The Century of The Self

Rock Series I


(Rock Series I, Oil and Gold Leaf on Boerd, 120×120 cm, Marco Grassi)

(Gallery Visit on 25.07)

What inspires me about this painting is the technique including the material choice. Although the motif is quite simple, the face (maybe “I”), I feel something from these strokes, mixed colour and this dynamic elaboration. She looks like struggling with something, or might be feeling grief.

The idea which this painting gave me was “deconstructing”. To show the frustration of the ego against unconscious purchases of fast fashion, it would be working as a starting point of designing to play with (deconstruct) cheap clothes which are available in stores such as H&M or UNIQLO.

Mass Consumption and Personal Identity


(Mass Consumption and Personal Identity, Peter K. Lunt and Sonia M. Livingstone, 1992)

Page 24, 25

In terms of the identity establishment, mass consumption is regarded as one of the social aspect to clarify your economic status, personality and your lifestyle. These facts work as a part of your identity, therefore, conduct itself to purchases something is indirectly linking to the configuration of the self, which is, most importantly, recongnized from the others, not from  yourself.

Now in this project, the purchases of fast fashion is defined by myself as an action driven by willingness to create fashionable sense, a kind of recognition as a fashionable person, in a daily life. That tendency of mass consumption of clothing is now too much exceeded. 


Louis Vuitton Fall 2017 Menswear


(Louis Vuitton Fall 2017 Mens, Louis Vuitton, 2017)

I think this collection was quite influential, because of the collaboration. The high luxury fashion brand just collaborated with the street fashion brand. This was the moment that Luis Vuitton was influenced by quick shifts of fashion for young ages. I think there’s up coming power from the middle or even the bottom of the fashion hierarchy which is driven by the communities of fashionable people on SNS.

The use of propaganda to manipulate people, done by Bernays


Indeed, propaganda is often used in politics to lead people to a certain pathway. But it is also compatible with commercial advertisement. A propaganda needs a statement which is often about rightness toward wrongness, and Bernays created a statement that it is torches of freedom to ban women to smoke in public. He completely altered the idea of cigarette from the symbol of men to represents of equal freedom between men and women.

When it comes to fashion, what would it be ? The idea started from the establishment of the self and is now maybe “Fashionable or Die”, I think.

Historical Materialism

Key points

  • Transitions in human society is provoked to resolve the contradictions of material factors in society.
  • Human history is the history of how people work and produce.
  • Any historical actions that people have done are because of material factors, not driven by their spiritual movements

ZARA Fall 2018 Men Campaign

Louis Vuitton Spring 2019 Men


(Louis Vuitton Spring 2019 Men, Louis Vuitton, 2018)

The cereative director of this show was Virgil Abloh, who has been designing Off-White. His main concept is “Street Luxury” and was presented in this collection as well. I think the collaboration of street style and high fashion is very relating to my project focus. “Casualty”, the sense of everyday fashion, might be taking over the top of the fashion hierarchy, because of such a style.

The influence of everyday fashion on the luxury fashion brand

[Louis Vouitton Spring 2019 Men]

The clothes themselves signaled the dawning of a new era. Neither pure streetwear, nor straightforward luxury, they sat somewhere in between, with all the trial and error that comes with mapping new territory.

“It’s not oversize. There’s volume in the pant, it’s very relaxed, very casual, very chic. Those are the things that I believe in. That’s my personal aesthetic. This is me having a conversation with luxury,” explained Abloh, who personally favors an adolescent’s uniform of T-shirt and jeans.

“Luxury is something that’s coveted. It’s not necessarily something that’s expensive, so I’m employing the perfect vintage T-shirt that you find in Melrose in L.A. — that’s equally as important as a cashmere sweater in brushed mohair,” he posited. As are the accessories.

(WWD, Joelle Diderich, 21.06.2018)

This collection showed the combination of casual fashion style and luxury fashion label. It is worth looking at in terms of inspiration for design development.

