Asap Rocky Agent
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 Rocky Agent
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 through this lens that the world was introduced into two of the core members of AWGE: Tan Camera and Robert Gallardo. Gallardo and Camera (actual name Kimi Selfridge), were imputed as the masterminds behind the project, with Gallardo taking the lead on creative direction and Selfridge as responsible for much of the installation’s photography and design work. The scope of AWGE has not been restricted to audio, however. In 2016 rumors of a potential cooperation with fashion critic favorite J.W. Anderson were verified, with Rocky frequently seen sporting the collection’s standout piece, a faux fur teddy jacket. Similarly, Rocky collaboration with GUESS was holistically conceptualized by the AWGE team. The launch of the clubhouse installation and a pop-up store motivated by a’90s treehouse, welcomed in attendance a who’s who of the Los Angeles creative scene. Perhaps most notably, AWGE branding has featured prominently on two of the Mob’s most recent music videos; those for Playboi Carti’s breakout hit “Magnolia” and the posse cut homage to Raf Simons, “RAF.” With these two high profile videos gaining wide-scale attention and countless views, AWGE remained very much behind the scenes. Be music videos it clothes, or expansive events, one thing is for certain: AWGE has more surprises in store. In May 2015, A$AP Rocky relaunched his Instagram using a collection of seamless, curated collages. Rocky’s feed could be scrolled through as a continuous experience, transcending Instagram’s conventionally format at the moment when viewed on any smartphone. In the midst of AWGEST, the AWGE enterprise unleashed what is possibly the realization of the creative vision to date, their Midnight Rave in Los Angeles. Titled after Shane Gonzales’ tag Midnight Studios, the Midnight Rave featured performances from DJ Virgil Abloh and designer, as well as members of the A$ AP Mob. Set in an abandoned L.A. warehouse, the space was carefully curated using Midnight Rave branding in addition to a moving L.E.D bar above the DJ booth. The photographer’s work is instantly recognizable for its mixed media collage style, pop-culture references, and references that are off-the-cuff to iconic brands like Palace and Goyard. Throughout the A$ AP Mob’s social networking platforms, Camera’s DIY aesthetic has become a staple since the relaunch.
While, in and of itself, this undertaking was an important time for the artist’s aesthetic individuality, it’s most notable since the project of the AWGE collective, the secret cabal of musicians, stylists, and creators of A$ AP Rocky. In this sense, it’s 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. We reached out to some members of the crew, but got the same answer:”The first rule about AWGE is that you do not talk about AWGE.” Besides the night’s performances, fans who were early enough were able AWGE, and to purchase a collaboration T-shirt by Abloh’s brand Off-White, Midnight Studios. Refusing to be confined by the limitations of art management that is one-dimensional, it’s perhaps in this multi-disciplinary, box-less manner which we’ll see AWGE venture further .
In describing her participation to Sophisticated , Selfridge says:”I made each collage by hand with various materials, including photos 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 young followers to rethink their own Instagram profiles and ushered in a new age of iPhone curators. Fast forward two decades and AWGE has remained, by-and-large. While notable A$AP affiliate Ian Connor often shouted out the collective, he stayed quiet on its purpose. Since their first project, the logo of the collective was spotted in connection with almost all the Mob’s creative endeavors. The crew’s profile has been raised in August, however, when A$AP Rocky announced the aptly-titled AWGEST: a month-long takeover by AWGE and the A$AP Mob, which featured several record releases, culminating in the launch of the Cozy Tapes Vol. Two and the launch of a new AWGE website and merch line. Seen on A$AP Mob members in the run up to the site launch, the merch collection featured a selection, in addition to trucker hats in red, green or blue. What about the name itself — what the hell does AWGE mean, anyway? “No one should know what the letters stand for. We all know what it is, and that’s how we want to keep it.” The movie, a partnership with Red Bull, was a modern reworking of the cult French movie La Haine, shot by regular A$AP Mob collaborator, Dexter Navy, also featuring London grime artist Skepta. The film was AWGE flexing its muscle, a workout in expression. The new awgeshit.com website gave fans their first look into the collective’s inner workings, removing the proverbial veil which had surrounded AWGE up till this point. The website’s”About” section clearly lists the integral members of the AWGE team. In addition to Robert Gallardo and Ian Connor, contributors are listed next to their creative roles: Matt Henson — Fashion, Shane Gonzales — Layout, Kamil Abbas — Creative, Hidjifilms — Video, Ben Baller — Jewellery, Hec Lunas Frans — Producers. It’s a who’s who of A$AP Mob affiliates.