kagablog

October 8, 2009

terry is fine art blow up doll richardson

Filed under: art,terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 4:38 pm

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“At a time when the artist collaboration game has run out of steam, leave it to rogue photographer TERRY RICHARDSON to flip the script and breathe new life into the concept as he did so amazingly with artist and toymaker MICHAEL LAU this month at DIESEL’s BRAVE GALLERY in Hong Kong. After being invited by the Italian fashion brand to travel to Brasil to photograph the local “wildlife,” in spring of this year, Richardson invited Lau to add his spin to the Terry myth when the resulting collection of photographs traveled to Lau’s native Hong Kong for their grand unveiling. The result was easily the greatest “interactive” toy ever created when Lau fabricated a larger-than-life, anatomically correct, fully-articulated action figure of our man with the golden Yashica to display as the exhibit’s showstopping centerpiece alongside several of his own large-scale paintings and a series of illustrations of the goggled photographer (which have been published as a limited-edition book available only at the exhibition). Why can’t all art shows be this cool???…”

August 23, 2009

whirlwind heat – purple (directed by terry richardson)

Filed under: music,terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 11:35 am

December 4, 2008

Filed under: photography,terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 1:40 am

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January 23, 2008

dissolution love

Filed under: kagapoems,sasha grey,sex,terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 4:29 am

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this is not an order
this is not a poem
this is not a man-
tra this is not a
list of recrimi-
nations this is
not a 12 step
program this
is not any-
thing this
is not me
this is
not
you
so no
stress now
baby i’m busy
anyway the truth is
if you’re going to live a lie
you have to do it very convincingly
and you don’t have to worry about my loyalty
i’m always loyal to me and you don’t have to worry
about timing i’ll know when it’s time to make the first mistakes
and if you’re afraid that i’ll debase you don’t forget a little debasement
goes a long way and i know that your mouth is a temple so open it
wider and i know that your eyes are portals to your soul so close
them. this is what i’m gonna do i’m going to uncontrol you
til your five senses ungovern you i’m going to unfasten
your seatbelt and watch while you float through the
windscreen i’m going to help pull you untogether
going to watch while you put off your face
so don’t be anybody don’t be somebody
don’t be a person don’t be a woman
don’t be a girl don’t be you
don’t be anything
don’t be free
don’t be me
don’t be

December 15, 2007

X-Rated

Filed under: 2003 - drive-thru funeral,sasha grey,terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 5:32 pm

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This is an all-ages poem
so I can’t mention
which part of
you I’d like
to suck
on.

December 13, 2007

on seeing a photograph of someone i once thought i knew

Filed under: kagapoems,poetry,sasha grey,terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 1:27 am

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who did you become?
that’s not anybody
i know wearing
your clothes
wearing
your
eyes
who did
you become?
who’s that wearing
your hair? wearing your
smile? who’s that trying so
hard not to wear your tears

December 11, 2007

Love Song

Filed under: 2003 - drive-thru funeral,sasha grey,terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 7:20 pm

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Go down
go
down
where
you have
to and we both
know you have to

Go down
take off
your
clothes
for countless
strangers I won’t
stop you I know you
have to go down. There’s
a place in your eyes that’s empty

Go down
Fill it
Like
I
did
I went
down. Go
down, do what
you have to, and
we both know you
have to. Go down, I’ll
be here for you. Always.

southbound

Filed under: kagapoems,sasha grey,terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 3:07 pm

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southbound
go my fingers
southbound goes
my tongue. lie back
and close your eyes girl
i’m southbound
i’m southbound

November 22, 2007

a near death experience

Filed under: kagapoems,poetry,sasha grey,terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 2:24 am

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one of the devil’s daughters called out my name
she said come here boy come here and play
so i went down and i played. i played love
with one of the devil’s daughters, but i
did not emerge unscathed. a powerful
death drive drove me. i tried to die
but i could not die. i tried to be
born but i could not be born
then i realized
don’t try
be

but i’m not ashamed of myself anymore
every beating i gave her was a begging
for forgiveness. every dark bruise on
her pale junkie skin was the gate-
way to a valley of light. and it’s
true she fucked around like a
two-stroke, but that’s what
devil’s daughters do. i
made the mistake of
not believing the
evidence of my
senses when
i heard her
whisper
my
name
my intuition
told me to run
away but my dick
stood up and yelled “charge”

