The Beauty Issue
Jess Blanch- RUSSH Magazine
What is it with this fascination we have with beauty? As civilisation progresses, our intoxication of its allure only grows. Poets have explored it for centuries, science stays fixated on how to get it and yet philosophies remain divided across the ages. What is beauty? What is its truth? It was this very wonderment that led us to this issue. Beyond the ‘beauties’ themselves (Jourdan Dunn, that is you, mind-blowingly bold and so beautiful), we loved the idea of exploring what we believe to be at its heart. The daily rituals – to eat, sleep and bathe – the subtleties in the way we do them that makes each of us different. The acceptance that creams, nor clothes will ever really ‘make’ us beautiful, but can certainly change how we feel. It became about uncovering hidden intimacies, exploring eroticism, nourishment and fulfillment and revelling in the gorgeousness of the everyday that doesn’t need to be shown-off.
We could not avoid those questions, however, of that which can ruin our pleasure. The ever-growing self-surveillance cameras that too often dictate our lives, the hyper-gaze and our obsession with creating an image for ourselves to be documented, and then endorsed by others, across cyberspace and the inexhaustible feed of Instagram and Facebook. How this endless pursuit of the virtue that’s associated with exquisiteness has led to us creating and controlling our image rather than just living it. The result of which is sometimes, just simply, a feeling of inadequacy. Can’t we just be in the moment? Isn’t our own memory the most potent camera of all?
It was Warhol who said, “I usually accept people on the basis of their self-images, because their self-images have more to do with the way they think than their objective-images do.” There is some comfort in these words. Wouldn’t it be cool if things were as we thought them, if we were, in fact, as we thought ourselves to be? I like to believe that we only care about how we look on the outside in the hope that others will be interested about what lies within: that we all know deep down that beauty exists in the mind, that it is of the soul and it can only come from goodness.
It’s funny then that I’m the one wearing the tinted lens. Perhaps I do need to take them off. Maybe it is only when we accept reality, for what it is, for what we are, that we will know beauty for what it truly means. Maybe it’s time to try this life ‘no filter’.