Kanye West Talks Politics & Skin Color's Role In Fashion In A Massive New 'Vanity Fair' Interview
Say what you will, Kanye West has seemingly mastered the art of perpetual motion. The rapper/producer/designer/possible political candidate has so many creative ventures in recent years that it’s difficult to keep track of them all, but in a new, extensive interview with Vanity Fair, West proffers a collective status update on his career works-in-progress.
The discussion immediately opens with West’s new Yeezy Season 2 clothing line, which was featured at last week’s New York Fashion Week and contained, primarily, a menagerie of skin-colored baggy sweatshirts (we were down with Season 1, but this time ’round not so much. West claimed that the design work for the new line was just as difficult as the first. “It always takes so many hours. I slept at the studio and I would have dreams or nightmares about the look board.” Many have noticed the deliberate (and sometimes uneven) distribution of white, black and brown-skinned models in West’s two latest shows, an issue that he was keen to explain as a matter of palettes and personal color theories:
It had nothing to do with race. It was only colors of human beings and the way these palettes of people work together and really just stressing the importance of color, the importance of that to our sanity, these Zen, monochrome palettes. I’ve stayed in a Claudio Silvestrin apartment since I was 26, and I love those types of palettes and that’s my opinion. And I have this opportunity to work with amazing professionals to get this painting across. I want it to become more of a moving painting than a political statement or a fashion statement. This is strictly . . . not strictly, you can take it how you want; obviously I’m a very socially charged human being. But at the end of the day, I’m just simply an artist trying to express myself, trying to finish my sentences just like my daughter can.
As Kanye’s chat with Vanity Fair continued, things circled back to music and the matter of West’s supposed presidential for the White House in 2020–a plan that West stressed is very real and factored into his long-term creative thinking. “I sit in clubs and I’m like, Wow, I’ve got five years before I go and run for office and I’ve got a lot of research to do, I’ve got a lot of growing up to do,” West said. “My dad has two masters degrees. My mom has a PhD, she used to work at Operation PUSH. Somehow the more and more creative I get, the closer and closer I get to who I was as a child. When I was a child, I was holding my mom’s hand at Operation PUSH. I think it’s time. Rap is great.”
Ever the quotable one, West also stressed that when it comes to politics, “the only concrete plan is that I plan to use concrete.” It’s a better agenda than candidate Trump, that we know for sure. Read the full interview over at Vanity Fair, especially if you’re interested in the hip-hop superstar’s feelings on fashion.