Tag Archives: Andy Warhol

{MUSIC MINUTE} “The Devil is Loose” by Asha Puthli

Well it sure has been a minute since we’ve had the chance for another addition to our beloved {MUSIC MINUTE} corner of our blog. Things have been really hectic and full, which is great, but with summer officially in full swing we are hoping to take the opportunity to put up more content here to ensure treasures of the {PAST} can be upheld here in the {PRESENT} and hopefully continue shaping our {FUTURE}…

Here we have a wicked piece called “The Devil is Loose” by one of those icons that everyone should know (but doesn’t) – Asha Pulthi! This song is from her album by the same name, and was her third of eight recorded albums.

Asha was born in Mumbai (formerly Bombay) February 4, 1945 and trained in classical Indian music and opera before falling for the devils of jazz which she infused into her traditional roots. After graduating from a public University in India, she received a scholarship to go to New York City and study with legendary choreographer Martha Graham (that aspect will make total sense when you see her moves in the video).

Her fate was setlled when her appearance on “Aint it Peculiar” by the Peter Ivers Band which was covered by major music magazines like Billboard and Rolling Stone. Her reckless abandon and joyful reverie was heard (and you can hear it too here– HIGHLY RECOMMENDED) and soon she had avant-garde jazz saxophonist Ornette Coleman knocking on her door, or calling her phone? We may never know…but she would make the most prophetic and signature vocals for his out-of-this-world improvisational jazz album Science Fiction, and the rest is history!

She was signed by John Hammond who most famously discovered Billie Holliday, Bob Dylan, and Bruce Springsteen – so very good company indeed!

Like I mentioned, this is from her third album of the same name (“The Devil is Loose”). Sadly not much is written about this album at all (at least in English) since it never saw its release in the US. But throughout, her vocals are sultry, soft, sweet, soulful and mysterious… her voice vaguely reminiscent of Diana Ross and then at other times as great and grand as Aretha Franklin.

Unfortunately for Asha, the money men at CBS London found an easy way out of hoisting her up and getting paid her proper dues when she became pregnant which effectively brought an end to her escalating royalties.

But before they could stiff her completely, performances on British television  would ensure her the right to negotiate royalties that only major acts such as The Beatles were able to obtain at the time- 14%!!! This and coupled with her pregnancy, Asha was shipped off to Germany much the same way The Beatles had been shipped to Hamburg.

However, unlike The Beatles, this choice by CBS London essentially hindered her career much more into obscurity and  allowed for artists like Donna Summer to build their brand off what Asha had rightfully developed.

She herself claims that Donna Summer, alleged Queen of Space Disco, copped her style- not only vocally, but literally too!

According to Asha, during one of her performances in Germany in the early 1970s she was approached by Ms. Summer herself.

Donna was in this moment “belting out songs” according to Pulthi, rather than the subdued dreamy vocals of Asha, inspired by her Hinduistic classical training, which gave that otherworldly style that would become the virtual sound of any major Munich disco…and would soon be adapted by the now famous Disco Queen that EVERYONE has heard of.

Not only that, Donna Summer allegedly approached Ms. Puthli backstage asking where she could find Asha’s custom made dress, to which Puthli would not oblige.

Donna, unbeknownst to Asha, went ahead and asked designer Bill Gibb to which he refused. Them’s the breaks, I guess.

“A lot of people say that this album [The Devil Is Loose] and the other album are templates that later on Donna Summer, Pete Bellotte, Georgio Moroder all ripped off from my sound. Now, remember I’ve mentioned to you that I was suspended because I was pregnant. So at that time was when they jumped on the bandwagon, apparently. This is what I’m told by people in Germany, in the industry. Because when they called me up they said, ‘We want to work with the real McCoy,”

-Asha Pulthi {source: Red Bull Music Academy}

Nonetheless, she is more and more recognized in importance and relevance for her ethno-fusion cosmic disco avant-garde synthy soul vibes, her out of the world stage presence (her moves have also been centred out as a major influence to Kate Bush), and undeniable individuality. A rebel spirit through and through.

Her first album “Asha Pulthri” was shot by Mick Rock who was David Bowie’s official photographer (she would also go on to hire Pierre LaRoche, Bowie’s iconic makeup artist), and was admired by art influencers such as Richard Avedon, Manolo Blahnik Salvador Dali, Andy Warhol, Diane Vreeland, and even headlined at Studio 54.

Her style was always changing and was always an eclectic mash up of her heritage, the {present} day (for her, {past} for us), and the unknown frontiers of space and time….So, how about that Donna Summer?

