‘FIRST WAVE’ COLLECTION
This season LES BENJAMINS casts its eye from the pre-existing notions of Earth and its far-flung locales into something more abstract and aesthetically distant.
The Istanbul-based brand’s Fall-Winter 2023 collection takes the name ‘First Wave’ — a direction set by the brands’s creative director Bunyamin Aydin, as a visual blueprint of what the first colony from Earth might look like in an imagined desert landscape.
Combining several aesthetic pillars of the brand, including futuristic sci-fi elements and gaming skins with traditional Eastern cultural symbols such as the LES BENJAMINS carpet monogram — ‘First Wave’ is an amalgamation of a future where the nostalgia for earth still lingers on, long after its inhabitants have left.
Garments are crafted with protective elements in mind, with second-skin type body armour, padding and technical military silhouettes in leather, silk and crepe juxtaposed by hardware and functional tech details each adorned with patches, tubes and drawstring elements in oversized slouchy rave-style silhouettes.
The base colour palette takes a melancholic turn across both men’s and womenswear with deep shades of mahogany, swamp and sylvan green — but flashes of abstract neons and acid-washes in over-exposed Pantones set a cyberpunk tone to the collection as a gentle symbol of humanistic hope set across a dysotopic backdrop.
Aligning with the brand’s commitment towards community, ‘First Wave’ imagines a world where a new tribe has formed in the desert, each carrying their own nostalgia of the past, and the East, but with a resilience towards the future.
LES BENJAMINS X SOUTH KOREA
Bünyamin Aydin chooses South Korea as a new market entry, building a bridge from the East to the East and connecting the dots between Istanbul and Seoul. With the historical bond between the two countries and the familiarity with the evolving youth culture in the underground scene, LES BENJAMINS ushers in a new era for Middle Eastern fashion, becoming the first designer to forge a link between the region and South Korea.
“It has always been my dream to bring Les Benjamins to Seoul since the early days of the brand,” said Bünyamin Aydin. “Both Korean and Japanese cultures have had a major influence on my upbringing in Germany.”
LES BENJAMINS enters South Korea with its FW23 “FIRST WAVE” collection by collaborating with trend-setting entities. The luxury streetwear brand has partnered with the Korean retail concept store, EMPTY, for their Pop-up opening on September 6th. This will run for two weeks during the most prestigious timeline of the year for creative industry, coinciding with the Frieze Art Fair season - which attracts global attention and bring in key individuals and audience together.
Moreover, LES BENJAMINS’ FW23 “FIRST WAVE” collection is reinterpreted by the one-of-a-kind, A-list photographer, Cho Gi-Seok. He bridges the visual narrative to connect the audience through the lens of contemporary fashion.
To unite the community, LES BENJAMINS orchestrates key activities and immersive experiences across Seoul. LES BENJAMINS showcases its sartorial street-inspired vision by hosting an event at Kompakt record bar on August 31st and forming an exclusive partnership with Namyoungtak on September 3rd.
The Korean creative and fashion community is already buzzing about LES BENJAMINS, seeing it as both new and necessary, possessing a unique cultural heritage.
Bünyamin Aydin added, “Through LES BENJAMINS, we aim to introduce Istanbul's youth culture, street fashion, and lifestyle that have not been previously experienced. Moreover, we plan to expand its role as a platform connecting new cultures and also as a communicator."