Studio by Sol “这真的是文身吗?”

September 30, 2019 2019年9月30日

On a busy street in Hongdae sits a large café with bare white walls. Despite the underwhelming decor, dozens of people come and go every hour, and most of the visitors seem to share a common trait: they’ve all got tattoos.

This is Studio by Sol, the biggest tattoo shop in South Korea. Founded by tattoo artist Sol and his business partner Inho, the atelier has taken on dozens of apprentices since it opened in 2017. It’s now home to more than 30 tattoo artists and attracts thousands of domestic and international customers every year.


在韩国弘大一条繁忙的街道上,有一间四面白墙的大型咖啡馆。每隔一小时,就会有几十人来来去去,他们中大部分人似乎都有一个共同的特点:身上都有文身。

这里是韩国最大的文身店 Studio by Sol,由文身艺术家 Sol 和他的合作伙伴 Inho 共同创立。从 2017 年开业至今,这间工作室已经招了几十名学徒,现在拥有超过 30 名文身艺术家,每年都会吸引数千名来自国内外的客户。

Sol had never considered pursuing a career as a tattoo artist until he met Inho during his year of obligatory military service. He had been pursuing a degree in sculpture and had just taken a leave of absence, because he felt uncertain about the future. All that changed the first time he saw a tattoo. “Inho had gotten a tattoo while he was home for the holidays,” he recalls. “I got to see it when he came back to the base, and I remember thinking, ‘I can do it better.’”


Sol 以前从未想过成为一名文身艺术家,直到他在服兵役那一年认识了 Inho。当时他正在攻读雕塑学位,因为对未来的迷茫感而刚刚申请了休假。转变的契机是他看到的第一个文身。“Inho 放假回家的时候刺了一个文身。回来军队时,我看到了它,我记得自己当时就在想,‘我可以刺得更好。’” 他回忆道。

So he decided to learn to tattoo. At the time, most South Korean tattoo artists worked with the Irezumi and Old School styles, but what Sol wanted to express in his tattoos was altogether different, and he decided he’d learn by himself.

“I wanted to focus on smaller designs, because of the social stigma around tattoos in South Korea,” he says. “Something that’s small and easy to hide, but something I put a lot of effort in. Naturally, the tattoos became very detailed.” Sol also emphasizes the importance of texture. “I wanted to work on tattoos that were no different from what you could draw on paper with colored pencils. I wanted people to wonder, ‘Is that really a tattoo?’ when they saw my work.”

After inking his first design on a friend, Sol fell in love with the human element of the medium. “I thought I’d just work on tattoos to make money for my sculpting career, but it took over because it was so fun,” he says.” You get immediate feedback and you get to interact with clients, who I learn so much from.”


于是,他决定学习文身。当时,大多数韩国文身艺术家主要都是创作日式文身(Irezumi)或是西式的 Old School 风格,但 Sol 想要创作截然不同的风格,于是他决定自学。

Sol 表示:“因为韩国的社会对文身存在偏见,所以我想设计精致一点的文身,小小的,容易隐藏,但也需要我花一定的功夫才能完成。所以,最终的图案会非常细致。”Sol 还很强调质感的重要性,“我想让文身最后看上去跟你用彩色铅笔在纸上画的画差不多。我希望人们在看到我的作品时会想,‘这真的是文身吗?’”。

给他的一个朋友刺了第一个文身作品之后,Sol 爱上了这种充满人性元素的艺术。“我一开始是想通过文身打工挣钱来支持我的雕塑艺术,但现在已经反过来了,因为文身真是太有趣了。”他说,“你可以得到即时的反馈,还可以和客户有很多互动,从他们身上我常常能学到很多东西。”

Sol recalls one of the more meaningful experiences he had early in his career. A couple flew in from abroad, wanting to get matching tattoos of their cat. “They were originally a cis heterosexual couple, but one of the partners was transitioning. Yet, they stayed together, and I was so inspired by the breadth of their love and understanding, that I was happy to work on a tattoo symbolizing their love and their relationship.”

This love of building human connections is also part of what led Sol to teach. “I wanted to share my knowledge,” he says. “But I didn’t want to teach art—style is something that should be developed by the artist, instead of being taught.  I could teach the technical skills for those who already had distinct artistic styles and wanted to express their art in tattoo form.”

A new artist will typically train for about three months at Studio by Sol. “For a new artist’s first tattoo, I’ll be right next to them to help out. I know what mistakes they’re going to make, since I’ve made them myself. But they’re talented artists, so they catch on quickly. Basically, all I’m helping out with is how to set up the machine. There have been no accidents so far—no lost friendships or anything,” he says with a grin.


Sol 回忆起他从事文身工作后一次很有意义的经历。一对夫妇从国外来到韩国,想文下他们养的猫。“他们原本是一对普通的异性恋情侣,但其中一个人正在变性的过程中。可他们还是在一起。这种大爱和相互理解让我很受启发,我很高兴可以给他们纹这样一个象征着爱和联系的文身。”

出于这种对人与人之间的联系的热爱,Sol 教的一部分。他说:“我想分享我的知识,但我不想传授我的美学风格。因为我觉得美学风格应该由艺术家个人自行培养,那不是可以被教导的东西。我只可以教那些已经有个人艺术风格和想通过文身表达自己艺术的人。”

每位新文身艺术家通常会在 Studio by Sol 接受约三个月的培训。“新手文身师刺第一个文身时,我都会在旁边帮忙。我知道他们可能要犯的错误,毕竟我都经历过。但他们都是很有才华的艺术家,所以很快就能掌握好。基本上,我要帮忙的只是设置好机器。到目前为止都还没有出过任何意外,也没有发生什么让友谊破碎或不快的事情。”他咧嘴笑着说。

Sol never imagined his tattoo shop would host so many resident artists. Tattooists typically went out and created their own studios after an apprenticeship. “That’s what I did, and that’s what was common in this field,” he says. “But many of the new artists at the time were women, and they seemed to be worried about having a space where they could work safely, especially given the legal issues in South Korea.” (In Korea, among other barriers, it is illegal to work as a tattoo artist without a medical license).


Sol 从未想过他的文身工作室可以吸引到这么多常驻文身师。一般来说,文身师当完学徒后都会离开去创立自己的工作室。“我就是这么做的,这也是这个行业的惯例。但现在有许多新文身师都是女性,她们似乎比较担心能不能找到一个可以安心工作的地方,特别是考虑到韩国相关法律的问题。”(在韩国,除了其他要求之外,没有医疗执照的情况下从事文身工作也是违法的。)

In establishing their shop, Sol and Inho sought to build a welcoming space that would attract even people who aren’t into tattoos. “So many new artists end up not succeeding because they fail to attract customers, even though they’ve got the skills,” Inho says. “From a businessperson’s perspective, I thought what Sol was trying to do made sense for everyone. It was important that we made the place approachable, especially given the social stigma around tattoos. So we decided to set up a café as well.”

Sol also hopes that their space can promote artists outside of the tattoo scene. “I was lucky enough to find success as a tattoo artist, but as someone who’s been trained in art, I know how hard it can be to find platforms to share your work,” he says. “That’s why the café in the shop is also meant to double as an art gallery, though it’s empty at the moment. And it’s my dream to fill it with different artists’ works, to make art as a whole more accessible to the public.”


在成立工作室时,Sol 和 Inho 的想法是打造一个温馨的空间,让即使是对文身没有兴趣的人也被吸引进来。Inho 说:“许多年轻艺术家失败的原因是他们不能吸引顾客,即使他们很有才华。从商人的角度来看,我认为 Sol 试图做的事情能让所有人产生共鸣。重要的是,我们要让这个地方能吸引到所有人,尤其是考虑到韩国社会对文身的偏见,所以我们决定同时开设一家咖啡馆。”

Sol 也希望自己的工作室可以推广文身艺术之外的艺术家。“我很幸运能够成为一名成功的文身艺术家,但作为一名读过艺术专业的人,我也很清楚要找到平台分享自己的作品是一件很困难的事情。”他说,“正因如此,我们希望咖啡馆同时成为一间艺术画廊,虽然现在还是空的。但我的梦想是在这里展示出不同艺术家的作品,拉近艺术与公众的距离。”

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Instagram: @studiobysol

 

Contributor: Joe Park
Images Courtesy of Studio by Sol


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Instagram: @studiobysol

 

供稿人: Joe Park
图片由 Studio by Sol 提供

Bangkok Phosphors 夜色下的魔力曼谷

September 27, 2019 2019年9月27日

Cody Ellingham’s first impression of Bangkok wasn’t visual, but literary, through Yukio Mishima’s Temple of Dawn, which takes place in Bangkok in the 1940s and 1950s. The vivid description of the city’s canals and temples left an impression on this globetrotting photographer. “I wanted to come here and see how the modern city had changed with my own eyes,” he says. “I found that the canals had been mostly replaced by congested concrete roads, but still the city had a kind of magic to it.”


环球旅行摄影师 Cody Ellingham 对曼谷的第一印象并非来自视觉,而是来自三岛由纪夫的文学著作《Temple of Dawn》,书中描绘了上世纪四十至五十年代曼谷的城市面貌,生动的文字让 Cody Ellingham 对那里的运河与寺庙记忆犹存。他说:“我希望来到这里亲眼看看这座城市的当代变迁。如今,我发现很多运河都被拥挤不堪的混凝土马路替代,但整座城市依然有一种魔力存在。”

It’s a magic that he captures in Bangkok Phosphors, a stunning portrait of the Thai capital after dark. Similar to his documentations of other Asian metropolises, such as DERIVE and Shanghai Streets, his approach to seeking out shots was largely guided by instinct. “Bangkok was totally unknown for me, as it was my first time here,” he says. “I explored. I wandered, I talked to locals, and I took my time figuring out the city’s layout.”