She most notably also made an appearance in the obscure Merchant-Ivory art film “Savages”, as one of the three wild women leaving very little to the imagination.

Her music was even literally blasted into space in 2009 from the Goonhilly British Satellite Earth Station on the 40th Anniversary of the Moon Landing. Why, you ask? Well

“{her music is} a form of free-floating, ultra-sexualized intergalactic disco that matched hyperventilating time with erotic electronics and surreal sonic environments. Puthli has gone so far out that she has space walked into inner space.”

As well, she has been sampled by the likes of P. Diddy, The Notorious B.I.G., Redman, 50 Cent, and Dilated Peoples. She even owns writing credits to “The World is Filled” by Biggie Ft. Too Short and Puff Daddy…so yeah!

SHE’S A BOSS

 

Nowadays the notion of a globalized pop star like Asha isn’t too uncommon. Artists like BTS get millions of fans around the world; or take for instance, K-Pop Girl Band BLACKPINK who just performed at Coachella…even the song ‘Jai-Ho’ from Slumdog Millionaire went on to win both an Academy Award and a Grammy!

That is NOW…but back THEN, artists to cross-over these racial boundaries were even rarer which is why still today, we can look back in awe on the incredible artistry, bravery and honesty Asha put forth to just be who she is!

I was not encouraged to do my own songs. They wanted me glam, more Shirley Bassey than Joan Baez. I insisted upon including at least one of my own songs, just one. They (the CBS record producers) already thought I was difficult because I wouldn’t change my name. There is a cognitive dissonance when you have a name like mine….They gave me suggestions like Ann Peters, Ann Powers. I said no as I had already won the Down Beat at that time and had a fan base in India. As Asha Puthli!”

Asha Puthli @ The Grammy Museum  {source}

Oh, how wonderful it is just to be yourself!

Some people might even blame THE DEVIL…which I’m sure is why she created this cosmic disco masterpiece.

See for yourself below:

HOW EPIC WAS THAT?!

{the dress, the moves, that audience, the song…EVERYTHING}

Luckily, so much of her music is resurfacing so we hope this post will help in the manifestation of her glory. Please enjoy “The Devil is Loose” and let us know what you think in the COMMENTS.

If you are intrigued, Red Bull Music Academy has a wonderful interview with this legend published just this last February, 2019.

We barely scraped the tip of the iceberg with this one, so don’t let us down! Go check her out, channel her spirit, and play those funky cosmic disco sounds hard into the night…

+E.O.F. STYLE DIVINITY+

It’s official.

Until next time,

{theEye}

+

 

{MUSIC MINUTE} “Blood and Honey” by Amanda Lear

So, lately we’ve been obsessed with the decadence and glamour of the 1970s disco scene, especially in Europe! And when we found this video by avant-garde superstar Amanda Lear, we found it to be the perfect combination of vintage awesomeness and spooky elegance!!!

We didn’t know very much about this divinity (don’t worry…we will be working on giving her an honored place on our altar of Style Idols & Divinities), but we have been delving into this marvelous woman’s life like no one’s business!

Here is a woman who hobnobbed with The Beatles, David Bowie, Brian Jones, Bryan Ferry, Andy Warhol…had the model looks of Verushka and the voice of Marlene Dietrich. Not only that, she was a close confidante to THE Salvador Dali, and remained one of his closest friends and muses until his death. She even closed Jean Paul Gaultier’s 1980s pop music muses collection back in 2013!

What is so wonderful about Amanda is her mystery . . . sometimes things are best left to the imagination, and Lear keeps this enigmatic quality to this day (her birth date and nationality is still unclear, as well as other rumors circulating)!

This is what we respect most of this bad ass woman! Just be yourself, and everything else will fall into place.

Until we meet again,

{theEye}

+

 

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I DON’T NEED YOU TO TELL ME I’M BEAUTIFUL! I KNOW I’M BEAUTIFUL!!!

Fresh off our VMP DRAG FASHION FLAUNT at this year’s Vintage Marketplace, we can’t stop thinking about how incredible drag queens are, especially those of the {PAST} who paved the way for the {PRESENT} culture and creativity and will continue to invoke its {FUTURE}.

We know everyone who is anyone keeps up with RuPaul’s Drag Race, and the past season’s ALL STARS edition featured a wickedly hilarious Snatch Game that had Brooklyn babe AJA take on one of Herstory’s most legendary queens – founder of the House of LaBeija, and star of the cult 1968 documentary “The Queen”, Crystal LaBeija!

 

+GET A TASTE+

And she took her on with gusto and glamour, and also delivered this beautiful spirit back into the forum of the mainstream…much in the way Jinx Monsoon brought us Little Edie of “Grey Gardens”, and Sasha Velour took on Marlene Dietrich; keeping these divinities alive for younger generations is absolutely key!

