As seen in SHIFT Issue 2//Vol. 2
They thought they knew what was coming. Those ‘80s dreamers, they thought they could see the future bright and clear, but their tool of prediction was not a telescope, but instead a broken old kaleidoscope, distorting each image like a paintball fight in Plato’s Cave.
They got it all wrong, we say now, with the harsh, charcoal-tinted glasses of hindsight. We scoff at their garish colors, the grotesque shapes and strange silhouettes that marked the decade’s fashion tribes like war paint. Our present, the real version of their deluded future, spins around us, swirling with fragmented shards of bitter nostalgia and grim predictions of dystopia. But this clear-eyed cynicism, this stream of black and gray, navy and brown, it’s better, right? More realistic.
And yet...there is a beautiful logic, a gaudy geometry to that time that speaks to something deep inside of us. We can’t help but be a little envious of those angles, the shapes that bodies formed when urban warriors would swathe themselves in clothes that distorted without digitalizing, pixelated bodies of mesh and color blocks untouched by the Internet age.
Our nostalgia is a little funny, a blend of smug mockery and wistful envy. Next time you put on your makeup, look into the bathroom mirror for a moment, then close your eyes. The fluorescent lighting and smudges on the glass fall away, and just for a second, imagine the ‘80s palette. Imagine the vividness of the colors—tropical oranges and cerulean blues and neon pinks that could be seen for miles away. The sense of freedom that came from knowing that with those colors, you could do whatever you wanted, smear it in big globs, angular streaks, or geometric patterns that boggled the eye. Open up and take a closer look at your Naked palette, the understated sophistication of today’s muted tones and subtle contouring. It is beautiful, no doubt about that. But remember, at the very least, a time when life had a little bit more moxie.
1. Tasha Lynn - Shoot Director
2. Tabaussum Mohibi - Shoot Director
3. Christi Suzuki
4. Louise Bernard
5. Torrin Rittenberg
6. Adithi Reddi