这样的魔力被 Ellingham 用相机记录在《Bangkok Phosphors》系列作品中,描绘出泰国首都入夜时分令人着迷的城市肖像。与他曾为其他亚洲大都会拍摄的作品类似,比如《DERIVE》和《Shanghai Streets》,Ellingham 通常会根据自己的直觉和本能寻找镜头,“拍摄的时候是我第一次去曼谷,对我来说是完全未知的状态。想要搞清楚城市的布局,要多花点时间,我会把自己沉浸在城市的街道里,与当地人讲话,不断寻找探索的机会。”

As it does in Ellingham’s past works, architecture plays a key role in this photo essay. Bangkok Phosphors juxtaposes dilapidated buildings with futuristic structures to highlight the city’s tug-of-war between modernity and older ways of life, a competition which the former is winning. His palette, which in this series consists of cobalt blues and fluorescent cyans, is another crucial atmospheric detail. These cold tones call to mind the seamy metropolises of cyberpunk fiction, and it’s by design: by drawing comparisons between present-day reality and dystopian sci-fi, Ellingham seems to be asking viewers to think about how our choices today influence the future, and whether or not that’s a future we want to live in.

Cody Ellingham is now raising funds to turn Bangkok Phosphors into a photo book. Learn more on his Kickstarter.


在 Ellingham 过去的作品中,建筑往往是主角。《Bangkok Phosphor》系列作品是一场关于现代与传统的碰撞,让破败不堪的建筑在未来感的框架中胜出。同时,钴蓝和荧光色拼凑成他的调色板,洋溢在每幅画面的细枝末梢处,这样的冷色调唤起人们对大都市赛博朋克风格的种种畅想。Ellingham 用真实写照与反乌托邦式的科幻画笔,带观者以现实角度选择关于未来的去向,引人们思考这是否是我们想要到达的未来境地。

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Website: cbje.tokyo
Instagram: @cbje.tokyo

 

Contributor: David Yen
Chinese Translation: Pete Zhang


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Website: cbje.tokyo
Instagram
: @cbje.tokyo

 

供稿人: David Yen
英译中: Pete Zhang

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Streets of Tradition 听说温州有一片 “世外桃源”

September 25, 2019 2019年9月25日

Odd juxtapositions lead to unexpected results. Zinan Lam gives his street art a dazzling and distinctive twist through his grounding in traditional Chinese art. In cities around the country, he brings together ancient and modern thought in a colorful “Neo-Oriental” style that always draws viewers in for a closer look.

Lam grew up in Chaozhou, in Guangdong province, where he first came into contact with street culture as a teenager. Now he works in Shanghai, combining graffiti techniques and traditional Chinese and Asian aesthetics in a stunning synthesis. Spanning several media, and enlivening public spaces with a vibrant palette and nods to local culture, his work can’t quite be called graffiti. “Graffiti is just a handy label,” he says. “But my work now is mixed-media visual art. It hasn’t been graffiti for a long time.”


两种不相关的事物放在一起,听上去怪诞,但又很合理,而结果也总会给人意想不到的答案。在视觉艺术家林子楠(Zinan Lam)的脑海里,一半是深厚的文化根基,另一半则是玄奇妙想的创作手笔,二者意想不到的连接,将古老与现代的思考勾兑在不同城市的街道,成为次世代东方缤纷美学的入口,不禁惹人走近一探究竟。

家乡潮州现居上海的林子楠,从青少年时期便开始接触街头文化,他将自身的东方符号与涂鸦文化结合在一起,创造出新的视角,被大众称作是现代与古典的美丽结合。不过随着与不同媒介的融合,“涂鸦” 一词早已不能概括他的作品,他的作品规模宏大,用鲜艳的颜色、丰富的材料、以及当地的文化地域特色,联动着公共空间的人群。林子楠说:“对于我自己来讲,涂鸦是一个流行符号,而目前我的作品是由多媒介融合的视觉艺术,早已不再是涂鸦了”。

Neocha visited Lam at his studio one late summer afternoon. From the corridor to the patio, his large workspace is jam-packed with his own artwork, along with cans of spray paint, sneakers, skateboards, equipment, and houseplants in the windows. Outside his door hangs a sign with the OOP logo.

OOP is the media platform Lam founded in 2014. In addition to showcasing his own work, it’s constantly promoting street culture and art, with news, music, lectures, products, and more. “All of these are things I really like. But right now I mostly want to get back to art,” he explains.

“I like to work on my art at my studio, and I like to have music on in the background—I listen to everything from classical to hip hop to electronica.” As he says this, Haruomi Hosono’s synthesizer melodies drift into the room, giving the space an upbeat yet thoughtful atmosphere.


夏末的一个午后,我们拜访了林子楠的工作室。他的工作室很大,从走廊到后院都摆放着他的作品,除此之外玲琅满目的喷漆、球鞋、滑板、装置、还有窗边的绿植,共同组成了他的工作空间。

工作室内外装饰的 “OOP” 标牌格外引人注目。2014 年,林子楠和朋友共同创建了这个分享平台,除了介绍他自己的作品以外,平台还持续为街头文化和艺术输入养分,内容涵盖了资讯、音乐、讲座、产品等领域,将不同领域的艺术家和朋友聚集在一起。

工作室背景里「细野晴臣」悠扬的合成器旋律响起,一下子让整个空间充满了活跃又细腻的氛围,“我喜欢在工作的状态下完成创作,也喜欢工作的时候有音乐陪伴,古典、Hip-Hop、电子音乐等都是我会听的范畴”

“Public art can’t be summed up in a few simple words,” Lam says. “Everything from graffiti to street art to what’s now called urban art arises from artists’ relationship to the contemporary world.”

One form of public art that Lam creates is murals. A good mural can be a site of cultural interaction with the public, a place for people to communicate with each other and with the city. Lam has worked in several cities and left behind traces of his presence in each one. In Shanghai, his huge outdoor mural The New Wave is visible on Hengshan Road, while Awaken graces a wall at Columbia Circle.


“街头艺术并不能用几个简单的词语概括,从最早的 Graffiti,到 Street Art,再到现在被大家成为 Urban Art,都是时代与人群发生的一场关系。”

公共壁画也亦是如此,其作为公共艺术的一种形式,与群众产生特殊的文化互动关系,是人与城市之间的当代文化讯号。林子楠曾活跃在数座城市,留下了自己与城市互动的足迹, 从上生新所里《Awaken》上藏传佛教里象征护佑和力量之意的雪狮,到居民楼之间露天阳台上的《Landscape》,他以超现实的都市艺术风格向大众呈现出细腻而有力的作品。“从公共艺术角度来讲,我希望每一个作品能与城市和公众有连接”,为了实现这样的连接,每次创作之前林子楠都会进行大量素材的搜集。

Lam’s latest mural, “The Peach Land,” on the side of a silo that rises 20 meters high in the city of Wenzhou, shows vibrant peaches set against a blue and reddish landscape. A colorful spring flows in a line between them. Viewed from a certain angle, the mural blends into the area’s scenery, with the Ou river and an unbroken mountain range in the background. As you approach, you feel you’ve entered an idyllic painted landscape.

The inspiration for the mural comes from the classical poem “Notes from the Land of Peach Blossoms,” by fourth-century poet Tao Yuanming. “The poem tells of a fisherman who accidentally rows his boat into a cave and discovers an edenic wonderland—a very surreal scene, perhaps. I wanted to use a dream world to tell about myself.”


林子楠最近的作品《The Peach Land》在浙江温州一栋二十米高的米仓上完成,壁画上鲜艳的大桃子背朝蓝山川,一道斑斓的泉水从中直泻而下。从某个角度看上去,与整片区域背后的瓯江和绵绵山脉融为一体,走近它恍如走进一片由染料涂绘而成的 “世外桃源”。这部作品的灵感也正是出自陶渊明《桃花源记》,林子楠说:“诗里面讲述的是一位渔民划船,误入洞口发现一个乌托邦的场景,这可能是非常超现实的梦境。我想用一个梦幻的地方,去讲述属于每个人自己的小境地。” 同时,整幅壁画也与米仓地面部分的滑板场构建出一个整体的概念。

Lam worked on “The Peach Land” for a year, and during that time he ran up against a string of challenges. “There are a lot of barriers to public art in China, and you have to get approval for the content and the general direction from all sorts of authorities,” he explains. Other challenges were of a technical nature. “The silo itself is really fascinating. It has a rounded surface, so when I was painting I had to think about how to stretch out the image so that it would look complete,” he explains. “I want people to experience this work themselves. To feel the power of public art, you have to experience it up close.”


