Thursday, February 19, 2009

Loren: Do the teriyaki chicken dance.

Ah, Devon Aoki sama.

In my humble opinion, you convey so much of the Japan I love, in this February 2008 Vogue Nippon spread, than any Caucasian model could. No, its not simply because you are a quarter Japanese. Its not just because at your petite (typically asian) height of 1.65 cm, you are the world's shortest model who has managed to walk the runways of Chanel and Versace. No, its not because the clothes they styled in this shoot is so much like Japan today - unorthodox and modern.

Its because wrapped in you, your mixed heritage, your slightly alienic beauty, your waifish stature - you alone symbolise what Japan nation (to me) is evolving into. Its not just the white skinned, kimono wearing, samurai sword toting nation. Its a country that has mixed in the cultures and bloods of others, into their own, and turned it into something uniquely their own flavor. Japan has always been seen as exotic and a little misplaced in the world, a standalone nation that defies what the definition of "normal" is. It is rich in its history, the people who hold their traditions and heritage close to their hearts even while they produce groundbreaking technology and embrace western influences.

Simply, and complicatedly put - it has every contradiction and contrast you can dream of. 

And Devon Aoki are a shining example of such a contradiction. If only you knew.

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