Issue 8 is out now with Lauren Greenfield's amazing 'Kids and Money' (watch the trailer at her website), a surrealist film by Carlos D from Interpol, a film adaptation of a Patrick Marber story by Sam Taylor-Woods, and Dave Eggers' films of people trashing bedrooms:
The James Franco film goes for 4 mins, but the Maria Banford and Creed Bratton bedroom trashing videos run 10 mins long - excruciating but so captivating!
Bubbly: Heyyyyy! Aero: --- Bubbly: What? What's with you?! Is everything ok????? Aero: --- Bubbly:I honestly don't even get what this is even really about. Aero:--- Bubbly: Who do you think you are? I've never even heard of Aero, Whatro? Who? SRSLY. [storms off]
I remember when I was about 17 and looking through Australian Vogue that I experienced a momentous occasion. I turned to my favourite (now defunct) section of the magazine which featured a real person (probably from Surry Hills!) and their wardrobe. It was usually a babe sitting with her knees all curled up in her bay window, with her shiny hair and genius outfit.
The girl I remember most clearly was amazing. She had cropped soft pixie hair, and she was wearing a Vintage skirt as a dress! With a BELT! around her waist and slouchy boots! I had never set eyes on such an ensemble. I was inspired. I bought slouchy boots. I used to dream about her life – what she must do for a living, and that every night of her week must be so busy: eating dumplings in obscure and incredible restaurants, and so many parties! And that her floors would be white painted floorboards. And that she probably always moisturized her legs.
Years, and three separate magazine subscriptions later (Vogue Australia, Haha’s Bazaar, and i-D) I can’t even think of how many incredible images of outfits my eyes have absorbed, and how many women have unknowingly undergone my ruminative dissections of their lives and style. So now I am in a tricky situation. Previously my position as viewer of fashion images was to only participate by way of dreaming. But now I AM one of those images.
Last week I was getting a ‘quick coffee’ with my boyfriend (TOM!) and a friend when an American guy approached me to ask for a photo for his Blaug. I tentatively said yes, assuming that it was a small blog and that no one would see it. He said he liked my ‘funky’ jacket, his word choice seemed to confirm my suspicions of it being just a very little one. After the photo was done he said that I could look at it on the Sartorialist. Being a word that is hard to remember I wrote it down on a piece of paper so that I could look it up when I got homeONE HUNDRED COMMENTS WHAT!?!??!?
I seem to be the only person in Sydney who hasn’t heard of this blog, so I won’t bother describing it.
So the point now is this – how do I begin to dissect the situation I am in now? As someone who wasn’t Waiting For the Sartorialist, this could not be more of a surprising situation, and is, I’m sure, the closest thing to fame I will ever experience.
I haven’t received written commentary on myself since school reports and have NO idea on how to take it (I check it three times a day, have read every one, and have constantly been measuring myself by the number and weight of the comments I’ve received in comparison to other ‘Sarts’).
When I look at this image that has been caught by a camera and put in a global network of blog-readers (3 millollion people read it a month!) and where anonymous people comment on this tiny little version of myself they subsequently make this image of me, anonymous to me.
My image (well, that particular image) is no longer mine. My staple winter jacket is no longer mine. And what is also no longer mine is my (previously well exercised) ability to dreamily pour over images of women in great clothing; it feels broken to me now.
Although I’m no Giovanna Battaglia (stupidly well put-together Editor of L’Uomo Vogue), I don’t feel so separate from her because she’s only a scroll away. I loved the hierarchy and the aspiration that came with fashion, and now what do I have left to aspire to!? Besides the obvious answer of any of the hundreds of people who are a thousand times better dressed than me and who are also featured on The Sartorialist, I do feel like the aura is gone. That hypnotic fashion image has disintegrated for me! Because I was there! It just felt like a regular old afternoon, but it doesn’t look like one! The whole image looks luminous!
I read an article this afternoon that mentioned the 90’s Rave movement, and that it marked a turn for music fans where instead of staring at a band, audiences focused on themselves and on those like themselves. And without ecstasy there to liven the occasion, and keep the image compelling (as in Rave scenes) we have The Sartorialist’s keen eye for dazzling sunlight through the hair and/or people with fascinating looking lives and/or REALLY good looking people – all of them wearing sick clothes, components which, separately or together, make for an intoxicating image. And when reality looks so sensuous don’t we just end up dreaming about our own image, and images like ours?
It's as though getting dressed in the morning in anticipation of meeting, and being seen and interpreted by others, is validated by strangers publicly assessing the decisions you privately make. Imagine stepping out of your house and being greeted by a chorus of onlookers who approach you, and tug at your jacket and glide their fingers through your hair and talk to themselves about your outfit, without really listening to each other, reiterating the same points over and over.
[click to enlarge]
What my confused and wide eyed ‘who, me!?” approach towards this image could signify is a certain end of innocence. I am no longer a child living in my parent’s home on the North Shore dreaming of how I might assemble an interesting outfit (and life along with it), I am now an adult living in my parent’s house on the North Shore with outfits and a life that I am happy with.
This won’t mark the end of time spent looking at fashion magazines for me, but this event certainly has fragmented some of the fashion image. I think I would have written to the girl with the skirt-as-a-dress the same thing that young Chessa! wrote to me. Maybe all this means is that instead of just looking on and dreaming, I have been pushed into the position of participant in a fast moving dialogue, soon to be archived under April 2009.
Last night was a big night for Television. Not only was it the worl premiere of Shaun Micallef's new quiz show Talkin 'bout Your Generation', but it was also Episode 2 of Season 5 of Australia’s Next Top Model.
