Scott Schuman’s latest book, The Sartorialist: X, is interesting, and diverse, and a welcome departure from the usual, too fashion-conscious street style photography that is becoming more and more brand-cluttered and, frankly, less and less inspiring. The photographer takes on the streets of the world, triggers your imagination and prompts you to think outside the box.
Schuman says at some point that he is surprised by the reaction he often gets when he publishies a photograph of someone from a humble background on the blog, such as “this person is worried about their next meal, not what colour shoes to wear”. I find that kind of comment besides the point, and ignorant. To put it bluntly, it is quite stupid to report everything else in the world to the western culture, lifestyle, fashion, and, yes, often shallow values. I was watching a reportage a while back (I think it was on BBC) featuring, among others, this woman, from a developing country from Africa, who sold clothes for a living and she would travel by foot to near-by and further-off villages in order to do that. And the women in those villages, who you could say that they strived for living from one day to the next, were anxiously expecting her every visit. Even though the conditions were harsh, they still cared for how they dressed, and found immeasurable joy in the act of purchasing a new piece of clothing with the little they had afforded to save. As The Sartorialist rightfully points out (and his book beautifully portrays), “much of the world is poor, but that does not prohibit people from enjoying life, music, food, art, and, yes, even fashion.”
photo by me