Kanye East (And no, I don't mean Kanye West's bad side)
There are a lot of things about American culture just waiting to be made fun of. From our evident reduced intellect in comparison to other nations (oh come on, let’s face it) to our tendency to revert back to 1950 more often than seemingly possible for a first-world country, we are far from perfect.
None of this is a secret, especially not to Estonian artist Tommy Cash. Cash, who has renamed himself “Kanye East,” enjoys spoofing American culture in a variety of artistic means of expression.
A rapper with a Vogue-proclaimed genre of “sinister-meets-sexy ‘post-Soviet rap’,” Cash is infamous for his disturbing music videos. He’s also apparently into fashion as he’s just released a clothing line full of inside jokes and Slavic imagery.
Cash gets his inspiration from other street-style brands like Yeezy, Off-White and Vetements. “We took Life of Pablo and twisted it,” Cash told Vogue. The artist’s latest collection includes “Life of Pavel,” T-shirts, Pavel being the most common name in Russia. “While Kanye had a big booty girl, on this version, I had these bread sandals that I made and Dom Perignon in a bad Russian toilet. This is kind of like when broke guys drive very good cars, but they still live with their moms.”
It’s also convenient that his given name is Tomas Tammemets, which is eerily similar to Demna Gvasalia’s fashion brand Vetements. “Tammemets is my real second name and it means ‘oak forest,’” he explained. “There is nothing more Estonian than my second name.”
“Tammements” is inscribed on the hoodie from his line, which is dedicated to Estonian pop sensation Anne Veski.
I don’t know about you, but I think Tommy Cash (Kanye East? Tomas? Tammemets?) is a riot. Anyone who doesn’t take every single thing in life ever too seriously is my hero because of how rare that is.
Cash uses his artistry to pay homage to his Soviet roots, poke fun at America and be unapologetically himself.
But let me ask you, why isn’t this considered cultural appropriation?