Par The Girl; Photographe Kourosh Erfanian
He is quirky, talented and one of Hedi Slimane's leggy fanatics.
After attending Burgerama Festival in Los Angeles, eighteen year old
photographer Kourosh Erfanian injects Purple Haze with his own work of genius.
Today, the field of photography is littered with people who know how to use Instagram and a filter. But that's not the case with eighteen year old Kourosh Erfanian who hails from Tehran, Iran. Through his own photography, his age fades to inconsequentiality; especially compared to the other de facto immature teens. He is far too talented, too inquisitive for anyone's standards. After attending Burgerama Festival in Los Angeles, I caught up with him to find out more about photography and the Californian scene.
Why did you venture into photography?
KF: I got into photograph because I love to keep my memories in a frame. I love taking pictures of anything and everything that astounds me.
How does this passion manifest itself today?
KE: I created Le Portefeuille - a weekly updated Instagram page that features my work. The photos themselves are shown in my black and white aesthetic and capture mostly the magic of festivals - from bands to audience members.
Why black and white photography? What does it mean to you?
KE: Personally, I think that when you photograph in black and white you achieve a level of clarity. It is minimal and classic yet it conveys something powerful. It doesn't just display something, it tells a story. And of course all the photographers I am inspired by are into this exact aesthetic.
You recently attended Burgerama Festival in Los Angeles. Tell me a little bit about it.
KE: I loved the dynamic of the crowd more than anything. The people were crazy and the kids in the pits wouldn't stop hard-stomping and head-banging! I don't think there's any other place in the world that creates this intensity in seconds. You instantly let go of everything and immerse yourself in the electrifying scene.
Which bands did you get to see and photograph? Any surprise appearances?
KE: I saw Cherry Glazerr, Together Pangea, Bass Drum of Death, Shanon and the Clams which were all amazing. The band called The SWMRS (formerly known as Emily's Army) stole the show. The three young rockers entranced the audience with their psychedelic sound. Saint Laurent designer Hedi Slimane was there documenting every moment of the fest. I think that was the most surprising thing.
That's amazing. Your photos do have a similar aesthetic to that of Hedi Slimane's.
KE: I love Hedi Slimane. I actually went up to him and said "Hedi, you are my idol. I love what you do!" He smiled, grabbed my shoulder and expressed his appreciation. I must admit I was shaking, I was way too nervous. At some point, we were both shooting and it was like we were competing with each other. That was the greatest moment of my life.
Under Slimane's reins, Saint Laurent is the most divisive and controversial house at the moment. What did you think of the latest collection showcased in Paris?
KE: I hate it when people say that he is creating the same thing over and over again. Hedi has created his own world, he doesn't cater to the pre-existing one. The FW 2015/2016 collection was a middle finger to the fashion industry – from the slutty looks to the soundtrack (that was provided by punk rock bad The Felines). What I love about Hedi's collections, is that he creates powerful juxtapositions - for instance, he combines the romanticism of the floral dress with the masculinity of the leather jacket.
Music continues to bleed into fashion and has inspired designers - from Raf Simmons to Vivienne Westwood. What does it mean to you?
KE: I love when designers enmesh music into fashion. I think music is very powerful and hence it creates my world. I grew up listening to heavy metal because my mother was what you would call your typical metalhead. I am currently loving the punk-metal grooves of LA-based band Cherry Glazerr.
What are your aspirations for the future?
KE: In August I'll be hosting a photography event in Iran where I will be introducing the Californian scene and the new wave of the rock generation. I feel that my country needs to be injected with aspects of the Western culture and I aim to be one of the pioneers. I don't want to just educate people but also inspire them to appreciate the art industry in all of its entirety.
You are just eighteen years old. I mean it hardly seems credible. Well done and thank you for your time.
KE: This is my first interview ever so I would like to thank you for this amazing opportunity.
It will never be forgotten. █