Fashion has tumultuous relationships with other creative spheres such as cinema and contemporary art. They flirt, borrow, and steal, at times with complicity, at times with duplicity, and often, with impudence. FLY seeks to explore this volatile alchemy by mixing fashion video editorials, short films, animations, portraits of contemporary artists and music videos.

They invite creators from various disciplines to direct short films and videos. FLY invites artists to provoke thoughts by questioning the world and the cultural, societal, and political swings they observe.

FLY’s editors– Catherine Camille Cushman, Stephen Blaise and Laurent Vacher, all from different artistic backgrounds– envisioned an innovative media project by gathering talents from the fashion, film and contemporary art worlds. The challenge lies in the fundamental differences of the creative process in each of these creative spheres, as the ideology and tools of each discipline determine its methods. The disparities between fashion and visual arts are unmistakable. If contemporary art defies the boundaries of human activity, fashion attempts to alter them. Art anatomizes, fashion wraps; where art comments, tropes and ironizes, fashion transforms and disguises.

Through various styles and topics, FLY’s editors reference such artistic movements and avant-garde modes as Romanticism, the Vienna Secession, Dada, and Bauhaus, each of which prefigures the multi-disciplinary approach favored by FLY.

From a peculiar documentary on Cambodian rock n’ roll by indie cinematographer John Pirozzi, to a poster by contemporary artist Liam Gillick, asking: “Alors les gens etaient-ils abruti a ce point avant la television?” (Were people this dumb before television?), each issue of FLY is published with limited edition art work. Gillick’s poster was printed for FLY_01, while Ryan Mc- Ginness created a series of fifty different silk-screened covers for FLY_00.

“Talents are selected for their strength of vision and willingness to collaborate with artists of other disciplines,” says Stephen Blaise.

“The idea. This is where everything begins,” says Catherine Camille Cushman, who directed ‘Protest’.

“Our magazine has a voice and we’re passionate about what we do.” For ‘Protest’ Cushman followed a model dressed in Louis Vuitton through a frantic crowd protesting the Iraq war, which required careful planning and coordination of the three cameras in a live event. “People were holding photos of their dead children, and we didn’t want them to think we were in any way trivializing their pain or making a commercial. FLY’s team met with the cameramen beforehand to discuss the frenetic quality we were hoping to achieve, logistics, sunlight/shadows cast from buildings, managing the chaos of the crowd, equipment, batteries, direction of the model in a loud atmosphere etc.” They chose to cast a model with large expressive eyes, who acted as an observer rather than representing a particular political position.

There is something haunting and profound in this novel use of media to explore the experience of art and fashion. With the moving image, FLY’s creative team brings into focus many of the concepts widely explored by filmmakers and artists for decades, and deliver uncommon opportunities to experience temporality, refine narratives, and intensify emotions.

-Muriel Quancard-Johnson