I noticed the Rocky has been on the move in a major way with his recent imprint AWGE.
This step is noticeable and asking more of him as a creative within the most potent culture. Expressed directly and for a bigger purpose than pushing himself into the spotlight. Asap Ferg
Rocky collaborates with Ian Connor, Playboi Carti, and Luke Sabbat to name a few.
Definitely, it feels like art for the sake of expression. They’ve found an aesthetic and pressed forward with it in a vein similar to the influences he’s cited regularly. Master P’s No Limit and Houston’s DJ Screw. This is the same but on a higher level, the opportunity to reach more viewers and thus influence taste has never been higher.
This is what happens when someone that understands aesthetic has the money and time to build creatively. It reminds me of all that went into making Kanye’s MBDTF one of his most celebrated and in-depth works. All facets led to the experience of the music being phenomenal. And although Rocky isn’t as respected as a musician, he definitely has all the tools to make impact and influence visually.
Let’s take a dive and understand what’s likely to happen and where the movement could take us next.
Rocky would come to describe the relaunch of his Instagram as a’digital installation’, and it was that the world was introduced into two of AWGE’s core members: Tan Camera and Robert Gallardo. The scope of AWGE hasn’t been restricted to music. In 2016 rumors of a potential collaboration with fashion critic favorite J.W. Anderson were verified, with Rocky often seen sporting the collection’s standout piece, a faux fur teddy coat. Likewise the stand-out collaboration with GUESS of Rocky was conceptualized by the AWGE team. Buoyed by the success of their first collaborative collection, which sold out globally, and to coincide with the collaboration’s second iteration, AWGE introduced the’A$AP Rocky x GUE$$ Clubhouse’. The initiation of the clubhouse a shop and installation motivated by a’90s treehouse, welcomed in attendance a who’s who of the Los Angeles scene. With these two high-profile movies gaining wide-scale attention and millions of perspectives, AWGE remained very much behind the scenes. Be music videos it clothes, or events, one thing is for certain: AWGE has more surprises in store. In May 2015, A$AP Rocky relaunched his Instagram using a collection of seamless, curated collages. When seen on any smartphone, Rocky’s feed could be scrolled through as a visual experience, surpassing the richly squared format of Instagram at the time. In the middle of AWGEST, the AWGE enterprise unleashed what is perhaps the most complete realization of their creative vision their Midnight Rave in Los Angeles, thus far. Titled after Shane Gonzales’ tag Midnight Studios, the Midnight Rave featured performances from DJ Virgil Abloh and global designer, as well as members of the A$ AP Mob. Set in an abandoned L.A. warehouse, the space was carefully curated using Midnight Rave branding as well as a moving L.E.D bar over the DJ booth. The photographer’s work is immediately recognizable for its media collage style, pop-culture references, and references to iconic brands like Palace and Goyard. Throughout the A$ AP Mob media platforms, the DIY aesthetic of Camera has become a staple since the relaunch.
It’s most notable since the project of this AWGE collective, the secret cabal of artists, stylists, and founders of A$ AP Rocky while, in and of itself, this undertaking was a significant moment for the artist identity. In this sense, it is a testament to the collective’s desire for secrecy that even whilst consistently putting out content that is high-profile, AWGE has managed to continuously shroud itself in mystery. We reached out to a few members of the crew, but got the same reply:”The first rule about AWGE is you don’t talk about AWGE.” In addition to the night’s performances, fans who were early enough were able to purchase a collaboration T-shirt by Abloh’s brand Off-White and AWGE. Refusing to be confined by the limitations of art direction, it’s in this box-less way which we’ll see venture .
In describing her participation to Complex, Selfridge says:”I made each collage by hand with various materials, including photographs shot on 35mm film and Polaroid film.” Though the day of the relaunch saw Rocky’s Instagram shed over 100,000 followers, this unique reimagining of his social media presence through daring, new visual aesthetics inspired many of the artist’s youthful followers to rethink their own Instagram profiles and ushered in a new era of iPhone curators. Fast forward two years and AWGE has remained, by-and-large, a mysterious entity to those who’ve followed the A$AP Mob. He remained quiet on its objective, while AP affiliate Ian Connor often shouted out the collective. Since their first job, the collective’s emblem was seen with nearly all the Mob endeavors. The team’s profile has been raised in August, but when A$AP Rocky declared the aptly-titled AWGEST: a month-long takeover by AWGE and the A$AP Mob, which featured several album releases, culminating in the release of the Cozy Tapes Vol. 2 and the launching of a new AWGE website and merch line. Seen often on A$AP Mob members in the run up to the site launch, the merch collection featured a choice of AWGE branded t-shirts, which sold out instantly, as well as trucker hats in green, blue or red. What about the name itself — what the hell does AWGE mean? “The first rule of AWGE is do not ask questions about AWGE,” Rocky replied when asked by The New York Times. “No one should know what the letters stand for. We all know what it is, and that is how we want to keep it.” Furthermore, in October of the same year, in the run up to the launch of Cozy Tapes Vol. 1, A$AP Rocky premiered the AWGE-directed short film “Money Man.” The film, a partnership with Red Bull, was a contemporary reworking of the cult French movie La Haine, shot by frequent A$AP Mob collaborator, Dexter Navy, also featuring London grime artist Skepta. The brief film AWGE flexed an exercise in expression, its creative muscle. The new awgeshit.com site gave fans their first look into the collective’s inner workings, removing the proverbial veil which had surrounded AWGE up until this point. The website’s”About” section clearly lists the integral members of the AWGE team. It.