November 16, 2007

snuff girl

Filed under: kagapoems,poetry,sasha grey,terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 1:37 am

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there you are
lying in the grass
giggling while he stabs
you. his stabbing at first
stylized, and then faster faster
as if syncopating with your giggles
when suddenly there is a voice from
behind the video camera, it says “kick her”
so your stabber kicks you which gives you another
fit of giggles. i watch this all, bemused and detached,
i have become your web stalker, i have nothing left of you

except media

October 18, 2007

maxim

Filed under: kagapoems,sasha grey,terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 1:05 pm

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when you don’t fit in
you have to become your own genre
your own niche

and market that

September 24, 2007

Filed under: photography,terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 10:13 pm

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September 13, 2007

fashion junkies

Filed under: terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 6:40 pm

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August 20, 2007

Filed under: terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 10:15 pm

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August 17, 2007

purple magazine summer 2007 cover

Filed under: terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 5:45 pm

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August 6, 2007

terry richardson at work

Filed under: terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 6:13 pm

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July 26, 2007

Filed under: photography,terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 10:19 pm

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July 20, 2007

a portrait of natalia vodianova by terry richardson

Filed under: photography,terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 9:21 pm

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July 16, 2007

Filed under: photography,terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 5:14 pm

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July 9, 2007

every boy wants to be terry richardson

Filed under: terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 3:11 pm

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July 4, 2007

a portrait of fernanda tavares by terry richardson

Filed under: photography,terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 6:42 pm

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July 3, 2007

a portrait of mena suvari by terry richardson

Filed under: photography,terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 6:58 pm

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April 11, 2007

It’s Terry’s World and You’re Just Afraid of It

Filed under: terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 3:30 am

The pride of Hollywood High makes good being bad
By Arty Nelson
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It’s Thursday afternoon in Terry Richardson’s studio on the Bowery in Lower Manhattan: Pantera’s cranking, fashion models parade in and out, and judging by the staff’s nonchalance, one suspects that this is just another day in Richardson’s life, albeit with little of his recent and highly documented adventures in penetration and pearl necklaces. These days, it’s good to be New York’s favorite rail-thin, well-inked photo sniper. Terryworld (Taschen) and the limited-edition Kibosh (Damiani) were both recently released in conjunction with a savagely attended opening at the Zeitgeist-central Deitch Projects in Soho, during which thousands of rabid downtown kids gleefully braved a human stampede and near-inhuman temperatures for a glimpse of Mr. Richardson’s latest photographic foray into a land where the photographer’s own penis acts as a kind of sword/torch guiding him through the sometimes troubling and oftentimes hilarious wilderness of his unrepentant sexual psyche.
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Today, however, it’s all about casting for the next Sisley campaign, Richardson’s 14th to date, although, in fact, he’s playing hooky. Rocking his notorious standard-issue nerd glasses and muttonchops, he clowns with his buddy and fellow photographer Kenneth Capello, whom Richardson is shooting for I.D. magazine’s special New York City issue. Watching one of the most sought-after image-makers in fashion and pop culture work is a study in frantic energy. He bops to the pounding metal, bonds with his subject, playfully does whatever he can to coax that one flash that will capture the deeper currents stirring behind the human mask.