What is Pop Art

Nicola L: Performance with non-celebrity people

The idea to make a piece of art where everyone shares the same skin”, Nicola L.

It sounds like “be homogeneous” for me, which is often seen everywhere today. 

Nicola L

“Working Process” exhibition


(Working Process, Nick Waplingron, 2015)

The photo in the middle which has really strong impact is reminding me of mass consumption. And this exhibition is about the collaboration of recycling trash and fashion designs, therefore it is relating to my project more than Pop Art inspiration.

“Working Process”

Primark Effect, Anonymous Mass


Her statement is relevant to mine, which is that the unconscious consumption and waste of clothing istaking over public and make them homogeneous mass. The interesting point is that she mentioned the effect as a real circumstance of Primark Effect.

UK household average purchasing clothing

The average UK household spends more than £1,700 for purchasing clothes per year

Inspiration of the exhibition, "Working Process" by Nick Waplington

The Century of The Self

The Century of The Self, Adam Curtis, 2002

The documentary film about the phychoanalytical manipulation of clusters in commercial and ploitical ways. 

This film gave me the idea to focus on unconscious consumption of fast fashion for the youth. Considering Bernays’ idea of the self, it is possible to deliberately give a designed identity to people with a propaganda. Although the establishment of the ego or identity has been regarded to be driven by inner actions or motivation of individuals, it is potentially created by a specific idea and leaded to be there. I think the notion of fashion is very typical about this. Now that people think it is a great freedom to show themselves through fashion. But that works as a kind of social justice and force us to, unconsciously, approve of massive consumption of clothing. 

My idea is to visualize the frustration of the ego within unconscious purchases of fast fashion clothing. 

She observed her reflection in the glass


(She observed her reflection in the glass, 37.3×55.8 cm, John Hilliard, 1976)

This series of photos make me think about the existance of the self. In each graphic, it seems to be different. For example, in the first one, it is quite obvious that the main character is the lady on the left side and there seems to be her presence (ego?). However, in the third one, she became obscure and the main character moved to the lady standing inside the frame. Her existence is gradually being unclear. 

That inplied me that the Self or the recognition the Self is objectively defined. It does not really matter wether or not she is actually here and recognizing herself. This feeling, something like isolated, would be potentially linked to the Talk in Tate Mordern. 

The End of Civilization


(The End of Civilization, Jurgen Lehl, 2017) *primary photo at 21st Century Museum, Kanazawa

This exhibition is not directly relating to the concept, but it is about people’s ignorance of mass consumption. He gathered floating wreckages in the beach in Okinawa and used them for making lights. He aimed to reuse and transform something which will never resolve itself into nature. His strong statement on the website inspired me to develop my concept.


On The Beach, Jurgen Lehl interview

Virgil Abloh (Off-White)×Nike

I see here the strong impact of the casual fashion to create massive trend, which is even taking over the conventional notion of High Fashion.

UNIQLO × JW Anderson


(UNIQLO and JW Anderson SS 2018 Collection, 2018)

Collaboration is a familiar way for UNIQLO. This allows normal people to access to JW Anderson’s signature. I think it is the way to sell the clothes to our desire. There are many elements to lead people to unconsciously buy clothes. Name value, signature, temporary selling, low price, sale.

Maslow’s hierarchy of needs (Study of Self-actualization)

The analysis of Self-actualization in fashion communities on Instagram. And the interference of Fast Fashion

The establishment of the Self through fashion, the main topic in the project, is belonging to Self-actualization, because the identity or figure that people want to obtain in fashion communities like on Instagram is not something necessary for them to healthily live. It is to do with achieving something and would never fulfilled. Fashion influencers play the role of ideal figure for followers and followers act to be like that. The model of Self for the actualization is duplicated one. 

However, the needs of Self actualization is hardly fulfilled. In this case, one of the tallest wall toward them is the capability of accessing to high fashion clothes; to be frank, it’s money. Fast Fashion provides them with the solution of that. That quickly transfer the trends into their production and sell. Therefore, even if people cannot afford Louis Vouitton, they can buy similar designs of clothes. Fast Fashion is important way for them to achieve their emotional needs, not physical and material necessity.


