The Pre-Fall pieces
One of the season’s biggest – and boldest – prints: scrawls with a rebellious, counterculture edge.
Msgm (1 & 4)
Inspired by Britain’s post-punk, new wave scene in the ’80s – and in particular, the sub-culture’s “grand dame” Vivienne Westwood – founder Massimo Giorgetti swathed romantic plaid-patterned, Victorian-tinged blouses and dresses with a graphic marker scrawl.
MICHAEL MICHAEL KORS (2, 3 & 5)
For his diffusion line, the beloved New York designer launches an eight-piece capsule collection that pays tribute to the tagging (graffiti speak for a stylised signature) that blanketed the city in the artistically vibrant ’80s. Expect his name in block letters, as well as more fun motifs in black and white on bags, shoes and even watches.
Burberry (6 & 7)
Its “Burberry London England” tag is well known, but its Pre-Fall interpretation could just be one of its most radical: a contemporary graffiti scribble splashed across the likes of bodysuits, leggings and boots. Mix and match with other pieces in the eclectic collection, which references everything from ’80s skaters to ’90s ravers, for a refreshingly upbeat take on maximalism.
Coach (not pictured)
Following the reveal of a 70m-long graffiti mural featuring its signature “C” logo at the Botanic Gardens MRT station in April, the label continues to celebrate New York’s riotous art scene with a collection featuring the work of graffiti artists Whisbe and Jason Naylor on ready-to-wear and leather goods in stores this month.
The runway sets
“Vandalised” catwalks meant plenty of Instagram moments – and cultural inspiration – during the Fall/Winter 2018 Fashion Week season.
The female artists
The graffiti world isn’t just an old boys club. These are the female taggers making
a statement and a name for themselves.
Cath Love (@cathloverosatwo)
The Hong Kong-based artist’s curvaceous Jeliboo character is more than just a cutesy cartoon doing yoga poses. Describing it as embodying “whispers of hip-hop”, her work calls into question body image issues and challenges archaic female stereotypes.
You’ll know this Czech graffiti artist’s work well. She appeared in Reebok’s “Always Classic” campaign and redesigned its timeless Club C sneakers. She’s also behind Girl Power, a documentary about 15 international female graffiti artists that toured film festivals all over the world.
Anna Laurini (@annalauriniblue)
Milan-born Laurini made waves in the graffiti scene when she started painting five years ago. Her signature Picasso and Matisse-inspired artwork (it first appeared in the alleys of East London) has since led to collaborations with British shoe brand Rupert Sanderson and Japanese label Black by Moussy.
Working as part of a duo (with Muhammad Firdaus as Studio Moonchild), the Singapore-based artist’s cutesy-meet-sci-fi characters have a modern Grimes edge. Their work can be seen all over Singapore, from Aliwal Arts Centre to *Scape, and soon in a cafe along Upper Thomson Road.
Real graffiti is no longer found just on streets and in alleyways, these urban art-specific spots in Los Angeles, Helsinki and Denver show how far it has evolved.
Ham Graffiti exhibition
To get schooled on the art form, Graffiti (till Sept 9) at the Helsinki Art Museum delves into the historical roots of graffiti art, while tracing its development and contemporary manifestations. The exhibition is divided into two sections: the first explores graffiti as a subculture, lifestyle and art form, while the second takes a look at art in the public space.
Beyond the streets
That there will be a fully skatable recreation of the Venice Pavilion (the legendary graffiti and skate destination in Venice Beach, California) is just one reason to visit Beyond The Streets (till July 6 at the Werkartz studio in LA). Curated by graffiti historian and urban anthropologist Roger Gastman, the exhibition involving more than 100 artists includes everything from paintings to sculpture, photography and installations, all celebrating the subculture of graffiti and street art.
Hip design hotels know the value of site-specific work, hence Montreal-based urban art gallery Station 16 Gallery will open its permanent second outpost at Denver’s The Source Hotel. With an emphasis on street art and graffiti, the gallery will be an open-to-all art space featuring a roster of local and international urban artists, so you know the lobby will be buzzy and full of scenesters.
This story first appeared in Female’s July 2018 print issue.