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Terry Richardson first busted onto the fine-art scene in 1998 with a show at the seminal Alleged Gallery in New York titled “These Colors Don’t Run,” which coincided with the publication of his first book, Hysteric Glamour. “There was a huge, 4-foot-by-6-foot portrait of Terry with cum all over his face, and then in the back there was a shot of a toothbrush jammed in a butt that was blown up to 12 feet by 30 feet,” says Alleged’s erstwhile maestro, Aaron Rose. “The thing about Terry that you have to remember is that he’s got a total Beavis and Butt-head sense of humor. The first time I saw the work, Terry spread like hundreds of 8-inch-by-10-inches out on his kitchen table. Ten years of shooting people being wild on the Lower East Side. I couldn’t believe how vast it all was. Terry creates the ‘kids being bad’ feeling as well as anyone who’s ever mined that particular terrain.”
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Like Ed van der Elsken, Larry Clark and Nan Goldin, Richardson is obsessed with creating a body of work that captures the rarefied world inhabited by his peers and cohorts — an ongoing series of intimate but not precious portraits of urban life gone completely amok, the amalgam of which constitutes an impromptu autobiography. Whether it’s sloppy lovers in party costumes French-kissing and slurping at each other’s nipples, heavy metal kids rolling around in the grass, or fun and games at nudist colonies, what separates Richardson from the photographers who have preceded him in this genre is his terminally randy irreverence. Where the others call it quits at “aftermath,” Richardson literally serves up the after-poop, or the jism as it streams across the cheek and breasts. Richardson is forever in search of the outlandish, never wavers when confronted with bad taste, and often quite remarkably manages to convey a sense of joy, exhilaration and sometimes even sheer poetry.

“It’s hard to compare Terry to other current artists because almost everyone working in the same genre is copying him,” says Dian Hanson, Richardson’s editor at Taschen. “Terry is the innovator, the father of fashion-porn/porn-fashion, in perfect step with America’s current ‘reality’ obsession, or rather America’s current manipulated-reality obsession. Relevance? He’s a guy using his charm and current cultural cool to rewrite a less-than-ideal adolescence. And more power to him. The guy excels in his fashion career and through sheer balls builds an equally admired side career casting himself in every man’s porn fantasies. Most people would edit out these urges; Terry just bulls ahead.”
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Upon encountering the man and his subtly well-composed wild sides, here are a few things to bear in mind: Terry Richardson is the progeny of Bob Richardson, the ’60s Blowup-era fashion photographer, and Annie Lomax, Bob’s former wife and stylist. That makes for a colorful back story, but it also means that while many of us were watching The Partridge Family and then going to bed, Terry was more or less running wild in the streets. “Basically, I went from Paris and New York, and my dad being really successful to my dad totally losing his career and my mom being in a car accident which left her permanently brain-damaged,” says Richardson. “Next thing you know, I’m losing my color TV and we’re on food stamps and welfare. Literally, from the penthouse to the park bench.” Richardson made his name and found fame in downtown New York but, in fact, spent much of his formative “punk rock youth” years in Hollywood — a Hollywood High Sheik who landed in New York with 800 bucks, a portfolio, a Pentax snapshot camera and three Black Flag cassettes. “To me, my best pictures happen when I capture the spirit of Black Flag’s Nervous Breakdown EP. The years I spent at places like Cathay De Grande and the Starwood [seminal L.A. punk joints] were where I believe my aesthetic was formed,” Terry smiles. “My tweaked Yale MFA, so to speak.” Richardson keeps coffee in his cupboard by shooting fashion campaigns for the likes of Miu Miu, Gucci, YSL, APC and Tommy Hilfiger and, in his spare time, makes art photos that have recently begun featuring himself, fully engorged, engaging in a dazzling array of tantric maneuvers with a variety of willing partners.
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“I used to always want to shoot nudes, but when I’d say to models, ‘Hey, do you want to do this?’ they’d be like, ‘No way, why don’t you get naked?’ and I’d be like, ‘Forget that.’ Then I tried to get men involved in the process, but that was always weird, too. So then I got this idea that since I’d always got worked up and would, like, pop a boner when I was shooting women that maybe they’d get more into it if I let them start shooting me,” says Richardson. “So now I’ve got all of these rolls of myself where I’m being ordered around by women while they take nudes of me, all of which turned out to really be the catalyst for this whole most recent body of work.”

