In the winter of 2010, photographer Hiroshi Sugimoto spent three months in his Tokyo studio shooting the continuums of hues diffused through a prism he had made—inspired by Isaac Newton’s 18th century scientific exploration of color—using a final batch of the last production of Polaroid film. The result was Colors of Shadow, a gorgeous chromatic study spread across 200 Polaroids. Now Hermès has transferred 20 of those works onto a series of silk scarves, each in a limited edition of 7, as part of the brand’s ongoing “carré d’artiste” program. The collaboration proved rather serendipitous for Sugimoto.
The Hermès Editeur 3 Hiroshi Sugimoto exhibit at Art Basel.
“I usually don’t crop out my art,” explains the photographer, who is largely known for his black and white images of seascapes, architectural sites and wax figures. “But since the Polaroid is a perfect square, its proportions perfectly fit the scarf size, so it was just a coincidence that it happened.”
Hermès created a special inkjet to digitally silk print the photos onto extra-large scale scarves (140 square cm), the better to appreciate Sugimoto’s hypnotic gradations. And while the pieces are currently on display at the Art Basel fair through June 21 (and will be exhibited at Art Basel Miami later this year), eager types with 7,000 Euros (approximately $8,700) to spare can purchase them online at hermes-editeur.com.