Pope Francis is now in the same league as Bradley Cooper, Chris Pine and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, according to the US magazine Esquire, after he was named by the publication as the ‘Best Dressed Man of 2013’.
The magazine said the Pope’s ‘sartorial decisions’ equaled the three actors’ ‘sartorial choices’ of outfits and made him this year’s best dressed man for ushering a new era (and for many, a renewed hope) for the Catholic Church.
“His mode of dressing really does reflect the mindset behind it,” said Mark-Evan Blackman, assistant professor of menswear design at FIT, of Pope Francis.
“I remember when John Paul II was buried in those opulent bright red shoes. When the current pope was elected and chose not to wear the red shoes I thought that was very reflective of his approach to being a person functioning in a role,” he added.
The article said the new Pope has been ‘big on symbolic gestures’, after it was earlier reported he paid his own bill at a Church-owned hotel and washed the feet of inmates including two females on Holy Thursday.
Pope Francis also wears black shoes, instead of the traditional red ones, and unadorned simplistic regalia which clearly showed unorthodox approach to papacy.
“Pope Francis understands that menswear is meant to express the character of the man wearing the clothes,” the author of The Fairchild Encyclopedia of Menswear, Mary Lisa Gavenas said.” No rapper-style popewear for him.”
Esquire also described the Catholic leader as the ‘most approachable Pope in recent memory’, and the humblest one who exchange simple outfits to the opulent jewelry and fur-lined capes that says a lot about the man and his simplistic, if not unconventional views.
The Pope became endeared to the world, Catholics and non-believers alike, almost instantly after his ascension to the Vatican throne for his humility.
He is known to use the micro-blogging site Twitter to reach out to people, especially the youth.
He took selfies, sneaks out at night in disguise to help the poor, and was reported to have even hung out with Patti Smith.
Ann Pellegrini, Associate Professor of Performance Studies & Religious Studies at New York University couldn’t have said it better in describing this year’s ‘best dressed man.’
“The humility of his garments offers a way to visibly display his theological and material concerns for the poor. This Holy Roman emperor really does have new clothes,” she said.