FASHIONISTA///AN HOMAGE TO CONSUMERISM: STEPHEN SPROUSE REMEMBERED IN PRODUCT
On the heels of the epic celebration of the life of designer & artist STEPHEN SPROUSE that is “Rock on Mars” at NYC’s DEITCH PROJECTS, a barrage of new product is hitting the shelves commemorating the pioneering punk fashionista. Most crucial of these releases are two new retrospective books: The “Le Book” is a three-volume edition featuring rare snapshots and sketches (available in March), while the crucial “Stephen Sprouse” (Rizzoli Press) chronicles the artist’s life and creative career in exquisite detail with enough ’80s day-glo ink to burn your retinas out (available in February). Of course, a special-edition Sprouse graffiti covered edition is available exclusively at Louis Vuitton stores for a limited time. Which brings us to the high end of Sprouse’s product explosion in the form of a revamped collection of Sprouse designs for the Parisian luxury goods brand that single-handedly revitalized Sprouse’s career back in 2001 when LV designer Marc Jacobs tapped him to create a signature graffiti patter overprint that would prove to be a marketing coup for the company. Rolling out a host of Sprouse pieces, from classic Speedy bags to ballerina flats in new day-glo colorways (“You’re either going to love it or hate it. I’m fine with either reaction,” says Jacobs) LV presents a second installment of a must-have collection at an unfortunately precarious economic moment. Says Daniel Lalonde, president and chief executive officer of Louis Vuitton North America of the seemingly risky move: “I think we’ll be lucky if we have any stock left in the next month and a half.” The most pricey and coveted of LV’s offerings is a Stephen Sprouse graffiti skateboard housed a hard case LV monogram skateboard trunk in an edition of three at $8,250 each. Fittingly, the economic blow is softened by news that all proceeds will benefit Free Arts NYC, which provides underserved children throughout New York City with special arts programs. Vuitton is also making an undisclosed donation to the Sprouse Estate, as well as the Stephen Sprouse Memorial Scholarship Fund at the National Academy for Design. Meanwhile, crack open that LV wallet and HAVE A LOOK:
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