Wednesday, December 13, 2006

VAN GOGH Ran Through A Xerox Machine (Letter to Anna)

Starry Night, VAN GOGH

I received this letter about my article, Too Much Information. It is a good read from Juan Miguel, someone who knows his fashion history.

what is the most interesting, inspiring fashion? the answer to that question is greatly subjective because there are varying levels of taste which naturally stem from varying levels of interest and sophistication. there is always bad taste as there is always good taste (now THAT is purely subjective). agreement will never be quite unanimous. especially in this day and age when women wear short skirts one day and long ones the next, pegged pants yesterday, palazzos today, and clam diggers tomorrow! truly, never has there been a time of such un-uniformity, of such sartorial freedom. fashion has become so very varied AND so very fickle. whatever is a girl to do?

...i guess the challenge for any designer nowadays is to create work that is SIGNIFICANT to current lifestyles, trains of thought, activity, and sensibility. each designer has an
interpretation of all these things and the one whose work resonates most effectively is the one who is celebrated. mary quant and the youthquake of the sixties, dvf and ysl and halston and bra-burning in the seventies, mugler's and
montana's shoulders coupled with calvin klein's easy american style as women marched into the workplace in solid power-assertion of the 80's, armani's sobering minimalism againts versace's flamboyance and tom ford's sexy gucci amid the personality and image and sex obsessed, dichotomous nineties, marc jacobs' luxury cyber-youth granny chic spin hand-in-hand with the vintage-pre-occupation and dollar signs of the early 2000's... blah blah blah...

fashion has become very mainstream because people see it more. there are so many magazines, there's, project runway, the ubiquitous red carpet, on and on. it's like a van gogh ran through a xerox machine and you end up with 10000 copies. there doesn't seem to be anything special about fashion anymore. maybe this is why they say haute couture is dead because everything is truly now for the masses. but i think it's not quite dead yet because we still see some of it around, thank God!

an inny-inny-tiny fraction of the world buys haute couture but it has always been the playground of the true designer. of course lesser mortals scoff at couture offerings but you and i know it's only because they simply do not understand (funny how they finally "get it" five years down the line; they always do or at least one would hope). however, i don't blame them because a lot of the stuff is truly pretty far out and it hits you right in the face when you first see 'em. but if only people could see couture for the "idea," you know...

couture is an art form. beyond intelligence and creativity, haute couture is for the brave. not only does it take true talent to come up with something new, innovative, unique and beautiful, it takes guts - to do it, to show it, to celebrate it, and ultimately, to share it. some people say that couture is insignificant but i beg to disagree. if there were no couture, we all might as well be wearing potato sacks everywhere, everyday, forever and ever. most people don't realize (especially before miranda priestly's wonderful monologue; some of you readers understand what i'm saying here) that what we wear now evolved from an ensemble sashaying down a designers runway eleventeen hundred years ago. you know what miranda means?

personally, i do not care what the critics say, particularly those insipid so-called "style gurus" on tv who in their self-aggrandizing and uncreative cataract perceptions are kings and queens of mediocrity. i'd like to see chalayan make more robot dresses, and more armor from galiano (i love the new stuff he did!; that armor is the new montana shoulder pad! talk about the empowerment of women!).

i want my heart to beat fast. i want to get excited. designers who are intelligent and brave do it for me because they have vision and oh how inspired they are...

cheers anna and take care...

juan miguel
4:22 AM


Anonymous Anonymous said...

WOW! i never would've thought. thanks anna! i'm thrilled!

cheers! and do have a great, great holiday!

juan miguel

3:46 PM  
Blogger kawadjan said...

OMG! i'm just exhilirated to see your blog as featured in the philippine daily inquirer today. i'm so impressed with your blog. very insightful indeed. and i'm thrilled about your new show. good luck kabayan!

4:29 AM  

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