The increase of prêt-à-porter brands joining Paris Couture schedule


The fact that haute couture Maisons have been decreasing in Paris Collection, on the other hand prêt-à-porter brands joining Paris Fashion Week have been increasing.

Fast Fashion and Consumption Behavior of Young People

Fast Fashion and Consumption Behavior of Young People

Key Points (interesting facts mentioned in the essay) and Analysis 

  • Failure of localization is the reason why H&M and Foever 21, the brands succeeding in other countries, failed to achieve their economic growth in Japan.
  • Zara, the fast fashion brand which is the most biggest revenue in the world wide, use 200 designers to ‘rip off’ design features from latest high fashion collections


In Uk, the country in which the biggest fast fashion industry in the world is, PRIMARK is the good example to refer to the first point. In UK, in my opinion, prices is the key point to fascinate people to buy clothing, rather than designs, because designs are all brought down to the fast fashion in common and there’s almost no other point to outstand the other brands. When considering the fact that PRIMARK is radically occupying the share in UK (Research file), I figured out the brand seemed succeed to localize itself well by performing with its low prices clothing. 


The second point indicates how fast fashion work; their main concern. Before localization, finding the most biggest demond of people, the fashionable designing of fast fashion is the core idea. Fast Fashion produces clothing which looks similar to the trends in high fashion. By doing that, they achieve to offer ‘solutions’ to the majority of people (I mentioned this, on the sketchbook,  in the relation with the Instagram affair between followers and influencers).

Louis Vuitton Suits made of “Paper”


(Louis Vuitton Suits, Kyle Bean, unknown)

I really like the idea to use paper for the part of the outfits. It is interesting that Louis Vuitton is presented with paper which would never be expensive. This implies to me that what people recognized Louis Vuitton with. It is the pattern which is quite iconic for the brand; Visual Identity of Louis Vuitton.

Yohei Ohno Fall 2017 Women: Material Choice


(Yohei Ohno Fall 2017 Women, Yohei Ohno, 2017)

This collection is interesting in terms of material choice. The designer, Ohei Yohno, focused on technological and industrial materials. These outfits are quite opposite of the materiality in Fast Fashion.

Charles Jeffrey Loverboy SS 2019 Men


(Charles Jeffery Loverboy SS 2019 Men, Charles Jeffrey, 2018)

His designs have craziness united with basics. The beautiful balance of that is really ideal for me when I visualize something in between fast fashion and high fashion.

Annual Waste of Textiles and Clothes in UK

Annual amount of wasted clothes is 350,000 tonnes worth over £140 millions

Clothing Consumption in 2014

WRAP suggest, in Textile Market Situation Report Spring 2016, that clothing consumption was around 1.1 million tonnes in 2014. The total consumption includes both clothing and non-clothing was estimated as 1.7 million tonnes.

Refered on page 5


Digesting of Waste and Resources Statistics 2018 Edition; Charity Shop Grade Textile, page 37. 38.

The percentage of wasted clothes in UK

Primark has been growing faster than any others last 5 years

Stealing share

Primark's sales come as other retailers have struggled to boost profits amid a challenging High Street environment.

Even after opening 30 stores in nine countries with 1.5 million square feet of selling space, ABF said Primark still had room for "significant growth".

The company said trading at Primark had been "excellent", particularly over the summer.

In the UK, Primark "performed particularly well", ABF said, with sales up 10% from last year and its share of the total clothing market "increased significantly".

"Primark has grown faster than any of the other top 10 clothing market players over the past five years", said Charlotte Pearce, a retail analyst at GlobalData. "By providing value for money in its trend-led clothing, it has been able to steal share from midmarket retailers as shoppers trade down".

(BBC online, 07.11.17)

"APOC",Issey Miyake; the idea of the garment display