How sad it is when you hear a young man or woman denote they have no idea who these iconic legends are . . . stay educated, kids!

“The Queen” is a fabulous film directed by Frank Simon, and provides an up close and candid look at the behind of the scenes of the 1967 All-America Camp Beauty Contest in New York City. It is a wonderful portrait of a time gone by. . . New York City is rough and tough, and men from all around America shack up in tiny hotel rooms in anticipation of the pageant discussing the difficulties of being gay in America. They are all fabulous, and its wonderful to see their final transformations from the male versions of them you see in rehearsals. This transformation truly proves the power of style and image to invoke strength from within.

Illustrated herstory by Laurel Lynn-Leake

By far, the most fabulous moment has to be Crystal’s freak out when she is named fourth place storms out and then rips everyone a new one backstage. Absolutely ICONIC…you are going to have to see it to believe it! And if you are a fan of Drag Race, you will really appreciate what Aja brought to the table even more.

We stumbled upon a full version of the film on Youtube, so check it out below and enjoy!

+Look out for Andy Warhol’s cameo (he was a judge in the pageant)+

Did you know Frank Ocean sampled Crystal Labeija ???

We love moments like this in pop culture where the {PAST} races into the {PRESENT} and ultimately shapes our {FUTURE}. . .  rebel queens like Crystal LaBeija will live on far past those who chose not to be the truest, most incredible versions of themselves.

I don’t need you to tell me I’m beautiful! I KNOW I’M BEAUTIFUL!!!

 

And really, we should all fell this way! Screw the haters- you rock!

Listen to that spirit within you, and let it free…

Until next time,

{theEye}

+

 

 

+ FAVOURITE FIND + VIVA MAGAZINE {circa. January 1976}

VIVA MAGAINE: The International Woman’s Magazine {circa. January 1977}

Cover Photograph by the iconic HELMUT NEWTON (hence, the undoubtable chic-ness of this image).  Published by icons Bob Guccione and Kathy Keeton of PENTHOUSE fame, this is a prime piece of classic porn chic.

First coined in a highly influential New York Times article in 1973, porno chic describes a distinct period between 1969 and 1984 where American pornos were hitting the mainstream consciousness and pocketbooks hardcore. Andy Warhol kicked it off in 69 with Blue Movie, and films like Deep Throat, Behind the Green Door, Caligula, The Opening of Misty Beehtoven, A Night at the Adonis, and Flesh Gordon are among the films that encapsulate the Golden Age of Porn.

But it wasn’t just about the films. This period also saw a surge of amazing publishing prowess seen by magazines like PLAYBOY, HUSTLER, OUI, and of course PENTHOUSE dominated the scene, but for the first time publishers turned their attention to the female gaze, and offered pleasures like PLAYGIRL and VIVA with the male form objectified freely and openly to ease the tensions of the day.

I know it seems cliche to say, but its about the articles, too! Especially adult magazines of this period, you will find some powerful political, cultural, and historical content that just can’t be beat! Some of the articles included in this VIVA Magazine include:

The Blue Angel: Inside New York’s Naughtiest Night Club
Minnie Riperton Raps About Fashion
The Real Brenda Vaccaro
The Naked Cowboy
Dustin Hoffman & Robert Redford on set of “All the President’s Men”
Do You Have What It Takes to Be Happy?

Not going to lie; what really stood out to us was the top story on the cover: HOW TO MAKE LOVE LIKE A WITCH!

 

The things they targeted their demographics with back in these times is fantastic! Imagine if they had published topics like this today?? People would have a fit! But, seriously we need more of this!

That’s just what makes this piece so god damn amusing. Keep pieces like this for entertaining treats for your guests- some pop culture, history, and a little eye candy.

They don’t make them like they used to …

And I always get a kick with cigarette ads from this period. They are always so special and great. Like this one:

Just out in the park picking flowers and placing them in my pretty flower basket and smoking a cigarette. . .  

+LADY BE COOL+

I don’t know how things have taken such a drastic turn. It’s rather sad, really…but luckily, we do have pieces like this to remind us of these lost times.

This is a rare item especially considering the super sensual and chic Helmut Newton cover, and VIVA being of lesser popularity as PLAYBOY or even PLAYGIRL. If you have any questions? Send us a message to the.eye.of.faith@gmail.com

Check out more details in listing in the {SHOP}

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{BUY NOW}

 

 

E.O.F. TALKS: Film Maker Craig Highberger Talks Andy Warhol Superstar Jackie Curtis

The Eye of Faith Shop Banner Boys

Here at The Eye of Faith we worship the spirit of individuality. Escaping the everyday, and letting your uniqueness shine is something Andy Warhol superstar Jackie Curtis was no stranger to.

