Art and fashion exist on two sides of the same coin, but often only work in unison at exhibition or event settings. ODD. New York, a carefully curated boutique, allows customers to experience eclectic art, fashion, and lifestyle items in one comfortable space. Founded by Judson Harmon, the young owner is a man from many fields; drag queen, model, business owner and now designer of his own namesake brand.

Judson Harmon | Photography courtesy of ODD. New York

With a penchant for selling even at 13 years old, Harmon told Hausie about his first e-commerce business. He sold rare coins and antiquities online using the technology available to him in 2004-5. At a young age, he had an eye for quality and began to build a love for curation. Moving from San Diego in 2010 to New York City, Harmon stayed within the realm of art and studied dance and music. Theatre lead him to fashion, “mostly for it’s ability to be theatrical without explanation” (Harmon, 2016). Ideas about ODD. were brewing since 2011, and a year later, Harmon unveiled ODD. New York online.

ODD. New York | Photography courtesy of ODD. New York

As a fashion lover, Harmon became aware of “various aspects of the broader industry” of which he did not agree with, “in stark contrast with a select few stores that [he] frequently visited” (Harmon, 2016). The yet to become business owner wanted to create an environment similar to these select stores. One with a consistent welcoming environment, that can excite and educate people on what they’re buying, and blur the lines between gallery and boutique. Thus the inception of ODD. New York.

“[I] wanted to venture into something different and assemble a brand matrix that encourages more of a sense of adventure.”

Judson Harmon, 2016.

Melissa Plastic Shoes x ODD. New York Launch Party | Photography by David Phelps, courtesy of ODD. New York

Aiming towards quality over quantity, Harmon understands the unethical practices behind some production chains. ODD. New York hopes to shed light on the stories behind the products. Fascinated with the narratives of each designer and brand, Harmon has realised this makes the boutique much more approachable.

“Fashion is ultimately an accessory to our lives, and one of those silent voices that gives people a first impression even before you speak. We are here to encourage people to add quality and personality to that silent voice.”

Judson Harmon, 2016.

Melissa Plastic Shoes x ODD. New York Launch Party | Photography by David Phelps, courtesy of ODD. New York

ODD. New York’s aesthetic has grown with Harmon and his ever evolving taste, as well as the changing aesthetic of his customer base. Nevertheless, it has always remained true to it’s philosophy of quality and individuality. When ODD began, Harmon focussed on all black or white, “drapey” looks from select emerging brands. As ODD has evolved, the boutique holds a fusion style of “past/present/future punk concept which has a little bit of everything so its less alienating and more visually striking for [their] customers” (Harmon, 2016). From the designer and owner’s personal experience and values, ODD believes all items can be unisex, and does not encourage it’s customers to shop by gender:

“It is up to the wearer to decide if it is for them, and gender confines really have no place in fashion beyond the original concept for how things should fit. Beyond that, dresses can be worn by boys, and men’s tailoring can look amazing on women. Its all about having fun”

Judson Harmon, 2016.

ODD. New York | Photography courtesy of ODD. New York

Mirroring the holistic philosophy of Harmon’s aesthetic, the interior concept of ODD. New York is free of clutter. Recently implementing a modular design, more freedom when re-merchandising the store is allowed. The clothes and products are given the space to shine alone; fully displaying their unique design. As said by Harmon; “The designs provide the ambiance; we just built the skeleton on which they are displayed”.

ODD. New York | Photography courtesy of ODD. New York

This free moving set up at ODD makes it the perfect for hosting events. Often holding specialised events for the boutique’s collaborations with local artists and brands – ODD is dedicated to their client base and industry friends and connections. Their events bring different communities together in a creative space, allowing for new dialogue. Harmon says, “this has also given us insight into industries outside of our own, which influences new ideas and unique perspectives for us to consider and incorporate into what we do on a daily basis.”

Melissa Plastic Shoes x ODD. New York Launch Party | Photography courtesy of ODD. New York

Past events include a private dinner hosted by Creatures of the Wind designers, Shane Gabier and Christopher Peters. ODD. New York was transformed to a restaurant and bar for their top clients and New York based influencers. The guests were treated to a private view of Creatures of the Wind’s Resort 2017 collection. Changing from night to day; ODD makes a great exhibition space. In July, painter-make up artist – photographer, Moises Ramirez exclusively showcased new works made in collaboration for ODD. The highlight for many was the surprise mural by Ramirez, painted on the brick wall of the boutique’s courtyard.

Moises Ramirez x ODD. New York Launch Party | Photography courtesy of ODD. New York

ODD. New York has many more exciting events coming up. September 2nd 2016 marks the debut of new works by photographer Jessie English. Exploring gender fluidity with rocker Jesse Rutherford (The Neighbourhood) as the primary subject, English’s photography book ‘&’ will be available to purchase at ODD. Look forward to cocktails, a meet-and-greet, as well as a surprise installation. As well as exclusively stocking Judson Harmon the label, alternative private labels, and luxury brands; ODD. New York is surely an all encompassing experience.

With special thanks to Judson Harmon for his artistic insight and personal comments. Many thanks to Morgan Stuart for the hospitality.

Visit ODD. New York at 164 Ludlow St, New York, NY 10002, United States

Written by Sonia Wan

Edited by Christina Wright