UNIQLO SPRZ NY

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On March 28th, UNIQLO will celebrate the grand opening of #SPRZNY on the 2nd floor of its 5th Avenue location. In addition to its stylish, affordable and high-quality basics, the 2nd floor of the store will be dedicated to a “fashion meets art” concept, which will carry uniquely designed tees, outwear and other surprises. While you wait for the unveiling of #SPRZNY, you can sign up for UNIQLO’s Lucky Line, an online platform that allows you to win prizes by simply “standing” in a virtual queue. The prizes include a $200 shopping spree from UNIQLO, a Starbucks Verismo Beverage Machine, among many others. To sign up, go to UNIQLO’s website and join using your Facebook or Twitter account. Then, pick an avatar and its UNIQLO wardrobe (a kangaroo in a scarf, for example), and get in line. We’re already in line, and can’t wait to see the store and surprise on March 28!

Absolut Collaboration: Rafael Grampá’s Dark Noir

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On Friday, March 14th, premium vodka brand Absolut hosted a private screening of Dark Noir, the first 3-D animated film by Brazilian graphic novelist Rafael Grampá. The film was the culmination of #NextFrame, a collaborative project between the brand, the artist and online users from around the world.
 

 
Grampá’s goal was to inspire creativity in others through his own characters and writing, and by using social media, Absolut invited its nearly 5-million Facebook fans to participate in the project. The brand asked fans to submit suggestions at key points in the film’s script, and over the course of 3 weeks, Grampá reviewed thousands of submissions from more than 20 countries. The best suggestion was sketched by Grampá and made a part of his animated film.
 
“Through #NextFrame… I’m making the transition from cartoonist to director,” Grampá says. “A translation of my art from 2D to 3D. I already explore my style through image, sequence and space. Now I’m experiencing telling my stories with image, movement, time and sound.” Working alongside animation studio Red Knuckles, the film—a detective story set around a search for stolen ideas—was brought to life.
 

 
Dark Noir premiered during a private screening in Berlin at MADE, a creative space by Absolut, to an audience of international journalists. The next night, there was a public screening hosted by Grampá with more than 300 guests in attendance.

Graphic Reality: Rafael Grampá’s Art Comes to Life in His Collaboration with Absolut

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For #NEXTFRAME, Absolut Vodka collaborated with Brazilian graphic novelist Rafael Grampá on an innovative, interactive project that transformed select ideas from the brand’s online community and translated them into film. From 2D concept to 3D completion, Grampá worked closely with Absolut, and Red Knuckles—the UK animation studio that brought the Gorillaz to life back in 2005—to realize the project. Now complete, the film and an accompanying exhibition of drawn works from the graphic novel will be on view this month (March 2014) at the MADE space in the heart of Berlin. Here, we speak with the artist about his background and the process of turning dreams into reality.
 

With Absolut’s Next Frame project, you’ll essentially be co-writing a story with online users, then turning it into an animated film. How did this collaboration come about?

Absolut invited me to take part in the global campaign, and during our first conversations they already told me that they had the idea of doing collaborations with artists on special projects. Next Frame emerged after a lot of meetings, and during that whole time Absolut always stressed that this project would be completely my own, as author.
 

 
How has working with a large brand like Absolut helped push your work forward?

When you do a project of this scale with a lot of talented people involved from many different places, an artist can’t help growing in his craft.
 
Can you explain the process of your work? How do you come up with the ideas for your characters and their appearance?

That’s exactly what this short animation is about: where ideas come from. I think people are the instruments of their ideas, that we’re the servants of those ideas in this world. Just as the purpose of a spade is to dig holes, ours is to bring our ideas to life in this world. But a spade doesn’t dig a hole on its own; it needs a strong arm to use it.

