raf-simons-sterling-ruby

Photo courtesy of Dover Street Market.

After a decade of friendship, the artist Sterling Ruby and the designer Raf Simons teamed up on a collection for the Simons’s eponymous men’s wear label. “We were both apprehensive in the beginning to do something like this,” Ruby explains, “because art and fashion/fashion and art do not always work together. We were very aware of the artist/designer collaborations from the past and we wanted to do something different. We wanted to make it a true Bauhaus effort.” And so, the two went back and forth sharing drawings, hand-dyed textiles, and designs for months until the presentation this past January, which also included four of Ruby’s hanging vampire-mouth fabric sculptures. Today, one of the sculptures and the full Sterling Ruby x Raf Simons fall collection are at Dover Street Market in New York. “When we were thinking about how to show the collection in stores we thought about the possibility of including the vampires from the actual runway show,” Ruby added. “I wound up making a new version of the vampire mouth that would hang from the full length of the ceiling.” The red-white-and-blue mouth hangs in front of the elevator, making a dramatic entrance to the collection. “It feels like a portal to another way of working or seeing things. It’s a kind of disruption to show an artwork in a place that isn’t a blank white room,” Ruby says, of creating a piece for placement in a store. “It has the right vibe.”