《The Peach Land》项目共持续了一年的时间,巨大且精致的轮廓,搭配鲜艳分明的色彩与,会不由得让路过的人驻足片刻,林子楠说:“希望大家可以去现场亲身感受这部作品,公共艺术需要真正走到作品面前,才能感受到它的力量。” 但创作途中也遇到了很多困难,“公共艺术在中国还是会有很多阻碍,要画的内容和引导,都需要在相关部门进行审批。米仓的建筑特别有意思,其本身是圆弧的表面,所以在画的时候会考虑把画面拉伸,这样才能看到一个完整的平面,为创作大大增加了难度”。

Lam is a father now, and having a family has reaffirmed his faith in his art, and it’s inspired him to expand what he does. “In the future I may move into other media,” he says. “I might try my hand at sculpture, for example. Now that I’m in a new phase, I want to venture into new territories, exploring new things and keeping my curiosity about the unknown.”


如今的林子楠已是一位父亲,组建家庭过后,让他在工作与创作上更加坚信自己所做的事,同时也将会有更多媒介的融入,“接下来可能更多类型的创作,我会尝试雕塑或更多领域的内容,” 林子楠说道:“在不同阶段下,我都希望可以踏入新的领域,探索新的事物,保持对未知事物的好奇心”。

The Peach Land

Address:
Wenzhou MiFang Industry Park
No. 5255, Oujiang Road

 

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Weibo: ZINANLAM
Instagram: @zinanlam

 

Contributor: Pete Zhang
Photographer: David Yen
Additional Images Courtesy of Zinan Lam


The Peach Land

地址:
温州米房创意园
瓯江路5255号

 

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微博: ZINANLAM
Instagram: @zinanlam

 

供稿人: Pete Zhang
摄影师: David Yen
附加图片由 Zinan Lam 提供

Who Are You Looking At? 不食人间烟火的肖像

September 23, 2019 2019年9月23日

The women in Kelly Belter‘s prints sit alone, eyes closed or lost in the distance, with a look of apathy or boredom written across their faces. Or perhaps it’s not apathy or boredom, but something else entirely—expressions that aren’t so much enigmatic as they are ambiguous, unavailable. Drawn in simple lines and with a minimal palate, the subjects offer no insight into their thoughts. They’re not there to be looked at.

A Korean-American illustrator, Belter grew up in mainly in Dallas, and then moved to Korea to teach for a few years after college. That’s where she began to work seriously as an artist. Previously art had been only a hobby, and it wasn’t until she moved to Seoul, where she had plenty of time to spend drawing, that it started to seem like a realistic career choice. She enrolled in a graduate degree program and began freelancing seriously. “I invested more time in illustration,” she says. “I started picking up odd jobs and commissions while I was in school, upgraded my work materials, and transitioned into full-time work doing corporate design and freelance illustration projects after graduating.”


Kelly Belter 画中的女人们总是孤独地坐在一旁,她们双眼紧闭,又或迷失在远方,一副淡泊是非、百无聊赖的表情挂在脸上。即便并非如此,你也会从她们身上,稍许读出几分不食人间烟火的意味。Belter 用简单的线条和审美趣味,轻描淡绘出每一位女性主人翁的心头思绪。她们就伫立在那儿,不希望被他人察觉。

韩裔美国插画师 Belter 的青少年时光大部分在达拉斯度过。大学毕业后的几年里,她移居到韩国从事教学工作,并在那里开始作为一名艺术家进行创作。搬去首尔之后,Belter 拥有大量时间进行创作,艺术对她来说从兴趣爱好转变为职业选择。随后,她进行了硕士学位的学习,并开始着手于自由职业的工作,上学的时候,我在插画方面投入了更多时间,用兼职的钱来升级我的创作用具。毕业后,公司的全职工作和兼职基本上是同时进行的

At first she created most of her work digitally, using illustration software. But eventually she grew tired of relying on a computer, and in 2018 she began experimenting with alternatives. That’s how she fell in love with print-making—particularly silkscreens and risographs. “The physical process of hand-crafting each image is really satisfying. I like the visual effect of bold, bright color blocking within an image,” she says. Printing by hand also also allows for slight variations of color and texture within each work. On her website, she sells risographs and limited edition prints.

Her figures have a static, wallpaper-like quality, an effect heightened by the floral patterns on her subjects’ clothes. “Creating a more ‘flat’ image allows me to better balance details, texture, and color palette,” she explains.


起初,Belter 用电脑插画软件绘制的大部分作品还有一股数字的味道,但后来,她渐渐对电脑的过度依赖感到厌倦,于是在 2018 年另辟蹊径,陷入了一场与孔版、丝网印刷的恋曲。她说:“亲手制作每张照片的过程让人心存满足,那些大胆以及色彩鲜明的视觉效果是我的心头好。”通过这种操作手感强烈的创作方式,你会在每一幅作品中,发现不同纹理与颜色之间细微的变化。在 Belter 的个人网站上,一些丝网印刷的限量作品正在公开售卖。

她的作品总有一种静态、墙纸一般的质感,女主人翁们身上穿着的花卉图案印映而出。“在平坦的纸质上作画,能让我更好地在细节、纹理和调色之间找到平衡”。

This flatness also makes the subjects more inaccessible to the viewer. Very subtly, Belter inverts a tradition of portraiture that leaves women on display as a passive object for an implicitly male spectator.

Belter has long been fascinated by nineteenth-century Orientalist art, and especially by the paintings of Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres (1780-1867), who often depicted non-European women in a romantic, exotic fashion. Belter’s work is in dialogue with Ingres, and she seeks to invert his representational conventions. “He often used the perspective of a window looking into a room of women,” she explains. “I hope to present women from a different perspective, and I’ve played with the idea by grounding the women within the room, often with a window behind them. The women I draw are self-concerned. They are looking at themselves, rather than being looked at by someone else.” While her subjects are seldom engaged in any action—they’re more likely to be gazing into space—they’re also not passively on display.


同时,平坦的纸质还会让人物看起来区别于凡尘,高贵且端详。细枝末梢处,Belter 颠覆了传统的肖像画法,以含蓄的男性视角展现女性外貌。

长期以来,Belter 一直沉迷于十九世纪东方主义(Orientalist)艺术,尤其是 Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres(1780-1867)的作品,这位法国画家曾时常描绘欧洲地区之外的女性肖像,具有丰富的浪漫色彩和异域风尚。而 Belter 的作品则像是与 Ingres 的对话,对话中 Belter 尝试颠覆后者的传统绘法。“Ingres 经常能以窗户的视角望去女性角色的闺房,而我则希望以不同的方法呈现,在我的作品中,窗子往往在女性的背后。我笔下的女性,都是关注自我的。她们与自己对话,并不希望被他人看到。” 同时,Belter 的人物通常没有任何动作,她们更像在空中凝视,并不想被展示在画卷里。

The eclectic objects in each print are also the product of considerable thought. Belter wants each image to suggest a brief, simple story, and she gets inspiration from photos she snaps of odd items that catch her eye when walking around Seoul. In “Oranges and Antibodies,” for example, a self-indulgent obsession with health is visible in the choice of props: “an acupuncture hand sculpture and diagram seen in a traditional medical office, pill boxes, Korean Hallabong oranges and the filter-masks everyone in Seoul wears. I wanted to contrast that self-concern and decadence with the environmental chaos outside and our propensity to ignore it.”


画中的物品也同样是经过 Belter 深思熟虑的,她希望通过画面去呈现言简意赅的故事。每当漫步在首尔街头,她都会用相机记录下那些夺人眼球的物件。在作品《橘子和抗体(Oranges and Antibodies)》中,过度迷恋健康的心理状态被安放在了可见的道具上面,“你会看到人体和手部穴位模具,药箱以及韩国人人都有的过滤面罩。我想用这些道具延伸出一些思考 —— 自我意识、外界环境的混乱、以及人们司空见惯的态度,让这三者之间形成反差的对立面”。

With her newfound love of printmaking, Belter is eager to continue experimenting with new techniques and media. She’s now at work on a screen-printed zine, which she also plans to release as a risograph. And at least one of her prints is also available in tote bag form.

If you can’t catch her at one of the art book festivals she’s been attending across Korea and throughout Asia, you can find her prints available on her website.


在她与版画制作的恋曲中,Belter 也希望持续在作品中加入新的技术与媒介。目前,她正忙着一本丝网印刷杂志的制作,孔版印刷的打印版本也在计划之中。同时,一些作品还会被印在托特包上面。如果你没能参加她在韩国和其他亚洲地区的艺术书展,你还可以在 Kelly Belter 的网站上浏览她的作品。

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Website: kelbelter.com
Instagram: @bybelter

 

Contributor: Allen Young
Chinese Translation: Pete Zhang


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网站: kelbelter.com
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Contributor: Allen Young
Chinese Translation: Pete Zhang

Mr. Pahinga 精诚所至 金石为开

September 20, 2019 2019年9月20日

When “Pahinga,” by Al James, became a viral anthem in the Philippines last year, it was emblematic of a new wave of independent Filipino rappers finding success on their own terms. As high-speed internet became readily available across the country, listeners began craving new styles and found unmediated access to local talent. Tectonic shifts followed: a new generation of artists could now find instant success, and James was at the forefront. His syrupy, sensual style was everywhere, and it was the sound of a new era.


