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Reinvention

I had the pleasure to stay for a few days in London recently. While spending some time with my Londoner family, their typical sense of humour reminded of Tony Ray-Jones and Martin Parr’s “Only in England” exhibition. It explores the lasting influences of the too short career of British photographer Tony Ray-Jones on the developement of British photography since the 70’s and on Martin Parr’s work. Driven by the moto “Don’t take boring pictures”, Ray-Jones was fascinated by the eccentricities of English social customs and immortalized what he thought was a disappearing way of life. Full of melancholy and humour, his work impacted Parr’s rarely seen black and white photographs from ‘The Non-Conformists’ series. Known for his sociological and satirical point of view, Parr provided his own analysis of the modern life, documenting the social classeds of England.

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Beauty Contest Southport, Tony Ray-Jones, 1967

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Mankinholes Methodist Chapel, Martin Parr, 1975

Blackpool, 1968 by Tony Ray-Jones

Blackpool, Tony Ray-Jones, 1968

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Brighton Beach, Tony Ray-Jones, 1967

Tom Greenwood cleaning 1976 by Martin Parr

Tom Greenwood cleaning, Martin Parr, 1976

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2014 was undoubtedly the year of selfe, a new word that became quickly a worldwide marketing concept. After focusing their campaigns on Italian families, Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana launched the #DG Family project last October. The idea? Encouraging fans to post family selfies on the website dolcegabbana.com/dgfamily, a kind of new social media dedicated to the brand. Family is then reinvented: the generic D&G logo takes place in the pictures instead of the last name, creating a virtual and universal family.

DGFamily1

D&G Family 4D&G FamilyD&G Family2

D&G Family 3

D&G AW 2012-2013 campaignD&G FW2012 campaign

D&G SS 2014 campaign

“There is no way you’re going to get a quote from us to use on your book cover”

Metropolitan Police spokesperson regarding Banksy “Wall and Piece” book, 2006

Very controversial yet subversive, street art tends to challenge art itself by situating it in non-art contexts. First known as political or social slogans graffitied onto public walls, street art now still include graffitis, but also street sculptures and installations, LED art and guerilla happening just to name a few of them. The street is not only the best way for a street artist to reach its public, but also to start conversing with it.

When some street artists use “smart vandalism” to raise awareness on a particular issue, others see urban spaces as a privileged location to express themselves and be heard. Finally, street is a cheaper canvas for people who cannot afford buying material, allowing art to be accessible for everybody. Legal definitions may consider that street art is a form of vandalism and it is still prohibited to make graffitis is some cities. Regardless this controversial vision of street art – some people see it as a crime, others consider it as art – , marketing professionals have been starting using methods inspired from it. Called “guerilla marketing”, these methods promote a brand in public areas, taking advantage from the fact that there is almost no competitors using this canvas.

Banksy, Ramallah Checkpoint, 2005

 Banksy, Ramallah Checkpoint, 2005

Banksy, Marble Arch, London, 2004

Banksy, Marble Arch, London, 2004

You and Me, Zhang Zhaohui, Dashanzi Art District, 18 April 2013

 You and Me, Zhang Zhaohui, Dashanzi Art District, 18 April 2013

Mini Countryman snowball located in front of Macy's, December 2010

Mini Countryman snowball located in front of Macy’s, December 2010

Mini Countryman, marketing campaing held during the 2010 Geneva International Montor Show

Mini Countryman, guerilla marketing campaing held during the 2010 Geneva International Motor Show

Last year, a friend of mine showed me a picture of a cat wearing a wig. At first, I have to admit that I couldn’t believe it! After a good laugh, I then discover that dressing up your pet was actually a new trend. Even the Huffington Post recently published an article called ” Dogs wearing pantyhose: Owners put tights on their canines in China“!

Glamourpuss, the enchanting world of kitty wigs, July Jackson and Jill Johnson, 2009

“Glamourpuss, the enchanting world of kitty wigs”, July Jackson and Jill Johnson, 2009

Huffington Post, 04.05.2013

Slidshare published on the webpage of the Huffington Post, 04 May 2013.

It is not something new as painters and illustrators have always been interested in the relationship between human people and their pet. One example would be the drawer Louis Wain, well-known for his  anthropomorphised large-eyed cats playing golf or smoking a cigar:

Cat with a Cigar, Louis Wain

Cat with a Cigar, Louis Wain, 1905.

More recently, it seems that the increasing number of fashion blogs led bloggers to find new ideas and concepts in order to attract audience. The blog Menswear Dog, created by the New-Yorker Dave Fung at the beginning of the year, has already attracted more than 500’000 visitors. During a Saturday afternoon, Dave and his girlfriend decided to dress up their shiba inu Bodhi with Ralph Lauren, Levi’s, Gant, Prada and other stylish vintage clothes. According to Rosanna Casper, guest blogger for the Bridal Guide website, cats and dogs are also invited to suit up for special events such as weddings…

Menswear dog

Menswear dog 2

Menswear dog 3 Menswear dog.4Pictures from the Meanswear Dog blog.

Bridalguide.com (Dottie Photography) Bridalguide.com

Pictures from Bridal Guide online.

Cat café in Tokyo, psychologists for cats and dogs, spas and TV channels dedicated to pets… when a new Pet fashion week?

Since I have been planning a trip to Japan, it seems that I have been obsessed with cherry blossoms and see Japanese inspiration everywhere. And not only because my boyfriend is half Japanese! It started when I was invited to a Japanese artist’s private viewing, followed by a huge exhibit about manga and Nippon culture and, finally, when I was asked to give sushi cooking lessons to a couple of friends. And I must add to that list the latest fashion week and high-end marketing campaigns that are currently taking Japanese codes out of their context and playing with the cliché Western images of the  country of the rising sun.

Chanel S:S 2013 campaign_2

Chanel Spring/Summer 2013 campaign

Chanel S:S 2013 campaign

Chanel Spring/Summer 2013 campaign

Jalouse Cover, March 2013

Jalouse Cover, March 2013

Prada S:S 2013 campaign

Prada Spring/Summer 2013 campaign

Prada S:S 2013_2

Prada Spring/Summer 2013 campaign

Marc by Marc Jacobs S:S 2013 Campaign.1

Marc by Marc Jacob Spring/Summer 2013 campaign

Here the Japanese inspiration is less obvious but… look at these shoes!

Marie-Claire Italy_March 2013 (Photographer Thomas Krappitz)

Marie-Claire Italy_March 2013 (Photographer Thomas Krappitz)

 
Marie-Claire Italy_March 2013 (Photographer Thomas Krappitz)_2

Marie-Claire Italy_March 2013 (Photographer Thomas Krappitz)