Sterling Ruby’s personal wardrobe is as apocalyptic as his artwork. With little information—apart from Instagram posts showing a sewing station, fabric details, and a close-up of a neon-and-black windowpane-check fabric—out on the 47-year-old artist’s forthcoming coed ready-to-wear and accessories label, S.R. STUDIO. LA. CA., fashion circles are speculating about whether it will echo Ruby’s own moody, chemically altered outfits, which are rooted in American workwear. (To achieve their ghostly appearance, Ruby utilized menacing splatters of bleach.) The mystery will soon be solved, though: debuting on June 13 at the 96th installation of the Pitti Immagine Uomo menswear show in Florence, Italy, Ruby’s first solo public foray into fashion follows his decade of experimentation with textile-based works, including star-spangled “snake fang” soft sculptures, quilt collages, and backdrops for performance art.
“I’ve always been interested in the behavioral power that comes with clothing,” Ruby said in a press release. “For years I have been privately exploring garments as a medium, as something that impacts the way one can think, feel, and move.” Ruby has collaborated with a longtime friend, Belgian fashion designer Raf Simons, on projects for Christian Dior and Calvin Klein, but whether S.R. STUDIO. LA. CA. will champion Ruby’s somber interpretation of American utility or reflect European sensibilities is anyone’s guess. If his oeuvre is any indication, it’s bound to be at least a little sinister.