For the newest issue of The New York Times' T Magazine, which hits newsstands this weekend, the main man Jon Caramanica wrote an evocative piece about the evolution and ambitions of musician and clothing designer Kanye West. It tracks him from the behind-the-scenes workings of his New York Fashion Week Yeezy Season 1 presentation to his overarching goal of creating the largest clothing company in human history.
It's a deep dive into the psyche of Kanye and how much he has made an effort to change. He references a table that was put in his new house and compares it to his ego:
I have this table in my new house. They put this table in without asking. It was some weird nouveau riche marble table, and I hated it. But it was literally so heavy that it took a crane to move it. We would try to set up different things around it, but it never really worked. I realized that table was my ego. No matter what you put around it, under it, no matter who photographed it, the douchebaggery would always come through.
Those are some important words from a guy who is so reviled by some for being an outspoken asshole, for lack of better term. While the feedback regarding Yeezy Season 1 was relatively chided for its obvious influences, he parries back saying that he wants to show his influences: "I would like to be influenced as much as possible. I don’t care if you can see the influence in something, as long as I made it better." I'm not sure anyone would go as far to say that Kanye has done what Raf Simons or Rick Owens has done better then they have. But Caramanica makes sure to point out that an item like bulletproof vests had been worn by the likes of Tupac before Helmut Lang even put them in his collections. Influences can come from many places. The piece also goes into some of the details we've always wanted Kanye to talk about and is a great read from top to bottom, but easily the best tidbit comes at the tail end of the where Kanye talks about meeting Ralph Lauren during NYFW, the picture of which sparked a social media riot: "Do you know what he said when he did that? 'This is my son.' And I was thinking, 'I knew it! I knew Ralph was my daddy!'" ABSOLUTELY FUCKING INCREDIBLE.
T also got legendary photographer Juergen Teller to photograph Kanye in London and was kind enough to grace us with a video of the photoshoot production, which you can see below.