Beware : when you can’t see somebody, it’s perhaps because it’s you.
There is a US fighter plane, no need to say its name, which displays an amazing camouflage. In fact, it doesn’t have any camouflage and also uses a perfect one. Its body is colourless, entirely polished and silvered, and finally this plane is covered with a reflecting surface, a mirror. A strange object that takes its environment shape in real time and that, in another way, shines, surely dazzles under the sunlight, to become anything but discreet. So this chameleon, by reflecting what surrounds it, uses the most idiotic imitation process.
For a long time one has been accustomed, as regards military designs, to black, khaki, grey colours, to complex forms, to repetition or motif rejections, to sophisticated optical games. One has seen in Andy Warhol silkscreen prints, then in fashion, those motifs turned into pink and yellow, orange and blue… Here one has seen the street bringing into line reserved hunting and war garments, so that it could become symbolic of a European generation. Actually khaki is almost a discreet colour, as well as black or midnight blue colours. And we can see military camouflage patterns in contemporary architecture, fashion, and decorating many of everyday objects.
It’s nevertheless not possible to wear life support clothes at the office. Dark green is the colour of resistance, which refers directly to rave parties and to the bush. Then there’s a kind of “rustique” in the camouflage wear that’s overtly set against urbanity. That’s why it’s so ineffectual in a city, in terms of disappearance. We have said that camouflage clothes, by indicating a whole generation, can’t be useful either for a disappearance into the common herd, or for separation, it’s so much more ordinary. The camouflage clothes just display a selective insubordination that, because they’re based on appearance, should be seen as mainstream fashion.
So how to fade in a city? How to blend in? We can try indefinitely to research the average… Our aim can also be to find how to “camoufler le camouflage”, i.e. to hide in a goal of resistance, whether a defensive or offensive one? How to make a critical appearance nowadays, without falling into fashion or style stereotypes, without becoming see-through too? This camouflage should get through the creation of a non-style, one so evolutionary that it should defy description. It would also paradoxically answer to Chateaubriand’s invective : “To live happy, let us live hidden” !
Here our mirror-plane example can be used, because its mounted image is only its enemy or environment’s image. Finally this plane is objective, materialistic, pragmatic, etc. What captivates with mirrors is that, by just multiplying reality by two or more, they show a reconstruction, and point out qualities of this reality as well as its defects. So the mirror is still an extremely critical object, basely mechanical.
The US fighter shows a picture which is supposed to disappear, and then makes a perfect illusion. The illusion is in the eye, the point of view of the one who is watching, from his/her localization and brain. Nobody can ignore the process of the mirror if he/she aims to hide in the city. Here is an amazing new paradox, saying that not to be seen, you should start by carefully watching…
Then we should ask if the camouflage does not engage us in a schizophrenic game. It’s the risk to run. Because, concerning natural environments a hunter will say that camouflage is simply what you do or wear not to look human. On every level it forces someone to think themselves different from someone else, and to become totally malleable. Thus even if there’s a necessity or, maybe, a justification in the camouflage and disappearance, it is strictly impossible without contemplating an absolute identity disintegration or a total reclusion.
It can be aberrant to wish not to be perceived by a fellow creature, and that’s probably why an absolute camouflage doesn’t exist. Perhaps it moreover doesn’t exist in any context, it is a kind of myth. As well as every living being needing its own victims and predators, it can’t disappear in the eyes of the whole universe, especially for those which look like it.
So, taking this theory to its own paroxysm, I should advise you to take heed: when you can’t see someone, it’s perhaps because it’s you.