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Wanted: G-Star RAW and Vitra Revive Jean Prouvé’s Forgotten Classics

Fashion labels looking to extend their brand territory typically colonize home furnishings. If consumers really want to embody the Ralph Lauren image, the thinking goes, why stop at polo shirts? Why not go in for the tufted leather chairs from a “thoroughbred estate” as well? But it’s rare for a fashion house to revive the work of a master designer without leaving so much as a big logo. Such is the case with the denim-manufacturer G-Star RAW, which collaborated with the Swiss manufacturer Vitra to reproduce some of Jean Prouvé’s lesser-known pieces.

The collection reinterprets 17 of Prouvé’s pieces, many of which look strikingly Machine Age compared to the French Modernist’s better-known midcentury designs (check out the 1954 Rampe Lumineuse to see what we mean). G-Star adhered to the designer’s sketches but tweaked colors and finishes (the original wood pieces were lacquered instead of oiled). The stripped-down forms speak volumes about Prouvé’s timeless genius, and G-Star and Vitra have done the design world a service in bringing them back to life.BL