Keeping in with the tradition of collaborating with artists for numerous Dior Men's collections, Kim Jones has tapped Eli Russell Linnetz - the man behind fashion's latest obsession, ERL.
If you so much as google the name 'Eli Russell Linnetz', a few things are bound to come up; most notably the artist's various achievements in set design and beyond. From directing Ye's (formerly Kanye West) Famous and Fade music videos to photographing the cult icon's Supermoon campaign and even having a hand in the rapper's Yeezy line - Linnetz has built up quite the repertoire already. (Not to mention, he's also designed the set for Lady Gaga's Enigma tour, along with lending his artistic direction to Comme des Garçons for a film created to celebrate the Andy Warhol's You're In scent.)
Launched in 2018 - as a result of being encouraged by Comme des Garçons' Rei Kawakubo and Dover Street Market president Adrian Joffe - ERL's first collection was the product of wanting to showcase something for the opening of the DSM Los Angeles store. Inspired by his hometown Venice Beach, California and what he himself would want to wear, Linnetz wound up designing an eclectic variety of hoodies, graphic tees, and corduroy jackets in collaboration with Nike and artist Jordan Wolfson. Armed with a colour palette centring around an array of bright and bold neons (all of which would go on to later underpin ERL's ethos), the line predictably sold out immediately.
Taking part in a collection that 'pays homage to the Californian Art de Vivre to its thriving skate culture', few could be a better fit in the eyes of Jones than ERL. The upcoming Dior Men's Spring 2023 capsule collection, being shown in LA this Thursday evening, is expected to reinterpret fundamental icons of the house, such as the emblematic Bar jacket, through a sport-inspired lens, nodding to the Los Angeles landscape by sculpting a colour palette that mingles pastel shades with brighter tones.
Moving on from the rhythm of his previous collaborations with artists like Shawn Stussy, Travis Scott and Daniel Arsham, Jones revealed to WWD:
'I'm doing two projects like this, this year, and that's it, and I thought it was nice to work with younger designers I admire and give them the platform through Dior in a different way. Talking to all the people that I know that have gone through the pandemic and being independent, it's been difficult, so I thought it was a nice way to support people and also, glean a bit of how they're working… It gives us the capacity to do something in a different way than we'd work on it as Dior.'
Fitting in with the theme of Dior's Spring 2023 capsule and ERL's roots, the new Dior collection will debut in Venice Beach.