When Black Designers and Basquiat's Legacy Collide

When Black Designers and Basquiat's Legacy Collide

The Basquiat estate has been working with fashion brands for years now, with everyone from Coach to Saint Laurent drawn to the late artist's iconography.

But its latest fashion link-up is a first, and arguably its most significant: Jean-Michel Basquiat: King Pleasure, the exhibit currently running until January 1, 2023 at the Starrett-Lehigh building in New York, commissioned nine of the most exciting New York-based Black designers to create a collection based off of the exhibit's artwork.

The project was done in collaboration with Black Fashion Fair, the platform, marketplace and media outlet for Black talent and designers which launched in 2020. Its founder Antoine Gregory spearheaded the initiative and hosted a reception last night in the galleries of the exhibit to celebrate the launch.

Joining him were Basquiat's sisters Lisane Basquiat and Jeanine Heriveaux and niece Jessica Kelly Basquiat, as well as designers whose works were placed throughout the space and in between the artist's paintings, drawings and ephemera.

Among the designer partners were Shanel Campbell (Bed on Water), Anifa Mvuemba (Hanifa), Brandon Blackwood, Edvin Thompson (Theophilio) and Antoine Manning (Homage Year), each of whom have made an impact on the fashion landscape through their cult-favorite handbags, viral collections and multicultural heritage.

The collection is available now in the King Pleasure Emporium and on Black Fashion Fair’s website blackfashionfair.org. See more photos from the reception in the gallery, below.

Photos via BFA