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Artists Play Too

by Ami Kealoha in Design on 28 March 2006

Yt-Fila-T-Shirt

In a dream, Mayor Michael Bloomberg held a press conference and announced: “Foremost, New York is about artistic collaboration. My number one goal is to nurture the city as a cultural incubator so we can breed a new generation of Lady Pinks and Andy Warhols.” Then he declares August 27th as Old School Respect Day and instructs all citizens to dress accordingly.

Since this will never happen, we should be thankful NYCollective initiates hothouse projects giving young artists exposure. Their latest, “Artists Play Too”, joins up with FILA and 12 New York designers to produce limited edition T-shirts considering the fusion of art and athletics. Each of the artists were chosen for their unique graphic style and role sport plays in their lives.

Contributing artists are: Adhemas Batista, Darren Greenblatt, Pete Hahn, Nam Kim, Dust La Rock, Kasper Ledet, Jim Lasser, Larry Mayorga, MomiMomi, Youth of Tomorrow, and Linda Zacks. And the T-shirts will be sold in FILA stores worldwide.

A few work with the iconography of specific sports, like momimomi’s bike flying off a velodrome track. Most consider how both human endeavors define the body kinetic. Ledet’s design reads like human muscle involved in confrontational yoga. All display a slight addiction to retro.

FILA’s place in hip-hop history was one of the central reasons Wayne Kasserman, Executive Director of NYCollective, chose the brand for this mash-up. For Kasserman, the project harkens back to the height of FILA’s popularity when the makers of high art, street art and promoters pop ephemera made things happen in the city’s nightclubs. Youth of Tommorow’s shirt is a direct homage to the time with it’s graphic straight out of the video for “Double Dutch Bus.” (Pictured above right.)

by Kristopher Irizarry

Also on Cool Hunting: MomiMomi

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