Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Racism in America/ Black Eye of the Tiger 2

Sidenote: Ok, some may call it lazy that I'm doubling a sequel, but if the two weren't intertwined, I wouldn't exactly have much to talk about right now would I?
Previously on "My $0.02"................
Black Eye of the Tiger


Racism in America

Now....... as I stated before
"The American media loves nothing more than bringing down a prominent black person from glory........YEAH I SAID IT!!"
Extreme? I've been told......and then I saw this:
Where does one start? With the fact that it was done before the incident or that it was done without Tiger's participation?
Now it's possible that going to architecture school within an art school has made me a little over analytical about graphic imagery. I might read too much into a bare-chested photo of a person (forget race, the image of a bare cheste black man has no historic context of barbarism) who is almost always portrayed in a polo shirt if not some other professional/casual attire. I might be o.d.'ing when I say the cold color scheme of the backdrop and blue filters combined with the metallic free-weights are reminiscent of an inmate in a prison yard. I may be a little over the top to imply that the otherwise contradictory scully hat (scully = knit hat, ppl in different regions call it different things) which otherwise makes no sense, is the crowning cherry on the top to create the hoodlum, thug, criminal, bandit, villain persona. Heavens no! No way that could possibly be intentional. I work out all the time...well... used to....
(notice it's been a while since a "Staying Motivated in Gym" installment but that's another conversation) and I have shoulder length hair, so I can imagine how cold the head of a clean shave athlete must get while working out.....in the same climate that prompts one to take off their shirt....... which in itself is not at all symbolic of stripping anyone of anything...other than clothes........especially in the context of his current affairs. That's too far fetched.

And I'm absolutely confident that such an accredited publication mogul like "Vanity Fair" would be so versed in the power of still images that if any of these absurd insinusations were ever possible, it would have come up at least once before it made cover or even made it to print. It's not like EVERYTHING isn't scrutinized, analyzed and discussed down to the composition, colors, position and size or type of fonts. There's no way any publication would be either so oblivious or aware of this and still okay the article. Cus we all know how bad contraversy is for magazine sales. Who would want that?

I'm not trying to say anything, I'm just saying. Observations, is all. Oh! This will DEFINITELY be continued....
This brain fart has been brought to you by the letter "T," the color Orange, The New York Public Library, sarcasm, AND VIEWERS LIKE YOU!!!!
EPILOGUE....or perhaps, rather prologue-ey, after-the-fact but actually written long before-type-thingy....

Why does this all feel like deja vu? Bc I had this same debate almost two years ago when Vogue had "Lebron Kong" on the cover. I was told then that I was too over the top so I wanted to share with you all a post I wrote at the time in my discussion group "Vital Issues 'n' Stuff with Charles" (apparently forgetting I actually had a blog at the time)
You wroteon March 27, 2008 at 3:09pm
I think its utter naivety to say that Vogue did not put any thought into this obvious racial slap or was oblivious to any racial connotation. Before I even read this post the the first thing i saw in a half second glance is King Kong.
Example: Lebron signature (or at least one of em) is the white head band. Where is it? What are the colors of the Cavs uniform? Red, White or Navy blue. Why is he dressed in all black. I could sit hear all day and tear this image apart.

Vogue was either conscious of the racial image they were depicting and knew they could veil it in the age old guise of "oh you're just reading into it...people are too sensitive about race" or they realized the racial association that was perceived and either didn't care, or counted on it to spike sales. If you really, truly believe a magazine that is the bible of fashion and image was not cognoscente of this, I have a bridge for sale that you should take a look at.
Despite my love of sesquipedalian salads and semiotic symphonies, one thing we've heard a trillion gazillion times, when word fail, a picture says a thousand words.....



Camille said...

Well said.

Lady in Red said...

Oh VERY well said!

kevin said...

First of all Annie Leibovitz is a fucking great photographer. If you want a great treat check out her photos of Chris Rock or her Whoopi Goldberg milk photographs, fuck that better yet go all the way back and look at her classic John Lennon Yoko pic, ill bet you’ll be surprised randy to know she had a hand in such an iconographic image.

But the photo and the exclusive story are perfect. It’s really great for Tiger and very smart on Vanity fairs part as well. This is not something that is going to just dissipate into the ether like some bad movie an actor did early in his career; this thing is going to permanently add a new darker tone to the Tiger Woods persona. this image only serves to help him take hold of the "faux pas" and make it into something that adds to his image not detracts from it. it is the logical thing to do if he hopes to continue to be the athlete with the highest endorsement earnings ever. i hope his publicist had a hand in this kind of brilliance and if so who ever the publicist is needs to help me write a résumé that highlights my chauvinism, Caribbean womanizing, and the drunken daggering i share with the girlfriends of guys smaller than me at the club, or at least help me shoe horn these assets into a cover letter lol. No but all jokes aside the article will serve him well. Cause although many people will not read the story and just see the image, the image itself turns a debacle that would have been received as “tiger the philandering adultery” into a just simply ” tiger the sexy play boy” or “tiger the hot blooded MAN, how stupid am I to think this man has just been playing golf, eating Wheaties and reading the bible for the past 20 years”

All press is good press and Vanity Fair is the perfect forum for him to take control of his image. The image and our perception of it would have been very different if it was on the cover of People magazine or on the cover of The Enquirer, i dont know how complicit he was in the creation of the article but he should at least claim 100% because it serves him well. The discussion on the pages of Vanity Fair takes the discussion out of the dark alley ways of The Enquirer where the conversion was previously being held and incorporates it firmly and proudly into what will serve to be an even better and more marketable Tiger Woods persona! Now as for his marriage and his relationship with his wife, he is going to need far more than a good publicist to fix that and if he can’t hopefully he had a good pre-nup, or his wife will read my cove letter and pay for some drunken daggering, but in the meantime check out those Annie Leibovitz images.

(and by the way nutmeg chutney Dollar Wine Chip & Dale when the add revenue come in you are going to have to pay me as a contributing editor for this kind of gold lol)