On a recent (very rainy) Sunday evening, with Fashion Week in full swing, the fashion set turned out to the Penthouse of The Standard, East Village, not for a runway show, but for the launch of a book. The Opposition Book, a new visual volume by creative director, photographer, and stylist Juliann McCandless features conversations with a cross-section of young creative women and femmes who are unafraid to argue against the injustices they see pervading the country right now.
The project, says LA-based McCandless, is aimed at helping “people feel comfortable having these conversations in their day-to-day life. It’s cool to just sit down and talk about issues.” Wearing sneakers and a shimmering, strapless blue dress, she worked the room, introducing activists and interviewees to each other, while guests viewed paintings and photographs by the New York-based Art Hoe collective and Grace Miceli, graphic tees and hoodies by Natto Franco, and a performance from Alexandra Marzella.
A couple hours into the party, a group discussion about black women’s portrayals and positioning in both the media and society turned fiery. Youthful passion and protest filled the room, steaming the windows as rain continued to batter the city.
We buttonholed eight of the young creative people in attendance to find out what’s driving them to speak up in the current political climate.