28 November 2010

Weekend Reading: Gothic

Valerie Steele and Jennifer Park, Gothic: Dark Glamour (Yale UP & FIT New York, 2008)

"Lady Halcón", Vogue Brides, 2001

Visionaire no. 7, Black, Fall 1992

Costumes by Eiko Ishioka, Bram Stoker's Dracula, 1992

Dazed and Confused, August 2007

Dita Von Teese, Vogue Nippon, November 2006

From Gothic & Lolita, Phaidon Press, 2007

Yohji Yamamoto, Dazed and Confused, August 2007

"The Clinic: Welcome.  We'll tear your soul apart", The Face, March 1997 & Alexander McQueen, It's A Jungle Out There, Fall 1997

Rick Owens, Fall 2007 & Rick Owens & Olivier Theyskens, Gloomy Trips, 1997

Gattinoni Couture, Fall 1997

Gareth Pugh, Fall 2006 - channeling Klaus Nomi

Olivier Theyskens, Gloomy Trips, 1997

Confessions of a Goth by Rick Owens

"I had just moved to L.A. and was starting to blossom into the early stages of Gothdom, trying to look hard and world weary.  I was going to dive into a world of sin and exoticism that I'd read about in Huysmans's À rebours and Là-bas.  The stereo blasted the Sisters of Mercy, Marlene Dietrich, and Wagner.  I wore my gloves and jewelry to bed in full make-up.

Later, the main reason I took a job as artistic director with Revillon was its direct lineage to glamorous, decadent, fin-de-siècle Paris, my non plus ultra of high artifice.  I was still attracted to the same aesthetic, but it now had a layer of affection.  All those years of doomed idealism seen in the daylight of adulthood seemed rather sweet and poignant.  Everything black I ever wore again or put on a runway would be with a loving wink."


Valerie Steele's writing is always fun and engaging, and thankfully the essays in this volume do not disappoint.  If you are looking for a purely visual book, look elsewhere, but there certainly are enough beautiful images to inspire.  My personal tastes are not particularly Gothic in any semblance (I will always need some bright colour and fun patterns), but there have always been select aesthetics that intrigue me, and as such I find this book absolutely fascinating.


  1. Totally, love the post. Thanks so much for sharing.

  2. cool book! i love that dress from 1997... it's weird to think i was 7 years old that year haha...

    oh! p.s. i love that you did this face on your last comment :O haha

  3. I bet Riccardo Tisci and Givenchy are in there somewhere!! Didn't he grow up a goth?

  4. that looks like some seriously reading material


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  6. ooooooooooOOOOOO.
    I'm putting this on my half.com wishlist ASAP
    hope you are well love ♥

  7. Lovely post.
    I've always been attracted to the more gothic aspects of art and fashion. Just a gorgeous deep dark feel to it all.

  8. Really must add some of her books to the Christmas wishlist.


  9. Thank you for these! I like Valerie Steele's books, they're the big coffee table books that I actually read. I wish I had been able to see the exhibit for this in person.

    "Gothic" is a weird term to me. While I may like elements of it, I still like to inject an elegance to it.

  10. Lapping up this dark deliciousness!!

  11. That's my kind of book. Contents are inspiring.

  12. Très belles choses et super blog.


  13. Having fielded the question of what do you want for xmas from a few people and coming out with nothing, thanks to your post, I can finally say - get me this great looking book!

    Thanks :)

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