Asap Rocky Livelovea$Ap
I noticed the Rocky has been on the move in a major way with his recent imprint AWGE.
This step is noticeable and asking more of him as a creative within the most potent culture. Expressed directly and for a bigger purpose than pushing himself into the spotlight. Asap Rocky Livelovea$Ap
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.
Furthermore, in October of the same year, in the run up to the release of Cozy Tapes Vol. 1, A$AP Rocky premiered the AWGE-directed short film “Money Man.” The movie, a partnership with Red Bull, was a modern reworking of the cult French film La Haine, shot by frequent A$AP Mob collaborator, Dexter Navy, also featuring London grime artist Skepta. The film was flexing its muscle, a workout in expression. While, in and of itself, this undertaking was a significant time for the artist identity, it is perhaps most notable since the project of the AWGE collective, A$AP Rocky’s secret cabal of artists, stylists, and creators. AWGE and fast forward two decades has remained, by-and-large, a mysterious entity to those who have followed the A$AP Mob. He stayed quiet on its purpose while notable A$ AP affiliate Ian Connor shouted out the collective. Since their first job, the collective’s emblem was seen with nearly all the Mob’s creative endeavors. The new awgeshit.com website gave fans their first look into the collective’s inner workings, removing the proverbial veil that had surrounded AWGE up till this point. The site’s”About” section clearly lists the integral members of their AWGE team. In addition to Robert Gallardo and Ian Connor, contributors are listed next to their creative roles: Matt Henson — Fashion, Shane Gonzales — Design, Kamil Abbas — Creative, Hidjifilms — Video, Ben Baller — Jewellery, Hec Lunas Frans — Producers. It’s a who’s who of A$AP Mob affiliates.
What about the name what the hell does AWGE mean? “No one needs to know what the letters stand for. We know what it is, and that’s how we want to keep it.” Rocky’s feed could be scrolled through transcending Instagram’s conventionally arrangement at the moment when viewed on any smartphone. Perhaps most notably, AWGE branding has featured prominently on two of the Mob’s most recent music videos; those for Playboi Carti’s breakout hit “Magnolia” and the posse cut homage to Raf Simons, “RAF.” With these two high-profile videos gaining wide-scale attention and countless perspectives, AWGE remained very much behind the scenes. In addition to the performances of the night, fans who were early enough were able to purchase a collaboration T-shirt by the brand Off-White, Midnight Studios of Abloh, and AWGE. Refusing to be restricted by the constraints of art direction that is one-dimensional, it’s perhaps which we’ll see venture farther in the future. AWGE’s scope has not been restricted to audio. In 2016 rumors of a potential cooperation with fashion critic favorite J.W. Anderson were confirmed, with Rocky frequently seen sporting the collection’s standout piece, a faux fur teddy coat. Likewise the stand-out collaboration with GUESS of Rocky was conceptualized from the AWGE team. The initiation of the clubhouse installation and a pop-up store inspired by a’90s treehouse, welcomed in attendance a who’s who of the Los Angeles creative scene. Rocky would come to describe the relaunch of his Instagram as a’digital installation’, and it was through this lens the world was introduced into two of AWGE’s core members: Tan Camera and Robert Gallardo.
Be it clothes, music videos, or events, one thing is for sure: AWGE has surprises in store. The team’s profile has been raised in August, however, when A$AP Rocky announced the aptly-titled AWGEST: a month-long takeover by AWGE and the A$AP Mob, which featured several record releases, culminating in the launch of this Cozy Tapes Vol. 2 and the launching of a new AWGE site and merch line. Seen frequently on A$AP Mob members in the run up to the website launch, the merch collection featured AWGE trucker hats in red, green or blue, in addition to a choice of branded t-shirts, which sold out immediately. In describing her participation to Complex, Selfridge says:”I made each collage by hand with many 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 bold, 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. The photographer’s work is instantly recognizable for its media collage style references, and references to brands like Goyard and Palace. During the A$ AP Mob’s social media platforms, the DIY aesthetic of Camera has become a staple since the relaunch. In this sense, it is a testament to the collective’s desire for secrecy that whilst always putting out articles, AWGE has managed to shroud itself. We reached out to some members of the crew, but got the same answer:”The first rule about AWGE is that you don’t talk about AWGE.” In the midst of AWGEST, the AWGE enterprise unleashed what is the realization of the vision to date, their Midnight Rave in Los Angeles. Titled after Shane Gonzales’ tag Midnight Studios, the Midnight Rave featured performances from members of the A$ AP Mob and DJ Virgil Abloh, along with designer. Set in an abandoned L.A. warehouse, the area was carefully curated using Midnight Rave branding in addition to a moving L.E.D bar above the DJ booth.