Sunday, July 03, 2005

She Laughs at People Falling Down

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Rei Kawakubo, 62, of the greying pageboy, of the all-black, of Japan, of deconstructed amorphous fashions, designer/owner of Comme des Garcons (“like some boys”) gets the full New Yorker profile treatment this week (unfortunately not online). Writer Juduth Thurman teases out the depth in Kawakubo’s fashions.

Of Comme’s early work Thurman writes:
The palette was monochrome, with a little ash mixed into the soot, and one hears it said that Kawakubo “invented” black—it is one of the “objective achievements” cited by the Harvard school of design when it gave her an Excellence in Design Award, in 2000. What she objectively achieved was the revival of black’s cachet as the color of refusal.
So when we hear the tired phrase, “is the new,” which has its genesis, I presume, with “the new black,” let us think on this. “Is the new” is OLD. Let us snarl at the usage. If Kawakubo’s black was the original “new black” and hers was the “color of refusal,” can we PLEASE refuse to encourage, tolerate, utter that asinine phrase? Can we stop it? Or read the best quote from the story:
I duly asked her what she laughs at, and she answered deadpan, “People falling down.”
Don't be one of those people.


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