Gamma Player

2035 W. Division


When internationally known techno DJ Jeff Mills and wife Yoko Uozumi decided to open a boutique, they wanted it to blur the line between music and fashion. I’m still not sure what that means, but everything in Gamma Player’s black-painted space (the theme for its first season is “The Universe by Night”) is pretty darn cool. The couple, who together run Mills’s 15-year-old label, Axis Records, and have another home in Berlin, has stuck with small designers from Europe and South America who evince the kind of avant-garde yet wearable aesthetic they came to admire during their travels. “We try to select items that are not so crazy that you have second thoughts about wearing them,” says Mills. For example, a black button-down men’s shirt by IO, a German designer, looks at first glance like your basic sleek, European-cut shirt, but the back reveals irregular pleating with slashes of white fabric. A black knife-pleated skirt by Anne Valerie Hash features flowery cutout patterns that bring to mind a chic paper snowflake project. Accessories include a pair of brightly colored, magnetized square resin bangles by La Mollla as well as ornate necklaces and earrings by Brazilian designer Thais Franca that combine metal and traditionally made lace. Many of the designs are exclusive not only to Chicago but to the country. There is a small collection of books on art and fashion, which will eventually include CDs and DVDs. Clothes range from $100 all the way up to $2,000; accessories sell for $60 to $400.

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): photos/Mireya Acierto.