Monday, September 28, 2009

Dark Cinema at the Toronto International Film Festival

Hello darlings... After NY Fashion week, yours truly quickly headed up North to one of my favorite cities. A friendly, cosmopolitan town, with lots of Gothic credibility. Don't believe me? According to Wikipedia, Toronto's Goth scene was a pioneer for North America's Goth culture after the UK and Germany. I remember dancing among the gargoyles of their old city hall and shopping the stores along Queen Street West (before the dreaded corporate boutiques invaded).

Back to the festival, there were two films that tickled my doomed fancy. First, was Pedro Pires' short film "Danse Macabre". Pires is a visual effects artist whose previous work included the lush The Red Violin
In his directorial debut, this film features an "Exquisitely photographed morbid ballet". Beautiful, disturbing imagery evoking the final, jolting movements of a corpse. This piece won "Best Canadian Short" at the festival, proving again, what dark tastes our friends to the North have. See the trailer here.

The second Canadian film had a decidedly different vibe. SUCK! is a rock n' roll, comedic horror story with tons of cameos by music stars Iggy Pop, Alice Cooper, Moby and Henry Rollins. The first film to sell a distribution deal at the festival (another tribute to the twisted tastes of Canadians). The basic plot revolves around a loser rock band whose members are at each others throats. The leader's scorned girlfriend hooks up with a shady Goth one night and returns much paler, but with a bestial sensuality that delights their fans. The band decides it's best to sell their souls for fame and fortune. Malcom McDowell plays an obsessed vampire hunter who is afraid of the dark (of course he would be in this) and Kids in the Hall alum Dave Foley plays a sleazy manager. Check out the trailer below:

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Harper Bazaar's Magical Tim Burton Fashion Spread

In honor of Tim Burton's retrospective at the Modern Museum of Art in NYC, Harper's Bazaar's October issue featured a drool-worthy fashion spread of Tim Walker photography. The gorgeous pages featured elaborate gowns from almost every great couturier. Prepare to indulge in looks from Yves Saint-Laurent, Atelier Versace, Alexander McQueen, Jean Paul Gaultier, Nina Ricci, Giorgio Armani, Balmain just to name a few.
The photographs feature some very interesting plays on scale, nightmarish distortion and cameos by Tim in a clown and Santa Clause costume. Incredibly well dressed versions of favorite characters like Beetlejuice's Lydia and Edward Scissorhands also make an appearance.

Gothettes In Training: Brooches and Creepy Cute Artwork by Jade Kuei

Jade Kuei is a designer and artist who has created a lovely collection of creepy cute art and wearable objects suitable for younger souls. Her Mumbot shop on Etsy (and other brick and mortar boutiques) "illustrates whimsical yet haunted abstractions of her own dreams and experiences."

Originally referred to as the "Hot girl in the comic shop" by one of the Courtesan's gentleman friends, her images acknowledge the scary things a child may encounter, but also embraces them. The little ones in her pieces always have the superpowers to overcome their fears, much like her son Everest.

My favorite piece is the sweet vampire/little red riding hood brooch...(seems like a theme this month).

Monday, September 21, 2009

London: Un Ballo in Mascara at the Royal Opera House

Earlier this month, at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden in London, Queen of Drag, Jonny Woo with Deloitte Ignite presented 'Un Ballo in Mascara'. The festivities included what many concluded to be the highlight, the "Vogue Ball". A riotous collaboration with cabaret group Bourgeois and Maurice, this runway, cabaret, and drag celebration showcased many of England's most beautiful and talented boys... The glamorous celebrity judges included the likes of diva Beth Ditto and Gothic Fashion hero Gareth Pugh. Dark fashion, couture, and other themes were represented well in different competition categories.

Photos by AbsolutQueer Photography

Friday, September 18, 2009

Macabre Event: The Cursed Circus in NYC

Saturday night, the sexy hostesses of Dances of Vice are producing the Cursed Circus. The event promises "Magnificent display of freaks, fools, fire, and frippery that will astonish and delight!"
The sensuous performers will have a treasure trove of dark and erotic acts like a flame dancer, magicians, musicians and devilish clowns. A specially designed cocktail menu will be available, as well as glittery prizes from sponsors like Henrick's Gin and Lime Crime makeup.
The groupe calls on vamps, flappers, bohemians, and all other artistic minded individuals to attend to enjoy their night of wonder and depravity.
EVENT: "The Cursed Circus" - DOV Vintage Circus Spectacular
TIME & DATE: Sat, September 19, 2009 - Doors at 9PM
LOCATION: 303 Bond Street Theater - 303 Bond St, Brooklyn

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Brothers Grim Fashion Editorial by Matthew Brooks

Hello Darlings! I apologize for the sporadic posts of late. The Courtesan here has been busy at NY Fashion Week to peruse the lovely styles of the glitterati. Of course, most of the clothing on the runways are directed at the ladies.
Dapper gentleman are often unfairly overlooked. That is such a shame... Fall 2009 offers a stylish man plenty of dark, delicious wardrobe options. In this week's NY Times Men's fashion supplement, photographer Matthew Brooks produced a gorgeous editorial called "The Brothers Grim".
Look for a moody photo spread saturated in dramatic black and white. Salivate over luxurious capes by Givenchy, fur jackets by Ann Demeulemeester, a crocodile jacket by Louis Vuitton and plenty of goodies by Alexander McQueen. Click here to browse the entire magazine online.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Prada, Little Red Riding Hood and Fashion's Night Out

Thursday marked Anna Wintour's (Vogue Editor) stylish economic stimulus project, Fashion's Night Out. It was an evening where designers and boutiques all over NYC (as well as LA, Chicago, and multiple cities around the world) held shopping events, celebrity appearances and cocktail parties with entertainment to get the fashionable to open their wallets.

While I sipped the pearl garnished cocktails at Henri Bendel, and had my nails embellished with jewels, I did manage to enjoy some dark style...

M.A.C. cosmetics promoted Goth looks with a smoky, black palette. Their artists styled all the ladies who visited the boutique for a transformation.

My favorite and unexpected fall fashion showing, was the Prada 5th avenue boutique. Their windows and interior displays had their male mannequins dressed as sexy wolves, the female mannequins wearing luscious red outfits. (My favorite was the crimson red velvet burnout dress). This was all a 3D recreation of this month's Vogue fashion spread of the same theme.

It all seemed to be a tribute Neil Jordan's cult favorite, and erotically charged "The Company of Wolves" movie from 1984.

Missed that one? Don't worry, Leonard DiCaprio and "Twilight" director Catherine Hardwicke have announced they are working together to put out a Gothic version of the fairy tale.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Correspondence for the Wicked....

Has the art of penmanship, elegant notes and letter writing truly been lost? Have the generic A2 sized sheets and copiers ruined the lovely tradition of beautiful correspondence? I pray not. With well chosen papers, notecards and stationery. Any passionate lover can make a long distance amour quiver with well chosen words.
The Somber Stationery set has an elegant winter branch print, decorative lace taping, blood red doilies from Strata store.

Tell them they have a 'power' over you with this tongue-in-cheek (not literally I hope) voodoo doll set.

Would you like to seal and lock your prose? Laser cut "insane asylum" keys that you can use to adorn your vellum envelopes.


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