Grunge God

Enter Rick Owens's Dark Twisted Fantasy in New Book (PHOTOS)

A new monograph curated by Terry Jones, founder and creator of i-D magazine, celebrates the California-born designer’s signature “glunge” style.

Daniele + Iango, courtesy Taschen

Daniele + Iango, courtesy Taschen

i-D magazine founder and creator—and devout Rick Owens fan—Terry Jones pays homage to the California-born designer’s glamour-grunge aesthetic with Rick Owens, a new photographic monograph due out June 15. To compile the tome, Jones dug deep into i-Ds archives and unearthed vibrant photographs of the designer’s creations lensed by Corrine Day, Sølve Sundsbø, and Hans Feurer, as well as interviews with a slew of the magazine’s editors. Each artfully shot image showcases Owens’s dark, experimental approach to high-end couture. See the highlights.

Paul Wetherell, courtesy Taschen

Abbey Lee Kershaw’s tousled hair and pale complexion combine to create the illusion of a vampire nymph in this photograph shot by Paul Wetherell from i-D’s Flesh and Blood Issue in winter 2009. The Australian model dons one of Owens’s directional jackets with leather accents.

Daniele + Iango, courtesy Taschen

By putting a grunge spin on high fashion, Owens redefined what constitutes luxurious style. In this photograph from i-D’s Royalty Issue in spring 2012, model/actress Shalom Harlow stands poised to delegate duties in a form-fitting maxi skirt, a geometric shaped jacket, and platform sandals.

Josh Olins, courtesy Taschen

Aymeline Valade and Alla Kostromicheva pose as if dancing in this blue-tinted photograph from i-D’s Exhibitionist Issue in spring 2011. While the two models engage in a tender interaction—with Valade’s open back on full display—Owens’s loose-fitting maxi designs are explicitly unsexy. “The coolest thing is when you don’t care about being cool anymore,” the designer said. “Indifference is the greatest aphrodisiac—that’s what really sums up style for me.”

Hans Feurer, courtesy Taschen

Owens’s experimental design efforts are on full display in this three-fold image from i-D’s April 2009 Pain & Pleasure Issue. In the photo, Belarusian model Tanya Dziahileva, known for her wide-eyed, elfish expressions, admires her ensemble: an open-back dress and encased shoes, topped off with a floor sweeping black headpiece. The designer was never one to follow trends: “Fundamentally, in fashion and in life, you have to know the rules to know how to break them,” he said.


Takay, courtesy Taschen

“I design clothes for someone who has experienced a lot and satisfied a lot of appetites,” Owens said. “Someone who’s past experimenting, who’s been there and done it. It’s very autobiographical.” In this image, featured in i-D’s Age Issue in May 2005, then-25-year-old Shannan Click models one of Owens’s cropped jacket creations with winged shoulders.

Walter Pfeiffer, courtesy Taschen

This portrait of Terry-Ann Frencken from i-Ds Lights, Camera, Action Issue in summer 2012 highlights Owens’s lighter side.

Courtesy Taschen

Rick Owens is due out with Taschen on June 15.