去年,菲律宾说唱歌手 Al James 的单曲《Pahinga》在当地病毒式狂热蔓延,预示着新一波独立菲律宾说唱歌手正在以独特的方式胜出。随着高速稳定的互联网络在菲律宾全国普及,音乐爱好者们希望以更为直接的方式,发现新的音乐风格和本地新晋音乐人。同时地下音乐场景也发生了翻天覆地的变化:对于新一代艺术家来说,一夜成名不再是遥不可及的梦。而 James 便处在当地互联网音乐场景的先锋阵地,他绵密的感情色彩充斥在作品中,打造属于新时代的个人标签。

Now anyone can now record their first song and become a superstar overnight. It’s certainly the case with some of today’s most popular rappers. To the majority of his listeners, James too dropped from the sky as a total unknown. He had hardly any internet presence when he uploaded “Pahinga,” the sole, lonely track on his threadbare Soundcloud and Youtube pages. But he’d actually been waiting in the wings for nearly a decade, studying the rappers before him since his school days.


放眼当下,几乎人人都能凭借一首歌曲一夜成名,时下最流行的说唱歌手中不乏这样的例子。对大多数听众来说, James 同样也算是从天而降的无名之辈。当他上传《Pahinga》时,互联网上并没有多少关于他的痕迹。这首歌也作为他唯一的曲目,孤零零的占据着他 SoundCloud 和 YouTube 页面的全部内容。但实际上,James 的蛰伏期持续了将近十年,从上学时期他便开始研究一些早期的说唱歌手。

Listen to to some of our favorite tracks by Al James below:


点击即可试听几首 Al James 的歌曲:

As a kid, James would run around to some of Manila’s cultural landmarks, like Cubao Expo and the now-shuttered music venue B-Side, both of which were incubators for the local hip- hop scene. Since he was raised near Ronac Art Center, their monthly open mic, Wordplay, was the most influential space for him. “It was a hub for creative kids, a safe space for us. Lots of people whose name you’d recognize now were coming around there. We were the little kids observing and following the older guys.” But James’s first introduction to hip-hop culture was through graffiti, and it was the glue that bonded him with some of his earliest friends, many of whom are still part of his current crew Baryo Berde. “We were vandalizing some of the same doors and stuff,” he says with a laugh while getting a haircut from another childhood friend. “It was like, ‘Oh, that’s you? What’s up!’”

It wasn’t until 2012 that James actually started rapping, standing in the stairwells at his college and “cyphering,“ taking turns rapping together. He was studying advertising at a fine arts school, but he and his friends were more interested in rap: “We were recording some tracks for fun and releasing them on Soundcloud just for the homies, basically. I was rapping under the name AJ. Our first group was called The Land Of Promise. We’d talk about Filipino history, what life is like here, and why you should be proud. Our second group was 5th Wave Theory, and we actually wrote an album.” But in their final year at school, everyone got busy, and rap took a back seat. While they’d still cypher at night when hanging out, their first jobs after school were more important.


少年时期的 James 经常跑到马尼拉一些文化地标性场地观看演出,如 Cubao Expo 和现在已经关闭的音乐场地 B-Side,这两个地方都是当地嘻哈文化孕育而生的地方。他自小在 Ronac 艺术中心附近长大,那里每月都会举行开放麦(open mic)的活动 —— Wordplay,对他的影响很大。“那是一个让小孩发挥创意的中心,也是我们的庇护所。你们现在知道的很多有名的艺术家,他们小时候都是那里的常客,而我们这帮小孩就跟在大人身后暗中观察。”但 James 第一次接触嘻哈文化是通过涂鸦。他和一些早期的朋友都是通过涂鸦相识,其中许多人还成为了他目前团队 Baryo Berde 的成员。“当时我们都喜欢在相同的几扇门附近 ‘搞搞破坏’,然后就聊了起来,‘嘿,那是你画的?’”理发时他笑着说道,而理发师也是他的另一个儿时的玩伴。

直到 2012 年,James 才真正开始说唱,和朋友在大学的楼梯间进行 cypher —— 麦克风接力。那时候他在一所艺术学校攻读广告专业,但他和朋友对说唱明显更感兴趣:“我们当时录了一些歌,还发布在 SoundCloud 上,但其实只是出于好玩,想分享给朋友听。我当时的说唱艺名叫 AJ。我们第一个组合叫 ‘The Land Of Promise’,向大家讲讲菲律宾的历史、本地的生活方式,以及作为菲律宾人引以为傲的缘由。我们的第二个组合是 ‘5th Wave Theory’ ,当时还一块做了张专辑。”但是,大学最后一年,因为大家忙碌起来,说唱的事情就被搁置了。虽然大家晚上出来聚会时还会 cypher,但对他们来说,毕业后的第一份工作显得要更重要一些。

In 2015, the Al James persona came to life. He was only popping up as the occasional featured guest on friends’ tracks, but James could smell change in the air and was acting on it. “This is around the time that rap groups like 727 Clique and Owfuck were coming out,” he tells us. “When I first saw them perform, it was like culture shock. The kids were going crazy. It was a rooftop party and the whole thing was shaking. The police came and shut it down. Before that, we were used to chill, head-bopping crowds. This was totally new.” It inspired him to start experimenting and he recorded a few new styles, trying out some boom bap and some disruptive trap. But it was the lo-fi, chill sounds of “Pahinga” that he finally chose to upload. (The title translates roughly to “chilling out.”)


2015 年,他开始以 Al James 的身份说唱。偶尔友情客串朋友音乐的他,同时也察觉到了当时说唱界的风云突变。“那时候正是 727 Clique 和 Owfuck 这些说唱团体出来的时候。”他回忆道,“当我第一次看到他们表演时,真的是很震撼。所有年轻的小孩都快要疯了。在那次屋顶派对,我感觉整幢房子都在震动。后来警察赶到现场,中止了派对。在那之前的派对,我们最多只是跟着音乐摇摇头。所以,那次真的是一次全新的体验。” 那场派对启发他开始唱出新的尝试,并录制了全新风格的音乐,包括一些 boom bap 和一些爆炸的 trap 音乐。但最终 James 选择了《Pahinga》这首单曲中低保真、放松、舒服的曲风。

“I didn’t expect it to explode,” he says. And it didn’t at first. “Pahinga” gained traction slowly on Soundcloud. In the beginning it was mostly his artist friends playing and sharing it. But then it spread outside his circles. Although it never passed a couple hundred thousand plays on there, it was popular enough there that people started encouraging him to upload it to Youtube, where it took a life of its own. “Stuff wasn’t really blowing up on Youtube yet, but I did it anyway. It grew really organically. There were a lot of memes. People were ripping it from Youtube and adding it to different videos. Everything was happening at the same time, and it just snowballed.”


“我没想到它会这么火。” James 说。这首歌其实并不是一经推出便引爆互联网的,最开始也只是 James 的艺术家朋友会在 SoundCloud 上分享并收听这首单曲。但随后这首歌在他的社交圈以外一度被广泛传播。SoundCloud 上几十万的播放量,已经为他吸引了足够的人气,人们开始鼓励他把歌曲上传到 YouTube,从那时开始,歌曲《Pahinga》的波及范围便开始超出他的预期。“当时我在 YouTube 上也没被太多关注,但我还是上传了这首歌。它的流行是一个逐渐累积的过程。网上有很多对这首歌的改编。很多人从 YouTube 上下载这首歌,加到不同的视频中。各种因素加在一起,就像滚雪球那样。”

As he started getting booked to play shows, he quit his below-the-line advertising job. Al raps full time now, headlining festivals and events all over the country, still as independent as ever. “Some labels were reaching out, but the deals were pretty unfair. The music grew on its own, so I didn’t need them,” he shrugs. But he’s got to stay nimble. “With my newest song, ‘Latina,’ I tried a different approach. I was hearing a lot of similar vibes and I didn’t want it to deal with that saturation, so I switched it up. But the Al James flavor is still there.”


他开始受邀参加各种演出,并随后辞去了广告公司的工作。现在,Al james 是一名全职的说唱歌手,在菲律宾各地的节日和活动上表演,但仍然像以前一样保持独立音乐人的态度。“有些唱片公司联系过我,但条件都非常不公平。我的音乐本身在不断发展,所以我也不需要签这些公司了。” 他耸了耸肩说道。在音乐性上,他的曲风依然保持灵活多变的特点,“新歌《Latina》尝试了不同的风格。因为我之前听到太多相似的音乐,所以不想再创作已经饱和的曲风。我决定改变一下,但 Al James 的味道依然存在。”

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Contributor: Mike Steyels
Photographer: Jilson Tiu


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供稿人: Mike Steyels
摄影师: Jilson Tiu

Brush & Kink 何为酷儿艺术?

September 18, 2019 2019年9月18日

What makes a work of art queer? Sometimes it’s a touch of camp, a nod to drag, an urge to turn convention on its head. Sometimes it’s a fiery voice, a call to storm the patriarchal prisonhouse of gender. Sometimes it’s a subtler note—a longing sigh, a wary glance, a pained admission of forbidden love.

And sometimes it’s just rainbows and sex. Hui Ma’s work delights in every sort of erotic conjunction, with women and men and trans and nonbinary folk, in couples and singles and groups, all hugging, kissing, touching, rubbing, licking, romping, cavorting, frolicking, and fornicating their way across scene after libidinous scene. There are bodies of every description and shape and gender and hue—especially every hue: the rainbow colors seem to run together, like a pack of Skittles that’s melted onto the page.


