James Goldstein | Any Chance We Might Take A Photo Together?

Via the 25th Anniversary Issue, Under The Silver Moon

Written by

Matthew Bedard

Photographed by

Yong Kim

Styled by

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In the air, on the plane, courtside, and flexing a fit—it’s James Goldstein! The ubiquitous fashion weeks, art fairs, and NBA presence is unrelenting in his love of culture, jet setting, and bedazzled bespoke Balmain.

A longtime FLAUNT confidante (a FLAUNT-idante), this 25th anniversary milestone issue wouldn’t make sense without the entrepreneur and Sheats-Goldstein home-owning persona stepping to the photographic lens and speaking into our humble microphone. Enjoy this full-court press!


You live in the Sheats-Goldstein house, which was famously designed by John Lautner, whose designs epitomize California modernism and lifestyle. What about living in one of his most revered designs do you love the most?

I’ve always been attracted to minimal, modern design. Designs that are forward-looking and unique; designs that remove the barrier between inside and outside. In my house, I feel as though I am outside, even when I am inside. The experience for me personally is not just the appreciation of a great modern design, but also the satisfaction that I have been so personally involved in much of the design. I worked together with John Lautner for 15 years in determining the design of my house. As I interacted with him, it was a learning process as well. There was such a strong process after John Lautner passed away, and I was able to continue what I felt was his guidance in the design of more projects on my property, including what I call Club James.

Why is fashion important to you, and what do you feel fashion’s role in culture is?
I feel that fashion is an expression of my personality, as well as other people’s personalities, and I think you can learn about people by looking at the way they dress. That’s an important aspect of it. But beyond that, I feel that fashion is an art form and when people talk about great art, I believe that great fashion designers should be included with the acclaim for great artists. 

You mentioned Club James earlier. What do you feel is magical about nightlife?

Nightlife can be a great source for meeting with friends, meeting new people, and making new friends. And beyond that aspect of it, good nightlife can be an amazing high. The feeling of energy, it makes one feel so happy when the nightclubs are right and the music is good and people are dancing. It is a great feeling.

Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to be happening in Los Angeles these days. But when I go to Europe, it is a much better feeling to go out at night. You mingle with interesting people and dance and get energized. People say to me all the time, “Where do you get your energy?” Well, I don’t seem to get the same energy in Los Angeles that I get in Europe, and it’s because of the stimulation around me.

Speaking of Los Angeles, you’re a fixture at Clippers games and a lot of high-profile NBA playoff games. How have you witnessed gameplay evolve in the NBA, and what do you think is unique about basketball to any other sport?

I think that basketball requires more athleticism than any sport. It’s also a very intimate sport where you can be sitting right next to the action. It’s not like a sport at a big stadium with a hundred thousand people. It’s a sport where you can really see the players’ faces. Basketball is a sport that evokes individual styles more than any other sport. And the people: the professional basketball players have their own moves. Their individuality is very evident.

That’s something that you don’t see the same way in other sports. And there is a gracefulness about basketball that is very beautiful to watch. As far as the trends in professional basketball, the game has changed a lot, and to me it’s changed in a good way because it’s more about finesse now and outside shooting than it used to be. It used to be more physical. Now it’s about fitness.

Activism and social reform are now big parts of the NBA. What are your thoughts on sports as a platform for social change?

I think it’s very good that athletes are allowed to express their views on what’s going on in the world and that they are willing to take a stand and not be afraid of that. I think the NBA players are very enlightened and are sending off some very good messages. 

My final question for you: What is your favorite memory of the late 1990s?

I had a very unique second half of the 1990s. I was something that could be described as being adopted by the Houston Rockets. I was part of their team during their two championship years, during which I attended all their practices during their playoff runs. I became close friends with their players. I traveled with the team. And I even gave some tips to their number one player, a team of one. And after my tips before one important game, he scored 44 points. The Rockets won the game. And he thanked me after the game for helping him. So, as a basketball fan, to be able to participate, so to speak, in a team’s success was something that I won’t ever forget. 

Talent's own jacket, pants, shoes, and hat.

Photographed by Yong Kim

Written by Matthew Bedard

Grooming: Mirna Jose at See Management

Gaffer: Mike Panganiban

Location: The Sheats-Goldstein Residence

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James Goldstein, Flaunt Magazine, Issue 190, The 25th Anniversary Issue, Under The Silver Moon, Yong Kim, Matthew Bedard, Sheat-Goldstein Residence