Visceral, beautiful, bold: the pages of creative captain Rankin’s latest bi-annual project HUNGER truly captivate. A delightful mash-up of music, art, and fashion, the 516-page giant serves up an intellectual feast with pages upon pages of lush images complemented by thoughtful Q&As and articles dealing with issues ranging from illegal gold mining to Joseph Szabo’s portrayal of adolescence to the war in Afghanistan. Also included is a lengthy spread of nude photography shot by Rankin, which covers artists dealing with like-minded content, as well as workers from the softcore porn industry.
The influence of Rankin’s past publishing projects Dazed and Confused and AnOther can be found in-between vibrant dialogue and transporting visuals - sometimes severe, sometimes delicate, always bracing. A virginal Monica Bellucci crowned with gilded, floral wreaths neighbors a striking, geometric spread discussing the artistic masterminds behind iconic album sleeves (the gridded Trade Test Transmission cover and Bassment Jaxx’s sumptuously stylized Scars sleeve to name a few). Then, there’s the sexy. We’re talking a scantily-clad Heidi Klum getting all up in our business, working Pam Hogg body straps and a stripper pole like it’s her job. Helena Christenson plays the femme fatale as youngsters possessively ogle her bod, and lovely female specimens model Erickson Beamon earrings in the buff.
But let’s not forget to note the sheer showcase of artistic talent HUNGER provides us. The entire package is really a work of art with concepts that meld tongue-and-cheek playfulness with starkly handsome scenes, highlighting up-and-coming creative forces from a variety of mediums as well as social issues. Coverboy Robert Sheehan emulates the theatrical greasers of Cry Baby fame, Juliette Binoche discusses the palatability of chips and vegetable broth, and Werner Herzog differentiates between “discourse” and “interview.” Hunger successfully displays an interest in discovery, innovation, and the outside world.
Now, if that doesn’t cover all of the bases, we don’t know what will.
Written by Gina Magnuson