Art and fashion overlap without effort: they complement each other. From intricately painted and embroidered fabrics to screen-printed evening gowns, some of the most iconic collections from luxury designers have been inspired by the most influential contemporary artists -sometimes resulting in collaborations. We’ve collected some of the most iconic art + fashion collabs we’ve seen (and loved!) so far.
Daniel Buren + Fondation Louis Vuitton (2016)
The Foundation Louis Vuitton is a nonprofit art gallery, sponsored by LVMH, that was opened in 2006. In May of 2016, French conceptual artist Daniel Buren transformed the building into a colorful mosaic called “Observatory of Light.”
Salvador Dalí + Elsa Schiaparelli (1935-)
Salvador Dalí and Elsa Schiaparelli had a close creative relationship during the 1930s, a time when Schiaparelli was considered the most influential luxury designer in the world. It was said that both Dalí and Schiaparelli shared a passion for creating astonishing pieces, meant to shock and amaze, making their partnership a natural one. In 1936, they worked together to create a Surrealist-inspired line of suits and coats, and throughout several years in the 30s they created a line of intricate evening gowns. The Schiaparelli fashion house continues to make Dalí-inspired gowns, with the most recent debuting in the 2017 Spring/Summer collection.
Damien Hirst + Alexander McQueen (2013)
Since Alexander McQueen‘s Spring/Summer 2003 collection debuted the scull scarf, it has become a signature of the fashion house. The collaboration between Hirst and McQueen in 2013 saw a continuation of this motif, while also drawing inspiration from Hirst’s Entomology series. The collection presents 30 limited edition designs featuring etherial butterflies, spiders and other insects, forming a kaleidoscope-inspired geometric pattern.
Robert Mapplethorpe + Raf Simons (2017)
In 1989, the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington D.C. tried to present a Robert Mapplethrope retrospective titled “The Perfect Moment.” This plan was aborted following an intense censorship debate and obscenity trial the following year brought on by a Mapplethorpe exhibition in Cincinnati. This marked the first time a museum faced criminal prosecution due to works on display. In 2017, Raf Simons decided to celebrate the controversial work of Mapplethorpe, which was known for the blunt and revealing portrayal of subject matters like the BDSM community. This collection marked Simons second collaboration with an artist and featured some of Mapplethorpe’s iconic photos on men’s garments.
Vanessa Beecroft + Yeezy (2016)
Italian contemporary performance artist Vanessa Beecroft has now paired with Kanye West, visionary behind Yeezy, several times to present collections for the brand. Their collaboration sparked particular conversation after the Season 4 show where models were made to stand outside for several hours, causing many to faint and suffer heat exhaustion.
Richard Prince + Louis Vuitton (2008)
The 2008 Spring-Summer collection from Louis Vuitton, brought to life under the creative leadership of Marc Jacobs, featured inspiration and art from Richard Prince‘s iconic Nurse paintings. Twelve runway models, including Naomi Campbell, were dressed as nurses with the individual letters on their hats spelling out Louis Vuitton. The bags from this season were nods to Prince’s Jokes series, and consisted of text overlaying the washed out and colorful iconic LV monogram.
Piet Mondrian + Yves Sain Laurent (1965)
Yves Saint Laurent was known for having a particular passion for art that he often incorporated into his designs. The 1965 YSL Autumn-Winter collection, designed to honor his love for Dutch painter Piet Mondrian, showed the sense of geometry that Mondrian was known for in his works. The shoes that Saint Laurent designed specifically for this presentation became incredibly popular during the 1960s and were a favorite of Hollywood starlets. This collection had critics coining Saint Laurent the “king of Paris.”
Rosson Crow + Zac Posen (2010)
Zac Posen‘s 2010 collection drew inspiration from American painter Rosson Crow, resulting in four collections featuring her artwork. The Spring, Pre-Fall, Fall and Resort collections all held some level of Crow’s art. For the Spring collection, Crow’s paintings were featured directly onto the fabrics; for Fall, Crow designed floral print fabrics specifically for Posen’s runway.