Wednesday, July 20, 2011

The clothes make the man, apparently

You know what confuses me? When people dress in really weird, sometimes shocking clothes and claim to be "expressing themselves".
So... you're expressing that you wear shocking clothes? If taken literally, that means that their clothes is who they are as a person. Like their clothes is their entire being. Isn't there something better for you to be doing?

I think the reasoning behind it is that they're using their clothes as a means to say what they're into. The phrase "fashion statement" goes around a lot. If you were to say, "I wear these clothes because it's the sort of thing I like," that'd be a lot less confusing. I understand expressing your interests through a t-shirt or something, which is basically what I do.
But when you merely say "yourself", you make it sound like there's nothing more to yourself. Like all you are is weird clothes and a desire to bug people. That's a pretty empty statement. Can't the weirdness express something other than visual subversiveness? To be subversive for the sake of subversion solves no problems. Why can't a person be more like Yoko Ono, whose weirdness makes a social statement as well, dedicated to the promotion of love and peace?

This is why I'm becoming increasingly suspicious of Lady Gaga. She claims that she's being honest and genuine, and just being herself. Honest about what, exactly? That she likes bizarre costumes?
I understand that it's all an experiment in the phenomenon of celebrity. But that kinda rubs me the wrong way. It almost sounds like she considers fame a toy, and in some ways that attitude kinda boils down to "I'm in it for the fame". It's weirdness for weirdness's sake, but I'm not entirely sure if it makes people happier like I would like it to be. Or even especially more open-minded.
I doubt that she'd be getting much attention if it weren't for the costumes. The music's decent, but I'm curious what statement it makes, if any.

Part of it is that it's nothing John and Yoko, Andy Warhol, and Madonna hasn't done already. John and Yoko made themselves look ridiculous to advertise peace and love the same way politicians get votes and commercials sell deodorant. Andy Warhol sought to bring attention to the shape and form in commercial art and iconography, and make it a legit art. Madonna probably wanted to bare raw emotions and desires that women have.

I guess what I'm saying that while being different is good, there has be an underlying purpose and goal behind it- the weirdness ought to be a means to an end. Even if it's just for the sake of having fun once in a while. At least do it for that.

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