Pied Dans la Bouche
The occasionally cantankerous A.P.C. honcho Jean Touitou just sat down with Hypebeast’s Eugene Kan to expound on the state of modern clothiers. But when the conversation turns to America, he gets a little carried away and moves towards nationalist body snark. We’ll forgive him for choosing Serge Gainsbourg over the Ramones, but this requires an explanation.
Asked about the state of American menswear, J.T. drops this observation:
The American body is just impossible. It’s impossible to have a huge man look elegant, that’s why in Asia they’re usually more handsome because the proportions are better. In America, they are obsessed in sports. Sometimes you go to Los Angeles, big chest and broad shoulders with skinny legs. So I think that’s a problem in menswear.
The problem, in other words, is your body, not your clothes. It comes on the heels of Touitou big-upping Thom Browne, who can make life pretty hard for anyone with much in the way of shoulders, but we always thought that was an unfortunate side-effect rather than a grudge against the bulky of the world.
While Touitou may not be able to recall, there have been more than a few larger style icons through the years—Mr. Schnabel leaps to mind, along with a cohort of Hollywood gym rats—but it helps if designers decide they’re up to the challenge.
- — Russell Brandom