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CONCEPT + INFORMATION: JOLIE MITTLEMAN
Fantasy, imagination, and vision fuel the downtown scene in New York City. This fuel, this dream-like escapism from the ‘real world’ is often expressed through color. It is only logical then, that the color be magical and fantastic. This magic color is holographic; it is iridescent; it is color that changes with light through reflections and prisms; it is color that is an illusion. The use of holographic color transports whatever it touches to an alternate reality, on a colorful trip, where the feeling is surreal and unique.
Walk the streets of NYC, and simply by keeping your eyes open, you’ll see holographic color all around, particularly in the Lower East Side, which is full of young artists, musicians and designers. Strolling down Stanton Street you will find International Playground, an incredibly fashion-forward boutique with designers from near and far and clothing and accessories that speak for the city’s trend setters. In the window hangs a simple oversized jersey T-shirt bonded with holographic scales. Inside, shelves of holographic nail polish line the walls. And the sales person wears bright blue glasses and has made-in-NYC holographic nail polish painted on her carefully sculpted fingernails.
Take a stop in a Duane Reade, the Manhattanite’s pharmacy of choice, and check out the make-up aisle – the aisle of first choice for any young NYC girl. You’ll find Cover Girl has come out with a new foundation, packaged perfectly in an enticing little holographic compact. Even in a run-of-the-mill drug store, holographic color shows itself proud and loud.
Deep within the mid-town fashion district, where fabric stores line the streets and young fashion design assistants weave in and out, is Elegant Fabrics, full of piles of rolls containing holographic film, vinyl and leather. Further downtown on Canal Street is Canal Plastics, a must-see for designers, architects and crafts people alike. Sitting front and center in the window display is a holographic pyramid reflecting colorfully the street before it with its distinctive fire escapes.
Perhaps most important of all is the holographic touch to art and music, the obsessions of today’s youth. Enrique Gomez De Molina uses thousands of jewel beetles’ wings to ‘taxidermy’ his very own holographic walrus. The jewel beetle has on its wings a microscopic texture that reflects light in particular directions, giving off a fantastic bluish-greenish holographic color. You can find these wings in small vials at Evolution, New York City’s premiere curiosities store in SoHo.
Walking down Orchard Street, an unmarked and unassuming gallery surprises with a strange circular holographic film attached to the window, which gives the spectacular illusion of an iridescent rabbit-hole.
In music, especially in the dream-like indie pop genre, album covers are being released from multiple different artists such as The XX, Stealing Sheep, and Alt-J with holographic color as the focus and allure. The sound of dream-pop radiates a feeling of the unreal, the world of illusion, having a synesthesia-like effect on the listener.
Toda’s world has become our digitalized realm, keeping us ever floating between reality and surreality. Imagination becomes truth; even human emotion can be synthesized into little yellow faces. With the artificial becoming our natural, the fantastical our everyday, holographic color emerges as a prominent color for today’s generation.