“Introduction” by Christopher Breward – Aphorism Analysis
In the foreword of Christopher Breward’s Fashion Studies, he mentions several aphorisms. On page xviii he writes, “Fashion is not necessarily spectacular (though it often conforms to the theory of the society of the spectacle), it can also be demotic, ordinary, mundane, routine, and humble. It is the stuff of the ethnographer and the anthropologist.” Here I believe Breward is attempting to reduce fashion to its simplest form, and in his analysis of this form, he comes to the conclusion that fashion is ordinary. I disagree with this aphorism because I consider visual art to be spectacular, no matter how simple or seemingly unimportant, and I would consider fashion to be a form of visual art. Although there is clothing in circulation that does not necessarily spark creativity or scream innovation, that clothing still has meaning and each element that makes up that garment was invented with great care and ingenuity over years and years of discovery within the realm of fashion design. For this reason, I believe all fashion to be spectacular.
Another aphorism that Breward mentions is, “Fashion moves in space and time. It shared in the complexity of physics and mathematics, making patterns and networks, forming mazes and constellations. Through its forms we have an opportunity to re-unite [sic] art and science and to heal the rift of the two cultures.” I agree with this aphorism because I believe fashion is one of the few systems by which people globally can be united. Due to fashion’s close connections with both visual and utilitarian appeals, it is able to do things that other systems simply cannot.