I have mixed feelings about the color orange. Our recent political history is to blame. Donald Trump was famous for his amazing cantaloupe skin. Many would argue that he shares his makeup with his great friend Narendra Modi. Modi’s starchy skin tone is often matched with his kurtas. But with the rise of Yogi Adityanath, he seems to have given up his desire to wear orange. Yogi G’s oranges are so amazing, you won’t want to look anywhere else.
I can’t blame BJP’s Narottam Mishra for being offended by Deepika Padukone’s orange outfit in the song ‘Besharam Rang’ because we are tired of colour. They want to ban the film completely for hurting ‘Hindu sentiments’ when an actor with a fair complexion and tone wanders through the film for 15 seconds. Of course, it’s a coincidence that her dance partner Shah Rukh is my-name-is-khan, and Padukone appeared in support of the student protest at JNU in 2020. Rest assured that this change of direction has nothing to do with our confrontation with Chinese troops in Tawang.
In fact, Shah Rukh famously belted out the blockbuster song ‘Rang de tu mohe gehrua’ (color me saffron) in Dilwale (2015). BJP’s celebrity spokesperson Amit Malviya recently mocked Mamata Banerjee when Arijit Singh sang the song in front of her in Kolkata.
I don’t think I own an orange dress or shirt. Perhaps the red-yellow combination will make brown skin look dull even when it flatters white to dark skin tones. In the film Legally Blonde (2001), Elle Wood said, “Everybody who said orange is the new pink was really upset.” Orange also has a complicated relationship with fashion.
That said, it has an all-season appeal. It’s a great sunny color to wear in summer, it’s a tribute to autumn leaves in fall (like Kashmiri chinar leaves) and it gives a beautiful pop in the dull grays of winter.
This summer saw Rihanna in a pale orange coat, Blake Lively in a pantsuit, and Winnie Harrow in a mini. Hermès, has made luxury orange its signature color. The shade has interesting expressions. A mixture of red and yellow, orange combines emotion with positivity. It’s said to stimulate creativity and elevate mood – in fashion-speak it’s called ‘dopamine dressing’.
It’s attention-grabbing, as well as pop-up. It’s a pop-up. On the other hand, orange symbols are a danger symbol and are used on safety devices. Many right-wingers don’t know this, but orange is a symbol of sex and fertility (even when Deepika Padukone isn’t wearing it). The representative color of svadhisthana or sacral chakra is orange. The sacral chakra, our energy center below the navel and close to the genitals, is known to stimulate sexuality and creativity.
There are often oranges that are not oranges. Like the fruit from Florida – it’s treated with a dye called ‘Citrus Red2’ to create the vibrant shade we’re so familiar with. In fact, the natural color of oranges from Florida is green, thanks to the extra chlorophyll. But the blood orange of Spain and Italy is very red.
It’s funny that the color generates such contrasting and polarized feelings. Why blame the poor bhakts and throw oranges at them.