Credit: Claire Silver

Now Runway: Christie’s and Gucci Partner on Generative NFT Collection

BY Afrodet Zuri

July 14, 2023

Welcome back to Now Runway, where we report to you from the frontlines of the digital fashion and luxury revolution. Today we’re writing to you from the hot, hot, hot climate of an Ibizan summer where fashion takes a backseat to comfort — except at the club, where the peacock method of dress is in full effect.

This is a monumental week for digital fashion as Christie’s and Gucci have elevated the genre to new heights. Read on to see what else you missed this week, including Meta avatars by Maison Valentino and LG Uplus entering the digital fashion business. 

Christie’s and Gucci

Christie’s and Gucci have partnered to present a new auction, Future Frequencies: Explorations in Generative Art and Fashion. This joint venture highlights several of the current leading figures in the digital art realm, showcasing a diverse array of artists with a specialized emphasis on generative systems and artificial intelligence.

The auction will feature 21 NFTs, including works from notable artists such as Claire Silver, Emi Kusano, Emily Xie, William Mapan, Zach Lieberman, Botto, Helena Sarin, Draup, and more.

Credit: Luke Shannon
Credit: Draup

Each artist’s work innovatively delves into the confluence of fashion, art, and technology, encompassing themes from generative textile studies to algorithmic renditions of the iconic Gucci Bamboo 1947 handle. This intertwining of autonomous systems, AI, and fashion signifies a merging of distinct ecosystems – superimposing the fashion industry, which is focused on garment design and manufacturing, onto the realms of generative art and artificial intelligence that utilize algorithms, modeling, and data to mimic human-like intelligence and artistic production.

Credit: Claire Silver

“I’m very proud to present two works: Shinjitai, created in collaboration with Emi Kusano for Gucci, and style moderne, a solo piece for Christie’s,” shares Silver in a press release. “Shinjitai, which translates to ‘new character forms,’ is wearable art that uses AI to merge the storied aesthetic of Gucci with the spirit of Harajuku fashion.”

“Combining AI, 3D, film, and advanced mathematical functions with antique paintings and tapestries from China, Japan, and Eastern and Western Europe, both works are intended to celebrate the era of AI: the sophistication of experience, the innocent joy of the new, the depth of cultural heritage, and the light of the future. In the spirit of our digital+physical world, both works include physical components for their collectors — from rolls of fabric to hologram displays.”

Credit: Claire Silver and Emi Kusano

The auction will be conducted on Christie’s 3.0, their on-chain auction platform, and the works will be featured on Gucci Art Space, an online gallery established by Gucci that serves to highlight and empower artists. The auction is set to take place from July 18 to 25, 2023.

Maison Valentino

Maison Valentino has become the most recent high-end brand to design digital fashion styles for Meta’s avatars. Starting today, individuals can design their own avatars accessible across Meta platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, Messenger, and Meta virtual reality experiences, featuring six fully branded outfits inspired by Valentino’s latest collection.

With prices typically ranging from $2.99 to $8.99 for designer items, Meta collaborates with the brand on revenue sharing, although the exact percentages and prices of Valentino’s pieces remain undisclosed.

Credit: Valentino

In a press release, Valentino expressed its intent to explore the potential of digital clothing as “a step forward toward commerce in the metaverse,” stating that fostering individuality and community building has been an ongoing focus and area of exploration. This sentiment has been echoed and amplified within digital communities in the U.S., cultivating an inclusive ethos.

LG Uplus Corp

LG Uplus Corp., a mobile network operator under the umbrella of LG Corporation in South Korea, has introduced its own Metaverse fashion marketplace. This digital clothing platform will host sales connected to physical products in a physical store.

The newly established Metaverse marketplace for fashion by LG Uplus has been named Meta Slap and is slated to officially commence operation this month. The creation of this platform is part of the company’s strategy to grow its metaverse commerce within the fashion sector. 

LG Uplus, Z-Emotion, and Ation Fashion are set to open and collaboratively manage the Meta Slap clothing store from this month onwards. Z-Emotion makes simulation-based costume production software, and Ation Fashion is a South Korean textile and clothing maker that owns the popular casual brand, Polham. Customers can purchase clothing, accessories, and other fashion-related items through the virtual shop.

After making purchases in the metaverse, customers will receive links to claim their physical items. In the near future, LG Uplus Corp., Ation Fashion, and Z-Emotion plan to launch an AI-powered fitting room, allowing shoppers to virtually try on their selected items before purchasing them offline.

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