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That classical heritage has been pushed into the future recently in the brand’s relationship with Rihanna on the Fenty line, but the biggest step forward we’ve seen thus far comes thanks to Puma’s work with UEG. The Polish brand teamed up with Puma on a collection that features an incredible breadth of apparel and sneakers that dare to do something totally different.
And thank God.
The collection, “Gravity Resistance,” draws from the idea that as humans we’re always looking up and out, resisting the gravity of the past, and sometimes even the present. We’re always looking to the stars. Fittingly, UEG shot the lookbook in the desert with a setting that’s downright Martian.
Whenever an artist looks upward or outward—whether it’s in fashion or in any other discipline—the results are otherworldly. Think about it: The world that we live in is what they’re looking away from, so what they imagine will not fit.
The collaborative pieces from Puma and UEG, both the footwear or the apparel, don’t immediately make sense in our daily context. Whoever is wearing these pieces walks in their own way, at their own pace, and in their own vision of the world—and the future. All credit to UEG: the brand did its work a great service by displaying these pieces on their own terms, creating a context that makes a home for the challenging aesthetic.
Michal Lojewski of UEG credits the Italian phrase “use e getta,” meaning “use and discard” as the inspiration for the looks, examining how quickly we consume and throw away items in our daily lives. The combination of the extra spatial and single-use culture offers something we seldom see, especially from Puma.
UEG’s versions of Puma’s classics like the Suede and States feature dynamic paneling and unapologetic type. The take on the Sky Hi+ basketball shoe is almost shocking in its height, a brave move for any designer.
The apparel utilizes strong shapes and materials, sculpting the silhouettes out of traditional expectations and into something surprising. And all of this is done in black and white. There is no color. There is no gray.
The bravery is that this collection is obviously not for everyone, but what works about it is that it’s not trying to be for everyone. Rather than appealing to the lowest common denominator for popularity or sales, UEG is offering something truly different. It’s coloring outside the lines.
Not all shoppers are going to love it; most won’t even understand it. But at least it’s a vision for something new—a necessary and welcome breath of fresh air.