Succès de Scandale: Homophobia, Racism and Abject Marketing in Fashion

Succès de Scandale, the manipulation of outcry over the deliberately shocking, has been used frequently to garner notoriety and fame in the past. Currently, fashion brands are notorious for dropping crypto-offensive items into their marketing and then backing off with a meagre apology when customers react with legitimate offence. Social media hashtags generate viral visibility, and the associated brand is amplified exponentially. Engaging in this dance between the edgy and the truly offensive becomes tactical for brands to appear ‘cool’,Read more

“Y Sin Embargo Te Quiero (And Yet I Love You) Economic Policy Encoded in the Consumption of Used Garments” Conference Presentation: Secondhand Cultures in Unsettled Times Symposium, June 15-16, 2021 School of Journalism, Media & Culture, Cardiff University, Wales

I presented “Y Sin Embargo Te Quiero (And Yet I Love You) Economic Policy Encoded in the Consumption of Used Garments”  Secondhand Cultures in Unsettled Times Symposium, June 15-16, 2021 School of Journalism, Media & Culture, Cardiff University, Wales. The article this presentation came from is here: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/14759756.2021.1909207 The presenattion is here: This research involves an onsite ethnographic study and interview of the designers of the Clandestina fashion brand in Havana, Cuba. The Clandestina label creatively capitalizes on a commodityRead more

“Cosmetics, Glamour and AIDS: Way Bandy, Scott Barrie and Halston”

“We are shaped and fashioned by what we love.”― Johann Wolfgang von Goethe I presented “Cosmetics, Glamour and AIDS: Way Bandy, Scott Barrie and Halston” Thursday, July 1st at 1pm Toronto time for the Sartorial Society Series @SartorialSeries https://www.sartorialsocietyseries.com/ Here is the recording: https://www.sartorialsocietyseries.com/ My talk was part of week 5: Week Five: Trauma & the Legacies of Loss 1st July 2021 ​ Lucy Adlington (20-minute paper) The Apple-Green Gown: Ghosts of ADEFA and Nazi Germany ​ Mark O’Connell (20-minute paper)Read more

“Browsing the Virtual Boutique with Baudrillard: The New Realities of Online, Device-Based, Fashion Design & Consumption” (2021)

I have a new article “Browsing the Virtual Boutique with Baudrillard: The New Realities of Online, Device-Based, Fashion Design & Consumption” (2021) being published in the special publication: the 3rd Special Issue: In Pursuit of Luxury Journal in collaboration with the Journal of Design, Business & Society.  Abstract Contemporary engagement with fashion is with slick simulacra, daydreams, and digital fantasies; an impossible promise of a beautiful, de-corporealized perfection. The virtualizing of fashion consumption has in turn dematerialized garments completely. Although late to the party, the consumerRead more

Sine Qua Non: An Exploration of a “Catholic Imagination” at the Met

“Sine Qua Non: An Exploration of a ‘Catholic Imagination’ at the Met” (2019) Mark O’Connell   Abstract: Recently, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, a hallowed cultural institution, was transformed into an ecclesiastical couture extravaganza through the installation of the Anna Wintour Costume Institute’s latest exhibition, Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination. This exhibition showcased papal finery as well as gorgeous couture gowns juxtapositioned with icons from the Met’s collection in various galleries, some even installed withinRead more

“Items: Is Fashion Modern?” at the MOMA

Visited the “Items: Is Fashion Modern” Exhibition at MOMA which is described on the museum website as an exhibit that “explores the present, past—and sometimes the future—of 111 items of clothing and accessories that have had a strong impact on the world in the 20th and 21st centuries—and continue to hold currency today”. Some of these items are of modern vintage like Levi’s 501s, the Breton shirt, and “the Little Black Dress”, and there also ancient and “culturally charged” items likeRead more