Polo store goes to Hell(bent)

Currently sporting a paintjob by Hellbent, the University Place Denim & Supply outlet’s exterior will be a canvas for a rotating cast of artists.  Photo by Pasha Farmanara

Currently sporting a paintjob by Hellbent, the University Place Denim & Supply outlet’s exterior will be a canvas for a rotating cast of artists. Photo by Pasha Farmanara

BY PASHA FARMANARA  |  Polo Ralph Lauren is known for its subdued khaki pants and button-down shirts, but its Denim & Supply store on 12th St. and University Place has taken on a splash of more colorful flair.

With the help of local artist Hellbent, the store has launched its first installment of the Art Wall Project. The project helps raise money for the School of Visual Arts. S.V.A. students and alumni were invited to the project’s opening.

The store is selling a shirt inspired by Hellbent’s work, which is available for both men and woman for $50.

Hellbent’s facade treatment of the store is the first installment of the Art Wall Project. According to the store’s Web site, the place’s exterior will continue to be used as a canvas for future artists.

“The Art Wall Project is a new initiative that supports self-expression through collaborations with emerging artists, who transform the Denim & Supply New York store’s facade into a large-scale work of art,” states the store’s Web site.

Neither the store nor the company had a role in designing or even influencing the facade artwork.

“That’s all me,” Hellbent said. “They had seen my work. I have murals like that everywhere, so they had actually teamed up with refinery29, a fashion art blog and found me. They then just gave me free rein to do whatever I chose with the store.

“It’s Denim & Supply, an offshoot brand of theirs which is geared more toward music and art background, I guess,” said Hellbent. “So that’s my color palette and my style.”

The store on 12th and University is one of only two Denim & Supply stores in the U.S., and is the brand’s flagship location.

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One Response to Polo store goes to Hell(bent)

  1. And here we thought that garish display was only temporary! Suitable for Times Square, maybe, but not for this neighborhood. For those of us who live here, it's an eyesore and an imposition, and a terrible thing to do to a nice old building like that. Everyone in my building was very upset about it, but we were told it was only for six weeks.

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