The Emperor’s New Clothes

Emperor

“The Emperor’s New Clothes”, oil on canvas, 32″h x 27 1/2″w, self made frame, applied stadium jacket binding fabric

 

 

 

The continuing theme of American Iconic Fashion. By the time this jacket was being made both in post WWII Japan and Korea , it was already probably the most recognized symbol of American sport, the classic, baseball, stadium jacket.

It was worn by players and fans alike and is still a multi million dollar world wide business in most every sport.

Here and as rendered, is an example of a silk-satin, “made in occupied Japan”, baseball stadium jacket. A WWII Vet stationed there, brought this and several other jackets home with him. I had the good fortune to buy his personal effects and found them, looking as new, in one of his old suitcases.

My presentation just seemed to be ignited by its very Asian Japanese appeal. It was reversible, on one side there was a dragon, and on the other, there was the head of a tiger, they were magnificent. It was kimonoesque yet with an totally American twist and influence.

The Japanese were also long time fans of baseball, which was introduced there in 1872. So this interpretation was not a stretch of tailoring for the Japanese for their American occupying forces. This jacket in a button up form had been worn in Japan since the turn of the century.

As shown in my painting and seen in the close-ups, the jacket is pinned down in place by classic map pins. It is to emphasize, not only by its Emperor_closeup_1Emperor_closeup_2construction and painting, but by its title as well, that the map of Japan has changed and its days of conquering Imperialism were over.

The Emperor whatever he wore now had the same power and appeal as the Emperor in Hans Christen Anderson’s tale. Now a simple plebeian garment, a stadium/baseball jacket, stood for a significant change to a warrior nation whose Imperial Emperor would soon be as comfortable in a three piece suit as he was in a kimono.