Born February 19, 1947 in New York City; Jackie Curtis slayed the scene with a gender bending style and booming persona that should never be forgotten.

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That’s why we’re bringing her from the clutches of the past to the forefront, and it’s no better time, really; gender is undergoing quite a shift in this last decade, and many changes are still abound.

+ READ ALL ABOUT IT: COVERGIRL’s Cover Boy +

Our faithful correspondent John Wisniewski spoke with film maker and author Craig Highberger whose 2005 film “Superstar in a Housedress” explored the star’s groundbreaking art and life!

{ J.W. } What interested you about the life of star Jackie Curtis, Craig?

{C.H.} I grew up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, which is Andy Warhol’s hometown. My Uncle Sam Highberger had gone to Carnegie Mellon University with Andy and was in some of his classes and talked about him and so I became aware of and I loved Warhol’s art and that whole world. I also loved new wave cinema and without telling my parents I snuck out to these film screenings at Carnegie Mellon of Warhol’s films “Chelsea Girls” and “Flesh”.

And in “Flesh” there is this scene I will never forget, in which Jackie Curtis and Candy Darling, in drag, are sitting on a couch reading a movie magazine and chatting while nearby Joe Dallesandro is getting a BJ from Gerri Miller! I was 16 years old and I mean this was just fabulous to me!

In high school I was very aware of what was going on in New York City, pop art, Max’s Kansas City, the Warhol scene. I knew I wanted to be a part of that.  There was a magazine out of New York called “After Dark” magazine that had these really hot photos of Joe Dallesandro, and Jackie Curtis, Holly Woodlawn and Candy Darling by photographer Jack Mitchell. I wanted to go to film school in New York and meet Andy Warhol and the Superstars and that is just what happened.

I was a freshman at NYU the fall of 1972, it was just a few years after Stonewall and gay liberation was happening and the first NYU gay student group wanted the University to allow the group to meet officially on campus and the administration did not immediately agree to this so there was a big demonstration announced – a sleep-in, actually in the basement of my dormitory at NYU and Jackie Curtis showed up for it in his signature drag, because Jackie knew that there would be press coverage and maybe TV cameras and Jackie was a publicity hound. And I was just entranced, I recognized him immediately and introduced, told him I was from Pittsburgh, that I loved Andy Warhol, that I loved him (Curtis) in “Flesh” and “Women in Revolt”, that I was majoring in film and television and wanted to film his plays and performances documentary style.

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We became instant friends. And I went around with Curtis to parties, to Max’s Kansas City, we hung out with Holly Woodlawn (who is still a great friend), Candy Darling, and I met Andy Warhol a couple of times. 

In 1974 Jackie played the starring role in his play “Glamor, Glory and Gold: the Life and Legend of Nola Noonan, Goddess and Star”, it was off-Broadway at the Truck and Warehouse Theater on the Lower East Side across the street from La Mama directed by Ron Link. And I told Ron I wanted to film the entire play and he allowed me to if I would show it at cocktail parties for his prospective backers. So I did that.

Everything about Jackie was amazing and exciting and I really wanted to make a documentary about Curtis’ life from the moment I met him. I loved Jackie. 

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{J.W.} How and when did Jackie Curtis meet Andy Warhol?

{C.H.} Jackie told me in August 1967 he and Candy Darling were walking in Greenwich Village and Jackie saw Andy Warhol and Fred Hughes coming out of the Leather Man store on Christopher Street.

Warhol had just bought some leather pants. Jackie ran up to Andy and introduced himself and asked for his autograph on the shopping bag Curtis was toting around. Warhol asked Jackie what was in the bag and Curtis told him it was satin shorts for the tap dancing scene in his play “Glamour, Glory and Gold” which was opening in September, Jackie invited him to come.

Jackie told me he went to the Factory with four tickets and gave them personally to Andy Warhol. He came and afterwards congratulated Curtis, the author and the start of the performance, Melba LaRose, Jr. played the lead Nola Noonan, and Candy Darling played Estelle and was reviewed as a woman.  Curtis asked Andy Warhol for a review quote and Warhol said of the play:  “For the first time, I wasn’t bored” which they used in advertisements! 

{J.W.} Jackie starred in the Paul Morrissey directed film “Flesh”. What was that like for Jackie? How did this film come about, Craig?

