If NSYNC’s iconic music video for their 2000 banger "It's Gonna Be Me” didn’t make you at least a little bit gay, you’re lying. Swapping out Moby Dick for glitzy doll packaging, the homosexual version of Pinocchio turned Justin Timberlake, JC Chasez, Chris Kirkpatrick, Joey Fatone, and Lance Bass into a real boy (band) as they danced their way to the checkout aisle of a toy store.
It was fabulously campy and, 18 years later, it’s become the inspiration for a new fanzine by creative designers LAZOSCHMIDL that out-gayed the music video thanks to a major dose of glitter, confetti, and velour.
Named after the head of design Josef Lazo and creative director Andreas Schmidl, the Swedish-Germany artists’ studio has become a go-to for offbeat and norm-breaking content. With their latest release, Unpublished Material #7, LAZOSCHMIDL has created another limited-edition fanzine that upends the traditional lookbooks of other fashion designers with a theme we can all relate to: “Idols in Rehab.”
The 44-page book shows off a Fall '18 Collection that’s as outrageously gay as their penchant for walls of silver-streamers. Alongside lightning blue, faux snakeskin assless chaps and briefs with bedazzled crotches, a sheer, shimmering bodysuit, and a full velour tracksuit put Juicy Couture to shame.
While the Lazo and Schmidl celebrate their campy, queer zine and dream up Issue #8, we caught up with them to talk about strapping models into safety belts and designing for people who “enjoy being sexy.”
OUT: What sparked your idea to start a zine?
LAZOSCHMIDL: Good question. Being obsessed with the printed matter and just starting out as a label, it was the ideal way to communicate our collection’s concept visually. Since each collection is based on writing, dressing characters of a short story, the garments being photographed on models and staged in a certain surrounding manifest the core principle of our work practice.
As an artist studio, how does your work blend from fashion into art?
Both of us grew up seeing exhibitions by Otto Dix, Salvador Dalí or Neo Rauch. We started by translating artworks into clothing, i.e. Gilbert and George, Isa Genzken or Matias Faldbakken. By creating the zine and staging still lives of butter, egg, and needles or by strapping models into safety belts, the creative process went full circle. Today, the literal art aspect is less important to us, but there is always a subconscious connection to it.
The zine is really erotic in a very soft way. How’d you come up with idea for this one?
It was really inspired by an exaggerated idea of Ken dolls' packaging, but a more exuberant version, furnished with glitter curtains and confetti.
Do you identify as queer or anywhere in the LGBTQ umbrella? If so, how does your own identity bleed into your art?
We realized that our garments are being validated as norm-breaking and queer, but really, we just present options for contemporary modern men who do not identify as straight, gay or queer anymore, but enjoy being sexy, being themselves, and being cheeky.
Do you have an idea in mind for the next zine?
The collection is in the making and the theme is already set - nothing can be revealed yet, hun!
You can purchase Unpublished Material #7 here but grab one fast — there are only 100 copies available.
Photographer: Federico Fernández
Models: David, Maksymilian & Jesper at MP Stockholm / August at Nisch Management