Friday, January 15, 2010

Investigative Report #1 : You Copy-Cat, You!

Yohji Yamamoto 1998
Marc Jacobs 2008

We all have web-sites we skim over to reward ourselves for whatever it is we do for a living. I imagine business-men eating lunch at their desks scrolling through ESPN for scores or stats or Perez Hilton or playing some nerdy video game with their college pal in another state. For business gals I imagine it's J Crew or Zappo's or a blog they're anonymously penning about how much they hate their job. For those of us whose living is made on the internet there are no definitive lunch breaks or down-times between meetings wherein to virtually blow-off steam. I am of course one of the latter. The problem for me is that I adore fashion and everything about it and since what I do is what I love, the lunch break thing doesn't apply. The work/play boundary is a blur.

Every morning when I turn on my computer I am up against it and its hard. What constitutes a "working browse" - an information gathering, trend tracking, temperature gauging and prediction-making move - versus a "break browse". I rarely move beyond the fashion realm no matter where I am and whether or not I am "off", not working etc. Maybe I check out a cute dog thing on YouTube but pretty soon I'm back at it searching for an episode of House of Style. Suffice to say that I've become really good at supplementing information gathered on working browses with content I happen upon while taking a breather.

The byline for Vagabondnyc has always been that whatever we're seeing on the runway right now to some extent or other is bound up in the past. Some of our favorite designers - Helmut Lang, Martin Margiela - made clothes where the references where there but on mute. So when I was hunting for my favorite ads of the oughties I started to see similarities between the ads themselves in themes across designers and across decades. Certain poses, settings, etc. In order to justify my lengthy forays into the campaign archives of favored designers, I've decided to make something of the knowledge I gather. Every once and awhile I will post an Investigative Report, my mission, broadly, will be to find, compare and contrast aesthetics old and new. To be frank, I'll be hunting around for act's of that sincerest form of flattery which little kids call copying.

Item 1: Yohji's 1998 ad with-once major now doing Dooney and Bourke and Dana Buchman ads-Maggie Rizer, AND Marc's version with-always MAYJAH to herself- Victoria Posh Spice Beckham.

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