Jan 28, 2009

cheap or chic: logomania

chinese vase, decorated pussywillow plant, yellow teacups, spiral staircase (2007)

HAPPY CHINESE NEW YEAR EVERYONE!
sorry for the silence... it's been a happily frenetic time for me, visiting extended family and catching up with 1, 2, 3 times removed cousins uncles and aunts. through it all of course one tries to maintain a semblance of balance and moderation, but CNY is not a occasion that lends itself any middle ground. 

thus, speaking of middle, mine is rapidly growing amid the mountainous tumult of the endless sweet treats of the season...way to renege on one's new year's resolutions! thankfully i didn't make any promises and therefore cannot break any. outfit posts in another entry! while my new home can't accomodate the same decorative excesses as in past years like above, i'm still glad for the occasion and its accoutrements! 

cheap or chic #1: stephen sprouse x LV
more monogrammed LV

stephen sprouse x LV was a wonderful idea, and his now-iconic neon rose is truly a wonderful example of current, hip pop artistry. the problem i have with the collection is its complete embrace of true flashiness--neon + graffiti + monograms + roses.... it's all just a bit Too Much To Handle. 
matchy neon monograms

a rose/signature/scrawl or 2, that's acceptable. but to put it all together in a cacophonic explosion of neon garishness is NOT an update of the LV brand but a poor attempt at making its appeal more relevant/street/pop art/etc. of late, it seems these limited edition collections are the brand's modus operandi, money-spinning-wise. and on that count, i cant fault them.

orange green pink-- it's all the same when so luridly emblazoned

marc jacobs' shameless plugging of his designs notwithstanding, the potential of a cutesy print on leggings has been overshadowed by the incessant, over-the-top juxtaposition of pink with green with orange with monogram with graffiti... 
less really is more, and in this case, the reverse holds true too. 

CHEAP, NOT CHIC.
 

cheap or chic #2: citizen's American Quilt

This handmade art piece combines 58 iconic logos of mass-market retailers, fast food chains and other corporations synonymous with America. They have each contributed to the creation of the contemporary North American identity and condition, yet we feel ambivalent or even negative toward their hegemony over our cultural and economic landscape. 

just as a traditional quilt provides comfort, can a contemporary twist on the American identity provide the same amount of cultural identification via the institutions and corporations that essentially make up America? i don't recognize all of 4 out of 58 logos--really showing how far the identity of the country has been molded and stretched by these brands, with their heavy hand in product placement and consumer branding. 

maybe fashion can have a conscience too, by playing a role in forcing us to question our identity, rather than to lamely hanker after something that's been inflated to appear more worthwhile than it truly is. fashion is an art, and art is meant to be stimulating, discursive, didactic even, so why can't what we wear make a statement sometimes?

CHIC, NOT CHEAP. 

5 comments:

Maya said...

I'm not crazy about this collection, but if I had to choose i would prob just wear the leggings.

copperoranges said...

hmm, i do not mind the american quilt so much. i like the idea that most of those companies were founded by one person with a dream. maybe i am too idealistic though.

i like the neon rose sweater!

Zoë said...

Hey there my dear!
how are you?
Im not loving the LV collection much actually...
but anyway thanks for the pointers of where to check out! I'm not there yet, no so you need not worry. But I'll be sure to check out those places.
how have your new year celebrations been coming along? oh i love this time of year when a small part of your HUGE extended family come together...:)


x

Zoë said...

p.s I'm linking you :)

Cathy Voyage said...

Love the pic of the stairs!