Kanye West is passionate about design. When it comes to designing things and thinking about designing things, Kanye is always “Cosmic Brain meme.” In an exclusive from The Hollywood Reporter, the artist sat down with his interior designer Axel Vervoordt for a talk on philosophy, the process of creation, and the literal concept of time. Here are some highlights:
On Kanye’s plan to make a philosophy book:
“I’m writing a philosophy book right now called Break the Simulation. And I’ve got this philosophy — or let’s say it’s just a concept because sometimes philosophy sounds too heavy-handed. I’ve got a concept about photographs, and I’m on the fence about photographs — about human beings being obsessed with photographs — because it takes you out of the now and transports you into the past or transports you into the future. It can be used to document, but a lot of times it overtakes [people]. People dwell too much in the memories. People always wanna hear the history of something, which is important, but I think it there’s too much of an importance put on history.”
This is genuinely intriguing. A Kanye West philosophy book is something the world needs whether we want it or not. Kanye is certainly not shy with sharing his beliefs but he continues to dive deeper into ultra-wealthy, L.A. ideological bullshit and honestly, let’s get more of it. It will be maddening, bonkers, and truly fantastic.
On Kanye’s “mission statement” with Yeezy Season and other projects:
“At Adidas, I have Yeezy, but it’s a namesake brand. It’s my nickname. We do these sneakers that sell out and we get, “Oh, this is the number one brand on Women’s Wear Daily.” And I don’t wish to be number one anymore, I wish to be water. I wish to be closer to UNICEF or something where I can take the information that I have and help as many people as possible, not to just shove it into a brand.”
On some level, you can see what he means. He wants to create. He wants to help people. And he wants to be synonymous with mountains, trees and the ocean, which is understandable for someone who is so much of an artist. On another level, he sells $300 shoes. Later, in the interview between West and Vervoordt:
WEST: There are just a lot of words that I want to remove when you think about a company, like the word company. I like the word community better. I don’t like the word brand because we don’t use branding.
VERVOORDT: Yeah, exactly.
WEST: We inform. It’s a lot of things — a complete different ethos to what Yeezy is.
Again, he sells $700 jackets. Though not to completely shit on West alone, this falls in line with much of corporate America’s idea of selling people an ethos and a philosophy, making whole commercials about synergy and “creation” to mask the fact that they’re overcharging you for T-shirts.
Kanye West on time:
“I do believe that all time is now. The future is here now, the past is here now. There’s certain people that you meet and you say, “Oh, you’re from the future.” You feel this in their spirit, people who are just staying in a time where the time doesn’t celebrate who they are, and there’s other people right now who the time does celebrate, and those people end up more famous or notorious. But I’m big on connecting with timeless energy, with people and musicians that I’m around. When working on “Runaway” with [artist] Vanessa Beecroft, it was very important to not define the time, to not give any labels to the environments that we were in.”
This is just beautiful because Kanye is now a character from Twin Peaks.