“How you live your life is your business. But remember, our hearts and our bodies are given to us only once. Most of us can’t help but live as though we’ve got two lives to live, one is the mockup, the other the finished version, and then there are all those versions in between.”
– André Aciman, Call Me by Your Name
We all have a story.
Our story forms spontaneously with every experience we inhabit, some parts inherited – family legends, the legacy of our generation – and then the rest; those moments that truly ‘happen’ on this tramp through this life. There’s the first time they happen and then all the times after when we retell them, edit and often re-experience them in our quest to make sense of it all. In here somewhere lie some mysteries; truth, memories, confessions, objective curiosity and self-discovery. But no matter how we look at it, our personal history is our one necessity, and is true to Joan Didion’s words, “we tell ourselves stories in order to live”.
This issue is a high-five to storytellers; those who have taken the fast lane to our emotional centres through their images, lyrics, words and narratives. The authors of legends, the keepers of diaries and curators of photographic memoirs. Observers, fanatics and sometimes stealers of all our precious circumstances.
Like Nan Goldin, whose life work has been a commitment to a “real memory” she describes as “an invocation of the colour, smell, sound, and physical presence, the density and flavour of life”. Kurt Cobain’s confessional diary – worthy here at the very least for the enigma of his handwriting – where he concedes it’s a space where “I like to calmly and rationally discuss my views in a conformist manner even though I consider myself to the extreme left”.
And all the songwriters who seem to know those very words that we thought belonged to us alone, those that say ‘whad-up?’ to our soul, catching us way off-guard when we hear them. Emerson Snowe’s “I’ll introduce you to my room, and show you all my favourite things / I’ll tell you stories from my past, and how I was when drinking”, and Leroy Francis: “I’m a loser but we’d laugh a lot / ‘Bout the time we were on the TV / On my rooftop I’d burn on / Waiting patiently praying you won’t be long’”.
Our story will always be our reason why.
It’s our proof, our desire, our bias.
It’s what binds us to others and what makes us live out our imagination. It’s why we make history.
PHOTOGRAPHY Max Papendieck @ Lowe & Co. Worldwide
FASHION Billie Iveson
MODEL Abby Champion @ Next Models
HAIR Kevin Ryan @ Art + Commerce using Unite
MAKEUP Stoj @ Management + Artists using Anastasia Beverly Hills
MANICURIST Dawn Sterling @ Statement Artists
CASTING Calvin Wilson @ Establishment Casting
PRODUCTION Paul Preiss @ Preiss Creative
DIGITAL OPERATOR Keith MacDonald
PHOTOGRAPHER'S ASSISTANTS Connor Langford and Darren Thomas
PRODUCTION ASSISTANT Max Koiwai