Month: July 2014

Esther Honig: Perceptions of Beauty

Our perceptions of what is “natural” and what is “fabricated” have become increasingly blurred in our technical world.  The theory of art(ifice) becomes increasingly important.  In the mid-19th century, art took on a perspective as an improver of nature.  Landscape gardeners like the Englishman Capability Brown pushed and pulled the countryside to make it more and more like the natural state.  Nature wasn’t even good enough to be itself.  In contrast, the hyper-organized parterres and forced perspective boulevard in the manner of Haussmann and Le Nôtre defied the the loose visual organisation of the natural world into a man-made concept of...

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High-Waisted Shorty Shorts: Why, Oh, Why???

As a feminist, I resist criticizing expressions of sexuality and desire.  As we move through the spectrum of fashion from Quaker conservatism and white pearls and sweater sets to the barely there string bikinis of Brazil, there are moments of power, expression, sexuality, desire and contradiction, all of which make me love the discussion of fashion even more.  But in each of these situations, there is the question of context and the personal expression of fashion which is style.  To work within a framework set out by the eminent cultural critic Roland Barthes, clothing and fashion are the collective...

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