What is Dieselpunk?
A word associated with, but different from SteamPunk – DieselPunk is a little darker, a little grittier and often more military styled. An alternative fashion statement, DieselPunk is a style, a genre and an attitude all of its own.
Here’s a quick overview to the definitive DieselPunk world and how it differs from other genres.
Understanding the “-punk” genres
In common with many other forms of “punk” art and styling, there’s a slightly dark and dystopian feel to DieselPunk, a grimy edge which is difficult to ignore.
Alternate world fashions, from the origins of CyberPunk through to SteampPunk and beyond, aim to create a realistic world which is consistent in its concepts, no matter to what they are being applied. In many cases this means fusing history and fantasy, often with a healthy dose of futuristic technology thrown in too for good measure.
This artistic licence applies to everything within the landscape, transforming architecture, fashion and technology to something which is vaguely familiar yet somehow radically different. In many ways the style of DieselPunk, and other genres, can be seen to be rooted in history but also combined with a futuristic feel which changes the look completely.
What is DieselPunk?
Having understood the basics of many of the punk genres in detail, you may well be wondering what sets DieselPunk apart from the rest.
Set entirely in the three decades which span the two World Wars, DieselPunk never left the 1940s. And yet in some ways the future has instead come to visit DieselPunk, with a radical re-imagining of history.
Think of classic images and themes from the 1940s: film noir, fascism, war, swing bands, patriotism and soldiers and there you have the basis. But fuse weaponry and technology which far outweighs what was available, either taking modern day capability or even fantasy creations, and there you have what is widely recognised as DieselPunk.
Forget 1940’s Vintage Tea’s – DieselPunk is gritty, edgy and raw and everything, even the soldiers and patriotism, has a slightly industrial and grimy veil. It can however include the 1940's Pin Up styling albeit in a darker fashion.
War is a prevalent theme within DieselPunk and everyone is tooled up with magnificent weapons from the future.
If you were to single out some aspects which devotees might recognise as definitively DieselPunk, these would undoubtedly feature:
• Gangsters and flappers
• Flying Aces and Aeroplanes
• Fantasy or futuristic technology
Differentiating SteamPunk and DieselPunk
Steampunk is arguably one of the best known punk genres, but unless you understand exactly what you’re looking for, it’s easy to lump anything vaguely industrial or futuristic into one category.
DieselPunk is described in detail above, but although the two are often confused, SteamPunk is very different.
While DieselPunk focusses entirely on the era between the world wars and is grim and gritty, SteamPunk harks back to the Victorian era. Think bustles, steam trains and frock coats and you’ll start to get the idea.
DieselPunk has an almost universal lack of respect for humankind while SteamPunk sees everyone adopting a high society attitude, with impeccable manners and status. Hot air balloons do also feature in SteamPunk but rather than pilots as adventurers (DieselPunk) they are more likely to be depicted as scientists.
The difference can clearly be seen in films: classic DieselPunk epics include Sky Captain & the World of Tomorrow, Hellboy, The Rocketeer, Captain America and Dark City. Contrasting to this is the SteamPunk Genre which offers 20,000 Leagues under the Sea, Edward Scissorhands and Sleepy Hollow.
Like much alternative fashion and styling can be intertwined and intermingled, CyberPunk, SteamPunk, DieselPunk, Vintage Clothing and Gothic Wear all stem from an alternate view of the world and so choose your favorite style and enjoy.
Know your punk…
If you enjoy alternative art, do your research and discover the world of DieselPunk. Distinctive, dark and fascinating, you’ll find DieselPunk has an irresistible depth which reaches into the deepest recesses of your very soul and takes hold. And it feels magnificent….
What is Dieselpunk?
Posted by Felicity Fizzle | January 14, 2016 | No Comments