By: Khensani Mohlatlole
Aimee Song is a fashion blogger in the ranks of Leandra Medine, Chiara Ferragni and Kristina Bazan. You know, the girls that started out with humble Blogspot beginnings—their boyfriend and a little camera snapping photos advising the average civilian as to why tube tops shouldn’t be paired with Uggs—and now earn thousands every time someone clicks a mouse or ‘oohs’ and ‘aahs’ at a pair of cap-toed boots, score major book deals and have Karl and Patrick calling them.
So one can’t be surprised at the cry of irony and hypocrisy by her followers when Aimee posted the above photo to her Instagram, right? Aimee Song has been sponsored by luxury brands like Louis Vuitton, some of her earrings are worth more than Regular Rhonda’s paycheck. Considering the subject matter of this wall mural, that is reportedly by Kian Aspire*, is Aimee only reinforcing its message? You could also consider that the whole mural isn’t being presented; the entire message reads ‘Lost Values’.
What really piqued my interest and several internet trolls and commenters of the Instagram was her caption:
“I think every piece of art should make people think and talk. Like with any picture I post, some of the things people will say will be nice, and some will not. I honestly don’t think the artist was talking about LV specifically, but instead simply using the L, the V, and the company logo to convey a message. Just like how they’ve been many different parodies of various fashion brands lately. Of course, I could be completely wrong, but we’re all talking about it so I think the artist succeeded in making an interesting piece of art.”
My very first conclusion was that this mural was a social commentary on the ever present emphasis on the ‘importance’ and ‘need’ for material possessions. To paraphrase Kanye West in his interview with Zane Loew; if you get a really great pair of pants from Zara, your self-confidence is Shangai to Hong Kong, but when another girl walks in with the Celine version of those pants you feel like ‘poo’. Which, really, is ridiculous but that’s what the world is like. It doesn’t seem to be about how you wear something but where it’s from, how much you spent, have you been photographed in it and whether you’re the only one with it.
But then I considered the timing of this post. Was it not just five minutes ago when Marc Jacobs announced his leave from Louis Vuitton? While his leave was surprising it was also easily swallowed; Louis Vuitton is no longer the power house that it once was, it’s not the ‘you’ve arrived, my brother’ item anymore. When I think of Louis Vuitton today; it’s the symbol of New Money (and not in the romantic air of one Mr Jay Gatsby), tastelessness and crass. Maybe the artist was commenting on Louis Vuitton’s loss in value: not only in demand and exclusivity but the standards that the company now holds itself up (the Italian and French LV factories are rumoured to be worse than some Asian sweatshops, there’s the scandals of their methods of extracting animal skins). I mean, Louis Vuitton, Lost Values.
While I’d like to discuss the intent of the artist on a deeper, less superficial surface, that is not what this article is about. This whole mini-debacle that barely made it to a thousand Instagram comments really brought up an interesting issue: interpretation, artistic license and call-and-response.
The reason blogging is such a therapeutic activity and something that’s become many a people’s passion is because one gets their own slice of the Internet where you’re in charge, no one can tell you left from right and you’re supposedly free to just be you. Hopefully, Mom won’t ground you and the ol’ boss won’t cut you off. But the Internet has also made people less open to creativity (we live in age of reblogging, retweeting and regurgitating) and 50% more critical. I think sometimes we have to remind ourselves that we don’t all view things through the same mind’s eye. I see blue lipstick as the best thing since sliced bread while other people will think it’s ridiculous and I should go to a nunnery but that is OK. We can’t all see eye to eye, has the Middle East taught us nothing?
I just want to advise my fellow bloggers to consider what they’re saying before they post that comment or publish that post. Remember not everyone’s going to agree and not everyone’s going to like but that is no reason to push people down, be out right nasty and self-imperialist about it all.
About The Author:
Khensani Mohlatlole is a fifteen year old style blogger whose got the biggest crush on Big Sean’s GQ spread and plans to dedicate her life to the pursuit of the perfect front-camera angle for selfies. On top of all this she fends of vicious rumours that she’s a hipster and the desire to wear sunglasses indoors at night whilst trying to legalise marriage to dessert. She can also be found constructing rants and wearing mismatched socks on her blog, Glitter Daiquiri, trying to be Kanye on Twitter and silently judging (yet, at the same time, trying to be) hipsters and Kylie Jenner on Tumblr and Instagram. Send her a snap of your breakfast and ask her about what really goes on in Cincinnati!