Art Fashion

Antwaun Sargent Interrogates a Cowboy for Helmut Lang

Justen Leroy, Hymn I, 2023. Image courtesy of the artist and Hannah Traore Gallery.

In 2004, fashion house Helmut Lang printed the word “cowboy” backwards on a plain, white t-shirt. The word itself evokes the mythos of the American West, of frontierism, and a vintage brand of masculinity. Its inverse stylization forces onlookers to think about what it would mean to turn the archetype itself on its head, to reckon with a legacy that is deceptively complex. 

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