Artist Stephen Wilson is bringing to life luxury fashion boxes, transforming each box into a unique work of art with one of a kind embroidery and embellishments. The iconic boxes of luxury houses like Chanel, Hermès, Valentino, Dior, and Gucci are the canvases for this series that is catching the eye of art and fashion enthusiasts alike.
Stephen invited us into his studio for a tour and to see the process of the luxury box series in the making.
"I look at each box as I would a blank canvas before I design what will be stitched and placed on it. Instead of a plain white background, I get to work with luxurious designer boxes." - Stephen Wilson
After each box is hand-selected, a unique design is created for it.
Each box is embroidered. Stitching through a box is extremely difficult and time-consuming. Since each box is unique, extreme care must be taken when stitching is applied.
Depending on the box, some are embellished with lace, patches, and additional assemblage techniques. All of the embroideries are created at the studio as well.
Once completed, the boxes are three-dimensionally mounted using the original base box as support, then framed in a shadowbox.
"As often as I can I try to create a piece of art that evokes the emotion of the box itself." - Stephen Wilson
Born and raised in Hoboken, New Jersey, Stephen Wilson is a conceptual artist whose unique medium carries his message. Blending luxury fabric, 3D-printed sculptures, laser-engraved acrylics, and highly detailed embroidery pieces, Wilson’s manipulation of multiple materials produces wholly original works of art. His early career in the commercial fashion industry, along with a wildly successful embroidery software company, has equipped Stephen with a range of technical skills. Wilson relays strong messages by channeling Americana, high fashion, and traditional crafts.
The medium is the message. There is a long list of artists that create art using traditional means. However, Stephen Wilson is anything but traditional. The medium used for his pieces is predominantly fabric and thread, combined with sculptural 3D printing, laser engraving, and painting. When you examine one of his pieces closely you will notice that each line and element is created with thread on top of luxurious fabrics. Some of his pieces contain millions of embroidery stitches and take hundreds of hours to create. Fashion influence is prevalent in his pieces. The fabrics used include Hermès silk, Chanel wool, fabrics by Marc Jacobs, Oscar De La Renta, Vera Wang, Ralph Lauren, Versace, Dolce & Gabanna, and Brunello Cucinelli. He is influenced by contemporary art, pop art, street art, graffiti, and iconography, as well as traditional quilting and handicrafts. Each piece is unique and expertly crafted in his Charlotte, North Carolina, studio, using both traditional and modern tools.
Stephen Wilson is known for work that blends a high fashion influence, traditional quilting, and Americana. He has been an industry leader in both the fashion embroidery and home embroidery world, as well as an industry speaker, writer, and educator. His pieces have been included in solo gallery exhibitions, group exhibitions, museum shows, and are collected by art enthusiasts worldwide.