Designers Use Art as Inspiration for New Wear LACMA Collection

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Inspiration for the Wear LACMA collection comes from objects in the museum's collection or special exhibition loans, such as this jeweled mother of pearl snuffbox, commissioned by Frederick the Great of Prussia, circa 1775
Inspiration for the Wear LACMA collection comes from objects in the museum’s collection or special exhibition loans, such as this jeweled mother of pearl snuffbox, commissioned by Frederick the Great of Prussia, circa 1775

Photo Credit: LACMA

The Los Angeles County Museum of Art is expanding its “Wear LACMA” collection in continuation of this year’s 50th anniversary celebrations.

Items from the expanded collection draw inspiration from artwork found at the museum. Nineteen Los Angeles based designers will try their hands at replicating famous works of art in fashion-forward, unique ways. For example, Monique Lhuiller will design dresses inspired by a blue and white 18th century French porcelain pitcher, while Irene Neuwirth will craft jewelry inspired by a bedazzled 18th century snuff box; Juan Carlos Obando will make caftans in prints adapted from photos taken at the museum during the 1960s and the dream team from Rodarte will make T-shirts and sweatshirts using the museum’s famous John Baldessari LACMA logo. Meanwhile, Anita Ko will create wood pendant necklaces and stud earrings with surfboard-like tips inspired by surf icon Duke Kahanamoku’s board from the 1920s and the Elder Statesman’s Greg Chait will create cashmere T-shirts and scarves festooned with a floral motif taken from the 1926 Granville Redmond California Impressionist painting “California Poppy Fields.”

Other designers participating in the project include Jennifer Meyer, Clare Vivier, CO, dosa, Esquivel, Freecity, Greg Lauren, Gregory Parkinson, L’oeil du Vert, Libertine, Newbark and Nick Fouquet.

Wear LACMA was launched in 2012 after Katherine Ross, the wife of museum director Michael Govan who also happened to work at LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton, came up with the idea. One hundred percent of the sales from said pieces go to the museum; to date, that amount has surpassed $250,000.

Items from the Wear LACMA collection will be sold at LACMA, at thelacmastore.org and, for the first time, on the fashion e-tail site Farfetch.com, which links the inventories of more than 300 boutiques around the world, including Just One Eye and H. Lorenzo in L.A. Farfetch will build a special online boutique for the LACMA collection.

Samuel Alapai Kahanamoku, "Duke Kahanamoku's Surfboard," 1920s. Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Partial gift of Mark and Carolyn Blackburn, and purchased with funds from LACMA's 50th Anniversary Gala
Samuel Alapai Kahanamoku, “Duke Kahanamoku’s Surfboard,” 1920s. Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Partial gift of Mark and Carolyn Blackburn, and purchased with funds from LACMA’s 50th Anniversary Gala

Photo Credit: Museum Associates/LACMA

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