This film asks the question: Are the ideas that we have really our own or are we merely instruments in the hands of unknown forces? The name of the film, DARK NOIR, makes reference to Plato’s Theory of Forms, which says that our reality is merely a dark shadow of an intangible reality made up of ideas. From that starting-point, I created Vincent Black, a mysterious guy who has the gift – or the curse – of seeing the beings that live in this other reality, the World of Ideas. These beings are the Daimons, who plant ideas in humans’ minds, using us to carry out their whims in the material world. And in the end, the film ends up being a metaphor about the creative process and each character represents an element of that process.
 

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The Empty Quarter

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For “Driven Challenges,” a series that is one part Gumball Rally and one part Indiana Jones, Land Rover has been pushing its all-new Range Rover Sport to new limits.

The series began this year at the world-famous Pike’s Peak International Hill Climb, at which the Sport set the world record for a production vehicle on that course, and has now set the record for the fastest ever crossing of the Empty Quarter by a production vehicle. To capture this epic, one-of-a-kind crossing, a documentary film team was embedded with the crew, and that feat is the focus of Land Rover’s latest documentary “The Empty Quarter,” above.

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“It almost doesn‘t matter where you go. It’s just important to go.”

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Polina Soloveichik is a mural painter in the “cold paradise” of Berlin. In this video from Lufthansa’s #inspiredby series, Polina talks about how travel helps to refresh her creativity, and explains her process of painting walls, noting that it’s not always necessary to “Banksy the streets up” in order to create art in your surrounding environment.

Click here to see more inspirational videos from Lufthansa

Sound + Rhythm

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To celebrate the launch of the fragrance Burberry Brit Rhythm, Burberry and NOISEY have joined together to create Sound + Rhythm, a unique editorial space focusing on the experience of performance from the perspective of modern emerging British artists. Utilizing tumblr, Sound + Rhythm is a destination for artist profiles, energetic photography, new music, sharp writing, and a 6 episode short film series capturing the pulse of British music. In one episode below, British rippers Drenge talk about their preference for small venues, moments before they take to the stage to perform.

Head over to the Sound + Rhythm Tumblr to experience more

The Parting Glass

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In Tullamore D.E.W.’s new short film, “The Parting Glass,” four friends meander through the rolling green hills of Ireland. Dressed in dapper suits with details—a flower on a front pocket, tattoos peeking out of a sleeve—the friends pour glasses of Tullamore D.E.W. Whiskey, reflect on life, and quote poet James Joyce. The friends stop at a graveyard and, surrounded by headstones, sing the 1770 ballad, “The Parting Glass.” They toast to Jerry, a friend who we assume has passed—but the end has a smart and surprising twist.

The film was produced by New York agency Opperman Weiss, as part of Tullamore D.E.W’s “Irish True” campaign, and AdAge wrote that the “short should be envy of other booze ads.” We agree: The film tells a simple and beautiful story, which captures the true spirit of Ireland—just like Tullamore D.E.W. Whiskey.

View “The Parting Glass” and other short films on Tullamore D.E.W’s YouTube channel, and friend them on Facebook for updates.

 

Anti-Flare: An Interview with Keith Underwood

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In recent years, tattoos have rapidly grown in popularity, so much so that over 45million Americans now have at least one tattoo. Just as fashions come and go, the trends in tattooing walk a similar trajectory that has been seen through a recent resurgence in the popularity of traditional tattooing. Here on behalf of Sailor Jerry, we speak with traditional tattoo artist Keith Underwood about such things, and the path one follows as 3rd in line along the Sailor Jerry legacy.
 
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The Top-10 Mustaches in the History of Art

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This month is Movember, a philanthropic movement in which men start November clean-shaven then grow their mustaches and beards for one month in order to raise awareness and money for prostate and testicular cancer. In support of all the men who are growing out their mustaches this month, Harry’s—the brand of razors that offers a great shave at a fair price—created a holiday in celebration of their commitment. National Shave Day will take place on December 1, 2013, and Harry’s is offering free mustache shaves and a limited-edition razor at partner barbershops—from Baxter Finley in California to Harry’s Corner Shop in New York.

