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12 September 2007

Marc Jacobs, Surreal Life

marc spring 2007

If I had to summarize the Marc Jacobs Spring 2008 show in one word it would definitely be "surrealist." Surrealism was founded as an off shoot of dadaism by a Freudian psychiatrist/poet. The movement is heavily influenced by Freud's writings, and someone who, *ahem* has been on a recent journey of self discovery and self analysis might be drawn to this artistic movement. Surrealism seeks to reveal the unconscious in its works, and many of the most famous surrealists' works have a decidedly dream like quality.

The surreal influence comes through most strongly in the accessories. The shoes with the completely rearranged structure were amazing and were the first item that really got me thinking about the surrealist influences in this collection. I find these shoes even more interesting because if you look at the shoes Marc Jacobs has done in his different collections over the last year or two you can almost see a shoe evolution. The earlier shoes definitely laid the structural ground work that made this pair possible! I also find the black curly-Q hat, which is like a little cartoon wig, interesting and inspiring!

One of the strongest themes in the styling of the show was exposed underwear or underwear stenciled onto the outside of the clothing. What is the most common nightmare scenario of all time? Discovering that you showed up to class/work in your underwear! The motif of exposed underwear that repeats throughout the collection is decidedly surrealist. Want more allusions in the collection to a dream like state? Models are all styled with some serious bed head, and several girls walk down the catwalk in oversize shirts with numbers on them, akin to a boyfriend's jersey that one might steal to sleep in.

Bear with me while I continue to play arm chair analyst. According to Dreammoods being naked or partially naked in a dream can have a variety of meanings, all of which could relate to things that Jacobs has gone through over the last year. Nudity in a dream can imply that you are hiding or ashamed of something, it can imply fear of being ridiculed or it can imply being caught off guard. My favorite meaning comes from those dreams where one is partially nude in a dream and not caring, like the models in the show, this implies being comfortable and proud of who you are. I like this interpretation because to me it means that Marc Jacobs is back and proud of who he is now.

If given the chance to expand my explanation of the collection to only five words I would say: "witty without being too serious." Jacobs has a cult following so he can afford to put pretty much anything he wants out on the runway, and often does. "If he sews it, they will come," and by they, I of course mean everyone: starlets, editors and most importantly his cult of customers. I think this collection is creative and smart, but maintains wearable elements. I really like that through fashion (a kind of mass art), Jacobs referenced one the major modern fine art movements giving his customer something to think about and wear. Most of all I like this collection because I feel like it is personal. I am probably reading way too much into the whole thing, but that is the great thing about being a blogger...I get to put it out there and then wait for my fellow fashion fanatics to leave their two cents on the subject!

Surrealism, as defined by Tate:
"Movement launched in Paris in 1924 by French poet André Breton with publication of his Manifesto of Surrealism. Breton was strongly influenced by the theories of Sigmund Freud, the founder of psychoanalysis. Freud identified a deep layer of the human mind where memories and our most basic instincts are stored. He called this the unconscious, since most of the time we are not aware of it. The aim of Surrealism was to reveal the unconscious and reconcile it with rational life. The Surrealists did this in literarature as well as art. Surrealism also aimed at social and political revolution and for a time was affiliated to the Communist party. There was no single style of Surrealist art but two broad types can be seen. These are the oneiric (dream-like) work of Dalí, early Ernst, and Magritte, and the automatism of later Ernst and Miró. Freud believed that dreams revealed the workings of the unconscious, and his famous book The Interpretation of Dreams was central to Surrealism. Automatism was the Surrealist term for Freud's technique of free association, which he also used to reveal the unconscious mind of his patients. Surrealism had a huge influence on art, literature and the cinema as well as on social attitudes and behaviour."

3 comments:

dianabobar said...

yes yes yes, loved it!!! great theories!

Ondo Lady said...

Wasn't he over two hours late with this show? I heard even the great Anna Wintour walked out before it started. Other fashionistas were saying it was not worth the wait. I wonder where Marc goes from here?

Chic and Charming said...

As per a recent report, he might be picking up and moving to Paris! Apparently he was so upset by the backlash against his delayed show that he is thinking about leaving the States. I don't think it will happen..

I guess I thought all fashion shows ran late...