Thursday, May 22, 2008

I Shop, Therefore I Am

Yesterday, I wore this shirt, designed by the artist Barbara Kruger for a limited-edition Whitney Biennial series:


This was worn ironically, for several reasons. First of all, I bought it from Gap.com, which has outdoor advertising for the series featuring glamorous artists all over neighborhoods like SoHo where working artists used to live, but can't any more because local residents and realtors never got the shirt's message that "Plenty is already enough" and loft rents soared out of sight. And clearly I haven't either - it's not like I really need another t-shirt. So I am supporting the arts, but in the most specious way possible.

Second, one of Kruger's most famous works is titled "I Shop, Therefore I Am", and she undoubtedly gets a cut from every shirt. Which makes the sentiment expressed thereon particularly subversive.

Third, I rocked it with skinny black jeans and these insanely expensive Chanel sandals, further emphasizing irony #1. Though my shoes are all black, bien sûr:


Also, as I rarely wear clothing with words on it, and this is a men's shirt that even in size small is tunic-length on me, it was interesting to be "read" up and down in several ways all day, both front and back.

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