Okay, this should just about finish my thoughts on the state of fashion up until today, that is! I have talked about the “consolidation” of fashion as well as fashion reviews and the sameness of fashion. I have covered a lot of ground but there is more on the horizon that is unfolding right before your eyes but you need to be aware and take note of it and take heed!!
I incorrectly referred to Conde Nast as the mother ship when in fact it is Advance Publications that is the mother ship as they are the awning under which all else is housed.(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Advance_Publications#Publications).. This is truly enlightening.
Conde Nast is the arm or division or “area” which is most powerfully influential to me as it is they who decide on the dissemination of a tonnage of fashion information. Yes, this is a deliberate effort on their part as to what can only be termed fashion a monopoly or purveyor of fashion propaganda. And, if there is ONE person who will ultimately and probably already has been written into the annals of fashion history in the 20th and 21st century, it is most certainly Anna Wintour who has now added “Artistic Director for Conde Nast” to her litany of titles as of this very week; a new but sweepingly inclusive title that supersedes anyone or anything else within the fashion media business.
Let me backtrack this a bit, we have Signorina Nuclear Wintour who 25 years came to Vogue and in that time has redefined fashion on her terms, all based on her ideas and her theories of the who, what and where of fashion. You with me?? So she starts in print or ink as an editor and then with the passage of time and a few continents, she has insinuated herself into almost every aspect of international fashion from show calendars to special events to the good, bad, the bad, the ugly and who is fashionable and who is not. Oh and did mention her skills as head hunter/matchmaker? Hang in there as it is about to get more interesting.
She is now the “godfather or Popessa” of fashion in terms of who will “get in” or “stay in,” receives honors, will be blessed, pardoned, or sentenced. Instead of seeing George Washington hanging in the classroom you will be seeing Anna with her bob and dark glasses peering over the future of fashion. A dreary thought but indeed possible given her Herculean ambitions, reach and powers. Still with me here?? By the way, ring kissing is acceptable behavior here as she must be adored, admired and obeyed!
The bottom line here is simply that Anna Wintour will, if she hasn’t already, eclipsed every major fashion personality and fashion titan of the 21st century when it comes to the dictates of fashion. She may not be revered in the same way that Diana Vreeland has been but there is no question that her influence will far outlast the legacy of Mrs. Vreeland. Mrs. Vreeland changed our fashion perspective for a “moment in time” in magazines and museums but The Kaiserine Wintour will have changed our view of every facet of fashion for possibly generations to come… this is not a thought that sits well with me but I feel it is much more a reality than a fantasy. She is part editor, CPA, ATM, branding expert, dictator and star maker.
Within the last month or so, Advance or Conde Nast, in essence, one of the same, has invested in a couple of internet shopping sites. Granted this may not seem like a game changer but chew on this for a bit … Anna has changed the way we see the business of fashion, literally, like it or not, she has influenced what we think of fashion with her all inclusive vision and leaden sway... This is evidenced already in magazines, on line magazines, fashion websites, reviews and all things within the orbit of fashion. With me here ?? So now it makes sense, that Missy , the center of this universe, will soon be curating how you shop for fashion by influencing who, what, where and how you shop via these websites with the same ardor she has utilized in printed and internet communication .. are you reading me loud and clear? I don’t want to make it sound that she is a one woman censor but that aint far from the truth given her spheres of influence and the loyal minions and outlets at her disposal. So, I am thinking that now, more than ever, is the time to speak up and make your feelings known about this “fly” in the ointment. Today it is a fly or a little pest and soon, without notice it will be Rodan or the fly that took over the world ..think on it!
For me, I will speak as loudly as I have been and I will retain my own view and perspective on the world of fashion as there is more than one way of seeing it. The paradigm of fashion power shift has forever... well maybe not forever... been transferred into the hands “one person” and that is not something that should have happened in this business. In a business that prided itself on independent thinkers and individual schools of thought we have allowed ourselves to be held captive by the hubris of a woman who has steamrolled over an entire industry to “see it her way!”
I am not ready to throw in the towel just yet!
*** original art by Marc-Antoine Coulon***