The New York collective is making fun of luxury by selling used paper shopping bags in designer shops for 40 dollars. Result: sold out in less than a minute. This is their latest desecration and perhaps the softest. We tell you about the ones that have caused a stir and caused discussion in the fashion system
Already a couple of decades ago, people in London liked to walk around with empty Harrods shopping bags or bags containing personal items, as if they were ‘normal’ it bags. The purpose was, trivially, to use them as belongings. In other words, they were used to appearing wealthier than reality. This ambition does not seem to have gone out of fashion and has been targeted by the MSCHF collective, which has created the provocative Only Bags project. And it is only the latest desecration of luxury in a long, controversial series.
The ultimate desecration of luxury
Only Bags is a website that sells (or rather was selling: the “bags” sold out in less than a minute) designer bags by Fendi, Hermès, Supreme, Burberry and Prada for 40 dollars each. Once again, the New York collective has achieved its objective. To provoke luxury, its image and its dimension, turning this desecration into an online viral vehicle.
The provocations of MSCHF
More than anything else (the product, the turnover) what counts is the message, MSCHF seems to want to say. It is no coincidence that when, in 2019, MSCHF produced the controversial Jesus Sneakers (they had a crucifix woven into the laces and water from the River Jordan in the bottom), its CEO, Gabriel Whaley, explained to the New York Times that ‘the story the trainers told was more important than making a profit. Ditto for the Birkinstock produced in 2021. They were sandals made from leather from the iconic Birkin Hermès bags and Birkenstock cork soles. Or for the Satan Shoe: Nike Air Max 97 trainers containing a drop of human blood. No brand has approved these creative hacks of its accessories, not least because they often tread the line of legality (as well as good taste, some argue).
A kind of Banksy
All this is not a hindrance (on the contrary…) for the New York-based collective of about 30 creatives. Also because, by now, there are those who define it as “the Banksy of consumer culture“. In other words, a collective that aims (with due ironic cynicism) at the consumerist drift of the social context and luxury, releasing a project every week. Everything we create, digital, physical or whatever it is, is somehow in between art, luxury, fashion, hypebeast, capitalism, social commentary,” explains MSCHF co-founder Daniel Greenberg to WWD. What will be the next desecration?
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