Gothic culture, an urban culture that drags us to the past. Its images and cultural trends take us back to the 19th century. This style of art and literature emphasized the expression of emotions, feelings, and imagination. This is influenced by Romanticism. The Gothic culture took a great affinity for unhappiness and the use of ancient poetry verses to express melancholy. So, its followers take pride in being different from the dominant culture. Their dark style dress code indicates a choice to separate themselves from conventional norms and standards.
Since its beginnings in the ’80s, the gothic culture has adopted dark elements. This has been enriched with tastes associated with music, aesthetics, philosophy, art, and literature managing to become for some a way of life, for others a fashion or a feeling. The Gothic style has evolved into an expression of art. It has been cleverly represented by many artists and lovers of the genre. Among them, we can mention Alexander Mcqueen.
Alexander Mcqueen – The Face Magazine
The famous designer Alexander Mcqueen presents the Gothic style through his fascination with history. Virtually all of his work has been inspired by medieval ecclesiastical paintings. However, many of his designs and creations are charged with a Gothic quality that endures to this day. An example of his fascination for the Gothic style can be found on the cover of the British magazine The Face, from April 1998, where we find a Mcqueen at his best.
A somber, dark, mysterious image that evokes sadness, loneliness, and melancholy at the same time. That’s what the Gothic image of Alexander Mcqueen’s face tries to capture. A cold and eccentric exterior contrasts with the unfortunate reflection that emanates from his interior.
The pallor of his face, a faintly colored face which is highlighted by a deep, penetrating gaze. The red color of his eyes can easily be the source of a feeling of fear or anger. But there is something that goes beyond the red-eyed vampire, something that even provokes empathy and compassion. In many persons, this look might be able to trigger the greatest of fears, creating the worst nightmares, bringing nights of horror and anxiety. But for the good observers, for those who can stare deep inside, the image captures and provokes many other things.
After all, they say that the eyes are the mirror of the soul. And we ask ourselves, does he possess a soul? The answer is in his eyes. His gaze is a window to his inner self, exposing a bloodthirsty soul with a great need for feeding to satisfy his sadness and misfortune as if the heat of the red brew could bring him back to life. The sadness and loneliness are reflected through his lost and mournful look. As if he was crying out for help, for understanding, and compassion. His look is his armor, a shield that protects the vulnerability that lies within.
Madonna: Gothic Style
Madonna also expresses the protective shield that shows a rebellious being, full of courage, but at the same time full of pain. A being who has taken defensive positions against life because something led her there. Something produced and shaped those feelings. Some unfortunate event was responsible for the creation of that heart ached soul.
The whole image represents a call to rebellion. A call to face all the adversities and injustices that she is exposed to. It is the image of a woman who dares to stand up and face the rules. Her facial expression and body language denote that she is ready for battle. She displays a recalcitrant and defiant eyes, the disdainful shape of her mouth and even her dressing code are the pieces that make up her weaponry. Her clothes’ colors denote the seriousness of her intentions. The use of her gloves goes with the hard fight she will face. Also, her body posture indicates that she is not willing to accept any more injustice. She is the hero who will lead the battle for all of those who are in a similar position.
Through this look, she wants to provoke fear and intimidation in others. Its image projects self-confidence and toughness. She is the only one who can lead the battle. She has created this image to protect herself. Her looks offer a feeling of comfort, security, and confidence to a being that may be delicate and helpless inside. She is tired of been vulnerable in the face of social injustice. So, she has decided to make a change and be in charge of her protection.
The eyes can be the mirror of the soul, but sometimes they can be deceiving. So, the impression that the image of the inside cover can produce on us. Here we are introduced to a beautiful image of her sensuality. An image composed of a perfect and magnificent combination of lights and shadows in which sensuality and human beauty stand out. This image stands out for its nature and simplicity. It is tenuous, lacking in color, but capable of revealing and provoking strong and deep feelings. The composition is perfect. So, It has achieved its main purpose which is to tangle us with a beauty that is willing to devour us without even realizing it.
A slim and stylized silhouette stands out. She shows herself as vulnerable and delicate as if wanting to break or appease the mysticism caused by the dark color of the sheets. But, at the same time, it is strong, provocative, charming, and sensual. She has the most perfect and beautiful face that drives the attention towards her shy captivating gaze.
In spite of its delicacy, this image has a hypnotic and captivating sensuality. The beauty and sensuality of her body attracts and invites to passion, with the power of hypnotizing and attracting the weakest souls towards sin, or perhaps, to unexpected dangers. This is perhaps because beauty, delicacy, and vulnerability are only a part of a very well elaborated mortal trap. This trap that makes the weakest succumb to her charms, only to be devoured later without mercy.