In new sculpture exhibition, Helmut Lang breathes life into unused clothing from Saint Laurent collections

Anthony Vaccarello tapped the designer-turned-artist to transform abandoned goods into narrative pieces about the past, present, and future of the French fashion house

Saint Laurent’s Anthony Vaccarello enlisted renowned designer-turned-artist Helmut Lang to construct a unique reflection of the history of Saint Laurent’s designs.

Lang, designer and founder of his own eponymous fashion house, retired from fashion a decade ago, and shortly after donated 6,000 pieces of his collection—shredding the rest. He did so apathetically, having transferred his affinity for fashion to his studies in applied art. Looks from his original collections can be found in design museums across the globe, and the rest have been repurposed into pieces of artwork. Even before his clothing’s popularity in our modern era, Helmut Lang displayed an eagerness to contribute to concepts like minimalism, and causes like sustainability. It’s no surprise, then, that Vaccarello tapped him to do what he does best–create art out of deserted goods.

Unused clothing and accessories from previous Saint Laurent collections had new life breathed into them as Lang transformed them into primal sculptures, standing as narrative art pieces about the past and future of the French fashion house. The obsidian-colored totem poles stand confident and tall, cacophonously textured as a result of the intricate mixing of various elements.

The campaign is set to last for a month, from September 30 until October 30. The sculptures will initially be on display at Saint Laurent Rive Droite in Paris, then in Los Angeles, before being put out for sale.