何为酷儿艺术?有时,酷儿艺术带着一股俗气,招摇的色彩、做作的变装风格、颠倒行为规范的冲动;有时它是一腔热血的呐喊,呼吁人们席卷父权制的性别藩篱;有时它则像一枚微妙的音符——夹杂着渴望的叹息、警惕的眼神和痛楚的爱的禁忌。

而还有些时候,酷儿就是彩虹加性爱罢了。马慧以各种各样的性结合为乐,她的作品展现了这些男女、跨性别和非二元性别人群,在淫溺之所里,成单成双或成群结队地,相拥、接吻、爱抚、摩擦、舔舐、嬉闹、玩耍、交媾。画面中的小人拥有多元的体型、性别和肤色,尤其是肤色:彩虹色彩勾勒身体的线条上流淌,像要流溢出来,仿佛是一堆融化的彩虹糖。

“My subject matter is desire and sexuality,” says Ma. Her most recent series, Paradise Lust, with its throngs of undressed bodies, almost looks like an homage to Bosch’s Garden of Earthly Delights—or better yet, an X-rated version of Where’s Waldo? As in the Waldo books, here too the artist has hidden “Easter eggs” throughout each painting, and the curious and patient viewer can spot the Birth of Venus, the Girl with a Pearl Earring, and various Japanese Edo-period prints, along with the Pink Panther, Sailor Moon, and Captain Marvel. The sprawling, often physically impossible settings are as much a nod to M.C. Escher as they are to the perspectival conventions of traditional Chinese painting.


“我的作品主题是欲望和性。”马慧说。她的最新作品系列《Paradise Lust》(欲望天堂)描画了一群赤裸相拥的人物,似乎是在致敬荷兰画家耶罗尼米斯·博斯Hieronymus Bosch)的《人间乐园》,或是一个成人版本的《聪明的沃利》——和这幅画一样,作者在每幅画中隐藏了很多“彩蛋”,好奇和耐心的观众可以从中看到《维纳斯的诞生》和《戴珍珠耳环的少女》,以及各种日本江户时代的版画元素,甚至还有《粉红豹》、《美少女战士》和《惊奇队长》。向四面延伸、超乎现实的环境既致敬了荷兰版画大师 M.C.Escher,也体现了传统中国绘画的透视风格。

These titillating tableaux, these perverse panoramas, these spectacles of salacity allow Ma to chart the breadth and variety of copulation. Yet bawdy as they are, they’re also strangely impersonal. Her figures are not individuals, but merely parts of a group, viewed from afar; in these paintings, the most intimate desires appear as a collective, almost abstract phenomenon. This effect is intentional, because in Ma’s view, sex links people across space and time. “I see sexuality not only as a personal experience, but also as a collective experience throughout history,” she explains. “The individuality fades in time, but the flesh, the experience, and the sensation are always there.” In Paradise Lust, she highlights the continuity of sex, rather than its subjective depth.

There’s also a political dimension to her choice. Instead of displaying, say, a single nude woman, like so many canonical works of Western art, Ma seeks to avoid the pitfalls of painting sexualized women, even as she celebrates a certain objectification. “I think it’s hard not to objectify the body you see,” she notes. And that being the case, why not make the objectification more universal, more democratic? “In my series, I depict not only female bodies, but also male bodies and even animals.” (Notably octopuses: in fact, in addition to the improbable and the impractical, the works contain a fair amount of the impossible and the unpalatable.) “I try to generalize the body form, and the fact that sex is enjoyable for all genders.”


马慧通过这不同寻常的景象、挑逗的造型、盛大的人体狂欢,淋漓尽致地展现了性的广泛和多样。然而,尽管画面大胆赤裸,却也充满抽离感。她笔下的人物不是个体,而只是被远观的一个群体中的一部分;即使是最亲密的欲望也像是一种近乎抽象的集体现象。这是马慧有意而为的效果,因为在她看来,性爱在空间和时间上联系着人们。“在我看来,性爱不仅是个人的事情,是历史中的集体经验。”她解释道,“个体会随时间衰老,但肉体、经验和感觉不会。”在《Paradise Lust》中,她展示了性的历史连续性,而不是其内在的深度。

她在创作时也加入了一定的政治色彩。比方说,她没有像大多数传统西方艺术一样,为了男性观众,特意描绘单身女性的形象,因为她试图打破“男性凝视”(“male gaze”,一种把女性定位于被看者,置于男性凝视主控操纵的现象,译注)的做法,尽管她也表现了一定的人格物化。“我认为不将你所看到的身体物化是一件很难做到的事情。”她说。既然如此,为什么不试着把“凝视”变得更普遍,更民主?“在我的作品中,我不仅画了女性的身体,还会画男性的身体,甚至是动物。”(尤其是章鱼:事实上,作品中除了完全不可能的事物之外,还含有相当数量的令人难以置信和不快的事物。)。“我试图让身体的形态概念化,让人们知道,性爱对所有性别的人来说都是一件快乐的事情。”

Ma grew up in Beijing and now lives in New York, where’s she’s working on her MFA at the School of Visual Arts. Her international education lets her draw on techniques and influences from both China and the West. “I studied Chinese traditional painting when I was little,” she says. “The way that water and ink interact with rice paper still fascinates me. I love its immediacy, its abstractness, and especially how the brush strokes illustrate power and passion.” It’s also an ideal vehicle for her themes. “The water-based medium is perfect for depicting the sensation of fantasy.” Like watercolors, desire rarely stays within fixed lines.

Sexuality has been a topic of fascination since she was a child—mostly, she says, because no one talked about it. She recalls searching for information about sex from Chinese romantic novels, only to be surprised to discover, much later, that her own experiences were nothing like the ones she’d read about in books. A curiosity about the gap between desire and reality drives her art today.


马慧从小在北京长大,现在在纽约视觉艺术学院修读艺术硕士学位。国际化的教育背景让她汲取了来自中国和西方两种文化中的创作技巧和影响。她说:“我自小研究中国传统绘画,水墨与宣纸的互动让我很着迷。我喜欢水墨画的即时性、抽象性,尤其是笔触对于力量与激情的表现。”水墨也是她表达主题的理想工具,“水性介质是描绘幻想的理想工具。”像水彩画,其中的欲望很少固定线路内停留。

性是一个自小就让她着迷的话题,主要是因为身边没有人会谈论性。她记得自己以前曾在中国的言情小说里搜索关于性的信息,在亲身体验后却惊讶地发现,现实的体验与她在书中描写的是完全不一样的。这种对欲望与现实之间的差异的兴趣塑造了她如今的艺术作品。

Paradise Lust is not entirely realistic,” she says, showing a knack for understatement. The setting seems to be a series of pleasure gardens whose occupants luxuriate among Greek columns, palm trees, and arches. According to Ma, though, the scenes take place not in some classical locus amoenus but on a eighteen-story rocket ship: each of the paintings in the series corresponds to a different level, as it charts its course to a pansexual Fire Island in the sky.


“《Paradise Lust》不完全是现实的。”她轻描淡写地说道。画中的背景似乎是一个个乐园,画中的人物在希腊石柱、棕榈树和拱门之间纵情享乐。马慧解释,这些场景并未发生在传统的乐园之地,而是在一艘十八层的火箭飞船上:系列中的每幅画都对应不同的楼层,一层层堆叠,构筑出空中的一个泛性恋的孤岛。

Otherworldly scenes like these may seem far removed from our terrestrial life, but Ma insists that fantasy can shape reality. For one thing, the variety of bodily entanglements suggests an equal variety of power dynamics. “The bedroom can be political too,” she says. “Who has the power in bed, who is taking charge? In a way, it defines the power dynamic in a couple. A queer woman could potentially break the gender binaries, and achieve equality in bed. Different positions give different kinds of pleasure without the necessity of defining who’s dominant.” 

Blending the carnal and the carnivalesque, and folding in a strong dose of politics, Ma’s works are a celebration of desire in all its forms. They may not be realistic, but since when are desires confined to the limits of the possible? As that rocket blasts off, you almost wish you, too, could leave the earth behind for a while, and hitch a ride to Ma’s cosmic queer utopia.

To see the entire series as a single, unbroken image, click here.


像这样虚构的场景似乎与真实生活相去甚远,但马慧坚持认为,幻想可以塑造现实。一方面,各种身体的纠缠暗示各种力量的抗衡。“卧室也会充满政治色彩。”她说,“在床上谁掌握力量,谁是主导?在某种程度上,它体现了情侣之间的力量抗衡。一个女同性恋可能会打破性别二元,在床上实现平等。不同的姿势带来不同的快感,没有必要确定谁是主导。”

马慧的作品融合了肉体和狂欢,并蕴含丰富的政治元素,展现了各种形式的欲望。可能不太现实,但是对欲望而言,又有什么是不可能的呢?当这支火箭起飞时,你大概也会希望自己能够离开地球一段时间,随火箭抵达马慧所构筑的那个太空中的同性恋乌托邦。

点击这里,查看整个系列的无损长图

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Contributor: Allen Young
Chinese Translation: Olivia Li


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Contributor: Allen Young
Chinese Translation: Olivia Li

Sci-Fashion JIN 袍加身

September 16, 2019 2019年9月16日

You can’t just wait around for the future, you have to go out and create it. That’s the ethos behind JIN, an haute couture clothing brand from Taipei. The brainchild of Burgess Wu, JIN was born of a pure love for science fiction. The flagship store in the Wanhua district, half showroom and half event space, is a laboratory for creativity inspired by Blade Runner that regularly hosts a range of unique parties.


