Hermes, 1994

Blatant pandering to the exploding middle eastern market that had been identified late in the previous decade or subversive nod to worldly Hermes values? The image of a saharan bedoin woman wearing an Hermes printed scarf as a niqab is as alluring as it is puzzling, and no less politically incorrect. Given the bag and saddle maker’s pristine reputation as the most sacred of French luxury brands and France’s current contentious and strenuous relationship with its North African immigrants, the layers build up fast. Certainly it holds an electric excitement, a feeling for something bold and new if at least politically dubious. But who better than Hermes to take you into a brave new world? Maybe that’s the sprit the labels new women’s designer, Christophe Lemaire, has taken up as his charge.

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3 responses to “Hermes, 1994

  1. linnemore nefdt

    i don’t see a brave new world in this picture, the imagery is typically mainstream exoticism and thus to be read as blatant market exploitation.

  2. But I am curious if the fact that there may have been women in the middle east in 1994 who were in fact wearing their hermes scarves with their hijjabs, or maybe underneath their burqas, or even as a niqab, does that change the reading of this image? There is a good chance it represents an actual reality.

    • linnemore nefdt

      i don’t see a brave new world in this picture, the imagery is typically mainstream exoticism and thus to be read as blatant market exploitation.

      i imagine that it also does represent an actual reality. from what i read and see, middel eastern buying power seems to have been keeping the european couture houses afloat for quite a while.

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