Sudan Archives Takes Prada Mode LA
Last night, fashion and art cognoscenti gathered on Fairfax Avenue in West Hollywood for the latest installment of Prada Mode. Taking place over two days in tandem with Frieze LA, the Italian label’s traveling private social club transformed the dark, glitzy recesses of Genghis Cohen—the Chinese restaurant and iconic LA haunt—into a space for intimate meals, art word gossip, and live performances. Guests including Rashida Jones, Jeff Goldblum, and Jordan Wolfson dropped by to take in “HelLA World,” a multi-panel light installation by the Los Angeles-based artist Martine Syms, and watch sets by the likes of Junglepussy and Bianca Lexis. Last night’s headlining act, the electric violinist Sudan Archives, took the stage for her vibrant, high energy performance in a dazzling crystal headpiece and full Prada ensemble. After the show, she sat down in the Prada Mode green room for a chat about all things Los Angeles.
INTERVIEW: What are you wearing?
SUDAN ARCHIVES: This Prada dress, some opera gloves, a diamond headpiece and some glittery tights. I think my look is giving hot, glam nun. Originally, the dress was down to my ankles, but I put on a corset and snatched it up, because I’m a hoochie. I also stuffed the sleeves with garbage bags, because I need one thing that has some shape. It looks so good when you’re playing the violin.
INTERVIEW: How did you prepare for your set tonight?
SUDAN ARCHIVES: The first thing I do is google the venue. I want to know if it’s a club, a bar, or a gallery—that dictates the vibe. If we were at a museum, I’d do more of my earthy songs. When I saw all the red lanterns and the intimate club vibe at Genghis Cohen, I knew people would be able to handle me, so I didn’t hold anything back.
INTERVIEW: Where are you from?
SUDAN ARCHIVES: Ohio. I’ve been living in Los Angeles for seven years. In L.A. it’s like, “Do you want to be, like, a llama chiropractor? No problem.” I’m from a working class city, and when you step outside of the box, you aren’t always appreciated for it.
INTERVIEW: L.A. has too many…
SUDAN ARCHIVES: Transplants. [Laughs] I’m one of them.
INTERVIEW: L.A doesn’t have enough…
SUDAN ARCHIVES: African food.
INTERVIEW: What’s in your system right now?
SUDAN ARCHIVES: Burger King and adrenaline.
INTERVIEW: Do you check your violin or carry it on?
SUDAN ARCHIVES: Carry on always. I tried to check it in once on WOW Airlines, and they broke it. And now they’re bankrupt, which they might deserve.
INTERVIEW: How have your two days with Prada been?
SUDAN ARCHIVES: Amazing. I had my fitting at the store yesterday, and I knew I could make this look my own. I spent the rest of the day prepping for the show.
INTERVIEW: How do you feel about working with Prada?
SUDAN ARCHIVES: Sometimes when fashion meets music, it’s easy to overlook all the important technicalities that go into performing. But the Prada team was so focused on my sound, and the quality was perfect. I felt cared for.
INTERVIEW: What are you doing tonight?
SUDAN ARCHIVES: I’m ordering some egg rolls and getting on the dance floor.