After sending a class he teaches to see the Deitch show, the art critic Jerry Saltz had this to report: “‘Way politically incorrect’ is right, but also maybe not. When we got to the Richardson show, which could be called ‘400 Blows’ because, as you probably know, it’s all-blowjobs-all-the-time, the boys dutifully all said it was ‘sexist’ and ‘bad’ while, at first, the girls sat back. Then they all started carrying on about how it looked fun: ‘Big dicks, blowjobs, cum on your tits.’ They were all delighted.”

The show clearly presents Richardson as a crafter of moods. “It’s really almost like what I’m doing is ‘happenings’ more so than photo shoots.” And more and more, especially with the Kibosh sessions, the actual snapper has, at times, become an almost secondary concern.

“The goal is to get the best image possible, and if that means that somebody standing off to the side gets a more candid shot than me, then I’m all for it,” Richardson laughs. “Which doesn’t always make my clients happy if I’m working on a job, but the way I see it, it really doesn’t matter who is actually pressing the shutter, because they’re my images. It’s a picture that I’ve created. I don’t work off lights and angles; I work off emotions. A mood that I create.”
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Ever since he’s inserted himself as a predominant aspect of the subject matter, Richardson’s work has taken on a more conceptual bent, a kind of post-studio photo analogy to the likes of Jeff Koons, Takashi Murakami or Maurizio Cattelan. Richardson’s recent hardbound offerings, Terryworld and Kibosh, combine to form an extensive survey of his work to date. Taschen’s Terryworld is the R-rated miniretrospective incorporating work from throughout Richardson’s myriad chapters, including some of the tamer takes from the new erotic work. Taschen elected to pass on Kibosh as a book by itself. Explains Hanson: “What Benedikt Taschen wanted was an artful and complimentary mixture of Terry’s fashion and candid work. What Terry wanted was to see himself boffing pretty girls in an art book. I was the referee. I had to keep pushing for more fashion and pulling the poop pictures out of the ‘yes’ pile each time Terry’d sneak them back in. In the end, I think we’re all pretty happy and that the book really does represent most of Terry’s complex and conflicting artistic nooks and crannies.” As for the more X-rated Kibosh, the Italian publisher Damiani stepped up and put out a limited edition of 2,000 after Taschen passed on the project.

“The Kibosh work is really a result of me getting clean [off drugs] and really getting into the high that I was experiencing from the sex,” says Richardson. “I mean, even one of the meanings of the title actually refers to me exorcising my inner demons and, hopefully, putting them to rest forever. To give it the ‘kibosh’ so to speak.”

Is it porn? Or is it art? Who even really knows anymore? Where the lines aren’t heavily blurred, they’re dotted. When I tell Richardson that my wife, after approaching his work with more than a little apprehension, laughed out loud at several of his images, he breaks into a grin.

“You see, I love when I can get a smile out of someone with an image I’ve made. I’m interested in bringing a little joy into people’s lives. Art doesn’t have to be so serious; I think it’s way more about moving people than needing to make them furrow their brows.”

Terryworld (Taschen) is available worldwide on October 29 wherever finer books are sold, including Taschen’s flagship store in Beverly Hills. Kibosh (Damiani) is available at www.TerryRichardson.com.

this article originally appeared in the la weekly

April 6, 2007

Sure Shot

Filed under: terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 12:58 pm

Terry Richardson, the gangly, genial photographer from the Lower East Side known for his sexually provocative snapshots, has become a fashion power player. His secret weapon? An instamatic.

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BY DAISY GARNETT

Terry Richardson is a 36-year-old with a handlebar mustache, long sideburns, and a collection of odd tattoos, including one on his belly that says “T-bone” and one on his heart that reads “SSA”. He’s tall and a bit bandy, and he’s likely to be wearing faded jeans, Converse sneakers, and giant, slightly tinted aviator glasses. He’s seventies-looking, not in a retro hipster way but in a Starsky & Hutch way, with a touch of Burt Reynolds thrown in for good measure. He’s charismatic and famously attractive to women, despite his somewhat cartoonish demeanor. And much of the time, he carries a small snapshot camera with him, just like one you might take on holiday to record your adventures, which is more or less what he does for a living.