In preparation for National Shave Day, we decided to present 10 mustaches in the history of art, and rate them on a Needs-a-Shave Scale. The list includes Salvador Dali’s book dedicated to his mustache, in which the Surrealist painter poses with his whiskers tied in a knot, as a paintbrush, and as the hands of a clock, and Marcel Duchamp’s “L.H.OO.Q.,” for which he drew a mustache on a reproduction of the Mona Lisa.

Click through the slideshow for these mustaches and more.

Game Changers

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We recently introduced you to The SIMPLE Mobile Game Changer Series that follows host Levi Maestro as he travels the country in search of talented people who want to up their game. This got us thinking about our own game and what we’ve achieved in recent times to push The World’s Best Ever to the next level.

You may remember that we curated an exhibition of Nudes this past March to celebrate Guerrero Gallery’s 3rd Anniversary. This was the first art show that we had the pleasure of producing, and it felt like a natural progression from the art content we have displayed over the years. Nudes gave us an opportunity to showcase and thank some of our favorite artists, whilst focusing on one of our favorite topics, nudity.

Nudes was a great success—despite the inevitable last minute hiccups such as missing pieces due to a blizzard in New York—and the experience of curating an art show was definitely a game changer. It was something that challenged and inspired us to take The World’s Best Ever into a new arena, paving the way for future artistic collaborations that we’re excited to bring you in the coming months.

If you’re looking for inspiration and to change your game, head over to www.changeyourgame.com and check out some of the video submissions. And simply by entering your own 30-second video, you could win a new smartphone or tablet each week all thanks to SIMPLE Mobile.

Change Your Game

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Breaking the rules is what made more than 3 million people switch to SIMPLE Mobile, a brand that offers affordable cell phone service and nationwide 4G with no contract. To showcase people who break the rules, SIMPLE Mobile has created an interactive site and series.

The SIMPLE Mobile Game Changer Series follows host Levi Maestro, as he travels the country in search of talented people who want to up their game. Then SIMPLE Mobile gives them a hand in taking their game to the next level.

In the first game-changing experience, “L.A. Street Art,” Levi heads to Los Angeles, where he searches for an artist on the verge. He meets up with artists 2TONE and SPANTO, and together they select PUSH.

SIMPLE Mobile then helps PUSH create a three-dimensional installation piece, which stretches his skills and ideas, at Known Gallery. “It’s awesome,” says one attendee at the opening, “I’ve never seen anything like this before.”

In the second game-changing experience, “L.A. Skate,” Levi hits the streets on a mission to find a local skateboarder who needs a little support to realize their dreams. Levi meets up with pro skater Theotis Beasley, and together they select Blake Johnson as the “one,” and hook him up with a game-changing experience and feature in The Skateboard Mag.

Now SIMPLE Mobile is offering to change your game with a new sweepstakes. Submit a 30-second video that tells your story and how SIMPLE Mobile can help, and you’ll be signed up for a chance to win a new tablet or smartphone each week.

For more, visit www.changeyourgame.com

Just For (Rizzle) Kicks


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You can tell from our Reminisce Over This series that we are big fans of music videos, and so we were impressed by O2’s GoThinkBig Rizzle Kicks campaign, which gave young people the opportunity to work on the set of a real music video.

Over a period of three days, nearly 100 young people—ages 16 to 24—worked on the set of English hip-hop duo Rizzle Kicks music video for their brand new single, “Lost Generation.”  Each young person was paired with a seasoned music industry professional—from art director to gaffer—and gained invaluable work experience and insight.

“It’s hard even getting work experience at the moment, because I email a few production companies each week, and hardly ever get a reply, so it’s great I have this opportunity,” says Charlotte, who shadowed the director. “It’s been an amazing opportunity, a once in a lifetime one, because you’d never get this work experience placement anywhere else.”

