Monthly Archives: May 2009

Check out my Lady Gaga Article on the Washington Square News at NYU

Andrea F. Pagliai

My feature story on Lady Gaga was printed in Washington Square News, the news paper associated with NYU!

Click here to read: “Going Gaga

Lady Gaga

Lady Gaga.


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Michael M. Koehler Finds Focus Through a Lens

By: Andrea F. Pagliai

At age 26, Michael M. Koehler is starting a new chapter in his life. His photography show “Parade” just opened in Philadelphia, his wife Lauren is three months pregnant, he is moving into a new apartment in the East Village, and he just shaved his six-inch-long beard for the first time in a year.

Michael M. Koehler. Photo: Andrea F. Pagliai

Michael M. Koehler. © Andrea F. Pagliai.

It took him five minutes to get ready this morning. He wears his typical green-toned camouflage hunting pants, a beige collared polo, and leather hunting boots. He has his Leica M6 film camera in a holster, strapped onto his belt. He rarely carries much else.

Koehler is a presence with his 6-foot, roughly 200-pound frame. His red hair does its own thing and he has three days worth of red stubble spread out along his strong features—A departure from his former mountain man’s red beard.

Because of photography, “I knew it was a good scene,” Koehler reminisces. With the garage door open, Koehler sat facing the wilderness of his father’s picturesque rural Philadelphia home. “I sat in a chair, with the dog in a chair next to me, and my father just started trimming my beard. He cut it all off into a drywall bucket. Meaningful, wise—Boom, the beard was gone.” He photographed the entire process.

It’s a beautiful day, one of this spring’s first. Koehler gets into a cab. The destination: Grand Central Station. The 11 a.m. light streams through the window onto Koehler. It has been a year since one could actually see his strong jaw line, let alone the rest of his face. The beard, “physically and emotionally, was another layer of distance between me and the world,” muses Koehler. It made sense at the time, but now it’s a new time. A new show. A new face.

He meets Peter Quillin, aka Kid Chocolate, a boxer Koehler has photographed for the past year. They plan to go to a Reptile Expo in White Plains, NY, where Quillin hopes to buy an African tarantula. Koehler goes along to make a moment into memory, a memory into art.

Koehler and Peter Quillin aka "Kid Chocolate" look on at the display of tarantulas. Koehler is constantly photographing the scene. Photo: Andrea F. Pagliai.

Koehler and Peter Quillin aka "Kid Chocolate" look on at the display of tarantulas. Koehler is con stantly photographing the scene. © Andrea F. Pagliai.

Koehler finds his focus through the lens of the camera. His distinct vision of the world around him, molded by the relationships in both his past and present, make his black and white photographs so entrancingly captivating.

After graduating in 2005 with a B.F.A. from NYU’s Tisch School of the Performance Arts, Koehler remained in New York to pursue his dream as a photographer. His new gallery show, “Parade,” which opened April 3, 2009 in Philadelphia, is a point of departure for both Koehler’s art and his personal life.

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Go Gaga for Gaga

By Andrea F. Pagliai

Rob Fusari couldn’t believe she had made it from the bus stop in one piece. Her gold lamé hot pants and white knee-high go-go boots were a telltale sign: Lady Gaga had entered the building.

Born Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta, to an Italian family in New York City, Lady Gaga worked her way through Manhattan’s Lower East Side music scene to develop, what the public now sees, in her music videos and stage performances.

Her persona—a mix of 80s electro-pop-punk and performance art—distinguishes her in an industry that demands niche attractions. Her inspirations trace back to Madonna, Grace Jones, and David Bowie. But, now Lady Gaga is the trend. Revealing, tight-fitting leotards, be-dazzled bras, and space-rock inspired jewelry are all part of her identifying wardrobe. Her platinum blonde, stick-straight waist-length hair, adorned with a heavy dose of blunt bangs and glitter face-paint make-up, all contribute to signature components of her look.



Through image and popularity, Lady Gaga influences the music industry and fashion world. Many describe her as a pop-performance artist, which plays into her futuristic, architectural, and geometrically shaped stage garments that, conjunction with her music, make her stick in people’s minds.
Those who go to her concerts dress up in her likeness, the same way concertgoers did for Madonna in the 80s and 90s.

Lady Gaga’s fashion is as uninhibited as her music lyrics and this carefree style is catching on. Her revival of the dance ballad and her overtly sexual lyrics, which convert the timid, have both found their way into her clothing style.

Chinatown and Lower East Side based, avant-garde fashion designer Alisha Trimble feels that Lady Gaga’s original look distinguishes her from the rest. “She styles herself with such a unique look and that really impresses me,” remarks Trimble.

Lady Gaga’s, “fashion is also inspiring people to have a certain lifestyle,” Trimble adds, suggesting that Gaga’s fashion is evocative of Cyndi Lauper’s ‘girls just want to have fun’ attitude.

By taking risks with her outfit selections, Lady Gaga inspires her fans to be daring. Trimble believes that, “(Lady Gaga) is going to influence what people wear when they go out. Some more avant-garde designers will be favored by people who like her music,” Trimble adds.

Erik Bucci, a Lady Gaga concertgoer, dresses up in her likeness at her May 2nd show at Terminal 5.

Erik Bucci, a Lady Gaga concertgoer, dresses up in her likeness at her May 2nd show at Terminal 5. © Andrea F. Pagliai.

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My NYTimes Tag Line!!

By Andrea F. Pagliai

NEW YORK–Last Wednesday afternoon, I assisted The New York Times in reporting on the recent breaking news sports story regarding Olympic silver medalist in cycling, Davide Rebellin. The Italian cyclist was found positive for doping in his silver Olympic medal race, last summer in Beijing. I researched and translated various articles from a broad spectrum of the Italian giornales and sports gazettes. Some of those translated quotes where used in the article.

To my pleasant surprise, I received a reporting tagline/ contrib line in the article, “Olympians Caught Doping are Named,” which appeared in the print version of the NYTimes on April 30, 2009 in page B15 of the New York edition.

Click on the link provided above. Scroll to the bottom. It’s not my usual byline, but it’s “Andrea Pagliai” all the same!


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