In an era that threatens to see the raising of walls and the flaring of dormant animosities, it’s all the more important to recognize the immense value inherent in connections both large and small within our daily lives. From the background hum of international trade deals that keep our stores stocked, to the breaking of bread between close friends, our lives would be all the poorer without the power of connections to shape us for the better.
For our 17th issue, “The Connection,” we take a look at the merging of fashion and sports as embodied by the emoji-touting, millennial soccer star Paul Pogba, who is featured in our cover story. He speaks to us about his meteoric rise to the heights of the sport at Juventus and Manchester United, as well as his effortless injection of a new pop culture sensibility into the beautiful game.
We visited the meticulously organized studio of prolific contemporary artist Tom Sachs to gain insight into his outlandish creations that blend themes of space exploration with icons of American consumer culture. Elsewhere, we take a look at how digital artist Randy Cano traverses the uncanny valley with his psychedelic 3D animations which evoke equal parts fascination and repulsion, granting him a degree of Internet infamy.
Connection also serves to bridge one’s past with their present to powerful effect. We interview A-COLD-WALL* founder Samuel Ross, who connects his own childhood in Britain’s council estates to the austere, classless aesthetic of his designs in the midst of the country’s brewing class conflict. In remnants of another childhood, Korean punk designer Bajowoo frankly recounts the curious effect that his pharmacist father had on the creation of his anarchic label, 99%IS-. We also grappled with the curious dissonance between the heavily tattooed, bar-spitting public face of Japanese rapper KOHH, and his reserved, private self in his Tokyo suburban home.
With this issue, we have also revamped the guide to highlight six spaces across the world that are changing the face of retail and hospitality by connecting disparate influences to create novel experiences — our picks include a Hong Kong restaurant packed to the brim with street art, and a Spanish church-turned-skate park.
HYPEBEAST Magazine Issue 17: The Connection Issue retails for $15 USD and is currently available at HBX, as well as select stockists and newsstands worldwide.