Goldwell KMS California Academy Opens in New York City

Artistic and creative types have long flocked to New York City to tap into its unique and vast cultural offerings. And for the newest Goldwell KMS California Academy, it finds the City to be the perfect setting to call home. “We knew that we really wanted to be in the heart of New York—where fashion and all the energy happens,” shares Sandra Humphries, Vice President of Education for Kao Salon Division USA. “We've created [the Academy and classes] based on New York and this whole feeling of an extra-special education curriculum in an extra-special place.”
To showcase the multistory, loft-like, 6,500 square foot Academy, which will hold hands-on training workshops taught by top stylists and educators from across the globe, guests were led on a cultural tour of the space that exhibited Lampyridae, an avant-garde original color and style collection created by Goldwell Hair Care Artistic Master Dimitrios Tsioumas, who was inspired by the firefly. “We wanted everyone to really see what inspiration does for hairdressers,” explains Humphries. “So for us, [the collection] is this chance to show off the wonderment that is possible with hair and with training and education.”

Within the curriculum students are encouraged to look to the city’s urban landscape for inspiration and to use the city itself as their muse. The Academy’s sprawling outdoor deck with views of Manhattan’s skyline is the beginning point of Goldwell Lead Artistic Director John Simpson’s Inspiration NYC program. “It’s an inspiration deck. It’s amazing because it allows me to really speak about what is true scale,” shares Simpson. Simpson’s class focuses on training students’ thought processes as well as training their eyes to see and think color by tying in cultural references and architecture with a trip to the Museum of Modern Art and a walk through the streets of SoHo and the Meatpacking District. “We look at what is actual art theory. There are techniques and there are blueprints of hair color design in what we do every single day but you need to understand mass, scale, saturation and form,” says Simpson. “[This course teaches students] to live in the hair. Instead of just thinking of partial, single or full highlights, it allows them to just think about hair color. [For example,] ‘What is the volume I'm trying to create, what is the saturation, the tone, the finish?’ It's learning about how mass and scale translate into design.”

On Day 2 of the Inspiration NYC program, Simpson or a guest stylist will demonstrate freehand techniques and the students can bring in a photo or sketch of whatever was most inspirational to them in the prior day’s outing, which in turn helps them to their work out their newfound ideas on mannequins. “The class is a lot of fun and it gets hairdressers out of a complacency that I think is easy to fall into—like they might be doing the same pattern on everyone,” shares Simpson. “The whole goal is to get booked every day. And if you start thinking and seeing hair color differently it can actually generate business because it allows you to upgrade your services menu.”

More in Home