{C.H.} Warhol’s “Flesh” was Paul Morrissey’s response to “Midnight Cowboy” which was filming on location in New York City in 1968. Morrissey knew that Hollywood would tone down the subject matter and nudity and wanted to do something more gritty about a hustler (played by Joe Dallesandro) working the streets trying to raise money for his wife’s girlfriend’s abortion – talk about controversy in 1968 – that very concept was designed to stir up publicity and fill movie theater seats, especially with Warhol’s name attached to it.

Warhol and Morrissey already knew Jackie Curtis and Candy Darling and so Morrissey came up with an idea to have them sit on a couch and talk extemporaneously about a movie magazine while Joe Dallesandro is getting a blowjob from Geri Miller practically next to them in the same room!

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This was Jackie’s dream, to be in a movie in theatrical release on the big screen, and you bet that Curtis went to every screening and that it propelled him into more self-publicity (I believe this was the moment Curtis had 1000 Jackie Curtis shopping bags printed up which were sold in Greenwich Village head shops)!

{J.W.} Could you tell us about The Jack Mitchell Archives, Craig?

{C.H.} When I first began thinking about making “Superstar in a Housedress” I knew I would need lots of archival photographs of Jackie Curtis, and Holly Woodlawn and Candy Darling, Andy Warhol and the whole crowd. And I immediately thought I need Jack Mitchell photographs, he photographed them more than any other photographer. But how was I ever going to afford license fees? I got on Google and did some research and found that Jack Mitchell had retired in 1995, he lived in New Smyrna Beach, Florida and he did not have a website. So I thought I will offer to do a website for him and to be his webmaster in exchange for the rights to his photographs. And that is just what happened.

Jack and his partner Bob Pavlik came to the opening night of the film at Film Forum in New York and everyone was there, they were very impressed, and loved the film and seeing his photographs in a feature length film in a theater with a packed audience. And the film toured film festivals and we had a theatrical run and it was broadcast on cable and Jack loved it all. It brought him new attention. And I called him and said I know what my next documentary subject is and it is you!

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+Jackie Curtis by Jack Mitchell+

I want to do a film about your life and work. And he was very pleased and excited. He put me in touch with people who were old friends and people he had photographed who loved his work that I could interview on camera, like Broadway diva Patti LuPone, playwright Edward Albee, Alvin Ailey dancer Judith Jamison, famed choreographer Merce Cunningham, and many others.

And I made the film “Jack Mitchell: My Life is Black and White” and Jack said that it was the greatest honor of his life. He and Bob came to the opening in New York and they came to film festival screenings and Jack did Q&A sessions afterwards with me and he loved it so much.

About a year later Jack and Bob called me and told me that they had decided to leave me Jack’s archives, the entirety of his life’s work, all the vintage photographs, his negatives and color transparencies, his files and memorabilia, everything. Bob died in 2009 at the age of 77 during an operation. Four years later on November 7, 2013 Jack died just weeks after his 88th birthday. I was there with him when he passed away and moved his archives to a vault.

A few months later I began the full time work of cataloguing and digitizing everything. It is a huge job. Jack Mitchell’s career as a professional photographer began just after World War II, when he moved to New York City and continued for about the next five decades. The negative files are almost 6000 photo sessions and there are thousands of boxes of color transparencies as well. There are 77 boxes of vintage prints. I have been working on it for almost two years and have many years of work left. It is very exciting and I make new discoveries with every box I open and every negative file that I scan.

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{J.W.} What was Jackie Curtis’ finest hour?

{C.H.} Jackie Curtis’ finest hour?  Any of the countless hours Jackie performed – whether is was in his hit play Glamour Glory and Gold, or Cabaret in the Sky, Vain Victory, or singing at his grandmother’s Slugger Ann’s Bar – Curtis was an incredible star of amazing brilliance. So many people remarked upon his being a genius: La Mama founder Ellen Stewart and comic icon Lily Tomlin among them.

Jackie Curtis had an electric charismatic magnetism that enthralled and thrilled audiences. I loved Jackie. Jackie put all of himself into every performance for the love of the art, and that is why it is really impossible for me to zero in on one performance, one hour, one moment. Now that he is gone, I think of him and a whole kaleidoscope of incredibly beautiful moments of sublime artistry blossom in my mind. As others have said, he was sui generis – absolutely unique.

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{J.W.} What will your next book be about, Craig? Any other projects that you wish to tell us about?

{C.H.} I have been working on the Jack Mitchell Archives (cataloging boxes of vintage prints, and scanning negatives and color transparencies) since Jack’s death two years ago. There is a lot of material for my memoirs including several years I spent running around with Curtis. I am going to work at what may be my memoirs, but potentially could take a new form (film or multimedia) because I have the journals, and visual and audio elements as well.

