In many ways, the art any of us creates is a self portrait. Whether it be a landscape or still life, abstract piece or whatever may meet an assignment’s constraints, artists put themselves, their emotional state and sense of self into whatever they create. Alessandro Michele, creative director to Gucci, said, “Clothes are an atlas of emotions.” Of course, emotions are not rational, hardly ever totally realized, and always impacted by who you are around. In the same way as emotions form and mutate based on who you are around, the people you surround yourself with can decide for you what you wear as well. More often than not, it is who you are with, over place or even personal overarching taste, that decides how you put together an outfit. So being in a new place, meeting new people, trying new things (an inherent must to any act of traveling), your sense of self changes. Your art, a self portrait of who you meet and what you encounter, becomes what you wear and so how you appear. In the most literal sense, I was covered and am still covered in ink from my printmaking course at the Rhode Island School of Design. Black ink splattered across my body became in many ways a way people knew me, whether or not they got to know me. Similarly, the piercings or tattoos the people around me previously had or newly acquired at art school added to their sense of self and their overall image.
Being away, wherever ‘away’ is, fosters experimentation. Where you go, what you eat, and what you wear become what will be remembered in heightened detail and forever stored in your mind for both recounting and additional sentiment. Being away requires living in the moment. However, the problem with living in the moment, as we quickly realize, is that the moment passes too quickly. For the past six weeks I have been living at the Rhode Island School of Design among many talented and inspiring people. At art school, you are surrounded by the creative and truly dedicated.
Gucci is in many ways becoming an ode to the young and the collegiate. Gucci’s ad campaigns place my ideal art-schooler into a preppy college setting with embroidered sneakers and whimsical touches of color. Books lie sprawled on oriental carpets. Models wear glasses and blazers. The newest bags are named after Ancient Greek gods and figures from myth. Gucci is playing to the artistic and intellectual rebellion that is at the forefront of today’s innovative culture. Michele said, “The way you dress is really the way you feel, the way you live, what you read, your choices. That’s what I want to put into Gucci.” Think of how you dress as a self portrait. See how your style and self-image change as you meet new people and venture to new places.
My Look: Miu Miu shades, Gucci rings, Noir dress, TopShop flats, and Ikram Chicago cat and mouse bracelet
PC: Anabelle Folsom