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2004 Fine Jersey 'Janus in Leather Jacket' T-Shirt

Helmut Lang

2004 Fine Jersey 'Janus in Leather Jacket' T-Shirt


Size XS: Best for any size between an IT 46 - 36 Chest - S and an IT 44 - 34 Chest - XS. Can also be worn by women sized between UK 12/US 8 and UK 8/US 4.

Helmut Lang x Louise Bourgeois collaboration long-sleeve T-shirt from A/W 2004-2005. In excellent used condition. Made in Italy.

A/W 2004-2005 is one of my favourite Helmut Lang menswear collections. Merging the finesse of his 1990's work with the intricately detailed sophistication of his final years, Lang presented a wardrobe where classic masculinity and avant-garde transgressions sit effortlessly side-by-sideAn amalgamation of textures and materials referenced Lang's influential body of work; moleskin cotton, silk sateen, steel, coated buffalo leather, raw denim. The styling subverted typical notions of luxury and streetwear, balancing precision with chaos. At the same time, covert details created complex narratives that gave considerable depth to each look.

This T-shirt was one of the collection's signature basics and features a depiction of Louise Bourgeois's sculpture 'Janus in Leather Jacket' on the front. The back is decorated with Helmut Lang's logo, followed by 'New York Milano Paris'. This piece can be seen in the permanent collection of the Museum of Fine Arts Boston. Lang's original press release reads:


Helmut Lang has designed a limited edition of scarves and T-shirts for his men's Autumn/Winter 04/05 collection, with a print of the sculpture Janus in Leather Jacket by artist Louise Bourgeois, Lang's friend and collaborator.

Bourgeois created the bronze sculpture in 1968; the print was chosen by Lang and Bourgeois specifically for Lang's Autumn/Winter 04/05 collection.

Janus, the Roman god of beginnings and the guardian of gates and doors, is historically depicted by two faces looking in opposite directions. He was worshipped at the beginning of their planting time, harvest, marriage, birth and other important beginnings in a person's life. He represents the transition between primitive life and civilization, between rural and urban existence and the balance between youth and old age.

"Janus swings in both directions. Its double head is one head looking to the past and one head looking to the future," says Bourgeois.

Lang and Bourgeois have collaborated on several occasions, including the 1998 exhibit at the Kunsthalle Vienna, together with Jenny Holzer. Most recently, Lang designed a limited edition T-shirt with a print by Louise Bourgeois for the F/W 03/04 collection.

The T-shirts and cashmere-silk scarves are available in a variety of colors at Helmut Lang shops and selected stores worldwide.' (my emphasis)

The prints have been screen printed using thick matte cerulean blue ink that contrasts pronouncedly with the optic white fabric. The piece is crafted from luxurious cotton jersey with a mercerised treatment. The finely knit material has a deep colour and a beautifully lustrous surface. Furthermore, its high thread count results in a pleasantly rich and smooth texture while ensuring that it will maintain its softness for longer. The silhouette is semi-fitted with side seams that spiral slightly towards the right to enhance the top's drape when it is worn. The crew neckline is finished with ribbed trim. 

Documenting the friendship of two artists that are now seen as avant-garde pioneers in their respective practices, this piece is a quintessential Helmut Lang basic. Its tasteful decoration and high quality fabric make it ideal for everyday wear.

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