The world of Ray Ban is a gloriously artistic place to be, as your Daily learned last night when we entered District 1937, their warehouse space dedicated to the eyewear staple’s latest collection. Housed in SIR Stage37, the District was a artist’s factory of sorts, featuring various stations that showcased the five styles that make up the new Materials Collection. There were specific stations dedicated to leather, denim, steel, titanium, and velvet (the materials that the new styles are created in) where artisans in each craft created works in homage to their medium of choice. There was leather artisan Marc Evans and his intricate etched canvases, denim master Ian Berry (otherwise known as Denimu)’s intricate “paintings” made from used jeans, and a plethora of moving steel sculptures from Anne Lilly.
Berry’s denim portraits were certainly one of the show stoppers of the evening, with several partygoers lingering around to marvel at the detailed creations. He began working with denim when his mom wanted to turn his old bedroom into a guestroom. “She emptied my cupboards and there were jeans, DVDs, and probably some things I didn’t want her to see,” said Berry. “I had this pile of jeans and thought, ‘I don’t want to take those to a charity shop.’ There were so many different shades. But I’m not going to lie to you, it was just for pure aesthetic value originally, but in working with it I made new things with texture, depth, and my own connection to it. Plus, a lot of people are very connected to their denim.” Berry has even been commissioned by celebrity clients to make portraits and scenes out of their old denim. For last night’s event Debbie Harry, who performed a playlist of her smash hits alongside with her band, Blondie, got the denim treatment with a giant portrait of her iconic face performing in a pair of Ray-Bans.
Who else took to the stage? Indie-darlings MS MR, who captivated the crowd with a short set. But of course there was more: weaving through the crowds were fashion scene regulars like Zoe Kravitz, Coco Rocha, Gigi Hadid, George Kotsiopoulos, Zosia Mamet, Atlanta de Cadenet, and Katherine McPhee, a few of which even took advantage of the Ray Ban Remix station on the upper level, where they designed a pair of shades to take home. But which mod was fan-girling over the iconic blond new wave queen? That would be Rocha, who admitted: “I’m so excited to see Blondie! I can never get enough of her!”