Modern Couture

It's all too easy to forget that clothes are no more than an augment to our bodies. Our body type suggests the flavor of drape and the shapes we surround ourselves with. Whether wraith thin, or broad and muscular, we all have a form. Some wrestle with it, other settle into comfort. But contemporary neuroscience and philosophers of the mind are currently challenging the boundaries between mind, body, and environment such that we should seriously reassess our identity as situated in the flesh and what lies beyond.

Electronics have become essential parts of our active life. We are in fact merging with our inventions. Some artists, such as Nancy Nisbet, and scientists like Kevin Warwick are already exploring the frontiers of cybernetics. Warwick succeeded in forming a kind of radiotelepathy using the internet with his wife at the other end of a direct link. Integrating the mind with databases and linking it to appliances has become a practical reality, so the self is extending into our tools.

The most accessible and common form of body transformation is excercise. Rick Owens was recently featured in Details declaring that "modern couture" consists in mastering your own body, promoting your own health. He goes on to say," No outfit is going to make you look or feel as good as having a fit body." It's now taken for granted that a good diet and regimen of exercise can greatly impact our daily stress levels and self esteem.

Our personal lifestyle is absolutely an extension of our sense of self. How lost do we feel when we leave home without our cellphone? How coherent are we without proper rest? These devices, technological and behavioral, are simply features of who we are. The limits of our identity is flexible, amorphous, and shifting like the transition of one season into the next.

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