While most fashion photographers travel with a phalanx of good-looking young assistants wielding lights and oversized lenses, tripods, film bags, and reflectors, Richardson arrives on location with a couple of instant cameras, one in each hand, and nothing else. He doesn’t design the lighting, doesn’t plan his shoots, forgoes Polaroids, and never choreographs poses. He likes to work with little fuss and no entourage. And yet, in the last few years he has shot campaigns for Evian, Eres, H&M, Tommy Hilfiger, Anna Molinari, A|X, Sisley, and now —one of the biggest scores in the fashion world—the fall campaign for Gucci.
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“You know how cameras are supposed to symbolize sexual power?” asks the creative director Nikko Amandonico, who has worked with Richardson since 1998 on the Sisley campaigns. “Well, Terry is a big man with a tiny camera. He looks funny. He makes jokes with his camera, and that’s how he gets the shots.”

Richardson has wielded his point-and-shoot on Faye Dunaway, Catherine Deneuve, Sharon Stone, the Spice Girls, and a great many famous models. His work has been exhibited in galleries in London, Paris, and New York, and he has been published in magazines as varied as French Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, i-D, Vibe, The Face, and the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue.

“At the beginning,” Richardson says, “people laughed at me because I was using snappies. Sometimes, a celebrity would look at my camera and go, ‘Oh, I’ve got one of those.’ I’d feel like handing it to them and saying, ‘Well, you take the pictures then.’ But I like using snapshot cameras because they’re idiot-proof. I have bad eyesight, and I’m no good at focusing big cameras.

“Anyway,” he continues, becoming more animated, “you can’t give your photograph soul with technique. I want my photos to be fresh and urgent. A good photograph should be a call to arms. It should say, ‘Fucking now. The time is ripe. Come on.’ ”

These days Richardson is enjoying what many in the fashion world call a moment. Designers and stylists are entranced by the way he gives a glossy fashion spread a palpable—and somewhat coarse—sexual punch. “He’s a modern Helmut Newton,” raves Emmanuelle Alt, the fashion director of French Vogue.

“We’d run the gamut of slick, finished photography,” says Douglas Lloyd, the art director behind the Gucci campaigns, about the decision to use Richardson. “We wanted a rawer energy and more sex appeal, and that’s what you find in Terry’s work.”

“Terry is very much about sex,” says Gucci designer Tom Ford, “but what I love about his work is that his pictures jump off the page at you.” In fact, Richardson has already been confirmed as the photographer of choice to shoot the next go-round for Gucci, which will feature Ford’s spring 2002 collection.
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This is what happened the day in June when Richardson received the news:

He spent the morning in his studio on the Bowery—a long space with a white shag pile carpet at one end, a workstation at the other, and a full-length mirror in between—catching up on phone calls and editing prints with his associate, Seth Goldfarb. Benedikt Taschen, the iconoclastic art-book publisher, was in touch about the possibility of doing a book. Harper’s Bazaar called about booking him to shoot a fashion story for Glenda Bailey’s first official issue. Then Tom Ford called.

In the afternoon, a band named the Centuries came over to the loft. They were wearing gold and silver lamé outfits, and Richardson photographed them as part of a series he is doing for the French magazine Self Service. The early part of the evening he spent with Lenny Kravitz, discussing the next day’s shoot, when Richardson would photograph Kravitz for his new record cover. Then he went to Sophie Dahl’s rooftop party. At the party, a young stylist asked him if he was the son of Bob Richardson, the renowned sixties-era fashion photographer. “Yep,” Richardson said, biting into a piece of mozzarella, “son of Bob.”

“How is Bob?” asked the stylist. “He’s well,” said Terry, enjoying his supper. “Still working. Still wakes up with a hard-on every day. Pretty good for 74 years old.” He demonstrated what he meant with a breadstick, took a snapshot of someone with his Contax, then told a story about a curious wet dream he had had only the night before.

