Editor’s Letter – Volume 4 Issue 3
Stuart Brumfitt, Editor, February 2020.
Article taken from The Face Volume 4 Issue 003. Order your copy here.
“There are no more Jerry Seinfelds. There is no shared consciousness,” says comedian Jaboukie Young-White in our comedian portfolio, What Does A Joke Sound Like in 2020? The 25-year-old American stand-up, who’s made a name for himself on Saturday Night Live and through his spicy Twitter, says that with a fractured digital space, we’re all leading hyper-individualised lives. “We’re beyond the point where I’m expecting to be for everyone… You find that thing that is specifically for you, and then you like that thing.”
What connects much of the talent in this issue is the fact that they’re all so specifically themselves. Our cover stars, Grimes, LaKeith Stanfield, Noen Eubanks and Frank Lebon (who shot Lara Stone aka “Susan Delux” in the final part of his “fashion shoot on the edge of disaster”) aren’t walking to the usual rhythm – they’re totally off-beat, in the best ways.
While pregnant, Grimes is going to be using her avatar as maternity cover. WarNymph – who’s progressed from baby to the Balenciaga-clad goddess on these pages of The Face – will be doing gigs, appearances and shoots on behalf of our favourite techno-pagan faerie queen. Grimes is often unfairly mocked for her supposedly outlandish statements, but pay proper attention and she’s talking total sense – just ahead of her time. In an internet age, she argues, “The avatar allows us to play to the strengths of digital existence rather than be a human trying to navigate a world that isn’t made for us.”
To counter that, one human who’s navigating the digital world beautifully is TikTok teen idol (and Celine campaign boy) Noen Eubanks who insists “social media is not a very glamorous thing”, even though he makes it look like it is. He comes up with creative, funny ways to push the platform to its outer limits, but in an emotional part of the interview, he also talks about how TikTok and his fans stopped him from taking his life.
Meanwhile, going wild on Instagram stories is Hollywood’s most off-the-wall actor, LaKeith Stanfield. While most stars’ social media accounts are heavily managed, follow LaKeith and you get a true sense of the man. After trippy/surreal/shifty roles in smashes Atlanta, Sorry to Bother You and Uncut Gems, he’s decided to switch things up with a role opposite Issa Rae in “dark skin black love” romantic drama The Photograph, and later in the year will play an unpopular FBI informant in an untitled film about the Black Panthers. LaKeith likes to keep himself – and the rest of us – guessing.
There’s tons more film talent on top of that: from Talia Ryder, Jahi Winston and the Arias brothers (who appeared in Matilda, The Lion King, Kickin’ It and Hannah Montana as child actors) through to Taylour Paige, Levan Gelbakhiani and Brit star George MacKay. The cherry on top is the man who symbolises the new face of Hollywood: Bong Joon Ho. The South Korean director picked up four Oscars for Parasite, which was the first foreign language film to ever win the Best Picture Oscar. Read about the five things he lives by (food, mostly).
We have a story on the legacy of LA hip-hop legend Nipsey Hussle a year after his murder, a look at the rise in woggle-wearing Scouts in deprived urban areas, and tips for how to have socialist sex (and stop our attention, affections and emotions being commodified by the free market).
Soak up music from Griselda, 6 Figure Gang, Darkoo and Aitch (we couldn’t resist revisiting him just two issues since the last), and pore over a bumper fashion issue of womenswear, menswear, anywear, which includes the conclusion of photographer Frank Lebon’s frankly nuts comic strip of wig-wearing, stalking and murder.
Off-beat: unusual, strange, unexpected, extraordinary.