16 January 2015

Her Second Skin

Let me take you down memory lane, mine to be specific, to when I was living and working in New York half a year ago, where post-work and weekend activities with my urban family involved random acts commonly and overly known as 'shenanigans' (god, I miss them). If it was an act of hipsterity (hipster-ness?), we did it. So for the youthful New York hipsters, where else to squander our low and virtually non-existing salaries than Williamsburg. One of us suggests we meet at the trendy Nitehawk Cinema (the ones that play film festival indie movies while can dine along side your theater experience) on Metropolitan Avenue for the screening of Nymphomaniac 2 where we can judge Charlotte Gainsbourg's risk-kay performance where the excessive nudity is still considered tastefully done, but it never dawned on us that other hipsters would've beat us to it and tickets were sold out on arrival. Merde! So we reluctantly settled for ScarJo's indie film Under Her Skin, which left us leaving the theater feeling lost, perplexed, and confused as to why we put ourselves through that for two hours. If it weren't for ordering the truffle popcorn, that night would've been seriously lacking in flavor. Which brings me to the topic on skin, second skin that is. Perhaps we're slowly witnessing a paradigm shift back to more, dare I say, bodycon ensembles, Normcore was well and all, but even 'saturated minimalism' (which sounds like an oxymoron) gets boring after the millionith tumblr page that reblogs the reblogs of the same basic shots. Perhaps it's the fact that I study fashion design, where creating looks that are minimalistic is a crime far worse than a look that exhibits 'bad taste'. Which leads me to justifying this outfit (sort of), that is what I'd imagine one of the casts from The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills would wear around West Hollywood post-spin-class with her sister talking about how eating kale is basically eating plate garnish. It's a take on reformulating the casual LA matching tracksuit; minus the 'juicy' ass-logo, since mine is far from that.
trousers LLUNAA
socks H&M

06 January 2015

Castle in the Sky

2015. The year I both fear and anticipate. 'Tis the year I finally graduate university in London and dive into the real world. I apologize for the sparsely uploaded blog posts, but as I said, I need to put my education first and foremost and focus on my final year at school, but I promise just as soon as I graduate, I will launch The Provoker 2.0, the upgrade is worth the wait. Think added lifestyle videos of me basically exploring cities and eating my way through them, hanging out with interesting people, and general provocation of course. As I type this, I bid my winter holiday farewell as work mode kicks in and the Monday blues come full force since I'm preparing for my journey away from the comforts of Hong Kong and back to London. I'm packing my suitcase (again at the very last minute), trying to imagine a vortex or wormhole in my suitcase that can magically teleport or shrink five suitcases worth of property into one. Tell me I'm not the only who does this! Oh yeah, I'm a recovering hoarder which doesn't quite sound like a sexy trait worthy to put on your Tinder profile, but just like many of you, I hoard. So whilst I take my Tetris skills #ChildhoodGameStrong and apply them to my suitcase, let me share some throwback shots Natalie took of me back in Paris. Wishing all my readers and provokees a successful and smooth new year ahead! #MUAH
 shirt CÉLINE

photography NATALIE CHYI

24 December 2014

Island Hopper

Merry Christmas one and all! Or the more politically correct greeting: Happy Holidays! Ok, guys! I've been videoing snippets my life as much as I can on my iPhone 6, and frankly, I love it (the quality's amazing). So what you have seen here in photos will soon be made into a montage on YouTube, so get ready to know me in motion, not just stills. Last week, Bryant, Zoe and I hosted our out-of-town friends Eugenie, Natalie, David, Melody, and Oscar; and since we felt the island of Hong Kong got a bit overcrowded this holiday season, we took to sea to the off island of Cheung Chau, where seafood was lush and abundant, biking replaced walking, sea front property was ubiquitous, local businesses were humble, and cotton candy portions were generous, very generous. We wandered around the edges of the island, and somehow settled on these cliff boulders like mermaids on the rocks. Come to think of it, it literally looks like we could be have been exploring off the coast of sunny Santorini, I doubt anyone who sees the first shot here would immediately think Hong Kong, since this is a side of the city you don't see that often heh! As if jumping around steep cliffs with expensive camera equipment weren't risky enough, we promptly crawled through a tiny narrow pitch black cave, but since we all wielded fully charged iPhones, we lit the way with our flashlights and prayed for this cave not to cave in (there's a clip of us climbling out like proper survivors). Now, about the ensemble, I've put together double white denim simply because it's about time I did that, and a plaid turtleneck top to match my plaid skaters. Finally a graffiti-canvas backpack you're all probably sick of seeing but come on, it's practical for cave hunting and cliff jumping days, so let this one pass, aaaight?
sunglasses CÉLINE (SIMILAR)
backpack CHANEL
skaters CÉLINE


18 December 2014

Cliff Classics

A week ago, my sartorial integrity has been challenged. Mama-provoker threw a spontaneous cocktail party in the hub of Hong Kong's financial district for colleagues and friends that consisted entirely of bankers, lawyers, and accountants. If I were to show up and be introduced to this foreign world as the son of the hostess, my sister, also a confirmed attendee, promptly implied I better not be 'too much of [myself]', as in please dress down. When further interrogated if I brought a plain shirt from London, I realized I hadn't foreseen any formal functions, I only packed turtlenecks and knit dresses. Needless to say, it's starting to shape up as seriously not-my-scene. On the night, I decided that I'd be damned if I were to compromise and show up looking like a typical 'boy' conforming to my oppressive gender role (to someone like me); so to strike a balance, I showed up in an all black vintage 70s Ann Taylor jumpsuit. There, diplomacy has been laid. This led me to think, why am I so adamant against going with the proverbial flow? I mean, even instead of choosing a plain background to shoot an outfit, I needed to hoist myself up to the edge of a cliff with crashing waves like I'm Aerial the mermaid *cue Part of Your World*. Perhaps it's because I've been trying to 'fit in' all my life and got me nowhere because people like us simply don't fit the classic mold, which is why we're seen as provokers. But truthfully, I don't mind the classics, so long as there's some twist to it. Exhibit A, a striped top and black wool trousers, except mine are corseted flared dungarees that are so high waisted they graze my nipples, and my Breton cardi-top also works as a polo. Yes, I let the devil live in my details. Then for street-cred, I throw on this vintage cropped white denim jacket I found in a tiny charity shop in Paris back in October. Come to think of it, I do have some formal events lined up, one wedding in France come summer. I was given full permission by the bride-to-be to "be myself", now that's what I like to hear... I'm thinking a sheer baggy navy ruffled blouse and tweed fringed diaper shorts. Oh yeah, fuck the suit.

jacket LEVI'S
cardigan CHANEL
dungarees CHANEL
sneakers CHANEL

photography DAVID HAJOO CHOI
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