Two days later, I watched as he packed his cameras and his suitcase for a trip to Paris, where he would visit his girlfriend, Camille Bidault-Waddington (a stylist who was named one of the world’s most fashionable women by Harper’s Bazaar), and shoot his next project, a couture story for French Vogue, with the model Angela Lindvall. Not too shabby, I remarked. “I know,” he said, grinning. “I’ll be like, ‘Hello. Hello! Only me. Bonjour!’ ”
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“I don’t think Terry can believe his luck,” says the British stylist Cathy Kasterine. “A lot of photographers become frustrated once they’ve shot a few big campaigns and done their fair share of fashion stories. They don’t know what to say about fashion anymore. But not Terry. Every photograph for him is an adventure.” She starts to laugh.

“Sorry,” she says, “I was just thinking of how he looked when we first worked together. It was during his American-professor phase; he was wearing huge corduroy trousers and an English tweed jacket. This was in the bowels of Florida, at a nudist camp, where we were shooting an accessories story for Nova magazine. But that’s Terry. He makes you laugh; his photographs make you laugh.”

Still, much of the work Richardson is famous for is provocative and confrontational: a close-up of Richardson performing cunnilingus; a nude portrait of a bruised young woman crying on his bed; a close-up crotch shot of a woman wearing pink polyester underpants. One of his early assignments, a startling advertising campaign for the British designer Katherine Hamnett, captured a young woman staring at the camera with a frank, unashamed look. Her legs are open, showing a profusion of pubic hair. The photographs, after causing a stir in Britain, where they were published, provided Richardson with his first big break and foreshadowed the controversial “kiddie porn” Calvin Klein campaign.

this article originally appeared here

March 31, 2007

terry richardson interviewed by hintmag.com

Filed under: terry richardson — ABRAXAS @ 4:35 pm

1557.jpgNothing is too vulgar for the magazine world’s Marquis de Sade, Terry Richardson, whose full-frontal photographs of supple body parts, often in orgiastic orchestration, can really grab ya. His uncompromising style has left a trail of sticky magazine pages from here to down there and inspired a generation of photographers to keep it real. Taken with an old Instamatic, Richardson’s body of work has become one of fashion’s most instantly recognizable, and sought after; his sizzling images have appeared in the pages of i-D, French Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar, as well as campaigns for Gucci, Sisley and Armani Exchange.

The product of an unconventional childhood—divided between New York and Los Angeles, where his father, the eccentric 60s fashion photographer Bob Richardson, lives—Richardson continues to occupy a space in between, blending a New York fashion sense with L.A. street cred. Richardson sat down with LEE CARTER to reveal his soft spots for cinema, cars and naked skateboarding.
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Lee Carter: Is Terry Richardson a New Yorker or a So. Cal. kind of guy?

Terry Richardson: I think it’s not where you’re from, it’s where you are, and right now I’m in New York. I feel like a New Yorker.

LC: Do you have another place in New York, or do you call this studio home?

TR: This is it—home, everything. I like how you refer to it as the studio. The French call it le studio. A lot’s gone on this couch, let me tell you.

LC: Uh, should I get up?

TR: No. Just kidding. Sort of.

LC: Do you still skateboard?

TR: The last time I went skateboarding I was hit by a cab. I got a bruised hip and my face was cut up. I realized I shouldn’t be skating around the streets of New York City. Safety first. Now I have an indoor skateboard.

LC: You skate in here?

TR: Yeah, on my little skateboard, the best $6 I ever spent in a thrift store. We have naked skateboarding contests. That’ll be the concept for a future ad campaign, naked skateboarding.

LC: Naked skateboarding would be one of your tamer concepts. Has there been a time when you felt you’d gone too far? Too explicit?

TR: No, but there are a lot of pictures that have never run.

LC: I was thinking on the way over here that you would be ideal as a celebrity photographer for Playboy. Or something raunchier like Penthouse.

TR: Well, I’m working on some top secret stuff out in LA.
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LC: But you can tell me, of course.

