Asap Rocky Asap Forever
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 Asap Forever
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.
In the middle of AWGEST, the AWGE enterprise unleashed what is perhaps the most complete realization of the vision their Midnight Rave in Los Angeles, to date. Titled after Shane Gonzales’ tag Midnight Studios, the Midnight Rave featured performances from designer and DJ Virgil Abloh, along with members of the A$AP Mob. Set in an abandoned L.A. warehouse, the area was carefully curated with Midnight Rave branding as well as a moving L.E.D bar above the DJ booth. With these two high-profile movies gaining wide-scale attention and countless perspectives, AWGE remained very much behind the scenes. In describing her participation to Complex, Selfridge says:”I made each collage by hand with many materials, including photographs shot on 35mm film and Polaroid film.” Be music videos it clothing, or events, one thing is for certain: AWGE has more surprises in store. Rocky would come to describe the relaunch of his Instagram as a’digital installation’, and it was through this lens the world was introduced to 2 of AWGE’s core members: Robert Gallardo and Tan Camera. While, in and of itself, this undertaking was a significant time for the artist individuality, it’s most notable as the project of the AWGE collective, the secret cabal of musicians, stylists, and creators of A$ AP Rocky. AWGE and fast forward two years has remained, by-and-large, a mysterious entity to those who have followed the A$AP Mob. He remained quiet on its objective, while notable A$ AP affiliate Ian Connor shouted out the collective. Since their first project, the logo of the collective was spotted with almost all of the Mob endeavors.
When seen on any smartphone, Rocky’s feed could be scrolled through transcending Instagram’s squared arrangement at the time. In this sense, it is a testament to the collective’s desire for secrecy that even whilst always 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 reply:”The first rule about AWGE is that you do not talk about AWGE.” In addition to the performances of the night, fans who were early enough were able to buy a collaboration T-shirt by Abloh’s brand Off-White and AWGE. Refusing to be restricted by the limitations of art direction that is one-dimensional, it’s perhaps that we will see venture further in the future. What about the name what the hell does AWGE mean? “No one needs to know what the letters stand for. We know what it is, and that’s how we want to keep it.” The team’s profile was raised in August, however, when A$AP Rocky declared the aptly-titled AWGEST: a month-long takeover by AWGE and the A$AP Mob, which featured multiple album releases, culminating in the release of the Cozy Tapes Vol. Two and the launching of a new AWGE website and merch line. Seen often on A$AP Mob members in the run up to the site launch, the merch collection featured AWGE trucker hats in red, green or blue, as well as a choice of AWGE branded t-shirts, which sold out immediately.
The new awgeshit.com site gave fans their first look into the collective’s inner workings, removing the proverbial veil that had surrounded AWGE up until this point. The website’s”About” section clearly lists the integral members of the AWGE team. It. The photographer’s work is immediately recognizable for its media collage style, pop-culture references, and references that are off-the-cuff to iconic brands like Palace and Goyard. Since the relaunch, the DIY aesthetic of Camera has become a staple during the A$ AP Mob media platforms. The scope of AWGE hasn’t been restricted to audio. 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 holistically conceptualized by the AWGE team. The launch of the clubhouse, itself a pop-up shop and installation inspired by a’90s treehouse, welcomed in attendance a who’s who of the Los Angeles scene that was creative. Although 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 motivated many of the artist’s youthful followers to rethink their own Instagram profiles and ushered in a new era of iPhone curators. Moreover, in October of the same year, in the run up to the launch of Cozy Tapes Vol. 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 short film was AWGE flexing a workout in cross-discipline expression, its muscle.