Gen Art, the 15-year-old organization set up to support emerging talent in the fashion and entertainment industries, has found a new partner.
This story first appeared in the August 19, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
The firm is planning to merge with Rock Media & Entertainment, the two-year-old entertainment and media company which, since its inception, has produced and participated in a variety of fashion-related projects, including Rock Fashion Week Miami, Haven House at the Oscars and Style360. When the two organizations merge on Sept. 15, the new corporate name will become RMGA LLC.
For Gen Art, the deal will give the institution a much-needed financial boost, as it had been suffering from the lack of funding due to the recession. The merger will bring RMGA into the world of branded entertainment specializing in film, fashion, art and music. RMGA will continue to produce programming, content and events under both the Gen Art and Rock Media brands.
The company will be run by the four principals and founders from Gen Art and Rock Media — Scott Rosenblum of Rock Media will serve as RMGA’s chief executive officer, Gen Art ceo Ian Gerard and Rock Media’s Nicole Purcell will act as the company’s co-presidents and Gen Art president Stefan Gerard will become RMGA’s chief operations officer.
“This merger means that we will be around and we will weather the economic storm,” Gerard said. “This stabilizes the whole company and gives us the deeper pockets we needed. Now we can present these large fashion events, but in a much more cost-effective way. Also, since Rock Media has such a great relationship with Hachette, we will be able to help our designers that much more with extended online and print coverage in their publications.”
RMGA’s first event will be the Gen Art Fresh Faces in Fashion show on Sept. 15 as the finale of Style360’s shows, which will run from Sept. 12 to 15 in partnership with Hachette Filipacchi Media U.S. Gen Art will also move its Los Angeles Fresh Faces in Fashion show to be the centerpiece of Rock Fashion Week Los Angeles on Oct. 29. In addition, the organization plans to produce a celebration of Miami’s emerging designers during Rock Fashion Week Miami, slated to run from Oct. 14 to 18.
As part of the merger, Rock Media’s New York staff will move into Gen Art’s headquarters at 133 West 25th Street, while Gen Art will utilize Rock Media’s new offices at the Eden Rock in Miami. Rock Media’s Los Angeles-based team will utilize Gen Art’s West Coast office in Culver City, Calif.
Over its 15 years in business, Gen Art has produced more than 1,000 events supporting and showcasing emerging talent, including names like Zac Posen, Rebecca Taylor, Phillip Lim, Vena Cava, Milly and Twinkle; filmmakers Brad Anderson, Richard Shepard, Kevin Bacon, Fisher Stevens and Cary Fukunaga; artists such as Will Cotton and Ryan McGinness, and musicians from Imogen Heap to MGMT.