“I first walked by it and…I just had no words,” said Angelica Hicks of the first time she saw her wall mural on Lafayette Street, between Prince and Spring Streets, in SoHo. For an artist who churns out a pun-ny fashion illustration nearly daily, speechlessness is a high achievement.
“It’s huge, yes. It’s enormous. And it’s so cool.”
After being discovered on Instagram by Gucci creative director Alessandro Michele last year, the British illustrator, who runs an Instagram of illustrated fashion puns and recently published her first book, was tapped for a partnership with the brand. In addition to the mural, which is twinned with a similarly scaled installation in Milan, a line of 11 T-shirts with Hicks’ work has been produced.
The collaboration was celebrated Thursday night at the Lafayette Street Sant Ambroeus, which sits within perfect viewing distance of the wall mural. Hicks and the Gucci team were joined by Soko, Selah Marley, Ian Mellencamp, Aurora James and Hari Nef.
“I do this walk a lot – I work from home, and I don’t live that far away and I go a bit crazy so I walk,” Hicks explained. “So I was kind of seeing it being done, but literally it was so fast. And the coolest thing was they even got my imperfections: my slightly bobbly line. They got that – I mean, it was literally my drawing. They aren’t correcting me.”
The wall went up on May 8, as did it’s Milan counterpart.
Hicks, like many of the under-30 crowd in the restaurant, was wearing one of the Gucci T-shirts. “They optioned the rights for the drawings from a selection of Gucci-centric [work] – which sounds so weird,” she said. “And they were all ones that I would’ve picked myself – I was so pleased with the selection. Especially the loaves – the Gucci loaves.”