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BerlinRocks's Avatar
 
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Urban Pastoralism
I've read this term in the NYT/Big City/Sept. 21 2014. It is not a new word (it is a concept in literature and art - not that I know a lot about it). But in the context of Fashion, I'm not sure I've ever read it.

The author uses the term "urban pastoralism" to (scripte-ly) describe the latest Coach ad campaign (the paper was about the Michael Kors "affordable" line of bags in NYC). The last Coach campaign being styled by K. Templer, I was not surprised this campaign reminded of an editorial by Karl Templer in Interview (Americana in the june-july 2014 issue) a recent W editorial by M.A. Sauve, and another one by Steven Meisel (the Amish one).
The editorial by Templer, Jansson and Daria (Interview sept. 2014), with his Bergmann attitude, echoes a bit a certain urban pastoralism.

Urban pastoral valorize nature and the rural world in the city.

Some versions of American Pastoralism emphasize the city as a complex wilderness, which creates within its inhabitants a pastoral impulse for a simpler mode (Golden Age) outside the boundaries of the city. However, the inability of the subject in art, literature, and film, to escape from the city forces the subject to seek a symbolic pastoral moment within the city.

And I've also read this yesterday ... something pretty close to this concept in the Nelly Rodi trend report email (a come-back to nature... again)...

Can we talk about urban pastoralism in Fashion, or Lifestyle. try to identify its codes, norms and signs - though these are pretty to identify: a luxury that remains anonymous (the new trend in luxury - in a world that collapses under social-media influence-rs) ... In France, we would call that a "bourgeois boheme" aka "bobo", I guess. It also recalls the post-Soviet Union, post-Berlin Wall in the 1990s.

I'm not sure Karl Templer could be called the master of Urban Pastoralism in styling (though, today, a strong hand in Fashion Imagery) - but his Americana Interview editorial, and other works published recently in ITW, his Coach campain and so on certainly call for a moment to stop.

There might be other people, other form of urban pastoralism (should we have an eye on japanese fashion ?)

Is a urban pastoral "seen through the downtown eye" (ie, modern) coming back ? or just has it always been around...

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Americana by Karl Templer and Mikael Jansson, Interview 2014
Coach FW 2014 by Karl Templer and Steven Meisel (ad campaign)

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Interview Sept 2014, Mikael Jansson and Karl Templer (ft. Daria)
Vogue Italia June 2010, Steven Meisel and Karl Templer

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I am hoping I didn't misunderstand the topic, but this reminded me of something I heard once. Someone was explaining his theory of the meaning of art to me, and I found it fascinating. He said that we use art to fill a void in our soul.

Example, if you feel that you have no controll in your life and that it is all a big mess, you might enjoy the clean lines and bareness of a minimalist home or outfit. The idea of having less excites you. However, if you actually had very little, it wouldn't exite you at all... It is a fantasy of the rich, basically.

Another example; If you feel that the world is moving too fast, and you feel disconected with the worls around us, then you might dream of a rural enlgish cottage, preferably with a range cooker and lots of exposed wood and other natural materials. And you might subscribe to Kinsfolk and collect vintage pottery But again, if you actually came from a rural home, it might not be as dreamy...

As far as I understand, Urban Pastoralism is just another romantic fantasty. The editorials posted pictures Daria with frown lines, hobos in the forest, and some sad looking suburb. The roughness of it might excite us (rich folks) on some level, but if you actually didn't have a home or had frown lines, you wouldn't be too pleased!

I am not entirely certain what kind of void in the soul it is supposed to fill though... It is far from as obvious as dream of a country cottage or a minimalist kitchen... Is it a reaction to the glamour of the fashion world?

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US Vogue October 2014 - Reese Witherspoon



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"A die-hard New Yorker tries the rural life" How exotic But I guess for city people it is.

It is all a bit like Marie Antoinette with her silver milk churn, though, isn't it? Nothing new under the sun

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