TR: Let’s just say I get a lot of offers. But I like putting sexual images in mainstream magazines, not porn magazines. With porn mags, you’ll see penetration and people fucking and fucking, but it all looks the same after a while. Fashion can look the same, too. I like to be subversive, to push images as far as I can and still get them run. It’s a challenge to see what I can slip in.

LC: Pun intended?

TR: I like to explore sexuality and people instead of just showing cum shots, fist fucking and whatever to shock people.

LC: Does that make you an artist?

TR: Maybe.

LC: I saw an art show of yours at Alleged gallery a while back. And the soundtrack was the sound of really vitriolic phone messages, but no one knew who it was. I found out later they were between you and your father.

TR: Actually, it was just my father. He bombarded me one afternoon.
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LC: What provoked it?

TR: Who knows? It goes deep. Everyone needs to vent sometimes.

LC: Is he still taking photos?

TR: Don’t know. I haven’t talked to him in about a year. He’s still kicking. He’s a strong fucker.

LC: I’m waiting for your quote about how he still gets a hard-on every morning. I’ve read that everywhere.

TR: Do I say that a lot? He says it all the time to me.

LC: The first time I read it, he was 70 and still getting a hard-on, the second time he was 71, then he was 74. He’ll be 100 and still getting boners. That libido must run in the family.

TR: Yep, it’s in the genes.

LC: Pun intended again? Maybe you can do what Ted William’s son is trying to do and cryogenically freeze your dad’s body. There’s something in his DNA that needs to be preserved.
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TR: Yes and no. [laughs] He’s one-of-a-kind. He can’t be duplicated.

LC: Not even in you?

TR: A bit. That’s what I’m working on in therapy, not to repeat the same patterns.

LC: Do you want to have kids?

TR: Yes. Kids are amazing, I think the best conversations I’ve had in the last six months have been with 3-year-olds. They’re so direct and honest. They don’t know about too much stuff yet.

LC: Think you’ll be a good dad?

TR: I think so. But I’m still just an eligible bachelor right now. It’s kind of nice. I can do whatever I want. I like the freedom and the time to myself.

LC: What’s a typically date like with Terry Richardson?

TR: [yells out to assistants] Hey, what’s a typical date like with Terry Richardson, as I refer to myself in the third person?
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TR: Nothing wrong with fantasy.

LC: Do girls throw themselves at you?

TR: Sometime, but the sleazy photographer thing is cliché.

LC: Can I see the famous instamatic? You have two, right?

TR: Oh, boy. [gets cameras] They’re old, they don’t make them anymore.

LC: Have you ever used a digital camera?

TR: No. [Editor's note: Terry later used a digital camera to take his self-portrait seen on the first page, the first time he'd taken a digital photo.] I like the idea of having negatives and making prints, but I’m not against digital. We just learned how to scan, actually. It’s very exciting, we can send people pictures. We had the scanner for 2 years, but never did anything. We finally had somebody come over last week to show us how to use it. We needed to know so we can start building my website, www.terryrichardson.com, which should be up and running later this summer.

LC: You’ll be the master of your own domain name. What else are you working on?
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TR: A book for Taschen. I’ve done three books before, but this one is more of a retrospective art thing. I guess it’s a coffeetable book. That’s such a cheap term for a book, so vulgar. Whoever invented that should be shot. It sounds like there should be a little holder for a coffee mug and an ashtray. So I’m doing that, editorials, ad campaigns and just taking tons of picture. I’m also taking off across the country this summer in my car, a suped up black ’87 Buick. I love cars. They’re beautiful, like art objects.

LC: Sexual, too.

TR: Exactly. My car is called Mandingo, like the old pulp novel about a Southern plantation that would castrate the male slaves, but they’d also have a breeder, the stud, that the white women would all want to fuck, too. It was made into a film in the 70s with Ken Norton, who played Mandingo, James Mason, Perry King and Susan George. It’s excellent, like an exploitation of Gone With the Wind.

LC: Sounds like you’re a movie buff.
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TR: Yeah, I’m in the midst of writing a screenplay, too. I have to submit it in December. I’m still putting ideas on paper. They want a European art house thing, with lots of sex.

