Tuesday, 6 March 2007

What is cool?

In case you hadn't noticed, over the last 5 years 'Cool' has become a very ubiquitous, easy-to-own commodity. Let's face it, everyone is 'cool' these days. It's also the most overused word in the western world, a sure sign of its bastardization. Cool is easy to market, sell and to certain degrees achieve, with the right look, stance, sound, you are ready-made cool - just check out how many Sienna Millers there are walking down the street or how many Beyoncès there are in the charts and you get the point. This is not a good thing. It's making us all the same - so when will we get tired of looking at each other?

Getting inspired in today's culture is no easy task. It's hard to be fresh when fresh has become a commodity, when happiness has become fashionshaped, and fashion has shifted from niche pursuit to easy-access shorthand for cool. Like pulling up your hoodie to get an instant toughness boost or feeling 10% funkier because you've got new shoes on. The old signifiers of youth style and culture - music, and particularly, fashion? have become easy-access.

In short, everyone has become fashion-able. Not fashionable, you note, just able to grab hold of this week's trends with a lunchtime purchase of some cheap white trainers

Recognizing true creativity when you see it, nourishing it and encouraging it to grow, is the only way to beat the frightening forces of things like the pop idol machine, high street fashion factories and lookalike magazines and models. Do your own thing, keep reaching up for those high ideas and never look over your shoulder; because that's what being fierce and being creative, is truly all about.


Rosa said...

Gohir, you are Daddy Cool!

delmore schwartz said...

interesting. it's a very hard subject to grasp, absorb, understand and certainly there can be no solid conclusions. the idea of 'cool' is, and always has been nebulous and only qualified in the eyes of the beholders. crucially though, the homogenized uk society has swallowed up youth sub-cultures and therefore effectively any real contrasting concepts of 'cool' - mods vs rockers, punks vs hippies etc - and what we have is a situation were everyone thinks they're cool and almost no one is (by standards of old anyway).
without getting too post-modern on it, fashion and culture has swallowed itself and there is nothing to rebel against, no statement that screams "I"M FUCKING COOL, CHECK ME'...

you could argue that because culture and fashion offers NOTHING to the current 16 -20 age group that they are rebelling for rebellings sake, happy-slapping, knife crime blah blah blah. when you used to be able to say 'fuck you' to society by putting putting a pin through your nose has become normalized by fashion piercings the only 'fuck you' is a real violent reaction with no artistic merit whatsoever.

is it a product of Blairs Britain?? Face it, the economy has propped everyone up, there is now less of a divide between the working and middle classes and the kids are BORED, everything has been done before, nothing is genuinely exciting...the answer? i dunno, some people think that only in real economic or social unrest can something real emerge, artistically speaking, a true expression of discontent, that will probably come in the next 5 years.
on the plus side, Top of the Pops is dead, major record companies are SHITEING themselves - who needs them now bands can record and release their material from their bedroom, the spoon-fed pop of yore could be dead...films can be made on a shoe-string, people are waking up to manufactured pop garbage. if britney actually has the balls to jump off that chair then we may be set free, a symbol of hope....
there you go, some thoughts.

Laura said...

Gohir you are a male form of Tyra Banks.

That's just the kind of message she tries to promote.

How many pictures have you got in your hand? And does one of them have my name on it???

Gohir said...

I so watched ANTM last night! I love it, although Tyra is really self absorbed this series, whats with all the pics of her all over the house?

Laura said...

Do not diss the Tyra. Tra is FIERCE. And that is way better than being cool. Cool is sooooooo 2005.

In my hand I have 2 pictures. Gohir you are still int he running for being America's Next Top Model.

Gohir said...

Only if my prize was management from Elite Model Management, the cover and spread of Seventeen magazine, and a $100,000 contract with CoverGirl cosmetics.