Mixed media, the dirty Rauschenberg style of composition is largely absent from the world of apparel. Why this is is hard to say; while this design does have specific elements that might get lost in translation is also has large and bold elements that will transfer just fine. With the rise of streetwear, the ubiquity of Basquiat, you’d think that the style that bridged abstract expressionism and pop art and acts as a stylistically antecedent to street art would be more common, but it is in actuality rather rare to see.
The composition for Owl as a whole is rather blocky. The image isn’t necessarily going for the frenetic energy that might be expected from an artist playing fast and loose with layering and assemblage; rather the owl, a symbol of knowledge and wisdom since the time in which Athena was relevant stands as a symbol for the state in which knowledge exists and is acquired in our distracted and fragmented time of awareness.
‘Owl’ represents contemporary youth and vitality in the sense that the main body is rigid by necessity, because youth and the ensuing recklessness that that entails can no longer sustained within our society of prolonged and ever expanding inequality. The youth today can’t afford to be young; not for a time as was common in the past. Today people are young into their thirties because the stability, the conditions to allow them to be otherwise have all but disappeared and the “prolonged adolescence” is rather a failure of society to allow them to find footing with the ‘adult’ world’. ‘Owl’ is a piece of our time not all knowing, but rather staring back and judging as to how so much optimism and vitality might be wasted.