未来不是等出来的,是需要你去创造的,这就台北高订时装品牌 JIN 的设计理念。出于对科幻小说的热爱,创始人 Burgess Wu 打造了品牌 JIN。该品牌的旗舰店位于台北万华区,由陈列厅和活动场地构成,空间的设计灵感源自《银翼杀手》(Blade Runner)。而作为一个创意的工作空间,这里也会定期举办各种特别的派对活动。

Wu founded JIN in 2015 after dropping out of college. He was studying design but became impatient, unable to wait to start creating real things. As the son of a clothing designer, he already had a strong foundation in the craft , so he combed through past sketches and set to work building his brand: he began sourcing material and working with tailors to bring these concepts to life. When his first line, which had a sci-fi aesthetic, didn’t sell, he retreated to his home studio for some soul searching. He decided to combine his futuristic look with traditional elements, and this new approach seemed to catch on. “I wanted to offer something to society, something new for this generation,” he explains. “Fast fashion is boring—there’s no individuality. If you spend all your time following the trends, you lose yourself.”


2015 年,Wu 大学辍学后创办了 JIN。当时正在攻读设计专业的他,迫不及待并渴望能创造出实打实的作品。Wu 的父亲是一名服装设计师,在工艺方面为他早已夯实了坚硬的基础。在认真梳理了自己画过的草图过后,他开始着手打造属于自己的品牌:采购面料,与裁缝师共事,并逐渐将这些设计概念转化为现实。他的首个系列以科幻美学为主题概念,但卖得并不理想,他回到家中的工作室,反复琢磨自己的设计理念。随后,他决定将自己未来主义风格与传统元素结合起来,这种新的创作方式似乎很受追捧。“我想为社会和这一代人创造点新东西。”他解释道。“快时尚太无聊,缺乏个性。如果你一昧追逐潮流,你终会失去自己的个性。”

In Wanhua District, which is full of historic neighborhoods, it’s easy to find inspiration. “We keep our traditions,” Wu says. Nods to tradition in his designs include robes, leather headbands, silk shirts, and more. But he combines these with ultra-modern materials and tech wear details. “I travel to Guangzhou and walk around and touch the materials before choosing them. I handle them in person. I come up with the idea first and then go collect the fabrics.” He works with a well-known local tailor to produce small runs for each new line. He only releases about 10-20 pieces for each line and his customers tend to be film or design students.


在万华这个充满历史韵味的街区,灵感无处不在。你会从长袍礼服、皮革头带、丝制衬衫等设计洞见他们对传统文化的致敬,“我们要继承传统,”他说。同时,他还将这些传统元素与超前的面料材质、机能服装细节结合在一起。“我飞到广州到处寻找合适面料,选择之前都会先去用手摸,每次都由我亲自拣选。通常,都会先构思想法,再去进行挑选。”对于每一个新的系列,他都会与当地著名的裁缝师一同合作,进行小批量的生产。而一般每个系列他只推出 10 – 20 件作品,客户往往是电影或设计专业的学生。

JIN is much more than just its clothes, though. Their brick-and-mortar location is just as important, maybe more so. Underneath glowing neon signs is a working bar, which they open when hosting their one-of-a-kind events. Their central display case looks like a giant test tube. They often invite DJs to perform, and there’s even a tattoo artist with a booth set up in the back. Occasionally they bring in a sushi master, and most recently they hosted a boxing match. For Wu, the idea is to throw unconventional events that can cultivate interest with people who aren’t solely into fashion. “We want to bring people together from different scenes and make new friends,” Wu says.” There were a lot of people I’ve never met at this last event.”


但 JIN 不仅仅是一个服装品牌。他们的实体店同样重要,甚至可以说更重要。在霓虹灯标牌的下面是一个吧台,每当举办活动的时候就会派上用场;在店内中央的陈列台上放着一支巨大的试管;他们也经常邀请 DJ 前来表演,在整个空间的后面还有纹身师的工作台;有时,他们会邀请寿司师傅过来一显身手。就在最近,他们甚至还举办了一场拳击比赛。Wu 的想法是通过举办各种不拘一格的活动,吸引那些不单是对时尚感兴趣的人群。Wu 说:“我们希望将不同背景的人们聚在一起,结交新的朋友。譬如上一次活动,我就认识了很多以前从未见过的人。”

There’s still a ways to go, though. “The fashion scene here isn’t mature enough yet,” Wu complains.”People dress up for events or parties, but they don’t just dress up for fun on a regular day. I want to inspire people in Taipei to try new things. I want them to understand the value of style.”


当然,“这里的时尚行业还不够成熟呢。”他抱怨道,“人们会为活动和聚会打扮,但在平常的日常,他们不会出于有趣而特意打扮。我想鼓励台北人去多尝试新事物。我希望他们明白时尚的价值。”

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Website: www.jin2015.com.tw
Instagram: @jinofficlal

 

Contributor: Mike Steyels
Chinese Translation: Olivia Li
Images Courtesy of JIN


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网站: www.jin2015.com.tw
Instagram: @jinofficlal

 

供稿人: Mike Steyels
英译中: Olivia Li
图片由 JIN 提供

Walking in a Boundless Dream 梦境之中,现实之外

September 13, 2019 2019年9月13日

What is electronic music? Is it music made with a computer, or music with an identifiably electronic sound? Neither definition fits particularly well anymore, and maybe it’s an outdated term. The newest album by Beijing-based musician Guzz, called Walking in a Boundless Dream, is entirely digital, made without any physical instruments, although you’d never guess, since it’s brimming with organic texture. He doesn’t want to be hemmed in by a genre anyway and prefers to call it simply “music.” While the album is indeed a departure from any single style, it’s informed by the continued growth of electronic music as a whole, the maturity of the technology used to make it, and the largely unrealized possibilities of music made with computers.


究竟什么是电子音乐?电脑制作的音乐还是具有高辨识度音效的音乐,它们能被称之为电子音乐吗?恐怕以上表述都不太合适,也或许太过陈词滥调了吧。《走不出的梦境》是生活在北京的 Guzz 的最新专辑,音乐中大段的原声乐器演奏乐段洋溢着有机听感体验,让人完全想不到这是一张完全用电脑软件制作完成的专辑。无论如何,Guzz 也不希望被禁锢在音乐风格当中,他只想将自己的作品称之为 “音乐”。新专辑也同样脱离了任何单一的风格,在当下电子乐场景兼收并蓄,同时运用娴熟的电脑技术,极大地突破了音乐未知的可能性。

Listen to to some of our favorite tracks from Guzz’s new album below:


点击即可试听几首 Guzz 的新歌:

After his recent explorations of Asian identity within club music, Guzz has now left the dance floor entirely for more thoughtful terrain. His previous records combined Western dance beats with Asian compositions and instrumentation, evoking an eastward-gazing night out. Walking in a Boundless Dream still strives for a modern feel and incorporates some obviously synthesized sounds, but the album is overwhelmingly inspired by traditional motifs and instruments of Myanmar and India.


最近,在探索了俱乐部音乐与亚洲本地文化过后,Guzz 彻底将舞曲概念抛之脑后,开始探索更多意义非凡的领域。在他过去的作品中,西方电子舞曲节奏和亚洲乐器相结合,而在新唱片《走不出的梦境》中,音乐在追求现代感和合成器音效的同时,更多的体现了缅甸和印度传统音乐调式和乐器的影响。

Guzz took a circuitous path to get here, but he found the right direction. As a middle schooler, he used to buy Western CDs resold illegally in his hometown in southern China, a common phenomenon across the country at the time. This exposed him to rock and inspired him to join a band. When he was 20, someone introduced him to classic ’90s electronic acts like Prodigy and Daft Punk, and that new sound appealed to him, because he could make it alone. “I had grown bored of playing rock because you need a whole team, which is a hassle to organize,” he laughs. So he poured through Chinese forums and blogs to find text-based instructions in order to learn the software, imitating the sounds and feelings of the limited Western music he knew.


这是一条曲折的道路,不过可以确定的是,Guzz 选对了方向。Guzz 家乡是中国南部城市,高中时期的他通过购买并倒卖打口 CD 的方式了解西方音乐,这也是当时中国音乐爱好者的普遍现象。受到摇滚乐的影响之后,Guzz 开始组建乐队。二十岁的他在朋友推荐下听到了来自九十年代的 The Prodigy 和 Daft Punk 乐团,Guzz 一下子陷入其中,并希望有朝一日能一个人完成整首歌曲的创作。“我当时对摇滚乐已经感到有些疲惫,因为乐队需要一整个团队,有时也很难把大伙儿凑齐,”他笑道。从那时起,Guzz 便通过中文论坛和博客学习软件制作,模仿西方电子音乐中的味道。

In 2008, in his mid-twenties, Guzz moved to Beijing, a hub for music and entertainment. He began figuring out where he fit in artistically in a growing nationwide club scene. “When I started, no one in China really knew what electronic music was, so it was hard to find help,” he explains. But that changed quickly, and soon he was playing regularly in clubs as part of a new wave of Chinese dance music, building an audience across the country that still follows him to this day. 


