Public relations reps get a bad rap. People’s Revolution founder Kelly Cutrone, however, calls herself the Mother Teresa of the avant-garde, championing the likes of Vivienne Westwood, Agent Provocateur, Alexandre Herchcovitch, and Jeremy Scott. With fashion week on the horizon, we caught up with Cutrone to find out who she’s got her eye on.What made you want to start People’s Revolution?
I already owned a pretty significant, prototypical PR company called Cutrone & Weinberg, which turned into Untitled, probably the largest management company in the country. But I can’t help myself because when I see something really good, I want to tell other people about it! So when I sold my first company and started People’s Rev, I decided that I wanted to make a company of the future—I told everybody fashion is the new rock and roll! I wanted a PR company that told the truth versus cheer-leaded, represented only things that I really believed in. It’s all very idealistic. I mean, the name itself, People’s Revolution, means the world will change when we change ourselves.You’ve said that the designers you represent “express a message greater than just clothing.” Can you elaborate?
I’m really about communicating and about art. I couldn’t care less about Calvin Klein or Donna Karan. I mean, not that they’re not important brands, but I don’t understand what the message is. So I tend to find clients in a very narcissistic way. I’m into the underdogs and the periphery and the progressive. I’m like the Mother Teresa of the avant-garde. I really love Jeremy Scott because he’s a capitalistic pop artist. When I was 21 I married Andy Warhol’s protégé, Ronny Cutrone, and I was raised in a circus-like atmosphere in New York by the Warhol family, and Jeremy seemed to me like a modern-day Andy. He’s a visionary and taps into things that are iconic and translates them into a multi-tiered message. Who are your personal favorite designers?
I mean, today I’m wearing Citizens of Humanity jeans, a pair of Old Navy—oh no—Target flip-flops, a Gap shirt, no makeup, and I haven’t combed my hair. But I like a lot of stuff: On the expressive, neo-pop side I really love Jeremy. On the kind of quirky/structural side, I love Westwood and Herchcovitch; On the minimal side, which is how I tend to buy and dress, I’m really into Margiela and Yohji [Yamamoto], and on the embellished side I’m into Sabyasachi.You broke the fashion week tent record for most shows produced in 2002…
On the first anniversary of September 11th, no one wanted a show on this day, so we took every timeslot. We did Alexandre Herchcovitch, Rachel Comey, As Four, Jeremy Scott, Pat Fields. We literally had all three tents going twice! We were like, “We’re the People’s Revolution, and we refuse to grieve on a day like today. We’re gonna celebrate life and beauty.” At the end of the day, PR is really a service business, so you really have to want to serve!What shows are you looking forward to this Fashion Week?
My favorite show is going to be watching my daughter go to her first day of kindergarten—to see if she wears Sonia Rykiel Enfant or J Crew! I’m always looking forward to Jeremy Scott in Paris, because I get to offend large groups of French people! I’m always looking forward to Herchcovitch, Grey Ant, and Sabyasachi ’cause I’m in love with him. He’s so brave for an Indian designer. And Andrew Buckler. He’s amazing—like if Diesel and Paul Smith f*cked and had a kid, it would be Andrew Buckler. What else is in the works for People’s Revolution?
We’re going to do a Melvin Sokolsky retrospective, who is one of my favorite great photographers. We’re launching a clothing line with Marisa Ribisi (Giovanni’s sister, and she’s married to Beck) called Whitley Cross, and I’m gonna be in the D.J. booth with Beck! We’re also doing Nicky Hilton’s Chick line in Paris. I mean, I love all the shows we work on, I really do. peoplesrevolution.com