reminder of this biological trick.


Below: concealed weapons. Charles Inottum speaks often of  “latent aggressivity” as a natural and permanent state of mind of human beings. We think we are civilized and in control of our emotions but, at the very bottom, we are wolves disguised as sheep.

COMING SOON:  “Sex and Bones”.  Charles Inottum’s new book, due to come out next January, starts with a provocation: how about if we look at lingerie as an extra layer of bones? Isn’t it an exoskeleton, after all? The author argues that female seduction, as a strategy, finds in lingerie not precisely a weapon but an elegant self defense. In other words: every piece of corsetry mimicks the inner skeleton (corsets were made of whalebones). We asked Mr. Inottum why should we be allured by such scary symbol, and he told us men are attracted by danger and fear. Lingerie, to him, is not a playful, sexy thing. It is imago mortis.

Below: The way of saying “dressed to kill” is revealing for Mr. Inottum. Behind every courtship leading to carnal knowledge there is an intricate world of symbols. White lingerie is linked to the bone. And probably to the boner.

Above: this bustier is reproducing the interwoven complexity of tendons, muscles and bones. Inottum thinks the visible skeleton is a haunting presence, and he wonders why people refuse to see such evidence.

Below: Skin Deep? This tattoo tries to get underneath. But alas! – says Inottum – the exploration is not exactly reaching the inner body but only a scientific representation of it. Probably this is an unconscious, failed attempt to open up and reveal what’s inside.

Above: “Rose” by Christophe Gilbert. Once again, according to Mr. Inottum, the flesh is a thin coat of paint, a fragile membrane that barely holds us together. The body is filled with flowers, an unconscious allusion to antique embalming.

Above:  Dissolving Beauty. In this case, the skeleton becomes the ornament.

Queen. A black card from Gareth Hedges’ album (author is unknown).
Above: teeth are the hardest and most durable part of our body, a mixture of dentine and enamel. To anthropologists in the distant future – Mr. Inottum says –  a molar will provide all sort of information about the way we lived and loved.


According to the author, moose’s bones are the living proof that horns and teeth are strictly connected. Their evolution is linked, again, to the three “F”s theory.

Above and Below: Mechanical and Make up. The mouth opens to a whole range of interpretations and Inottum, like an enthusiastic writer-dentist, can’t wait to plunge into deep analysis, coming out with always unexpected answers.

Above: two images by Jason Freeny. The artist creates hilarious supporting structures inside objects, characters and everyday’s icons. The Empty Society, according to Charles Inottum, digs into the void, desperately seeking for a soul.  What we are left with, in the end, is just a smiling skeleton, a handful of bones.

Below: the way of saying “are you nuts?” is well interpreted by this sweet treat (or trick?). The similarity between brains and walnuts – Inottum explains – is not coincidence, but a clear sign of a vegetative state of mind.

The Brandpowder Team.

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ZIP THIS!

Top: Gideon Sundback, inventor of the zip (…you mean, the postal code?)

We’d like to pay a tribute to Gideon Sundback, the man who invented the zip, a device that beautifully separates and joins not only two pieces of fabric, but reveals a whole world of things, opening up and closing, showing and concealing, freeing and restraining both flesh and spirit, and the fireworks of fantasy.

“Thank you Gideon!” for your ’embroidered’ drawings of the 1917 patent (above). Inventions like this were a mix of technology and poetry. The etiquette, in such official documents, dictated meticolous handwriting, reflecting a sense of brainy elegance and aesthetic discipline.

“Thank you Gideon!” for opening (and closing) a new path in history.

“Thank you Gideon!” We couldn’t exist without you (The Cat Women).

“Thank you Gideon!”. The Shut Up logo (courtesy caoazul.com)


“Thank you Gideon!” Politicians should wear this on campaign. (The voters).

“Thank you Gideon!” for letting me properly torture women’s feet. (Loboutin).

“Thank you Gideon!” because shorts must be short, but never short of zips.

“Thank you Gideon!” for filling another gap in the fashion industry.

“Thank you Gideon!” for giving a ‘time-poor” society a chance for quick love.

The monster was stitched together by hand. B-movies show zips on his head and neck, but this is an historic false. Frankestein was written by a 19-year old Mary Shelley in 1817, exactly one hundred years before Gideon Sundback’s invention.

” °°°° you, Gideon!”. The button.

ON HAIR.

Above: “Me No Blonde” oil on canvas, 55×73 in. (140×185 cm).

I am happy to present a brief selection of jumbo-size paintings from Klaus Kizzinskitz, a Polish artist who is going to be in New York and London (not at the same time, of course) to promote his “On Hair” exhibitions, both on schedule at the Late Art Gallery. Kizzinskitz, 26 year old, is considered one of the new talents of the Art World. One of his paintings passed, unexpectedly, the 1,5 million dollars’ mark at the Shanghai Auction Fair. Half of the profits, he told me, will be donated to support scientific research to solve premature baldness among business people.

