Smash it up – Punk

Style as bricolage is pulling together a style combination of things that belong elsewhere and creating a new meaning. Therefore every case study we have looked at in the study group have used bricolage, the re-signification of styles in different subcultures. Bricolage will always be subversive as it is about breaking rules of different objects, traditions and styles. Punk as a style is based on this as it takes every rule in the book and trashed it, they are anti-establishment by questioning the rules.

Punks would borrow a lot of objects such as cheap trashy fabrics which aren’t considered as good taste, they would chose this ‘tacky’ material deliberately as well as leopard print and clashing colours. They wore fragments of school uniform and ripped it and wrote all over the uniform, this is a symbolic act as it is going against establishment rules again. They would borrow lavatory chains as a necklace to make a statement that it is bad taste and doesn’t go. The punks would use safety pins as jewellery in the mouth, lip, nose and ears, the safety pin is traditionally used to hold items together, they are changing this functions. The ideology of using tampons as earnings is a shocking statement. Jewellery has appeared in all of the subcultures we have looked at so far and the way that all the subcultures change there functions. In 1977 any item of bondage wear and pornographic iconography would be worn deliberately to make statements and stand out. Style as homology has a collective meaning which can show a political statement between a group of people.

From looking at the punks I can see that the jewellery theme is consistent throughout the case studies that we have looked at so far. Also how the use of bricolage is significant throughout, using fusions of objects and the re-signification in there style and the way meanings can be conveyed by fusing traditions and elements of the past. The punks clearly break rules to make shocking and political statements. Their use of anti-establishments can be used in my own work to communicate meanings by breaking the rules. Subcultures suggests the direct correlation between styles, beliefs and traditions within their group and style. Everything has significations that can be conveyed to communicate a meaning. By exploring a range of methods and materials which can be emerged to create an original idea allowing me to break the traditional rules of design and exaggerate an innovative piece.


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