Despite it being the dead of winter, things (out there) feel white hot. Flurries of snow are a decent analogy of the flurries of information that we have to trudge through daily, which is why, amidst this tempestuous moment, we set about to build a new corner of the web to contemplate beauty.
Here, questions of society, style, creativity, and breathless advances in language, media and technology will be explored at our own pace (read: not the web’s incendiary sprint). The arbitrary distinctions between culture and politics or fashion from theory have been dissolved on this platform. The editorial is agile and rhizomatic. In the way that information travels towards us—unconcerned with topical distinctions or category, so we shall contemplate it—a little bit, all at once, as we build new through lines and ways of seeing the cultural ecosystem.
The site, itself, has been built with this form in mind: Above The Fold will present readers with The Document Agenda—digestible, off-the-cuff ruminations on current events and perspectives far beyond the daily political drip drop—interviews with emerging, and tireless, voices across fashion, film, music, and the political sphere. At Large will feature writing that tunnels for some kind of measure of the new history we currently find ourselves. Documented will be a repository for the best visual culture makers of this moment. Our deep appreciation for compelling style will live in Fashion Portfolios, a specially designed section for visual editorials. At every turn, in each of these pieces, we’ll ask questions of aesthetics and style, what these social movements and cultural trends say of the time and of the distance we’ve traveled, if they’re reliable narratives of the new history we found ourselves living in.
Some of our first At Large pieces will give you a sense of the scope and the scale of our work. In appreciation of The Eternal Peter Hujar, we gathered a panoply of New York City’s steady cultural voices—Nan Goldin, Vince Aletti, Devonté Hynes—to praise the late photographer’s timeless work. Elsewhere, to make sense of a 2017 of uncertainty, purpose, and the digital accretions of lives lived a package called The Energy of a New Moment, I asked Paola Antonelli, Eileen Myles, Jarvis Cocker, Michael Stipe, and Miranda July—over a dozen artists, writers, musicians, and curators in total— to share just one artifact that summarized a most confusing passage of time. The results were a polyphony of opinion ranging from amused to mobilized. It’s a place for longer meditations what it means to be Adrift in America in this greater moment of unmooring to questions on society’s timeless desire for utopia.
Culture, to us, shapes the wide gravity of our society. When it fails to convey the broadest range of stories, dares not to make new formulations, challenge old assumptions, or rewrite worn narratives, there is a material, lived effect that manifests far in our lives outside of the runway, the bookshelf, or the club. Empathy, decency, appreciation of the unknown and the other, grow in proportion to a flourishing cultural commentary, and its right here, in this livid discourse, where you can count on us to be a champion, a critic, and, most of all, a cool head.