September 22, 2021

Wear The Right Thing

The Gallery at VCUarts Qatar

Jamel Shabazz, Radio Man, Brooklyn, NYC, 1980. Chromogenic print, 35.6 x 27.9 cm. Courtesy of the artist and Galerie Bene Taschen.

Does wearing a tracksuit nowadays define one’s origins and generation or gives others an idea of how one envisions the world? From Mark Zuckerberg wearing a hoodie in 2012 for a meeting with Facebook investors, through Run DMC removing his Adidas shoelaces in solidarity with prison inmates, to French rappers wearing low-cost brands—streetwear these days seems to have regained its political and social edge, overcoming its bling era. It has emerged as a more hybrid movement, embracing the post-gender revolution with its unisex metamorphosis, completely embedded in the universal youth culture and the struggles of our times.

The Wear the Right Thing exhibition translates this notion into contemporary art through the lens of three artists from different generations, Jamel Shabazz, Mohamed Bourouissa, and Sara Sadik, all of whom show, preserve and document the culture and style of diverse communities. As part of this exhibition, the designs from Balenciaga and pieces from collectors materialize and add to the spirit of freedom and irreverence of streetwear.

Julie Boukobza is a curator and art critic based in Paris and Arles, in charge of the LUMA Arles Residency Program. Ali Khan is Associate Professor at the Fashion Design Department at VCUarts Qatar.

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