2008 年,二十多岁的 Guzz 来到北京。在当时的中国俱乐部音乐场景中,他开始摸索适合自己的艺术方向。“我刚开始起步那会儿,没多少人知道电子乐是什么,所以很难获得援助。”但很快事情就有所改观, 作为中国新一批电子音乐人,Guzz 定期在俱乐部里演出,在全国范围内吸引了不少观众,追随者也跟着他的音乐时至今日。但,这样的生活方式也带来一定代价。

Yet the lifestyle took its toll. “The older you get, the more stress the club causes to your heart and ears and body. The music is also very much restricted to bass and rhythm. There’s not much else to explore,” Guzz says. “After leaving the club, a new world of music has opened up to me. If I had to define it, I’d call it something like ‘new Asian music,’ since I’m incorporating traditional Asian elements as the foundation. It’s a departure from modern pop in Asia, which is often heavily influenced by Western music. China and other Asian regions lost a lot of culture after World War II. I’d like to build a connection to those traditional Asian elements to more modern sounds to make something new.”


“随着年龄的增长,俱乐部对心脏、耳朵和身体也会带来更多麻烦。音乐也非常局限在低音和律动上面,可探索的东西也会变得越来越少。” Guzz 说,“离开俱乐部之后,我发现音乐为我重新打开了一扇门。如果非要去定义我的音乐,我会将它称作 ‘新亚洲音乐’,因为我的音乐结合了很多亚洲传统元素作为基础,区别于很多亚洲当代通俗音乐中对西方音乐元素的直接使用。第二次世界大战后,中国和其他亚洲国家丢失了许多文化。我想在传统亚洲元素与更现代声音之间建立联系,去创造新的事物。”

While he first began combining these elements through club music, he’s now taking a more eclectic approach, even traveling to Myanmar and India to experience firsthand the sounds that inspired his album. “I learned their methods through reading and watching Youtube. But I also traveled there just to listen to the music. I wanted to know the basis of this knowledge I’d learned from books to gain a stronger foundation. I went to the temples and listened to the daily performances and the various instruments they use. Religion is very present in the music, and although I’m an atheist, it gave me the feeling of connection between people and the universe.”


其实最初,Guzz 只是把这些元素与俱乐部音乐搅拌在一起,而现在,他用到更多兼收并蓄的方式来创作,他甚至亲身游历缅甸和印度,切身感受这些地域的声音,并把这些感受带来的启发放进专辑制作中,“我在 Youtube 上面学习如何将不同元素结合起来。不过,我还是会去当地聆听他们的音乐,想亲身获取 ‘书中知识’ 的要义,并获得强大的文化积淀。我会去当地寺庙,聆听他们每天的表演,以及对不同乐器的演奏。宗教对于印度和缅甸音乐的影响是很大的,尽管我是一个无神论者,但在寺庙里听他们的音乐带给我一种人与宇宙相连的感觉,这种感觉对这张唱片的制作理念有所影响”。

Throughout Walking in a Boundless Dream, you’ll hear musical cues, like a mode from Myanmar called Hkunithanci and a Southeast Asian xylophone. The album is also inspired by the melodies of Carnatic music, a style from the southern part of India. There’s even a Shamisen, a stringed instrument from Japan. But none of it is made with actual instruments—it’s all created using digital software and arranged together like an analog performance. “The previous album has a lot of samples to create the traditional Asian elements, but in this one, all of the sounds were digitally created.”

Electronic music may still be a useful category, but its boundaries are increasingly being tested. Guzz’s sound, though rooted in electronic music, is a departure to somewhere much more human.

Walking in a Boundless Dream is released now on the platforms below: iTunes / Spotify / Soundcloud / Bandcamp / 虾米 / 网易 / QQ音乐


在《走不出的梦境》中,你将会听到许多音乐风格和线索,比如缅甸的 Hkunithanci 调式,东南亚的木琴、南印度的卡纳提克音乐、甚至还有日本的弦乐器三味线。所有的这些声音在软件乐器中用电子模拟演奏的手段编辑成乐段。“上一张专辑直接采用了很多亚洲传统音乐的采样,而在这张专辑中我用软件乐器编写了唱片中音乐”。

从许多角度来看,“电子音乐” 这个说法绝对没有什么问题,但其界限正在不断被考验。虽然根源于电子音乐,但 Guzz 的创造力早已脱离其本身,让电子乐类别听起来更具人性化。

《走不出的梦境》现已在各大音乐平台上线,你可点击以下链接进入试听:iTunes / Spotify / Soundcloud / Bandcamp / 虾米 / 网易 / QQ音乐

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Contributor: Mike Steyels
Photographer: Nathan Wang
Chinese Translation: Pete Zhang


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微博: ~/guzz1984
Soundcloud
~/guzzchina

 

供稿人: Mike Steyels
摄影师: Nathan Wang
英译中: Pete Zhang

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Interspecies Utopia 和谐乌托邦

September 11, 2019 2019年9月11日

Beneath a fluorescent-colored sky, leviathans with bodies resembling Chinese finger traps tower over lakes, lime-green parakeets rock out on treetops, and rose-headed nymphs frolic from branch to branch—don’t worry, this isn’t an acid flashback. It’s the work of Angela Ho. The Hong Kong artist creates illustrations characterized by vibrant tones, noisy gradients, and dappled lines that work together to produce a retro charm. It’s an aesthetic that may seem at odds with her digital-heavy workflow.

Like Ho, many contemporary artists have furthered their creative potential through technology. Specialized software, pressure-sensitive styluses, and color-calibrated monitors allow creators to realize their artistic vision with clinical precision. Yet often, purely digital pieces end up missing a certain je ne sais quoi. This is something that Ho is increasingly wary of. Despite her reliance on digital tools, she’s looking to traditional techniques and mediums for inspiration.


在荧光色的天空下,有着类似中国棋盘手环样子的巨兽在湖面上飞舞着,青绿色的长尾小鹦鹉在树梢摇摆,玫瑰色的小鹦鹉在树枝间嬉戏——别担心,这不是幻觉闪现。这是 Angela Ho 的作品。这位香港艺术家创作了以充满活力的音调、嘈杂的渐变和斑驳的线条为特色的插图,这些线条共同创造了复古的魅力。这种审美观似乎与她的数字工作流程格格不入。

许多和 Angela Ho 一样的当代艺术家,利用科技发展他们的创作潜能。专业的软件、压敏笔和彩色校准显示器使创作者能够以精确的方式实现自己的艺术视觉。然而,纯粹的数字作品最终往往会漏掉某些东西。这正是 Angela 担心的问题。尽管她依赖数码工具,但她仍在寻求传统技术及媒介带来的灵感。

“I love woodcut printing from the 1950s, ’60s, and’70s with strong simple shapes and lots of texture from the wood,” Ho says. “This printing process gives depth to otherwise flat shapes. Texture in drawings makes them more tactile, like you can see the hand of the artist.”

Ho’s fascination with texture led her to experiment with risography, a printing method from the 1980s that’s found renewed interest in recent years. Risographs are known for producing unpredictable and inconsistent prints, and for many artists like Ho, its fallibility is exactly the appeal, as it makes the art feel more human. “I love the serendipitous nature of risographs,” she says. “I can give up some control over my work.”


“我喜欢上世纪 50 到 70 年代的木刻版画,它们的形状简单,还有很多木头纹理。”Angela 说。“这种印刷过程使平面形状的深度得以加深。在图纸纹理使他们更有触觉,就像你可以看到的艺术家的手。”

Angela Ho 对质地的迷恋,促使她开始尝试将 “risography”(意为“数字复印”)这 80 年代的印刷方法重新引起人们的兴趣。以创作不可预测和前后不一致的版画而著称,对和 Angela Ho 一样的许多艺术家来说,它的不完美正是吸引人的地方,因为它赋予了艺术更多人情味。“我喜欢数字复印的偶然性,可以让我放任一些对作品的控制。”

Ho’s appreciation for risograph printing doesn’t mean she’s shying away from new technology though. Her recent exhibition, Interspecies Utopia, held at Outré Gallery in Melbourne, Australia, incorporates augmented reality. Using the Artivive app, viewers can look through their phones to see her static prints come to life. “The AR in my show emphasized the idea of a working society, how each individual is important to it,” she recalls of the original idea. “It was meant to only function when all the characters were put together, when all the artworks were hung together in a specific formation. However, I decided with Outré to separate the animations in the overall AR experience, so that people who bought individual prints could also view the AR specific to their print.”


不过,Angela 对印字法的欣赏并不意味着她对新技术不感兴趣。她最近在澳大利亚墨尔本 Outré 画廊举办的《Interspecies Utopia》(意为“物种间乌托邦”)展览融合了现实。通过 Artivive 应用程序,观众可以通过手机看到她的静态照片栩栩如生。“在我展览中的 AR 技术增强了‘工作社会’的理念,以及每个人在其中的扮演角色重要性。”她回忆起最初的想法,“当所有的角色被放在一起,当所有的艺术作品以特定的形式挂在一起时,它就起作用了。然而,我和 Outré 画廊那边商量决定分开动画和整体 AR 增强现实的体验,使购买个人打印的观众也可以查看 AR 的具体展现。”

The illustrations in Interspecies Utopia feature the same retro aesthetic that Ho has always been known for, but the series is a marked departure from her earlier works. Rather than making standalone pieces, for this exhibition, she crafted a series with an interconnected narrative. “When my submission was accepted by Outré, I saw it as a chance to make my work evolve,” she recalls. “I’d been drawing lots of characters, often just floating in white space or on flat colors. I was beginning to work with environments and landscapes and wanted to put a range of characters together.”


