by PD Dr. Monika Kritzmöller
translated by Daniel Young
Fragmented, alienated – or actually just itself? – the face of the
beholder is mirrored in the flawless chrome surface that hugs the taut
luxury body. Its contours are unmistakable enough so that its identity
when veiled is unequivocally revealed. Chanel, Hermès, Rolex: the
discussion is about products from luxury brands. Are these insignias
of identity? Are the empty fragrances of our pretensions oozing forth?
Or must we preserve it, because it possesses the evidence that high
culture and sustainability are compatible?
It is the relationship between the observer and the object that at
first provides information regarding the quality of this liaison. The
conciseness of a form is only recognizable under an opaque veil, which
is immune to the authority of time and neutralizes the notion of
plagiarism and visual-aesthetic wear. Almost as an admission ticket,
it encourages the notion that "preservation" is a worthy, physically
enduring feature of exceptional material – or working properties – and
a counterpoint to brand labeling, which also obscures the magnificent
staging forms and its underlying lack of content.
As would be found in any self-indulgent anything-goes society, where
not only personal styling, but the entire identity is a result of
ubiquitous acts of choice, (good) brands negotiating as "vessels", are
imbued with their own stories. These stories are admittedly written in
the act of usage. Sometimes they are volatile, such as the sparkling
of a sparkler which teasingly burns up, and would be described by the
Sociologist Georg Simmel as "Omnia habentes, nihil possidentes". There
are many biographies of exhaustive object appropriation. In this
context "luxury" means stepping out of a disposable banality, but also
infers the removal of transient alternatives which directs you towards
a perception of sense and sensibility.