LC: You’re just the man for the job. What’s the first film you saw that really impressed you?

TR: Mean Streets, Taxi Driver, Five Easy Pieces, Carnal Knowledge, Out of the Blue, Over the Edge. And early Nicholson. My dad took me to see all that great 70s American cinema, like Godfather. And I like all those Jerry Shatzberg films with their bleak, unhappy endings that started with Midnight Cowboy. They’re anti-heroes because they’re criminals, and they die in the end.

LC: Which was a new thing at the time, not wrapping things up neatly at the end.

TR: Oh, totally. Have you read Easy Riders, Raging Bull? It’s about all those guys making those realistic films of the 70s.

LC: Which is, in a sense, exactly what you’re doing.

TR: Yeah. Keeping it real, that’s what the kids say.

LC: You’re one of few photographers who can marry art and commerce. You can bring a lot of sexuality to a brand like Sisley and it seems right.

TR: My best pictures are improvisational. It’s all about casting, especially with Sisley. If the cast is wrong, the whole thing is fucked. If you get people who know what’s going on, who are into it, then you just let them go, let them get into their characters.

LC: How much do you have to prod them?

TR: A little, but the casting is where I do the big grill session to see who’s comfortable. A lot of people are exhibitionists once you get them going. I’ve had people fuck on set, and suck, and fuck some more. And guys fucking, girls fucking, guys and girls, penetration. Sometimes I’ll cast a couple if I want them to do it, but strangers have done it, too. That’s why casting is so important. I can’t make magic with just anyone! But I’m not going to connect with everybody. I’ve walked off sets a couple of times. I said I was going out for coffee, then I’d leave.

LC: Are magazines very controlling? Or do they let you do what you want since you’re Terry Richardson?

TR: There’s more freedom with magazines than advertising. But even European mags are worried about advertisers now. You can’t work with a glossy and bring in all new girls. They want the big names. It makes it harder for new people to break in. Like I’ve always said, it’s not who you know, it’s who you blow. I don’t have a hole in my jeans for nothing.

LC: How long have you been shooting the Sisley campaigns?

TR: About five years.

LC: What’s the inspiration behind the fall campaign?

TR: It was the first time we went into the studio. We just wanted to do a shiny black thing. Next time we’re going back on location, for atmosphere. I think we’re going to shoot the next one in LA again.
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LC: They’re the most sexually-charged ads I think I’ve ever seen.

TR: Yeah, we tried to put a picture of a girl with little pompoms over her tits on a Sisley poster in Soho. This one [points at the catalog]. They said no because a little of her areola was showing.

LC: Or, as I like to say, hairy-ola.

TR: [laughs] I like that word. They said it was too sexy and it would be too close to a church and a school. It’s all so silly and conservative.

LC: I didn’t realize until recently that i-D runs an exclusive Sisley ad of you with each new campaign.

TR: We give them my self-portrait each season. It’s not even in the catalog, just in i-D. I always look forward to it. Humor is good. I love to make people laugh from a photograph. I think that’s the best compliment.

LC: Sex and comedy mixed together. You’re sort of the Woody Allen of photography.

TR: Annie Hall and Manhattan are my two favorite films ever. To me, photographs are more about people than clothes. I’m not one of those photographers who says, “Ooh, that dress is just making me crazy.”
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LC: Think Woody ever went to rehab?

TR: What?

LC: I have to ask about rehab.

TR: Oh my god, where do you get the goods?

LC: I don’t think it’s embarrassing. It’s common knowledge.

TR: Really?

LC: Sort of. Better to air it. Everyone’s doing rehab these days anyway.

TR: Oh, I know, it’s chic. I know so many people doing it.

LC: Silver Hill?

TR: No, somewhere in Pasadena. It was my first time. It really changed my life, made me really look at myself. It brings it all right down to simple things. It’s nice to put your life on pause. Life is a beautiful thing. Before rehab I wanted to feel good all the time. “All things in moderation,” as my mother always says. But a little excess can be good every once in a while.

this interview was originally published on hintmag.com

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