While there’s no question that Maurizio Cattelan’s $120k banana was the center of Jetsetters’ attention at this year’s Art Basel, the most relevant “artwork” for fashion insiders was the collaboration of Shawn Stussy Kim Jones for Dior.
There is a feeling that with this collaboration, streetwear OG Kim Jonesis heralding a new wave for Dior SS 2020, a shift from Street to Surf, which is entirely fitting considering Stussy’s West Coast skater/surfer background. While bringing on youthful, modern designers can be considered threatening or “cheapening” to the legacy of celebrated fashion houses (think Hedi Slimane’s revamp of the 2010’s Saint Laurent), this collection evokes quite the opposite sentiment. Youth and counterculture are what drive the fashion industry and represent what is to come, looking to the future of fashion, and it appeared that Basel-goers viewed that future as bright.
Christian Dior himself was once a hip art gallerist on Paris’ rue La Boétie who only became a celebrated couturier after he was focused on for new showcasing artists. If you had a few francs to spare in late Twenties Paris and fancied a painting by one of the modern artists then in vogue, you would have headed straight to the Christian Dior. Fast forward 100 years and Kim Jones is showcasing Shawn Stussy, the artist.
Over the course of the Art Basel week, Shawn rolled out a series of personal instagrams which explored how his “simple” hand-styled drawings are featured prominently throughout the Dior SS20 collection. The runway show was a showcase of the various techniques the Dior team implemented to incorporate Stussy’s creative into wearable art; from beading to embroidery and age old artisinal silk painting techniques. Even the runway was a full 360 degree immersive environment – introducing a new generation of streetwear enthusiasts to the “OG” they previously only recognized as a brand name “Stussy”. After all, Shawn Stussy sold his eponymous label in 1997 and while it has lived on and thrived in the 20 years since, only few remaining OG’s recognize the history. The collaboration is particularly relevant to us at Blue&Cream, because Shawn Stussy’s eponymous brand, the forefather to Supreme, is the original inspiration for the merger of Culture and Fashion that sparked the Blue&Cream Lifestyle.
Of course, the irony of this being that the sneaker heads of 2020 won’t notice any of this while waiting “online” for Nike’s much-anticipated AJ1 Dior.