Imagine a whole entire world where the red box logo immediately identified as Supreme, touches every aspect of one’s daily life, without interruption. Wait, hang on a second, that world already exists. Founded in 1994 by James Jebbia with a logo largely inspired by Barbara Kruger’s propaganda/word artworks, Supreme has somehow, over the years penetrated our daily life by creating the Supreme version of mundane every day objects and forging collaborations with the most controversial, coveted, cult brand, artists, and personalities in the world. Ahead of the FW17 drop (tonight), 2Mag has a little look at why these objects might matter and how that little box logo has become one of the most powerful in the world.
2017, thus far has been a tumultuous year. Headquartered in NYC, Supreme cannot break free from the wrath of Trump. No kidding; it wants to "Fuck the President" . . . and does so in a keychain that says perhaps what many Americans want to say, “I Pledge Allegiance to Shit.” With the events of the weekend past and President Trump blaming both sides when clearly there is a root problem that must be addressed, the state of the nation is truly shit and Supreme states this loud and clear in their new collection. This kind of protest is not new. It can also be a sign of support for those they love; this is what the brand has done since the early days of its existence. So tonight we will see a face mask in neoprene with Arabic writing. Hmm, what’s going on in the world, or specifically in America? The President put an outrageous travel ban on Muslims; although they cannot be there to stand up to the administration or this ridiculous ban, through words they can still protest.
On the other end of the spectrum: are you a fan of mid-century modern design? Well this FW you can get a Supreme Alva Aalto chair. The list goes on: a lifeboat in case global warming causes floods all over. What Al Gore is saying is true and we are in dire straits and it’s gonna flood, let’s paddle around in style shall we? A sake set and chopsticks? Well, hell yeah, if we are gonna entertain or have a date with girl or guy who has a sneaker collection we gotta show some clout such that we were able to obtain that set. We are not supposed to eat fish from the Pacific anymore, if you haven’t heard, so let’s have a sashimi party at home with fish from the Atlantic shall we? Can’t let that Supreme gear go to waste. It will be perfect too with the Chinese rice bowl set from last year. What else? The exercise mat? Why the hell not??? If we are gonna live the Supreme dream, we want it ALL. So yeah, let’s face it, politics or not, Supreme is cool. And cool is a currency in itself that everyone wants a piece of. The Louis Vuitton collaboration would be a great example of this (love it or hate it).
On the topic of cool and how to obtain these objects. The big HOW? Well, you either know someone at Supreme, so there is no problem: a simple phone call will fix any Supreme desire. Or you know one of these thousands of kids that line up in the Supreme queue who cops a piece for you . . . or you make friends with your eBay dealer and tell him beforehand what he needs to get for you. Or you are an “influencer”. There is tons written about this . . . Reddit is very well informed. But as far as we are concerned, here in Thailand, without a US credit card and a VPN we can’t even access the store and must focus on the Japanese one. Thus eBay dealers become your best friends on Tuesday before that drop on Thursday. Alas, after all these years, the Supreme hype is still real.
Supreme gives you things you can use, a lot, and those that you can’t really at all, but so what? It’s cool and you want to have it, collect it, for it be yours. Let’s face it, a brick on the floor of your house looks much cooler with the Supreme logo than without it right?*
And that wrench and shovel too. Oh wait, we forgot those all have a function, mundane everyday functions, even that paper weight.
Supreme goes beyond and continues to challenge our very perception of things, bringing to the fore political questions that should concern us or introducing us to artists we might never have heard of before. In a Supreme world there is no one and nothing impossible to collaborate with or use as inspiration and nothing is too precious or mundane to be branded Supreme.
*On the topic of the brick - useless perhaps but maybe also symbolic? You use bricks to build a house. Or imagine that the brick has an origin. Imagine a single brick symbolizing your Supreme dream. Maybe, if you are really angry, and perhaps attending a protest, you might also throw bricks through people’s windows to show a sign of your anger (this is an example, not a recommendation). It’s not just any brick: it’s a Supreme brick. Or maybe it’s just that putting a logo on a brick is really cool and that’s it.