Raf Simons does not live in Florence,
Raf Simons does not live in the XV century,
but there is a link between him and Lorenzo De’ Medici.
It seems a risky connection but this is Rhizomatic Mag, unveiling unexpected bonds is our purpose.
What can these two characters coming from so dissimilar realities share?
Yes but nor only.
Raf Simons and Lorenzo De’ Medici are magnate of their eras.
The Belgian designer expertly contaminated with art the various brands he worked for, from Christian Dior to Calvin Klein, inducing use to define the artistic references as key elements of his approach to fashion.
His obsession with art started when he was eighteen, after a childhood spent in a small village with nor museums, nor cinemas: ” I instantly had a very strong attraction to art. I could relate to it. It wasn’t so distant,” he told Fury.
Nowadays his private collection includes works by Evan Holloway, Mike Kelley, Brian Calvin, Olafur Eliasson, George Condo, Picasso, and Sterling Ruby.
As soon as he approached fashion, he manifested this passion through his creations, The Guardian reported “The art references during the Jil Sander years ranged from the pop of Yves Klein blue in his 2008 Spring/Summer collection to the more obscure influence of ceramicist Pol Chambost in 2009.”
During his period at Dior, we cannot forget his A/W 2012/2013 Haute Couture collection, in which the designer used Sterling Ruby’s artworks as prints.
The process was even shown in “Dior and I“. The documentary showed how intensely the creative director wanted that to realize this collaboration. Raf Simons showed that was possible to represent such a traditional brand with a modern approach, which was the key of his success in Dior (but also the motivation some bad reviews).
Nevertheless the most difficult challenge was the most recent one: how to introduce art in an urban brand as Calvin Klein? Raf Simons immediately showed it through
the CK S/S 2017 campaign, set in Pittsburgh Warhol Museum. The minimal, sporty design of the garments created a beautiful blending with the iconic works of Art on the back.
That is why Raf Simons can be recognize as rhizomatic.