As you might have heard, TELFAR is a black-owned, non-gendered fashion project established in 2004 in NYC. That was a long time before such a thing was possible…We would like to keep it that way — to appear always just over a horizon. Our shows are the result of a radical form of collaboration that we hope borders on conspiracy – in search of the collective form; the human form: of music, of theatre and of style. For Spring Summer 2020 we bring the practice to the screen – through the commissioning of a collective film.
Previews as a trailer for PFW The World Isn’t Everything is an exquisite corpse drawn and drawing together artist Petra Collins, break-out American playwright Jeremy O. Harris, enigma Dean Blunt, post-pop-star Steve Lacy, and rappers Butch Dawson and Bby-mutha, Moonlight star Ashton Sanders and Diamond Singily among very many others… The film mirrors a runway presentation and is accompanied by a live score by the Afro-Parisian DJ/Genius CRYSTALLMESS and the London based sonic artist Klein.
The aim of this show is the same as that of the brand. In an era of representation we insist on presence. In the era of inclusivity we cannot be content to be included in someone else’s world. Our project is to build a world of our own and the process and the result are indistinguishable. Our customers are our collaborators and our cousins are our customers.
Spring/Summer 2020 takes its inspiration from the customs/security lines at any airport at given time, anywhere in the world. It marks our third collaboration with the all American beer brand Budweiser, whose iconic emblems appear throughout in jersey, silk and twill.
We begin with our militant cargo section — in slate, drab and khaki — bisected by signature TELFAR panel- ling. What could be the legs of a pair of cargo shorts replace the arms of a simple T shirt — adding utility to ubiq- uity. Sideless slacks and shirts and a full military poncho with a hidden hood finish a utilitarian statement torn between tourism and survival.
Our denim is paneled and modular: with T-shirt flares, graphic cut-outs or full legs replaced with fish-net and leather, or dappled with fluffy clouds of bleach. A knit section starts with a trio of smart mod-zipped polos to return as breezy Afro-Jamaican string-vests: in T’s, hoodies and our classic asymmet- rical tank cut from crop to tunic.
A sporty tricot section in red, black and khaki is branded with an anachro-sporty iteration of the Telfar logo — for an iconic track-and-field statement whose fully constructed stripes betray complex tailoring, hidden pockets and zippered ventilation along their lengths. A pair of 70′s running shorts appear, then reappear as a poly-athletic version of our classic thigh-hole jean. Track pants, merge into denim at hip with a kind of queer inevitability as the trunks of track jackets are replaced with cotton netting, or T shirts, recycled from elsewhere in the collection.
As is our custom, our T shirts feature looks from our previous collection. FW 2019 “COUNTRY” poses as promotional stills from an unfinished black spy thriller. Some are cut at the back, or missing a sleeve; wrap at the sides or gather at the waist with a drawstring. The appliqué language of American Varsity is repurposed for a dimensional camouflage, constructed from amoebas of khaki and bone jersey, or in cut-out varsity letters backed with fishnet to skin.
“T shirt” with fragments of print, embroidery and appliqué invades the collection as both idiom and material. A duet of buttonless split collared shirts appear to be constructed out of scraps of vintage surf-T’s. They spill from the southern border, as the bottom of a jean as a flares; or as a boxer shorts — unseat a Chino mid-hip. The body of our polos is likewise replaced, leaving nothing knit but a collar and pocket stranded in a graphic sea.
Poplin is evicted as the primary material for our collared shirts and wraps featuring vintage Budweiser beer graphics printed inside out. Even a pair of two-piece suits, over-dyed in navy and ox-blood, are revealed by their faint graphics and raw slashed seams to be composed of nothing but jersey T shirts.