Bob Recine is one of the most creative and influential hair stylists working in fashion today. In fact, “hair stylist” doesn’t begin to do him justice — he is an artist and designer using hair as a material to create sculpture.
Unwilling to be bound by scissors and styling tools, Recine creates Dada-like assemblages using found objects like hairpins, sunglasses, paper, plastic, and headphones to produce eye-popping, provocative work. He collaborates with the industry’s most revered photographers, and has formed a creative alliance of sorts with Mario Sorrenti and Robbie Fimmano. Together they have blurred the line between art and fashion, conjuring arresting imagery for publications such as Another Magazine, American Vogue, Vogue Italia, French Vogue, Numero, Exit Magazine, I-D magazine, French Vogue, and V Magazine.
“For a person who they say is a ‘beauty expert’, I see it differently,” he said on Style.com. “[Beauty] comes in many forms, and its importance is how it’s utilized in the moment. That’s my perception and infatuation with beauty.”
You can view his captivating body of work in his recently published book Bob Recine: The Alchemy of Beauty, with photography by Mario Sorrenti, Robbie Fimmano and Bob Recine and an introduction by René Ricard. Personally, I can’t stop looking at it. Every time I dip into the pages something new emerges.
Without further ado, here’s my Q&A with beauty alchemist Bob Recine.
Job description: Hair Artist-Mystic Adventurer.
Why do you do what you do? To search for higher levels of ALL.
How do you break through a creative block? Never had one.
Education: High School.
Mentors: Art and science are my true mentors.
World-saving mission: Higher understanding of creativity.
Studio chair: ?.
Creative Soundtrack: Anywhere from Mozart to the Sex Pistols.
Most useful tool: Confidence.
Favorite space: Outer Space.
Favorite design object: Anything that is not only beautiful but able.
Guilty Pleasure: Reading.
What did you learn the hard way? All of it.
Has your work ever got you into trouble? YES. Trouble is always present when you have a vision and passion, as things confront our senses we confront them back, there are too many stories here.
If you could cross over into other profession… what would you do? I’m constantly crossing over but never really notice.
Dream Project: Alchemy of Beauty
Where’s home? NYC.Share: Twitter Facebook
The cover image featuring model Vivien Solari and photographed by Mario Sorrenti was originally made for Numero magazine in 1996.
Untitled, ink on paper, 7 1/2 x 7 1/2 in., 2007 / Tanya Dziahileva, photo by Mario Sorrenti, Spring 2007.
W Magazine, Eniko Mihalik, Photo by Mario Sorrenti, April 2009 / Untitled, collage on paper, 10 x 13 1/4 in., 2008.
“Trouble is always present when you have a vision and passion, as things confront our senses we confront them back, there are too many stories here.”
Exit Magazine, Rebekah Davies, Photo by Recine, Fall 2004 / Untitled, Tempra on Paper 3 3⁄4 x 6 1⁄2 in. 2004.
W Magazine, Eniko Mihalik, Photo by Mario Sorrenti, April 2009 /
Untitled, collage on paper, 10 x 13 1/4 in., 2008.
Untitled, ink and tempra on Paper 8 x 10 1/2 in. 2008 / V Magazine, Tanya Dziahileva. Photo by Mario Sorrenti, Spring 2007.
Untitled, Tempra on Paper 10 x 13¼ In. 2008 / Ingrid Mask, Photo by Robbie Fimmano, 2007.
Vogue Italia, Gemma Ward, Photo by Mario Sorrenti, July 2006 / Hairpin Sculpture by Recine, Photo by Robbi Fimmano, 2008.
Untitled, 690 Polaroid 3 ½ x 4 ¼ in. 2004 / Untitled, 690 Polaroid 3 ½ x 4 ¼ in. 2000 / V Magazine, Tanya Dziahileva, Skirt Created by Philipp Haemmerle, Photo by Mario Sorrenti, Spring 2007.
Untitled, lipstick and powder on draft paper, 12 1/4 x 24 in., 1996 / Natalia Vodianova, photo by Mario Sorrenti, 2007.
Numero, Vivien Solari, Photo by Mario Sorrenti, 1996 / Untitled, Tempra on Paper 25 x 40½ in. 1998.