Also, I decided to post five of my documentary films on Vimeo for reasonably priced on-demand streaming, as well as downloadable for iPhone and iPad. Here is the link: https://vimeo.com/craighighberger/vod_pages/sort:videos/format:thumbnail

The Eye of Faith Shop Banner Boys

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SPECIAL THANKS TO JOHN & CRAIG FOR THIS INTERVIEW

LEAVE US YOUR COMMENTS BELOW!

BE YOURSELF!

UNTIL NEXT TIME,

{theEye}

+

E.O.F. SNAPSHOT OF THE DAY {AUGUST 18, 2016}

 

The Eye of Faith {Vintage} - Snapshot of the Day- August 18 - 2016- THE IMMORTAL - Vintage 40s Graphic Book Cover Illustration

THE IMMORTAL

by Walter Ross

+First published 1959 +

Andy Warhol designed a cover for a paperback edition in the 60s.

Based loosely on the life of James Dean //

A favourite of David Bowie . . .

The protagonist wears Dean’s most iconic look which Bowie borrowed in his appearance in  “Christiane F“.

Amazing how you can find so many connections in between . . .

Until we meet again,

{theEye}

+

{STYLE IDOL} Jean-Michel Basquiat


BASQUIAT

+

jean michel basquiat

{French pronunciation: ​[ʒɑ̃ miˈʃɛl baskija]; December 22, 1960 – August 12, 1988}

1. artist. style icon. 

2. academic; a little underground; a little street; archaic African; American hip-hop; Classic; Refined; Cultured; Gritty; Nitty; Bad Ass; Post-Punk; Anti-Conservative; Painted. Layered; Tough; Rugged; Tribal; NYC. 

3. timeless. 

4. cool. 

+

I don’t listen to what art critics say. I don’t know anybody who needs a critic to find out what art is.

-Jean Michel Basquiat

I thought I was going to be a bum the rest of my life.

-Jean Michel Basquiat

+

+++ FEEL INSPIRED? +++

SHOP THE {SHOP}

+ + + + CLICK HERE AND USE XIXIXI FOR 25% OFF! + + + +

UNTIL WE MEET AGAIN,

{theEye}

+

+

{PHOTOBLAST} ‘SELFIE’-CENTERED SOCIETY

 

ROBERT CORNELIUS - 1839- SLFIE CENTERED- THE EYE OF FAITH VINTAGE BLOG

Robert Cornelius – Self Portrait – 1839

The FIRST ‘Selfie’ , as well as the first ever photograph of a human being in history. Not bad for a dead guy . . .

{source}

KIM K - SELFIE CENTERED - THE EYE OF FAITH VINTAGE BLOG

“Why do you like me more when I was prouder and wilder, more full of words, yet emptier?”
― Friedrich Hölderlin

Don’t quote me on this one, but I feel like I’ve been hearing/reading a lot of talk about Kim K being the inventor of the selfie. She released her book SELFISH , and whilst you can attribute the ‘success’ of her following (52.8 million and counting) to her candid take on life posting bits and bites of her online constantly, she wouldn’t be the first or last to take a picture of themselves.

Nowadays ‘selfies’ are rampant on the internet, and its quite curious to see a generation of children growing up with the notion that there is an essential need to post one’s image ‘online’ at all times. There’s a saying these days that ‘if you don’t see it on Instagram, it didn’t happen‘ – which by all standards seems a little reductive to the actual experience of life and living, don’t you find?

While Kim may have been one of the forerunners in the popularization of the ‘selfie’, and even pushing the boundaries of the process of raising your phone in front of your face and pushing a button to some form or medium that one could consider ‘art’ . . . ? ? ?

Too much self-centred attitude, you see, brings, you see, isolation. Result: loneliness, fear, anger. The extreme self-centred attitude is the source of suffering.

-Dalai Lama

Yes, that’s what’s strange and hilarious about this whole ordeal, when in fact, if you take a look at a ‘selfie’ from the past, they are a whole lot more interesting than the run-of-the-mill duck face, booty-tooched, tiara-faced, bicep crunched, mid drift bared, grainy narcissism that is usually made to elicit some form of hype or attention; rather they are candid, curious moments immortalized by light and silver taken in a manner that is even more technically advanced and complicated than your phone or tablet.

Hope I didn’t offend anyone and their phone or tablet, but its the gosh-darn truth. And even before the advancements of the photograph in general, we had artists who painstakingly mixed pigment and with brushes artfully illuminated their souls onto canvas in what are often the best works by any artist- the self portrait, as we have come to call it.

