On March 2, 2015, Dennis Clendennen, hairstylist and co-founder of Dionysus Salon~Spa of The Woodlands Market Street’s Dionysus Salon~Spa, was named national Hairstylist of the Year in the 6th annual RAWards.
The RAWards are a celebration of independent artists that have presented their work in RAW Artists showcases in 54 cities across the United States. Last year over 15,000 individuals showcased their talents in nine categories (visual artist, fashion designer, musician, filmmaker, hairstylist, makeup artist, photographer, performer and accessories) with national winners named for each genre.
The road to become national winner begins with presenting in a local RAW Artists showcase. Online voting narrows down the artists to the top three in each category for each city. A panel of judges for each category evaluates the work in their respective categories naming RAW Artists City Winners. City winners were then judged by a national panel of respected industry leaders in each of the nine categories selecting the national winners.
Clendennen’s journey to National Hairstylist of the Year began after being asked by Houston RAW Artists director Sammy Mazur to showcase his work in September of 2015. Clendennen responded to the hows, whats and whys of his showcase: “I love the creative process from inspiration to the final result and being asked to showcase for RAW Artists provided me with free reign to let it all go, have fun and create. Being undeterred by a “fear of failing” allows me to continue to push ahead with the process. Each step in the process, whether successful or not gave me the experiences and information needed to create the final looks.”
“Knowing that the audience would be of many different backgrounds, I created a video consisting of many of my published images to the music for the entire show to play on the screen behind my presentation. The inspiration for the hairpieces was the geometric starkness seen in the framing of various buildings, bridges and such. I took the sharpness of the geometric shapes and combined them with the softness and feminine beauty of the models bringing life to the static shapes,” says Clendennen.
“The makeup was used to create an emotionless ‘mask’, the face being solid white with exaggerated black eye liner. Alexa Covarrubbias, also of Dionysus Salon~Spa, was the makeup artist executing the vision, and beautiful designs by Houston fashion designer Kuteka of TikiGlam completed the looks. A great team came together to bring this vision to life on the beautiful models courtesy of Neal Hamil Agency of Houston. I give so much thanks to this team for helping to bring this show to life,” explains Dennis. “Thank you to Heidi Luerra for founding RAW Artists and creating a venue for independent artists to showcase their talents.”
Dennis continues to work behind the chair cutting and styling hair for clients at Dionysus Salon~Spa in Market Street. He continues to create outside of the salon logging twenty-five seasons of styling hair backstage during New York Fashion Week and creating editorial images for magazines, designers and websites around the world. His constant pursuit of creativity has resulted in him named one of nine finalists for Southwest Hairstylist of the Year by 303 Magazine in Denver.