Hendrix, Bowie, Prince, Barney… and me

Here we are! 2018 has arrived, and with it, the usual resolutions some will adopt, to no avail more often than not. As for me, I’d rather concentrate my efforts on simple, achievable goals. Like trying to finish those episodes of the first season of Stranger Things once and for all. Maybe dust that piano in my living room and get back to it, too. Some might say I’m too indulgent, and I might answer that in the end, it’s my choice. Because when you think about it, we always have the choice. Sometimes, we even have too many of them.

It’s probably to make life easier that certain decisions are made for us. Like deciding which color would be the color this year. And I must say that I find the idea debatable. Where are the good old moodboards that used to inspire us? When did we get in such a hurry, so unable to think on our own, that a company feels it has to come and save us by pointing out how we should dress and what color should the drapes be this year? Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against this much talked-about Pantone* color of the year, the Ultra Violet 18-3838. Violet is the color of Jimi Hendrix, David Bowie… It was also the favourite color of one of my idols, Prince, or so it is said, because rumour also has it that it was orange. It was also the color of Barney the dinosaur, one might say, so…

And me, in all this? I must admit that I’m not too eager to see Ultra Violet everywhere for a whole year. I’m also hoping that the other colors won’t disappear from the shelves altogether.

I know, I know, I’m being a little dramatic. But on the pretext of paying tribute to Prince, of giving this color a political dimension by dedicating it to the Time Magazine people of the year, and of Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute, deciding that “we live at times when we have to be creative and the color of the year has the power to bring our mindfulness to the next level”, I find that it brings an awful lot of responsibilities on the shoulders of a single little violet hue in the color chart. Sheena Iyengar, sociologist, affirms that while “choosing can sometimes feel like a chore, our lives would lose a lot of their meaning otherwise”.

As for me, I say that we discovered how to make numbers talk, and it seems it is now the case for colors. And now that we’re talking about it, don’t you find this 2018 Pantone color oddly similar to the 2008 color of the year?

*Pantone is a company founded in 1866 that used to produce color charts for cosmetic manufacturers. Following the arrival of Lawrence Herbert in 1956, the company developed its first color system, the well-known Pantone Matching System, or PMS, dedicated to printing.

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