In 2021, UNIQLO UT has been a veritable cauldron of cultural celebration, launching collaborative projects with everything from League of Legends and Pokémon, to Peanuts and beyond. But in addition to these ingresses into the conversation of the moment, UNIQLO UT has cast its gaze into the fine art world, tapping Jeff Koons as their latest collaborator.
This isn’t the first time that UNIQLO UT has released a collection in partnership with the art world establishment, with a Warhol-inspired pop art collaboration, and a Jean-Michel Basquiat x Warner Bros. collection also dropped within the last year. But for this year’s Autumn/Winter collection, the Japanese clothing giant has worked directly with Koons on a set of styles inspired by his Balloon Dogs sculptures.
Koons originally created Baloon Dogs to form a part of his 1994 Celebration series, made in five different colours that were red, blue, magenta, orange, yellow. Nearly two decades after they were created, Jeff Koons Orange Balloon Dog was sold by Christie’s in a 2013 auction. The stainless steel sculpture sold for $80.6 million and set a new record for the highest price ever paid for artwork by a living artist.
While the UNIQLO UT collaboration with Koons might be limited in the breadth of garments it offers, the collection certainly focuses on the best-recognised works of Koons career so far. The collection of t-shirts and hoodies feature graphics of Koons most famous artworks, including Orange Baloon Dog, Play-Doh, Seated Ballerina and more.
The collection specifically celebrates the upcoming exhibition, Jeff Koons: Lost in America, which will be held in Qatar for the first time this November. The UNIQLO and Jeff Koons collection will be available in UNIQLO stores and online from the 27th of September, with t-shirts for $19.90 (AU$27) and hoodies for $29.90 (AU$41).