This is just one example of the hundreds of work opportunities available through GoThinkBig, a portal set up by O2 that helps young people get relevant work experience, plan for the future and develop the skills to succeed.

You can watch the official Rizzle Kicks music video for “Lost Generation” here, and follow GoThinkBig on Twitter and Facebook for upcoming opportunities.

Go. Think. Big.


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Fresh out of college, I knew I wanted to work in print, but I wasn’t sure how. I tried sending pitches to magazines, but all required clips, and I went on interviews with publishers, but all of them required work experience. I took a job in a group home—a place where I lived as a teenager—to pay the bills, while I still tried to break into print.

Through an artist friend, I met the publisher of an independent arts and culture magazine, who hired me as an unpaid intern. It wasn’t glamorous, for sure—my main duties included mailing magazines and walking his dogs—but over time, I worked my way up from unpaid intern to paid assistant to associate editor to managing editor to editorial director.

The long story short is that work experience and connecting with the right people are the keys to landing your dream job. And GoThinkBig can help you do just that: The online hub created by O2 helps young people get relevant work experience, plan for the future and develop the skills to succeed.

Hip-hop duo Rizzle Kicks partnered with GoThinkBig to recruit young people to create a new music video for their single “Lost Generation.” Jordan Stephens of Rizzle Kicks said, “We want to give kids the kind of break we got. There are so many talented young people across the U.K. who all too often don’t get the chance to prove themselves in a real work environment. That’s why we wanted to get involved with GoThinkBig, using the launch of our new single ‘Lost Generation’ to offer up opportunities for people to get a foot on the ladder.”

GoThinkBig received 3,000 applications from all over the U.K., and almost 100 young people—ages 16 to 24—were selected and paired with seasoned industry professionals from a variety of positions, including runners, stage hands, makeup artists, cast, crew, directors, producers and editors. Each young person shadowed a professional during the three-day shoot, and gained invaluable work experience and insight into the industry.

“I’ve just graduated with a degree in film and video production,” said Joshua Reeves, who was mentored by the producer, “so this has made a great start to my career in film and television.”

Two of the youths who worked on the “Lost Generation” video have already garnered paid work since the shoot. Esrael Alem, who shadowed the behind-the-scenes director, was hired as a runner on an upcoming John Newman video, got work experience at video production company Partizan, and just landed work as a runner on a Little Woods commercial. James Ducker also got work experience at Partizan, and worked on a Dizzee Rascal video.

GoThinkBig helped kickstart Esrael and James’ careers, and can kickstart yours too. Register on GoThinkBig for a host of great work experience opportunities, and make sure to follow them on Facebook, Twitter and Youtube.

Crash & Collide Wrap Up

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adidas is one of the rare brands that is able to be both classic (what’s more classic than those three stripes?) and also on-trend, appealing to the next generation of tastemakers. In line with both of these qualities, adidas launched the “Crash & Collide” project, which called upon aspiring artists to create an original piece of artwork using at least one element of adidas Originals—the logo, a shoe or specific piece of clothing—interpreted in their own aesthetic.

By asking artists to “crash & collide” their styles with brand elements, adidas hoped to inspire originality and never-seen-before concepts. The finalists accomplished that and more: Dean Cook designed the HMS Original, an adidas ship in the throes of a sea monster; Simon Misra illustrated a portrait of adidas founder Adi Dassler among a pair of Gazelle trainers; Astan Istval drew two abstract faces about to collide; and Black Soup created a giant adidasbot unleashing a makeover on the masses.

The finalists got the opportunity to get their own creative projects off the ground with a financial bursary and publicity from adidas. We’re hoping for another major collision this Summer.

To find out more, click here.

