At this month’s New York Fashion Week, designer Kerby Jean-Raymond dedicated Pyer Moss’ runway show to celebrate black excellence. This warm weather collection, Jean-Raymond says, is meant “to imagine what the African American experience would look like without the constant threat of racism.”
This year, Pyer Moss’ show was staged in the Weeksville Heritage Center in Brooklyn, which is a historic area founded in 1838 and served as one of the first free black community spaces. If this collection shows nothing, it’s that black culture has thrived in America, even while folks have been quick to dismiss it. Graphics such as “See Us Now?”, “Stop Calling 911 On the Culture”, and “If You’re Just Learning of Pyer Moss, We Forgive You” poke fun at this idea and can be found on different pieces.
Many of the graphics barring that were done in collaboration with artist Derrick Adams, turning colorful works of art into prints depicting black life.
This celebration of black excellence doesn’t stand alone, though. Jean-Raymond and Pyer Moss have also collaborated with FUBU for this as well as Reebok for a capsule collection. The Reebok capsule was full of 90s influences – nylon track suits, colorful sportswear, and new sneakers.
Oversized, boxy jackets and palazzo pants, a staple of Jean-Raymond’s designs, have returned for this collection, juxtaposed with softer numbers such as high-low pleated skirts, mesh, fringed dressed, denim. Model Ebonee Davis sported her natural hair and was flanked by a young boy, both clad in white silk ensembles, to start the show. With all black models, Pyer Moss’ “American, Also. Lesson Two” celebrated black excellence against the backdrop of a predominately white industry.
You can find the full collection at their website.