Lee Unveils Worldwide Partnership with Iconic Artist Jean-Michel Basquiat

Today, Lee® is excited to introduce a globally available collection showcasing the artistic brilliance of Jean-Michel Basquiat. This unique capsule seamlessly merges the renowned denim craftsmanship of Lee with the groundbreaking artistry of Basquiat, offering distinctive styles for both men and women.

Emerging onto the vibrant New York City art scene in the 1980s, Basquiat’s bold use of colors and captivating graphics solidified his status as a global cultural icon, leaving an indelible mark on contemporary art. Similarly, Lee has shaped the denim landscape for a century, creating timeless originals like the Lee Rider™ jacket – an unparalleled design often imitated but never duplicated.

Drawing inspiration from Basquiat’s distinctive style and persona, the Lee denim silhouettes and coordinates serve as the canvas to showcase his neo-expressionist artwork. From splatter-painted jeans to boldly-striped sweaters and crown-adorned denim jackets, the collection seamlessly intertwines with iconic Basquiat pieces such as “Warrior,” “Pez Dispenser,” and more.

Brigid Stevens, Global Vice President of Marketing at Lee, stated, “Lee has always celebrated originality, and in our 100 years as part of American culture, particularly in the ’80s around NYC, the Lee x Basquiat collaboration melds art, style, and culture to deliver timeless and uniquely original pieces – iconic garments elevated further with these artful masterpieces.”

The comprehensive collection features men’s and women’s jackets, bottoms, tops, tees, sweaters, and sweatshirts, with standout pieces including:

  1. Men’s Striped Blazer and Pant: Paying homage to Basquiat’s paint-splattered suits, these ’80s-inspired coordinates feature white pinstripes and Basquiat’s signature crown motif, blending vintage formalwear with streetwear.
  2. Women’s and Men’s Laser-Printed Denim: Denim jackets and wide-leg overalls for her, and carpenter jeans for him, are laser-printed with Basquiat’s iconic motifs, including his famous crown.
  3. Men’s Denim Rider Jacket: A modern take on the original Lee Rider™ jacket, reversing to showcase Basquiat’s painting “Phooey,” exploring themes of consumption, property, and human existence.
  4. Men’s Long Sleeve Warrior Tee: Featuring Basquiat’s self-portrait, “Warrior,” this cotton tee captures how the artist perceived himself in the world of art.
  5. Women’s Striped Pez Dispenser Cardigan: A vintage-style sweater drawing its color scheme and bold stripes from Basquiat’s “Pez Dispenser,” with the artwork featured as a patch on the front.
  6. Women’s Cuffed Printed Carpenter Jean: Exaggerated cuffs display mural drawings inspired by Basquiat’s muses, including sketchbook-style anatomy and his signature crown tag.
  7. Women’s and Men’s Printed Sweaters: Drawing inspiration from Basquiat’s works, these sweaters serve as a visual shorthand for poetry about royalty, poverty, and life.

David Stark, Founder and President of Artestar, expressed, “Lee brought such a fresh perspective to Jean-Michel’s iconic artworks. We hope this collection will inspire a new generation of creatives.”

With a price range of $65 to $220, the collection is available on Lee.com, owned stores in Asia, Europe, and North Carolina, as well as select US retailers including Nordstrom and Urban Outfitters. European sites such as Zalando and Asos, and boutique locations like Killiwatch in London and Craemer & Co., also offer these unique pieces. For additional information, visit lee.com/Basquiat.

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