Archive for May, 2011


Tuesday, May 31st, 2011

BLUSH shot by legendary dutch photographer Erwin Olaf. Glamrock shoot inspired by Ziggy Stardust.

Photos: Erwin Olaf
Styling: Beatrice Jolly
Hair/Make-up: Annemiek Bohnenn

Gallery Views. Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty

Monday, May 30th, 2011

Narration by Andrew Bolton, curator of the exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art.

Savage Beauty Book Jacket

Monday, May 30th, 2011

To accompany Savage Beauty, the Alexander McQueen retrospective at the Metropolitan’s Costume Institute is a book written by the show’s curator, Andrew Bolton.  Surveying McQueen’s brilliant career, the book focuses on his most iconic designs to exemplify his dark inner workings and exquisite subversion of tradition. It also focuses on the highly sophisticated narrative structures found in McQueen’s collections and in his astonishing and extravagant runway presentations, which suggested the most avant-garde installation and performance art. Also in the book is an interview with the house’s new creative director, Sarah Burton. If you haven’t purchased it already, the time to do so is now.

Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty – Metropolitan Museum of Arts.  Edited by Andrew Bolton, Tim Blanks and Susannah Frankel.  Published by Yale Press.

Do my eyes deceive me?

Sunday, May 29th, 2011

It isn’t often that the opportunity to view innovative bodywork by a wide range of creative’s comes along, but sometimes it is worth the wait.  Doppelganger is a book that presents a unique insight into the ingenuity of art, beauty and culture applied to the human body.

At a time in Western culture where television ‘makeover’ shows in which individuals opt for plastic surgery or are given advice on clothes, makeup, diet and exercise have gained considerable popular appeal, it seems that large numbers of people are buying into the idea that lives can be radically changed through such makeovers.  The fact that we can ‘do’ things with our body and present or display ourselves in different ways suggests that our identity is not entirely fixed or determined by our bodies.  Doppelganger epitomises how easily an identity can be formed and adapted, presenting an array of radical appearances that prompt the exploration of the transformed character.

From body dysmorphic to translating the effect of technological advances and monotonous routine through costume and mask that challenge accepted societal ideas about what ‘normal’ or ‘natural’ bodies should look like, this was never going to be a light visual read.  Instead the book offers new possibilities that may not suggest solutions but at least proposes alternatives to how the body can be envisioned.

Also featuring the work of Madame Peripetie, whose photographic imaginations will be featured in the launch issue of 5thCharacter in September, Doppelganger is a book that you are not going to want to put down easily.

Doppelganger: Images of the Human Being.  Edited by Robert Klanten, Sven Ehmann and Floyd Schulz.  Published by Gestalten Press.

“Picture Credit All Images – Doppelganger copyright Gestalten 2011″

Losing all sense of control

Friday, May 27th, 2011

Finding unique approaches to using make-up within music promotion videos isn’t always easy, but this reinterpretation of Joy Division‘s “She’s Lost Control ,” directed by Pieter Hugo in Cape Town, South Africa has clear references to the photographic work of Phyllis Galembo.  As a result Spoek Mathembo’s Control hits all the right buttons.

Cosmetic Make-up Designer: Clinton Aiden Smith @
SFX Make-up: Margueritte Blom & Daleen Badenhorst
Make up: Candy Stylumdall


About This Blog

Friday, May 20th, 2011

Welcome to 5thCharacter’s ‘The Blog’, a celebration of the decorative body and beauty culture, and a window into the world of our contributors and collaborators. All types of stories surrounding the decorative body are covered by featuring editorials, exhibition, performance, film, print and digital, all that matters is the degree of innovation, creativity and thought behind them. It is written by the 5thCharacter team, but relies on submissions and suggestions from many others around the industry and the world.