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A Note on Glamour by Elizabeth Wilson Fashion History and Culture Tuesday 28 August 2012.

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1 A Note on Glamour by Elizabeth Wilson Fashion History and Culture Tuesday 28 August 2012

2 Glamour = Gramarye, “occult learning or magic,” 95. “Devils, wizards or jugglers deceive the sight, they are said to cast a glamour over the eye of the spectator,” 96.

3 So what does this tell us about the nature of glamour and, therefore, fashion? “Gothic was the ‘Other’ of the Enlightenment, and expressed the irrational, supernatural and ineffable expelled by reason, deism, and scientific cast of thought of eighteenth-century culture,” Castle 1995, 96.

4 Let’s look on pages 96 and 97 to see what was happening politically, industrially and culturally post- French Revolution until World War II. Farewell my Lady – “Why would the people want power?! It’s a burden that we inherit.”

5 So why was the dandy the ‘quintessentially glamorous individual? 98. Do you agree or disagree? How does that relate to glamour today? Force of personality, instead of heredity, became the foundation of power. And force of personality in the case of the Dandy was really fashionable performance, 97.

6 George Bryan Brummell, commonly known as "Beau" Brummell, (7 June 1778 – 30 March 1840 (aged 61)), was an iconic figure in Regency England, the arbiter of men's fashion, and a friend of the Prince Regent, the future King George IV. He established the mode of dress for men that rejected overly ornate fashions for one of understated, but perfectly fitted and tailored clothing. This look was based on dark coats, full-length trousers rather than knee breeches and stockings, and above all immaculate shirt linen and an elaborately knotted cravat.

7 Why is Glamour elitist? Tragic? Artfully concealed? Danger and dangerous fascination? “Neither transparent nor opaque…{but} translucent,” 100.

8 Cindy Sherman, Untitled, 102. See Arnold quote.

9 Nan Goldin. One Month after Being Battered Chibachrome print. Saatchi Gallery, London. 103.

10 Glamour or Celebrity?

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13 The abolition and recurrence of the ‘abject’ in Glamour. Nan Goldin. Gilles Arm

14 “When I put my hands on your body on your flesh I feel the history of that body. Not just the beginning of its forming in that distant lake but all the way beyond its ending. I feel the warmth and texture and simultaneously I see the flesh unwrap from the layers of fat and disappear. I see the fat disappear from the muscle. I see the muscle disappearing from around the organs and detaching iself from the bones. I see the organs gradually fade into transparency leaving a gleaming skeleton gleaming like ivory that slowly resolves until it becomes dust. I am consumed in the sense of your weight the way your flesh occupies momentary space the fullness of it beneath my palms. I am amazed at how perfectly your body fits to the curves of my hands. If I could attach our blood vessels so we could become each other I would. If I could attach our blood vessels in order to anchor you to the earth to this present time I would. If I could open up your body and slip inside your skin and look out your eyes and forever have my lips fused with yours I would. It makes me weep to feel the history of your flesh beneath my hands in a time of so much loss. It makes me weep to feel the movement of your flesh beneath my palms as you twist and turn over to one side to create a series of gestures to reach up around my neck to draw me nearer. All these memories will be lost in time like tears in the rain. -- David Wojnarowicz

15 Nan Goldin. Gotscho kissing Gilles (deceased)

16 Wojnarowicz lived on the streets and worked as a child prostitute. By the age of fifteen he’d suffered an unimaginable list of abuses, including being “drugged, tossed out a second story window, strangled, smacked in the head with a slab of marble, almost stabbed four times, punched in [the] face at least seventeen times, beat about [his] body too many times to recount, almost completely suffocated.” A close cousin of the Beat poets a generation before him.

17 “I want to be alone.” 106.


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