Soviet symbols on the catwalk: is it a step too far for fashion?


The symbol of communism is no longer the first of its kind. Fashion designer in the mid – 1970 – s, Moscow Dennis west, ma (Denis Simachev) staged a vivid visual culture magazine: Russian from red and gold flower to fur, jewelry, cartoon characters and the badge of the Soviet union. It can be foreseen to outrage of our parents and grandparents generation, they felt they had faith the sacred symbol of being laughed at and degeneration. Milan’s fashion show does not represent the international proletarian brotherhood – but kitsch and laughter may be necessary in the past.

Now, 10 years later, we are accidentally caught up in this era’s long visual regrets. Venetments chief designer Demna Gvasalia was born in the Soviet Georgia, because they say language is very timely and was a great success. They isolate the powerful token in our daily life – a sign of DHL, Polizei and security uniforms – and insert them into an irresistible cool new narrative. We live in an era of complete loss of context – the vagueness of meaning is a great liberation, but, as 2016 taught us, is also a potential tragedy.

However, “hunting” is just the tip of the iceberg – it’s impossible to talk about the recent rise of Russia and the Soviet union in the global visual culture, without mentioning Gosha Rubchinskiy. Since his early work, his work has reflected the strange dual identity of the new Russian generation. In 2009 Rubchinskiy called his first collection “the evil empire”, reversing Reagan’s cold war rhetoric – the epitome of western gaze. His peers have never forgotten the west’s vision: to be part of their identity through the media, to reflect something that has shaped the real thing.

Rubchinskiy’s “1984” series, launched in spring and summer of 1984, features a hammer and sickle and a large number of Russian red and Soviet fonts and slogans. When I first saw it, there was a familiar reaction: it was just for tourists, of course. What’s going on with the russians? A year later, these stylistic features are part of the global mainstream – from Britain to the us to China and Australia. I laughed at the idea that shoreditch market interns were wearing a hammer and sickle T-shirt and their knicks — but now they do. Other countries in Russia and the new east also worked: Soviet fonts began to appear in fashion magazines and in print prints by street brands. Even the hoodie arrived on time, regardless of the political baggage it dragged along with it.

For a boy or girl born in the early 21st century, a hammer and sickle may be just a miracle of the past. At the same time, it calls for bearing in mind the political and cultural struggles that many countries in the new east are still engaged in. Georgia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania and Ukraine have banned “totalitarianism and crime thought” logo, public display hammer and sickle and red star and other communist flag is regarded as criminal. Ukraine’s struggle for identity and independence is particularly acute; it is now undergoing a process of disintegration, dismantling the legacy of the communist state, cleaning up monuments and renaming public places. In April 2015, 22 cities and 44 villages in Ukraine had to change their name by understanding division. The fact that the stars used to be a loophole in buildings and monuments shows how difficult and controversial the struggle is. Yulia Yefimtchuk, a new generation of Ukrainian fashion designers, may be the only one to work with communism. For her, it was not so much in the past, but ideology, a youth utopia of equality and peace, that equality and peace may never have existed, and rarely.

The hammer and sickle of the Russian revolution a hundred years ago, the hammer represented the workers and the sickle of the peasants. The importance of physical labor and the working class a great change has taken place since then, and today even GeSha, reuben kinski (Gosha Rubchinskiy) the amount of the working class is more than a symbol of the communism to represent the working class. But why does the Vetements hoodie cause some disconcerting feelings? For me, when someone mentions communism at a party, it’s like the stereotype of most people. But also because today is a good summary. We live in an era of marketing manager calls himself a marxist, Barbara Kruger (Barbara Kruger) works appeared on the H&M T-shirt, a real fashion tutorial is what really exist on the Internet.