We’re Loving the VESTIGE and Artist Josef Albers Collaboration
VESTIGE, the contemporary men’s brand, has partnered with The Josef and Anni Albers Foundation for a dream collaboration on the German-born American artist’s most emblematic designs. The brand’s founders Kyle Derleth and Mark DiMuzio tell The Daily how a lucky encounter brought it all together and why the artist’s work resonates with them so much.
How did the collaboration come about?
Kyle: I was at a small dinner with friends, and met Lucy Weber completely by chance. A mutual friend was talking about her work as the director of licensing for the Albers’ foundation, and I sort of started geeking out because Josef Albers’ work has meant so much to Mark and I. When our friend also mentioned I owned a fashion line, I half-jokingly said: “We should do a collaboration!” It’s just one of those things you say when you’re excited that you don’t actually expect to happen, but Lucy was thrilled with the idea! There are so many similarities between VESTIGE and Albers’ work, and weaving it together feels like a natural merging of the contemporary and the classic.
What was it about his work that you love so much?
Kyle: Josef’s work resonated with us early on because it embodies our design ethos, which is to make art accessible and bring it into everyday life.
Mark: We were inspired by Josef’s appreciation for geometric simplicity. Like in his Homage to the Square series. Our logo is a take on a square, because we’ve always felt there was something innately beautiful about its simplicity. During this collaboration, Josef’s teachings on color theory really opened up our sense of exploration. We played with bold, fun colors that make you feel happy wearing the pieces.
What was the foundation’s reaction when you first brought up conversions on partnering?
Kyle: Lucy was excited to partner with a young, contemporary brand with Josef’s work, as it was something new that the foundation had not done before. She is also such a joyful person to be around, and her enthusiasm for our designs made us feel great. Mark and I worked excitedly for about a week on the initial pieces, and when we sent them over she loved them. So she helped guide us through Josef’s body of work, and we built a full capsule collection covering his Homage To The Square series, Interactions of Color, his custom font, and the album covers he created for Command Records.
How difficult has it been to launch something like this during a pandemic? What were some of the challenges?
Kyle & Mark: Our original launch was set for April 2020. Like most everyone in the fashion industry, we had to adapt quickly and take a different approach. We had to cancel a planned launch event; orders from retail partners and museums had to be delayed or canceled, and we decided to wait on the online launch until July.
What are the price points for the collection?
Kyle & Mark: Since our brand ethos is to make art and design accessible, we craft a premium product and make it affordable. Tees from the collection are $42, Swim $75 and Camp Shirts $88.
Where will the collection be available?
Kyle & Mark: It will launch exclusively on vestigebrand.com this summer, and at retailers this fall, as more stores are able to open back up.
We hear you’ll be dropping another collection in September. What will that collection be like?
Kyle & Mark: We’re dropping new pieces inspired by Josef Albers’ work for the fall season; cold-weather fashion further exploring his most emblematic designs. Plus, there are going to be some brand-defining new additions that we are saving as a surprise. We’re really excited to continue this collaboration.