《Interspecies Utopia》中的插图具有和 Angela 一惯的复古美学特征,但这一系列作品与她早期的作品有明显的不同。这次展览并不是每一幅画都是独立的作品,而是她第一次用相互关联的叙述来创作一个系列。“我的作品被 Outré 画廊选中时,我把它看作是让艺术领域向外拓展的机会。”她回忆道,“我画了很多不同角色,通常只是在空白处或平面上漂浮。我开始研究环境和风景,想把一系列的人物放在一起。”

At first glance, Interspecies Utopia seems to depict a forest sanctuary where all the animals live joyous harmony. But closer scrutiny reveals an underlying tension—it’s almost as if the place is too good to be true.

These feelings of suspicion aren’t unfounded, as the series’ core themes are partly based on racism and discrimination that the artist has faced or observed.”World events, xenophobia, and my own experiences and feelings growing up in Australia and being of Chinese and Hong Kong heritage were all influences,” Ho explains.

Ultimately, Interspecies Utopia is Ho’s way of presenting a simple but powerful message, one that she feels is especially important today: we may all be different, but a little empathy goes a long way in making the world a happier place.


乍一看,《Interspecies Utopia》似乎是在描绘一个和谐的森林,在这里所有动物在一起其乐融融地生活,但仔细观察后,它却揭示了一种潜在的张力——因为它几乎就像是一个美好得不真实的地方。

这些怀疑并非没有根据,因为作品的核心主题都是基于艺术家所面临或观察到的负面经历,尤其是歧视和种族主义。Angela 解释道:“世界上的种种事件、人们的仇外心理,以及我在澳大利亚长大时作为华人和香港移民的身份,对我都是有影响的。”

归根到底,《Interspecies Utopia》是 Angela 一个简单却很有力量的表达方式,她觉得在现代社会中特别重要:我们可能都是不同的,但是人与人之间的共情会让这个世界变得更美好。

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Contributor: David Yen
Chinese Translation: Chen Yuan


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供稿人: David Yen
英译中: Chen Yuan

Men’s Lies 俱乐部里的 “男人谎言”

September 9, 2019 2019年9月9日

Graphic design plays a crucial, if often overlooked, role in dance music. The right visual cues can convey taste and savvy, and an eye-catching poster can get people lining up to come to your show. Yet the two rarely come up in the same conversation—until now.

Meet Men’s Lies, an online platform dedicated to both electronic music and graphic design. It combines electronic tracks with original poster art—think of it as publicity for virtual concerts, or a Tumblr account set to music. Since 2016, it’s been bringing a fresh look to China’s underground music scene.

Men’s Lies was founded by two diehard electronic music fans, Yenk and PJ. The duo met while working in the magazine industry and bonded over daily conversations about art, design, and music. During one such chat over lunch, they came up with the idea of launching their own platform. “In the beginning, we envisioned a place where we could share our love of design and electronic music,” PJ says. “Naturally, the content was all based on personal taste. It became a small place where we could express ourselves.”


美学在俱乐部音乐中是绝对不可忽视的一环,其标榜着从音乐到文化等诸多方面品位。当赏心悦目的海报设计进入视线,其视觉冲击总会让人对当晚的音乐活动浮想连连。

Menslies 是一个以电子音乐和平面设计为主要驱动力的平台,伴随他们对音乐与设计独特品味的输出,为中国地下电子音乐场景送来一阵新鲜的清风。

Menslies 由 YENK 和 PJ 于 2016 年创立。早在创立之前,两位缘分之交就曾在两家杂志媒体一起共事,音乐和美学成为他们日常聊天的话题。而 Menslies 的成立便来自每日的午饭闲谈,PJ 说:“最开始,我们想为电子乐、设计的共同爱好找到一个输出平台,这一切都非常私人化,像是一个自娱自乐的小房间。”

Early on, they decided to dispense with original album covers and add their visuals of their own that encapsulated their listening experience; every mix has a specific aesthetic direction. “It started with the series ‘Pordmondnar,'” Yenk recalls. (That’s “random drop” spelled backwards.) “We picked random songs we vibed with and designed a graphic based on our interpretation of the track.” Even when the two began releasing longer mixes, they continued pairing individual tracks with visuals.

Each member of the duo handles different series, with different music and visual tastes. “PJ mainly works on the Music 4 series while I work on the Swim Cycle Run series,” Yenk notes.


在早期推出的诸多栏目中你会发现,他们抛开了音乐原本的包装,结合自己的听觉体验进行重新塑造;而每支 Mix 也都会有相辅相成的美学概念,“有点像是我们自己对音乐本身的美学反馈 ”,YENK 说道,“比如一开始的 PORDMODNAR 栏目,我们会特别随机地抛出一首当时很喜欢的音乐,然后照着我们对它的理解,去匹配平面视觉设计”。

好比 Menslies Logo 上的两个 “小人儿”,YENK 和 PJ 分别负责不同的栏目,他们共用一个空间,为各自的音乐与审美代言,“现阶段,PJ 主要做 ‘Music 4’ 系列,而我主要负责 ‘Swim Cycle Run’ 栏目”。

Not catering to mainstream tastes, not trying to be edgy, Men’s Lies designs don’t belong to any particular fashion, and their original use of colors and textures, combined with their attentive eye for detail, gives them a unique appeal. Much of their success is due to Yenk and PJ’s highly effective communication: they’re on the same wavelength. “The brainstorming process is my favorite,” Yenk says. “We have a blast every time.”


不一味迎合大众,不一味追求个性,Menslies 的设计不会让你觉得属于任何一个时代的时髦产物,但又能在独特的颜色、纹理搭配,以及不经意间的细节里出众夺人,让人倍感舒适。这些很大一部分都归功于 YENK 和 PJ 相互认同与理解的高效沟通模式,YENK:“最享受的是我们头脑风暴的过程,每次都聊得特别嗨”。

Men’s Lies’ poster art isn’t limited to the virtual world. Yenk and PJ also create posters for one of Beijing’s most inclusive clubs: Zhao Dai. When the club was looking for a new visual direction in preparation for its reopening in 2018, they turned to Men’s Lies to define their aesthetic in event announcements, publicity, and related products. Every weekend the duo create hype among the club kids with a series of striking, visually unified posters—an enormous amount of work. “Zhao Dai has given us a lot of creative freedom,” Yenk says. “We basically have no restrictions—we just do whatever we liked, whatever looks good. And almost all of it is PJ’s work. I handle the text and some of the routine design.” PJ recalls some initial creative friction, but the collaboration with Zhao Dai is now “100% silky smooth.”


Menslies 的设计也并不仅仅局限在虚拟的世界,Yenk 和 PJ 还为北京 Zhao Dai 招待所俱乐部提供美学支持。Zhao Dai 是北京最具包容性的电子音乐圣地之一,2017 至 18 年,经历过数月的停休和苦苦等待,Zhao Dai 的舞池计划再一次展开,这次回来的不仅是优质的音乐品位,还有一套来自 Menslies 的美学体系。俱乐部大量海报、活动文案以及周边产品由 Menslies 团队一手操办,他们承载着舞者们每周末的期待,他们的作品也呈现出非常丰富的视觉效果,但都处在同一风格的界限之内,堪称庞大的工作量,YENK:“因为招待所给了我们特别大的空间,基本没有限制。所以怎么好看、怎么讨自己喜欢怎么来。而绝大部分海报都来自 PJ 的手笔;我会负责文字内容,还有一些宣传拍摄的工作,” PJ:“记得在短暂的磨合期有一些来往,目前我们的合作已经 100% 丝般顺滑!”

Today Yenk and PJ are split between Beijing and Shanghai, but distance hasn’t slowed down their collaboration. They still try to put out several programs, such as “Take a Sip,” a series made in collaboration with producer Wu Shuang that features animated 3D art, and a round-up of the year’s best albums with the music critic known as 10000. They also have a guest mix program, where they invite friends to showcase their favorite music. Perhaps it’s 10000 who sums up the mission of Men’s Lies the best: “Great music should always have killer visuals to go with it.”


最近的 YENK 和 PJ 分别在北京和上海工作,但这并不妨碍两人之间的交流,他们还在公众号上进行着若干栏目的尝试,比如与 Wu Shuang 一起制作的 Take A Sip 栏目(一个以 3D 建模、平面设计、音乐为主的栏目)、与专业音乐爱好者 10000 的年度专辑榜单、还有与朋友制作的 Guest Mix 栏目等等,“现在要做的,就是把东西做好,然后多更新一些美丽的 ‘男人谎言’。最后,很想引用 10000 的一句话 —— ‘但愿美妙的音乐永远有美好的视觉陪伴’ ”。

Listen to our exclusive playlist, curated for Neocha by Men’s Lies.

 

Track List

1. DJ PoolBoi – Take Care
2. Akasha System – Afterimage
3. Soft Fit – North Shore
4. DJ Seinfeld – U
5. Leon Vynehall – Envelopes (Chapter VI)
6. Central – Keep Love on Me


最后,Menslies 贴心地为我们准备了一份歌单,温柔细腻的旋律,声动中铺开一副美好的画卷

 

歌单

1. DJ PoolBoi – Take Care
2. Akasha System – Afterimage
3. Soft Fit – North Shore
4. DJ Seinfeld – U
5. Leon Vynehall – Envelopes (Chapter VI)
6. Central – Keep Love on Me

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WeChat: MensLies

 

Contributor: Pete Zhang


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微信: MensLies

 

供稿人: Pete Zhang