When art and fashion collide, they push boundaries and create expressions that influence global cultures in the history of both discourses. These collaborations are reflections of the political, economic and social changes from their eras. Here are our favourite and some of the most defining Art x Fashion collaborations in history.
1. Elsa Schiaparelli X Salvador Dalí
They collaborated and inspired one another throughout their respective careers. When the two surrealist vanguards worked together, they forged the way for future collaborations between fashion designers and artists by bridging the gap between what is considered wearable art and fashion.
2. Yves Saint Laurent X Piet Mondrian
Artist Piet Mondrian inspired the classic and iconic Yves Saint Laurent dress. Saint Laurent released the 1965 dress for the Autumn season, a simple 60’s A-line shift dress.
3. Roy Halston X Andy Warhol
The friendship between Roy Halston and Andy Warhol is one that defined the artistic world. They paved the way for artists and designers to become celebrities in the ’70s. Halston would display Warhol’s pop-art prints in his Manhattan townhouse, while Warhol would use Halston as a subject in many of his stark polaroids.
4. Vincent Van Gogh X Saint Laurent
This collaboration showcased Saint Laurent’s impeccable ability to get inspired by the artists and mould it into his work to create a unique expression. The jacket was an ’80s style jacket symbolic of power dressing for women with a structured silhouette and bold shoulders.
5. Comme Des Garçons X Cindy Sherman
This 1994 collaboration with acclaimed photographer Cindy Sherman still holds an edge over many more recent fashion photography campaigns. The feminist photographer who is known for subverting the male gaze with her twisted self-portraits managed to fuse art and fashion that challenged the collaborative clichés.
6. Louis Vuitton X Takashi Murakami
Louis Vuitton collaborated with Japanese contemporary artist Takashi Murakami for the first time in 2003. They introduced the popular multicoloured monogram print. The bags from this collection are still deemed as ‘it bags’ even though they stopped producing the line in 2015.
7. Louis Vuitton X Yayoi Kusama
The collection launched by Louis Vuitton was playful and bold, featuring the artist’s signature bold spots that were seen on every item, from bags to dresses.
8. Marni X Rop Van Mierlo
Marni has regularly been collaborating with artists and illustrators from around the globe. The collaboration with Dutch artist Rop Van Mierlo has most probably been the most successful one. Mierlo, based out of Amsterdam, is best known for his children’s book Wild Animals. The book features pages of blotchy, watery-diffused animals that are seen as motifs in the collection.
9. Alexander McQueen X Damien Hirst
Their shared love for skull iconography encouraged this collaboration. In 2014, Hirst created a limited edition of 30 designs to celebrate the 10th anniversary of McQueen’s skull print scarf.
10. Prada X Michael Elmgreen & Ingar Dragset
The artists’ ironic take on luxury fashion involved creating a replica of Prada stores at the most popular destinations in the world. It was assembled in Texas, literally in the middle of nowhere. It is a popular work of public art that fuses pop and land art, commenting on Prada’s branding and consumerism.
11. Gucci X Unskilled Worker
In 2017, Gucci launched a 40-piece capsule collection in collaboration with Helen Downie – aka Unskilled Worker. Alessandro Michele discovered Downie’s work on Instagram, and the collection was a captivating mix of ready-to-wear, shoes, bags, silks and accessories.
12. Coach X Jean-Michel Basquiat
Deemed as the year’s coolest collaboration, Coach’s Fall 2020 collection celebrated and honoured renowned New York City artist Jean-Michel Basquiat featuring elements from his revolutionary Neo-expressionist art. The collection symbolised Coach’s inclusive spirit to connect with a new generation of audience.