The Independent are talking about global hipsters and the dissolution of traditional trends, name-dropping the usual suspects like Ryan McGinley and Nathan Barley. They call the Truman Brewery “a microcosm of an international phenomenon” which is kind of depressing but overall it’s an interesting article, describing the change in trend adoption from a vertical or trickle down movement to a lateral one largely thanks to the internet.
It’s a mostly upbeat article but it does slag off Uniqlo‘s pre-trendification era saying it was thought of as “a cheap and nasty Asian C&A equivalent” in 2004. Err, by whom?! Certainly not yours truly. Anyway if that’s all a little too fluffy read this Adbusters article on Hipsterism where Douglas Haddow calls it the ‘Dead End of Western Civilization’.
Websites like the Indie Travel Guide provide a sense of community and demonstrate how effective the internet is for bringing like-minded people together. Blogger trends are already firmly established, one only has to look at the a few of the womenswear blogs to notice the proliferation of people around the world suddenly wearing Ray-Ban Clubmasters or tutus from H&M children’s section.
The speed and self-reflexive nature of these trends is what causes Douglas Haddow to draw more doom-tastic conclusions, who sees the global scenester as a vacuous ironic trend sponge. Calling hipsters out on their “ironic lack of authenticity” Haddow states it has “allowed hipsterdom to grow into a global phenomenon that is set to consume the very core of Western counterculture.”
As hipster becomes a global brand that speaks the same language whichever country you are in I’m sure we’ll be seeing some form of backlash against it all. Style Salvage hit the nail on the head with their ‘Death of Indie’ article recently, ‘outing’ bands like Joe Lean and the Jing Jang Jong for their indie posturing and generic attitudes.
What do you think? Email me at isabelle [at] shinymedia.com
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