John Lawrence Sullivan Looks To Robert Mapplethorpe and Fetish Culture
A Perfect Drug sees designer John Lawrence Sullivan dive a little deeper into the influences which inspired his S/S 21 collection. Made in collaboration with the visual artist Soshi Nakamura, the film was shot in designer Arashi Yanagawa's home in Japan.
A Perfect Drug allows viewers to explore the designer's most recent collection, where Yanagawa looked to fetish culture. In particular, the designer was looking at Robert Mapplethorpe's work, which is often observed for its homoerotic portrayal of nudes. The John Lawrence Sullivan S/S 21 lookbook took Mapplethorpe's approach to the classical nude, and decided to challenge the philosophies which surround it. The arresting black rimmed portraits are reminiscent of Mapplethorpe's which he took on his Polaroid or Hasselblad cameras. The collection itself saw body piercings pinned into items of clothing and fetish face masks fit for the times, all the while developing Yanagawa's distinct deconstructed tailoring. To time with the release of the film, the designer has also created a t-shirt and cap available to buy now.
The brand itself is named after the heavyweight champion boxer renowned for his strength, personality and dignity, and subculture and music are recurrent themes in Yanagawa's designs. In this film, the designer's love of industrial music comes through. The clashing and banging comes from instruments played by friends of the brand. The catch? They only had one go. Nakamura follows Yanagawa's troupe through the dark hallways of a concrete underground space as they come to a make-shift stage, which one member later clambers across. Footage is tinged an inky blue, reminiscent of the background setting for the lookbook. With instruments provided and a time limit of just three hours, the results are pretty fantastic and pretty damn cathartic. So, what are you waiting for? Turn your volume up and let it all out.