It’s good to be selfish. But not so self-centred that you never listen to other people.

-Hugh Hefner

It would seem as a collective whole; as a community through history – we have always been fascinated by our true image, or at least, the image we leave behind of ourselves when we are gone. Perhaps its a stab at not being forgotten, or perhaps it is the artists own way of insuring they remember the times that were.

So in true E.O.F. style, we want to take a look back at the great ‘selfies’ of the past, remembering where we came from, and hopefully we can invigorate some imagination to add a flux to our inevitable futures.

Some things never change . . . certain aspects can change drastically on a dime, but as a whole, I think our tendencies tend to stay consistent.

The oldest ‘selfie’ we included in the gallery is of Ancient Egyptian sculptor Bak, who was chief sculptor to the pharaoh Akhenaten (father to the very famous Tutankhamun) who drastically shifted Ancient Egyptian customs during his rule which included their religion, as well as the world of art. Amazingly, this sculpture that depicts Bak and his wife dates from 1345 BC and is one of the earliest known examples of an artist taking to their own self image. 

My personal favourite is that of Grand Duchess Anastasia (fourth from last) which dates from 1913. 13 at the time, she uses a Kodak Brownie (circa. 1900) propped on a chair in front of a mirror to curiously capture her own self image and remains one of the most famous ‘selfies’ ever taken (sorry Kim…) due to the circumstances of her death just five years after she took this photo.

Curious how things change. Curious how they stay the same, also.

Keep your eyes open. The past lives everyday around us.

Just takes a little squinting of the eye to see it so clearly.

Until we meet again,

{theEye}

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E.O.F. STYLE IDOL: Peter Beard {Into the Wild}

Peter Beard in Francis Bacon's Mirror

HALF BYRON / HALF TARZAN

– Bob  Colacello on Beard in “Holy Terror”

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{b, 1938}

Who wouldn’t want to be Peter Beard ?

The “wayward wasp” from New York City was born to wealth, coming from an aristocratic family (his great grandfather founded the Great Northern Railway in 1857; his grandfather, Pierre Lorillard III, a tobacco heir) – he could have had any life he could dream of.

So, after graduating from Yale with a degree in art history (mentored by art greats Josef Albers, Vincent Scully, and Richard Lindner), and a membership with the Scroll & Key (secret society bro), he chose to escape the jungles of the western world for the true wild of Africa.

Peter-Beard-

I like to hang on to things and see the sea changes, the wear and tear, the spills, rain, and fire- how time works on everything.

-Peter Beard

There he would kick off his fantastic art career with a book entitled “The End of the Game” which documented the degradation of African wildlife brought on by yours truly – mankind. Taken in Tsavo National Park in Kenya, unsettling photos of carcasses and bones and rotting corpses in stunning and timeless sepia tinted black and white photos with mixed media and collage would put a stamp on Peter Beard’s exotic, original, and in-your-face style of photography.

It’s no easy feet trenching through crocodile infested waters, or watching as a colleague is torn in half by a charging rhinoceros, but it didn’t stop him from calling Kenya home.

He would set up home and shop in a rural sanctuary known as Hog Ranch, where he entertained a multitude of the world’s most interesting and fabulous friends, and take some of fashion’s most stunning images. He did it all in the most elegant and cool of ways.

Set against raving African landscapes, Beard brings new life to an industry built on a fantasy of luxury and excess, and strips it down (as well as his models) to the subtle supple curves of a woman, for whom he has had many. . . flecks of paint, and wicked swirls collaborate upon the images to create a magic that is evocative of his timeless and raw sense of style and unique perspective on life.

A rockstar in ever right, find him alongside Mick Jagger on tour, yachting with Aristotle and Jackie Onasis (clocking 4:20 in a $2,000 bet he couldn’t stay underwater for 4 minutes), entertaining royals, taking a nap with Francis Bacon in Andy Warhol’s bed,  or partying with Halston at Studio 54, running from bulls in Madrid,  or forcing Janice Dickinson to pose with a cheetah.

Lets put it simply: Peter Beard is a bad ass. He combines classic American ivy league style with a worldly spirit, nostalgia for the golden days of British Colonialism, all jet set to the max – keeping it clean, cool, masculine, and chic, and never being afraid to rip a shirt or get a stain. The truth is, he probably never thinks twice about any of that shit . . .  prolific playboys never give a shit.

EOF STYLE IDOL- Peter Beard- bad Ass

“I’m not a planner; I’ve never made a decision about anything in my life. The good thing about Africa is that you can escape forever. You can do what you want, without someone looking over your shoulder.”

