Hello fellow readers and bloggers!
Of all the movements we have studied this semester, I must say postmodernism is by far my favorite. Right now we are living in a postmodernist society, making it easier to connect to this design movement over the others.
Postmodernism is said to be the most controversial of all the design movements. It embraces many different approaches to design and refuses to be limited to a single style or definition of what art should be. One goal of this movement was to break modernism’s hold on design by producing more exciting, bright and experimental things. Modernism was based on an idealistic vision of human life and society, where clarity and simplicity were cherished. However, people started getting tired of having to live the same way as everyone else. Postmodernists rebelled against modernist ideas when they started embracing complexity and contradiction. The rise of mass media really helped postmodernism take off because the world was becoming connected in a way nobody thought was possible in previous years. People were finally able to turn on their TV, hear news on the radio, or read articles on the internet to see protests that were happening in the streets.
I would like to thank the one and only, Mary Quant for pioneering the mini skirt in the 1960’s. Longer hemlines do not flatter my petite figure; I have explored knee length, below the knee, mid-calf, etc. However, I still find myself looking like a tree stump with any of those hemline choices.
Not everyone embraced the miniskirt and it started out as a very controversial phenomenon. The repressed post-war generation of the 50’s was raised on utilitarian designs and this new playful attitude really challenged their conservative values. The miniskirt had a big impact over the way youth culture expressed themselves, flourishing in the late 1960’s as this marked the beginning of the sexual liberation movement due to the invent of the birth control pill. It was a way for young girls all over the world to channel their sexuality and fashion sense. Below are two images we saw on the slideshow during Wednesday’s class.
Like the miniskirt, punk fashion (beginning in the mid 1970’s) was the way of youth self-expression and rebellion against the norms of society. 1975 through 1979 was a time of personal creativity; mostly exhibited in America by the punk music, while in Britain the focus was broader. In Britain, punk was about music, fashion, and political views upon consumerism and capitalism. Working-class youths were outraged by the rising unemployment and they sought to tear apart consumer goods, royalty, and sociability.
Vivienne Westwood is largely responsible for bringing the punk aesthetic mainstream after designing clothing for Malcom Maclaren’s (manage of the Sex Pistols) boutique, famously known as “SEX.” People pushed the boundaries of fashion and design, which resulted in a strong division between the young and old generations. Some design elements of punk fashion included fishnet stockings (sometimes with intentional rips in them), black leather skirts and jackets, big boots, and spiked jewelry. Female punks often rebelled against the stereotypical woman by combining girly and masculine clothing in one assemble.
I would like to consider the start of postmodernism as the beginning of a new era. Artists of all types were finally allowed to get away from the design standards the modernism movement heavily enforced. It offered historicism, comedic expression, do-it-yourself projects, and most importantly, freedom of choice in design.
“Deborah Counsell.” Postmodern Aesthetics: The Legacy of Punk. Web. 15 Oct. 2015. http://deborahcounsell.blogspot.co.uk/2013/05/postmodern-aesthetics-legacy-of-punk.html
“The Women’s Liberation Movement Music Archive | the Girls Are.” The Girls Are. Web. 15 Oct. 2015. http://www.thegirlsare.com/2011/06/02/the-womens-liberation-movement-music-archive/
“Punk.” Pinterest. Web. 15 Oct. 2015. https://www.pinterest.com/sjmilly72/punk/