Above: “Alive!” a massive triptych stretching, top to bottom, for almost 30 feet. Kizzinskitz’s technique involves women’s hair brushes. He also personally prepares oil colors, following the Renaissance’s antique recipes. Below: “Sexy Keratin”, another huge canvas. To have an idea of its dimensions, the artist is the size of the woman’s nose.

Kizzinskitz’s fascination with hair is not new. While attending the Warsaw Art College, he found inspiration in the work of Botticelli, De Camp, Degas, Kahlo, Truong and Zhang, just to mention a few. “Hair is made of keratin, a fibrous protein produced by our organism. What fascinates me is the fact hair is made of dead cells, yet is the only part which keeps growing after we die.” Kizzinskitz moves his hands while talking to me, filling the air with imaginary volumes; his grey blue eyes look at me as if I were the only person left in the Universe. His work, when you are in front of the canvas, emanates a particular energy, animated by this ‘lively sense of death’. Colors flow like lava on the surface. This effect, he says, is the result of years of experiments and hard work.

Sandro Botticelli: “Young Woman” (oil).

Joseph De Camp: “Woman combing her hair” (oil).

Edgar Degas: “Woman combing her hair” (oil pastels).

Frida Kahlo: “Self portrait with loose hair” (oil).

Winnie Truong: “The Ginger Bread” (color pencils).

Hong Chun Zhang: “Life Strands”, charcoal on paper.

Kizzinskitz draws hundreds’ life-size sketches before realizing his huge canvases.

Above: Mammoth’s hair from the Ice Age. Kizzinskitz bought it from a collector and it’s now part of his Cabinet of Curiosities. He plans to use it to craft his next brushes. “I never painted with an elephant, before,” he said, smiling childishly.

Monica Turlot (correspondent for the Brandpowder Team, Paris 2012)

THE PAGE IS ALIVE.

What happens when you realize your life is going nowhere, while days pile up like shallow pages? What happens when you end up being trapped into their glassy, glossy surface?  While you think about an answer, we are going to tell you a story about a brave spirit who – in search of adventure – fought to come out, literally, from the immobility of a picture.

With light foot, the Fornarina Girl (we took her nickname from the brand she was advertising) has been running through the Vogue pages. On her way she came across several beautiful personalities populating the sleek world of fashion: most of them tried to dissuade her from the purpose, but to no avail. In the end our heroine finds a way out, only to realize she can’t really leave a clichè without falling into another one.

Concept and Art Direction: Carlo Muttoni / Hand Lettering: Monica Turlot / Photography: Bob Lesiem / Post Production: Brandpowder Team.

Special thanks to: Vogue Italy, Fornarina, Calzedonia, Dolce & Gabbana, Ralph Lauren, Dior, Gucci, Missoni, Catherine Denevue shot by Steven Meisel and the editorial ‘Home Chic’ by Miles Aldridge.

FINGERPICTURES

Like a Cadillac.

It was awkward. I was working with my camera in one hand, while placing the page under the proper light with the other. That’s when I saw my own fingers entering the frame of the camera’s view finder. They looked like pink fat aliens, fiddling around the page I was trying to shoot. I stopped, and started looking at my hand. If I watched it for long enough, it didn’t seem mine anymore. It was like a flashy spider, an octopus who lost three tentacles to adapt to terrestrial life, a cybernetic machine I now imagined crammed with silver wiring, bearings, and watchmaker’s screws under a thin layer of synthetic skin. I am easily distracted by my own assignment, so I started playing with my hand, placing it over the pictures in a sudden attempt to give images an extra dimension. What you see is the result of a few days’ work between Milan and Amsterdam. Some pictures are taken by Vogue Italy, others from an inflight magazine called Madame (merci beaucoup, Air France). I used a Leica M9 and a Lumix G1, selecting a medium resolution to give pictures a grainy effect. I shooted in daylight as usual, adjusting colors and adding minor retouches on Photoshop. “Like a Cadillac” (the opening photo is from an original by Miles Aldridge) is the first of the series. The Fingerpictures – that’s the far too obvious name I came up with – are another experiment in visual communication, and part of the “Photography, Photographed” project. I would like to express my gratitude to Vogue, Air France and their photographers, and a special thanks to the Brandpowder Team for their unvaluable support.

Champagne First.

Mustard Bastard.

Cold Paper.

F as in Feather.

Nobody Around.

Not As You Think!

Slow Down, Boy.

The Way I Feel.

You Joking?