22 March 2016

STYLE | YAYOI

Wearing top from Junya Watanabe, pants from numb, sneakers from SWEAR.

 Amidst the hazy weather that has bestowed itself upon Hong Kong, a similar cloud of excitement hangs in the air around the peripheral area of Hong Kong island. In other words, ‘tis the week of champagne, parties and a steady flow of art related happenings around the upper echelon of society. You will no doubt chance upon a few memorable characters making up the buzzy atmosphere that is #artweek: the event hopper, a species that has no difficulty illustrating their attendance at one of the many vernissages happening this week, the champagne hoarders, who share yet another photo of their umpteenth flute on Instagram, or the peacock, the type that sees equal amounts of attention in the urban jungle during fashion week. Having said that, I am certainly guilty of fulfilling one or two of the stereotypes every now and then.

What’s worth mentioning is that with art being such a hype driven commodity, its aspirational value is multiplied ten fold with the proliferation of social media. Never mind the fact that you’re at a loss for words staring at a blank canvas (because of its infinite meanings and NOT the price obviously), or the fact that some works seem to only carry shock value or a photographic moment for social media – what this all creates is a desire to sensationalize art the same way fashion is experiencing a ‘see now, buy now’ phenomenon. It is ephemeral, packed with energy, but very much short-lived. When people ask me whether I’m a fan of Art Week, I usually reply with mixed feelings because context here is everything and subtext is merely an afterthought. Who needs to understand the mathematical order behind Sol LeWitt's sculptures when all you really need is a photo of you standing inside the cubes and a black and white filter?

It’s not all bad of course, even my friends who aren’t particularly moved by contemporary art get excited for a week like this. Any interest is better than a flagrant disregard for the arts I’d say. If anything, it gives me an excuse to wear my Yayoi Kusama costume out for a spin.

Photos taken by Bryant Lee.


27 January 2016

STYLE | How my imagination ran wild with JW Anderson


Let's first establish that I rarely make such controversial statements at the beginning of anything I write. Despite how tempting it is to bait my audience (*cough cough* Harper's Bazaar), I'm usually annoyed by such tactics unless my writing has everything to do with said statement. In this case, my imagination is definitely not something I'd lie about. 

A profound sense of fantasy rifled through me as if it were the first time I saw the transformative impact of fashion. I was immediately transported back to the day when I would wrap myself in a duvet, march around the house and believe that I was royalty (clearly some of my fashion sensibilities had been influenced by Cruella de Vil). I kid you not, it was love at first sight. I might as well have followed Keats' example and named this post 'Ode to a Scarf". Similar to the Grecian urn that Keats' so lovingly adored, this scarf is certainly an item that would last a merry-go-round of trends if not forever.

Perhaps it's the nonchalant drape that set forth my imagination brimming with wild adventures and nomadic tales. Evidently, such vivid representations exist in my head to escape the banality of everyday life. It's a true tale of falling in love with fashion, not for the glamour (though I admit I do indulge myself occasionally), but for the chameleon-esque way of putting on different sides of myself. I've had my fair share of bewilderment amongst my friends for spending such an extortionate amount of money on something so plain and unusable. On closer inspection however, you'll notice as with any item that Anderson designs, the scarf carries an off-kilter appeal that paints its otherwise "plain" appearance. The volume and length is ridiculously dramatic while the mohair trim sways to your every step.

While Jonathan Anderson is famous for his provocative and seemingly unwearable designs, this scarf strikes the perfect balance between fantasy and reality. Many would say good taste is everything, but I would also like to think the opposite is always more interesting, n'est ce pas? Anderson's design vocabulary occasionally verges on the line of bad taste, but it's exactly this unpredictability that marks him worthy of winning Designer of the Year for both menswear and womenswear at the British Fashion Awards. In other words, his unorthodox styling and gender fluid creations have been met with critical acclaim, casting a warm light on being true to yourself in an industry famous for fake tans and picture perfect glamour.








22 December 2015

STYLE | [OOTD] The Force Awakens


Star Wars opened to much fanfare over the weekend and it’s buzzed as one of the best sequels in the series. I have to admit I’ve never actually jumped on the bandwagon the same way I've largely been oblivious to the happenings of Game of Thrones - Le gasp - But before I'm murdered for not watching something as culturally significant as GoT (this Buzzfeed video sums it up perfectly), I do have a reason for my "madness". 

Star Wars released its prequels back when I was around 6 years old, a time when I was just a bratty primary school kid who had just discovered his love for fashion. Naturally I was unable to understand anything in the movie due to my sadly undeveloped pea brain. Add to that the purportedly slow and uninteresting childhood of Anakin Skywalker and it’s a recipe for disaster. Would I give it another shot? I suppose so. Unfortunately, even the slightest interest in the series hasn’t exactly been acted upon (unless you count one of my favourite rides at Disney World being the Star Wars attraction as one).

As for Game of Thrones, I have my fear and lazy ass to blame. You know that feeling when you start something and wonder if it’s going to be a waste of time? Well, I knew that wouldn’t be the case for GoT. Instead, my fear stems from the fact that I'd be sucked into the universe that everybody so loves. I've been coaxed countless times to plunge down the rabbit hole but I also remember I’m at least 5-6 seasons (Or even more? I've no idea...) away from what’s happening right now. Never start something you can’t finish right? Also judging by my lack of a post schedule here on Cut & Copy, you can understand why I never got myself to commit to the entire thing.

I digress. In any case, have or have not, my interest in their award-winning wardrobes deserves a little more credit. Yes, it's definitely superficial to like something simply based on appearances. However, you cannot deny the power of these visuals and its effect on the overall movie. Padmé Amidala's outfits reflected her mood and the scenario she was in. We also have the combat costumes of GoT that reflect social hierarchy and the character's significance to the overall plot. Now who says fashion is just about looking good?

As much as I'd like to proclaim the transformative power of fashion, I can't help but also admit that at the end of the day, all I want is a damn good photo of my outfit :P

Taken by Emily Cheng and edited by me.