Sport and fashion have held a long relationship. You only have to look to Golf to realise how powerful the right kind of fit has on one’s perception. And vice versa, this is seen on the runway where luxury fashion houses have pulled inspiration from the football field for new streetwear garb. All eyes are on the arrival of LeBron James to the basketball court, where once, he led his team donned in matching Thom Browne sets. The viral social media moment is only surpassed by that of Gucci’s collaboration with the New York Yankees, where hype beasts are still vying for the coveted pieces.
Luxury fashion is no stranger to the arena. But it’s not since the likes of Michael Jordan that the NBA has truly been at the style forefront. This of course, is about to change.
This week, contemporary artist Daniel Arsham was announced as Creative Director of the Cleveland Cavaliers. While the role is not unusual in NBA franchises, it is one of the most high-profile appointments. In addition, Arsham’s new role is close to his family’s heritage. His great grandfather first came to the city in 1908 and went on to found a fabric-recycling business called Arsham Brothers.
“Cleveland is a place that has heavily influenced me throughout my life, no matter where my life has led me,” Arsham wrote on Instagram. “The Land is a part of me.”
Arsham will be in charge of the visual and art identity of the Cavaliers. This will include imagery on the team’s jersey, home court and in some aspects, social media presence. The ultimate goal according to Artnet News is to shape the Cavaliers into an international brand like the Yankees. The first project is to renovate the player walk-in tunnel shortly followed by new merchandise.
Daniel Arsham is a regular collaborator in the luxury fashion sphere. His signature design sensibilities have made appearances within Dior collaborations and lifestyle partnerships.
Following a multi-year partnership between the NBA and Louis Vuitton, this latest news paves the way for a fresh era of style within the association. And it won’t just span to sporting fanatics, but men and women globally. Cindy Crawford was spotted on social media wearing vintage Bulls merch, and quite frankly, I’m sold.