The whole neo-tribes concept was sparked off by two things. First, the Dana Thomas book. Second, seeing the Beckhams on the cover of W. The former merely added grist to my mill but the latter (after I realised it was not an internet mock up), well, that damn near put me into orbit.
Has the world really changed so much that we admire people like this? Or are things exactly the same as they were at the beginning of the 20Th Century? Under colonialism those who governed were no more than chip shop girls and butcher's boys. Have we acquiesced to being culturally and mentally colonized by vapid vulgarians and corporate greed for the sake of an imaginary 'lifestyle'?
For too many years now I have felt that I have been dictated to, on so many levels, not by the great and the good but by the mediocre and the stupid; two traits I find particularly repugnant.
I know this is "only a decorating blog" (your words and sentiment Ben, not mine) so what does this have to do with the decorative arts? Well, it has everything to do with it. Our consciousness is being shaped (if, we allow it) not by artisans and artists, but by corporate greed. I for one do not want more choices, I just want better things. Better things, made by people who take pride in their work and are paid accordingly, and not made by some dispassionate factory worker halfway around the world.
This is the truly tragic part of the Neophytes; they are incapable of recognizing this. They are too concerned with image to care about the process. They are not the inheritors or the curators of culture, they are merely its imitators. They ape, not their betters, but rather the vain and empty idols of celebrity. So easily gratified with so little - I detest them for not wanting more from life or from themselves.