A Hot Towel Shave With The Gillette Fusion ProGlide SilverTouch Razor

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This past Friday, Gillette offered me the chance to experience a hot towel shave featuring their new Gillette Fusion ProGlide SilverTouch Razor. Never having undergone a proper shave in my life, I welcomed the opportunity. Arriving at STORY on 10th avenue in west Chelsea a heavily stubbled man, I was guided into an old school chair, and after 30 minutes of man-pampering, resurfaced to the street a baby-faced 30 something thanks to the gentle hands of Luis from Frank’s Chop Shop. If you’re in New York, stop by STORY through July 7th for a look through their Men’s Shop.

Shiner

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We love booze—remember last year’s booze cruise? So we were thrilled to find out that Shiner, Texas’ oldest independent brewery, is finally bringing its beers to New York.

The brand’s signature brew, Shiner Bock, has been a Southern staple for decades, known for its deep amber color and distinctive flavor, which is perfect for pairing with beef ribs or brisket.

It’s no surprise then that Hill Country Barbecue Market is one of the first places to carry Shiner in New York. In addition to their Longhorn Cheddar mac & cheese and braised collard greens with bacon, Hill Country now offers four Shiner beers on tap (Shiner Bock, a pilsner an IPA and a seasonal beer).

Shiner has also found a new home at VICE, where it has a branded section titled “What the Bock,” which features posts on tattoos, barbecues and asks locals who they would most like to have a beer with (answers include Kurt Cobain, Dustin Hoffman, Eazy-E and God).

We can’t wait to get down to Hill Country or pick up a pack of their golden pale ale, which would be perfect to make our favorite booze-cruise recipe: the beer-onion soup sandwich.

Smirnoff Mindtunes

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Technology makes our lives easier, and so, there is a certain responsibility to use technology to improve the lives of others. A perfect example of this ethic in practice is the recent Smirnoff Mindtunes project, which focuses on how technology can be used to transform brain activity and emotion into music.

Smirnoff Mindtunes uses musical software that enables the physically disabled to create music with nothing but their minds, and the first track brought together British electronic music producer DJ Fresh and leading brainwave expert Julien Castet to help three paralyzed music fans—Andy, Mark and Jo—do just that.

The result is a high-energy track with hypnotic synths and heavy drum and bass. “I am very proud to be a part of this project,” says DJ Fresh. “It just goes to show what people have the power to create if they’re given the opportunity.”

Smirnoff has a long history of pioneering innovation, and Smirnoff Mindtunes is the first in a series, which will demonstrate how innovation enables people to realize their creative potential.

The Smirnoff Mindtunes track is available for download from digital retailers such as iTunes and Amazon and proceeds from the sale of the track will benefit Queen Elizabeth’s Foundation for Disabled People.

For more information, click here

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The Mercedes-Benz #Untamed digital photo installation in Paris

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You might remember a call to action back in March for the Mercedes-Benz #Untamed digital photo installation in Paris in promotion of the independent spirit of the CLA. Well, if you missed it, the event happened last month and thousands of creatives submitted their own images—resulting in a very cool, revolving display contained in an all-white loft space.
We never really know what to expect from projects like this, but the final product was fantastic. More images and a video recap after the jump.

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#Untamed. A Digital Photo Installation inspired the new Mercedes-Benz CLA

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Occurring this April in Paris, #Untamed is a unique digital photo installation utilizing instagram that inspired the new Mercedes-Benz CLA. Initially accessible through the portal untamed-installation.com, the goal is to have individuals upload fantastic images, or as the brand puts it “The natural enemy of the average.” Whichever way you take it, this is an opportunity for you to show your work internationally to an audience of art and culture enthusiasts. And think about it this way, you can drop the line “yeah, I have some work at a group show in Paris” for at least a month. Pretty impressive. But don’t think of this as a free-for-all, only the best work gets into the show. So put your personal style on blast, take it to an #Untamed level, and make an impression by uploading your instagram photos to untamed-installation.com

Interested and want to take part? Instagram photos can be uploaded to the website untamed-installation.com

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