I'd forgotten all about Talkin 'bout Your Cumbersome Title until I noticed @marcfennell, @triplejtvdoctor, & @danilic Tweeting 'bout Talkin 'bout Your Generation. If this were an article for the Sydney Morning Herald I guess I could just copy and paste their Tweets and call it a day. [Zing!] But this is a blog so instead I'll go on and on until the only person still reading is Roie. [zing :(]
I know it’s unfashionable to defend the institution of 'fair scoring' when it comes to this genre of wacky lon-linear game shows, but surely Generation X is alway going to win just by virtue of being born in the middle, and why is Tom Gleisner even there on Thank God You're Here?
And Gen Y doesn’t exactly have the retentive skills for a quiz format. I only know stuff after looking it up on Wikipedia, and then after the next time I look it up on Wikipedia because it just refuses to sink in.
The whole thing reminded me of that bit in 30 Rock when Kenneth develops his dream TV show, a cross between Deal or No Deal and Who Wants To Be A Millionaire, only for it to fail spectuacularly, as suitcases full of 1 million dollars in gold are kind of heaps heavy.
In this bizarro context, Shaun Micallef is akin to Simon Amstell on Never Mind The Buzzcocks- both are the best thing about the show. I have nothing nice to say about special quests George Negus or Ruby Rose so I won’t say anything at all.
As it turns out, Amanda Keller is really off-putting in a quiz setting. I've always thought she was funny, she probably always thought she was funny too, but her quiz-schtick is mainly just to blow raspberries at Shaun and make whip-smart comebacks like “oh shut up!!!!” and “oh stuff you!!!!!”. I feel like the tone of the show could sharply and suddenly change, and Amanda Keller would cry and scream at all of us. Oh and Arj Barker, Charlie Pickering and Josh Thomas. They were also people on this show.
Don't have anything nice to say about the graphics either but will say something anyway because Nina likes us to use this blog as a platform to 'talk fonts'. I can't quite get my head around this huge market surge for disgusting 70's bubble writing. The titles for this show look like inside of my year 7 folder.
I guess at the end of the days like this, I just don’t really care about quizzes. It feels like a lazy realisation of the potentially interesting concept of Generational Gaps. And as someone who rarely admits to being in a Law Revue, I know that when you can’t think of a sketch you simply co-opt any theme in to the game show format: Religious Figures of the Century!!! Arts Student Family Fued!!!1 John Howard v. Kim Beazley on the Einstein Factor lol!!!1
Later in the evening I went to my friend’s sister's house to exploit her Foxtel subscription and watch Australia's Next Top Model. Driving to watch crap TV feels like going to the supermarket specifically to buy dark chocolate. You hope the effort will circumvent the urge, and yet.
I usually only watch Models in 7 part increments on YouseTube, so last night had a nice sense of occasion. It was fun to be part of the strange little world that is Foxtel. There were these nonsensical little skits about Gossip Girl played between the shows, and lots of blue. There is a lot of blue on Foxtel.
AuNTM seems pretty good so far. My initial impressions are that Lola, though beautiful, looks old enough to be on America’s Next Top Model. And Adele looks enough like Alice to make this season seem relevant. It's a pretty high-fash affair this year, they do photo shoots with thick eyebrows and everything. The girls even wear high-waisted denim and predominately Mink Pink.
Because being/having been in line for a media empire is in the selection criteria for the job, Sarah Murdoch has become the show's new host after the controversial exit of Jodhi Meares. [Jodi Gordon, generally appealing babe and girlfriend of Ryan Stokes is probably already waiting in the wings- at least that way it'll become 'Jodi Mail' yet again. Can't quite get used to the sound of 'Sarah Mail'. It's not a thing.]
Sarah is about a trillion times more natural and relaxed than Jodhi, but also realllllly boring and not as warm. Sorta miss Jodhi’s sxc necklines too. Sarah’s memorable outfits thus far include a navy singlet top with white anchors and a grey suit dress.
This week the Challenge was something about wearing krazie ice-cream coloured leotards. Pretty sure they were shooting a catalogue for the new American Apparel range. I found it particularly helpful that they distinguished Frankie, The Black Model, by dressing her in the only bronze leotard.
Then the models arrived at Cockatoo Island, gasping and cooing as though they were about to attend a boutique festival. In fact, they were there to take part in a totally high-fash photo shoot! You could tell it was high-fash because they wore voluminous skirts and pointed their elbows.
The central plot of this weeks' episode involved on of the models, Cassie, being just THE WEIRDEST. There’s already been quite a bit of press about her antics and each week shows her spiralling further out of control.
The girl clearly has serious issues and the executive producers of the show (Sarah Murdoch) clearly have no qualms about exposing them. But what's weird is the arbitrary line they seem to draw between what constitutes a trashy bogan and what makes a fine young woman. Not sure how Cassie differs from the girl named Mikarla, or Tahnee [whose job is listed as ‘school leaver’], or Madison, the Queenslander with a force field for a haircut. Only time will tell.
As I hope Cassie will prove (and Kate Moss and Nicole Trunfio before her), as long as you stop talking and conceal your teeth, you can always be high-fash. Besides which, fashion has the capacity to transcend class! I believe it was just the other day I saw a homeless man in Hyde park wearing Romance Was Born....
It features 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, an internal laundry, a southerly outlook, and a rocket and pear salad.
See you at the auction. [Edit: Nina tells me this post was annoyingly cryptic - but if you click on the link, one of the photos listed for this clearly bogus apartment is actually the mixed greens salad]