Ebullient, effervescent, brilliant, compassionate, optimistic, onward-and-upward, colorful, dazzling, beautiful—these are the words that immediately come to mind when one thinks of Lucia Hwong Gordon. Add to this, terminally glamorous and there you have a fine picture of her.
There is about Lucia Hwong Gordon’s style, a refreshing, well composed yet carefree attitude in the manner she dresses. Despite or because of her haute ensembles, there is always an understated artistic daring in the relaxed, unforced way with which she pulls it all off.
Nimble, light as air, taut in physique, her perennially svelte frame perfectly allows her to look picturesque and glamorous in practically everything that she wears.
Unafraid, bold, assured, clever and witty, Lucia Hwong Gordon is able to wear elaborate, even flamboyant red-carpet type gowns and ensembles with such ease, as if a t-shirt. There is an indefinable Anna May Wong air about her—a polished chic, stoic bearing combined with that charming mystique that reveals as much as it conceals.
Hwong was born in Hawaii and raised in Los Angeles, California. Her grandmother was a grande dame of Chinese opera and her mother is an internationally renowned actress Lisa Lu. Her first public performance was in concert, playing the pipa, an ancient Chinese lute, at the age of six. She studied ethnomusicology, theater and dance at UCLA and Columbia University.
In addition, she has chaired philanthropic events for organizations including the Women’s Project, American Theatre Wing, Asia Society and Parrish Art Museum and has been on committees such as Southampton Hospital.
Her music for theater includes the scores for the Tony Award-winning Broadway production of M. Butterfly and Tony-nominated Golden Child; as well as David Henry Hwang’s New York Shakespeare Festival presentations of Sound and Beauty and The Dance and the Railroad and the Obie Award-winner FOB. She composed the music for Iago and Venus Voodoo at Lincoln Center.
No less a personage than Lucia Hwong Gordon scored the Mark Taper and McCarter Theatre premieres of Anna Deavere Smith’s Twilight: Los Angeles 1992 and created a 12-tone fugue for Joyce Carol Oates’ The Perfectionist. Among her dance scores, Fierce Attachments debuted at the Brooklyn Academy of Music’s Next Wave Festival. She also scored Ali MacGraw’s Yoga Mindbody and created music for the Guggenheim Museum’s Soho video wall.
Her music for television and film include Hiroshima (NBC), Vietnam War Story (HBO), Forbidden Nights (Tiananmen Square massacre) (ABC), Paper Angels (Angel Island) (PBS), Jennifer’s in Jail (girl gangs) (Lifetime), Lotus (women’s emancipation in China) (AFI), Who Killed Vincent Chin? (racial murder) (1998 Oscar nomination: Best Documentary) and Silverlake Life-the View from Here (AIDS), honored with Sundance Film Festival and Peabody awards.
Lucia Hwong Gordon’s concert pieces include The Unwelcome and Rhythm of Your Pulse, commissioned and performed by the Women’s Philharmonic.
The artist’s two albums, House of Sleeping Beauties and Secret Luminescence were released on the (Private Music) label. The Goddess Trilogy CDs of new age world music were released on her own label, Goddess Music, and received a Visionary Award in 2000.
She has earned distinguished credits as a composer and instrumentalist. She has created music for theater, film, television, dance and the concert stage.
Lucia is the very perfect picture of grace embodied, the very portrait of the artist as a work of art within and without.
Ladies and gentlemen, Lucia photographed in town/New York City and country/Southampton, 16 acts. Lets commence.
interviews/photographs: iké udé
LUCIA HWONG GORDON
New York and Southampton
Favorite Fashion Designer:
Zang Toi, Karl Lagerfeld, Tom Ford, Michael Kors, Hedi Slimane, John Galliano for Dior, Peter Pilotto, Monique Lhullier, Douglas Hannant, Gareth Pugh, Mary Katrantzou, Dennis Basso, Marchesa girls
Favorite Shoe/Accessories Designers:
Giuseppe Zanotti, Manolo Blahnik, Jimmy Choo team, Christian Louboutin, Fendi team
Chanel: for Winter, Coco; for Summer, Chance
Favorite Stylish Films:
Beauty & the Beast, Cocteau; Blade Runner; In the Mood for Love
Cipriani, Amaranth, Southampton beaches, Ananda yoga, Sant Ambreous
St. Tropez, Paris, Shanghai, Venice, London, Saint Petersburg and here!
Who is your style icon?
Cross between elegance of Audrey Hepburn and audaciousness of Daphne Guinness
What item of clothing would you rather starve for?
Shoes, always shoes!
What is your overall impression of how people dress in general?
My friends always look great; I’d rather look at them than everyone else.
And what do you recommend that they do otherwise?
Nothing. They always surprise and amaze!
PICTURE: #1 IN SIXTEEN ACTS
SPECIAL GUEST INTERVIEW:
LUCIA HWONG GORDON TALKS ABOUT HER 1st OUTFIT:
What items did you use to compose this particular outfit?
Shocking Pink Gown, Monique Lhuillier
Venetian red Lace Mask
Bulgari Serpenti bracelet and Concentrica earrings
How did you find the various items that you are wearing?
Mask: from Venice, for a birthday party; things from Madison and 5th Aves.; gown by Monique Lhuillier. Bulgari: Diamond Serpenti bracelet and earrings from my husband
How did you arrive at the decision to compose such an outfit?
I wore this ensemble to Carol Asscher’s birthday party in Venice. She requested no black or white. I thought hot pink would be fun and festive.
Where do you normally shop for clothes and accessories?
All over the world.
How much role does money or the lack thereof play in one’s endeavor to dress very smart or beautifully?
Money is not the key; it’s creativity. A sheet can be draped beautifully and worn with attitude.
What special recommendation would you give somebody who admires your style but don’t know where or how to start?
Have fun putting clothes together in unusual ways. A shawl can be a wrap, a skirt or a turban.
Name six famous personages—past or present—who you would invite over for dinner/drinks because of their impeccable individualistic elegance?
Duchess of Winsor
As a result of your style, what is your impression of how you are generally perceived in public?
Unusual elegance with a touch of glamorous international flair
And how would you rather the public perceive you?
Artistic elegance with a touch of glamorous international flair.
Presently, what do you think accounts for the poor appearances in how people generally dress or don’t dress?
I don’t think about them. If they don’t make an effort why should I make an effort to think about them?
In retrospect have you ever worn something that you now find particularly regrettable?
No, I like to be adventurous with no regrets.
In the end, do you dress to: (a.) please others, (b.) please yourself or (c.) hopefully be in agreement with everybody?
To please myself with exuberant, fun colors, shape and fantasy.
I dress with an amusing internal story to tell without words. In the end, others sense my enjoyment. Creative spirit lifts us all up!