Fashion

The Art of Vandalism, According to Palm Angels

We spoke to the Italian brand's founder and designer, Francesco Ragazzi while celebrating his collaboration with 8 Moncler.
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While Palm Angels Francesco Ragazzi doesn't particularly like the label of rebel, his second collection with Moncler proves that he is work is rooted in disruption. Launching three separate events in London, New York, and Milan, Ragazzi debuted his ‘Art Breaking’ collection. Moncler Genius debuted last year bringing together some of fashion’s most unique voices including Craig Green and Simone Rocha to utilize their vision and experiment with the codes of the house. For Ragazzi’s second 8 Moncler collection, the designer looked to vandalism as its root.

The collection began with a photograph of a vandalized Jeff Koons gallery. The lines between street art, and “high art” were blurred. The red Palm Angels graffiti text on top of the classic black Moncler puffers and vest have the same energy of the isolated graffiti over Koon’s retrospective at the Whitney. Ragazzi, of course, was also heavily inspired by the now iconic ‘self destruct’ Banksy piece sold at Sotheby’s for $1.4 million dollars. “Moncler for me is about the simplicity of a product that comes to life in many forms. I wanted to have the form broken”, Ragazzi expressed when asked about the collection.

The Soho event, on June 6th, brought together Kevin Frost, Selah Marley, Jazzelle Zanaughtti to experience the graffitied store space. The drop is filled with Insta ready technicolor crossbody bags and wallets,  signature Palm Angels streetwear infused with signature Moncler fabrics as well as Knitwear and some incredible coats to get you excited for winter.

We spoke to Ragazzi on his inspiration, what Moncler means to him, and his favorite parts of designing a collection.

ABRAHAM MARTINEZ: So tell me a little bit about this collection. It looks like it's very much inspired by a city, is it New York or is it just any global city?

FRANCESCO RAGAZZI: I definitely can start from New York because the idea comes from this exhibition of Jeff Koons that was vandalized.

 

AM: Did you see the Banksy painting when it went for auction and then it was destroyed?

FR: I definitely had that in the mood board.

 

AM: What about the collection are you most proud of? Is it the colors? The materials?

FR: I mean it's the variety—it's not just merchandise. There are very different pieces from knitwear, to belts, accessories to shoes, eyewear; it's more complete.

 

AM: What do you love most about your job?

FR: Creating. To have an idea, but ultimately, creating. Making it happen [is] the most important thing.

 

AM: And when you see someone on the street wearing Palm Angels, how do you react to that?

FR: It's crazy for me when I go out,  I don't know [for example] in Asia or even here in New York and seeing people wearing this stuff it has such a big effect [on me], in only four years.

 

AM: Totally. What was your favorite part about collaborating with a brand like Moncler?

FR: Playing with the DNA. They have such a strong DNA like Moncler and the craftsmanship and wow that's very interesting.

 

AM: What would you say the most fun part is about designing a collection?

FR: Definitely the starting point when you need to have an idea but also when you present it like the show is one of my most favorite things.

 

AM: What do you hope to share with the world as in terms of the relationship between art and the vandalism aspect of it?

FR:  The rebelliousness, the fact that the art is so pure in a way and [when] it gets vandalized with other art that is graffiti.

 

AM: Do you consider yourself a rebel?

FR: I don't like the word but yes. I have no rules. 

Shop the entire collection here.

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