-Peter Beard

You can still find Mr. Beard at Hog Ranch today feeding giraffes, and occasionally entertaining a photo shoot (back in 2009 he shot an iconic set of photographs for the Pirelli Calendar – click here to watch an incredible ‘Making Of’ video of his work on this piece).

His legendary journals and collage work have been soaring in prices at auctions as of late (his 1968 piece Orphan Cheetah Triptych took in $662,500 at Christie’s in 2012), so it would seem that sometimes doing the complete opposite of people’s expectations can truly pay off.

It’s all in the attitude, or should we say spirit. This is one we should all definitely try to invoke.

So, don’t get stuck in the status-quo. And never let anyone tell you that art isn’t worth it.

Peter Beard by Christopher Wahl

“I’m the most irresponsible person you ever met”

– Peter Beard

It changes people, and it changes the world.

Until we meet again,

{theEye}

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{ FURTHER READING: VANITY FAIR, NOVEMBER 1996 – “AFRICAN DREAMER” by Leslie Bennetts }

{MUSIC MINUTE} “EDIE (CIAO BABY)” by The Cult + A Wicked Rare Tour T That Gives You The Body Electric!

 

Entitled, Maybe - Edie Sedgwick Inspirations - The Eye of Faith Vintage

“Edie was spoiled materially, but starved and tortured emotionally. You can see that in her eyes. Oh, those sprightly, beautiful but also deeply sorrowful light brown eyes that I will never forget.”

– Andy Warhol

+Style Divinity+ Edie Sedgwick is one of those icons of style that cannot be denied. She also seems to represent a sort of decadent disheveledness that seems to have swept the upper classes of the 20th Century (for better or worse).

And for those in that world, it must have been most shocking to see a socialite like herself take off on a truly remarkable roller coaster ride through the world of Art & Fashion only to pitfall into a dark hole of abuse and addiction.

We admire her freedom. But like we always say – is freedom free?

A Lick For a Kiss - Edie Sedgwick Inspirations - The Eye of Faith Vintage Decadent Daydream - Edie Sedgwick Inspirations - The Eye of Faith Vintage Very Rosemary's Baby, Don't You Find - Edie Sedgwick Inspirations - The Eye of Faith Vintage

 

 

After all, could she really have lived such a life if it weren’t for her entitled upbringing? Probably not. But, in all respects, we all wish we could have a piece of that entitlement, really, and there are those who are brought up with the same regard to status in society who live very successful and honourable lives.

In the end, it all comes down to choices.

What Life Must Have Looked Like For Her Most of the Time- Edie Sedgwick Inspirations - The Eye of Faith Vintage

You have to put up with the risk of being misunderstood if you are going to try to communicate. You have to put up with people projecting their own ideas, attitudes, misunderstanding you. But it’s worth being a public fool if that’s all you can be in order to communicate yourself.

-Edie Sedgwick

So in the end, what will you choose?

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Our {MUSIC MINUTE} gives an ode to this Stylish Queen of Tragedy, and points to some of these ideas, and the world Edie inhabited, and looked toward.

It is a rare song from one of the most iconic bands of the post-punk/goth rock movement of the 1980s, led by the singularly iconic Ian Astbury whose mystical and almost enchanted rock persona still pushes the bounds of style for men (giant black hats, anyone?), so its not surprising that he also grew up in the same hometown as us here at The Eye of Faith!


Recorded in 1989, ” Edie (Ciao Baby)” is one their great songs, and seemed all too fitting to not feature!

We are also excited to announce that we have in possession a very rare tour t-shirt from the iconic Electric World Tour of The Cult back in 1987!! That in itself is quite unusual, but what makes the piece in our collection that much more unique is that it was from a run of shirts made in Canada featuring only the cities in Canada they performed at on the back.
The Eye of Faith Vintage - Rare THE CULT Band 1987 Electric World Tour British Punk Goth Mystic Rock N Roll Canadian Soft Unusual Bad Ass Graphic Concert T-Shirt

Rare THE CULT Band 1987 Electric World Tour British Punk Goth Mystic Rock N Roll Canadian Soft Unusual Bad Ass Graphic Concert T-Shirt

{CLICK HERE TO BUY}

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It’s an absolute style stunner, and a piece of music and style history, so we tend to think that kind of thing is gosh darn awesome!!!
If you want to take a closer look, or to +PURCHASE+, please check it out in the {SHOP}!
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I think surely we have given you all enough to meditate on for the moment.
Bikini Bod Goddess - Edie Sedgwick Inspirations - The Eye of Faith Vintage
Until next time,
{theEye}
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