BARNEYS NEW YORK embraces their outer rebel  for charity with THE BLACK LEATHER JACKET auction


Long hair minimizes the need for barbers; socks can be done without; one leather jacket solves the coat problem for many years; suspenders are superfluous.

– Albert Einstein

As fashion’s ultimate bad boy, Albert Einstein recognized leather jackets rule. And with that note to commensurate their downtown store opening on 7th Avenue and 16th Street, the same city block where Barneys New York opened doors in 1923, the luxury retailer has partnered with White Columns and The LGBT Community Center for The Black Leather Jacket auction.

A total of 23 one-of-a-kind leather jackets were created by artists Susan Cianciolo, Dan Colen, Kim Gordon, Ella Kruglyanskaya, Helmut Lang, Glenn Ligon, Nate Lowman, Marilyn Minter, Rob Pruitt, Ugo Rondinone, Sterling Ruby, Borna Sammak, Anicka Yi, Lisa Yuskavage and designers Azzedine Alaïa, Joseph Altuzarra, Tim Coppens, Isabel Marant, Dries Van Noten, Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci, and Alexander Wang. Items are available on Christie’s to bid on until March 22, with proceeds to benefit two of New York City’s non-profit institutions: The LGBT Community Center and White Columns, NYC’s oldest non-profit art space specializing in emerging artists.

The Impression thinks, “Genius!” and has eyes on a number of these beauties below.


Azzedine Alaïa

The biker jacket is one of my favorite pieces because it is so iconic. The silhouette and the animal print leather are both running themes in my collections, but I’ve never produced this design in this material before!

- Azzedine Alaïa

Joseph Altuzarra

Inspired by folkloric influences and contrasting textures, Mr. Altuzarra has reimagined the masculine leather jacket with the application of a luxurious, oversized shearling collar. Nipped at the waist with a wraparound leather belt, the silhouette is unexpected yet authentic to Altuzarra.

Tim Coppens

I used primer paint, a Sharpie, Eminem’s picture from the “Dazed and Confused” June 2000 cover, safety pins, and leftover fabrics from my Spring/Summer 2016 collections.

- Tim Coppens

I used primer paint, a Sharpie, safety pins, and leftover fabrics from my Spring/Summer 2016 collections. I looked at what was in my studio and mixed some stuff up.

- Tim Coppens

Dries Van Noten

Homage to Paris. A city we all feel very close to. An expression also of our emotion for Parisians after its recent dark period and our good wishes for the City of Light.

- Dries Van Noten


Isabel Marant

I wanted to make the jacket modern and visual while staying crafty. The white cotton thread creates contrasts with the leather and gives a handmade touch. Since I’m always inspired by Americana, I used the eagle as an emblem on the back.

- Isabel Marant


Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci

Inspired by the Givenchy’s iconic Punk Marine collection for Fall 2007, the jacket is customized with embroidered pyramid studs that come in three sizes of ancient gold metal and galvanized gun metal to give a unique Givenchy signature to a classic leather biker jacket.

Alexander Wang

The song “Hotline Bling” by Drake


Susan Cianciolo

Untitled, 2016

Feather, paper, glue, acrylic, gouache, watercolor and white out. One of the most celebrated designers of the 1990s, Susan Cianciolo always approached the act of making from an artist’s perspective.

Dan Colen

No Sex No War No Me, 2016

Enamel on jacket. Dan Colen emerged in the early 2000s downtown New York art scene. His art is usually irreverent, drawing inspiration from tribal attitudes and aesthetics of music and youth subcultures.

Kim Gordon

Untitled, 2016

Glitter, ‘Mod Podge’ adhesive, and ink on notebook page. Kim Gordon has worked for 30 years across disciplines and across distinct cultural fields: art, design, writing, fashion (co-founder of X-Girl), music (founding member of Sonic Youth and the duo Body/Head), and in film and video (both as an actress and director). In her art she likes to explore questions of image and identity.

Ella Kruglyanskaya

Untitled, 2016

Oil on leather. Ella Kruglyanskaya has emerged as one of the preeminent painters of her generation in the past 5 years. She works in both oil on canvas and egg tempera on wooden panels. Her work is underscored by sardonic wit, invoking a complex lineage defined by a seemingly inexhaustible set of historical reference points and aesthetic detours.

Helmut Lang

Untitled, 2016

Mixed media, tape, pigment, and resin. Lang established his fashion label in 1978 and has achieved global recognition over the following three decades. After retiring from fashion in 2005, Lang has solely been working as an artist.

Glenn Ligon

Untitled, 2016

Oil stick on leather. Glenn Ligon has developed a complex body of work that explores the intersections of history, race, class, identity and desire. Ligon is among the most significant artists of his generation. His work is rooted in language: typically found or appropriated texts sourced from literature, politics and popular culture.

Nate Lowman

Untitled, 2016

Oil on canvas, oil on inkjet on canvas, and cotton thread on leather jacket. Nate Lowman has developed an expansive body of work over the past decade that takes the recent past of American culture as both its subject and departure point.

Marilyn Minter

Wet Kiss (Jacket), 2016

Dye Sub photograph on aluminum, leather cord, and oil paint pen. Marilyn Minter, for almost 40 years, has explored questions of identity, gender, and sexuality in an increasingly influential body of work that embraces painting, photography and filmmaking. She draws her inspiration from the seductive imagery associated with fashion, advertising and pornography.

Rob Pruitt

91 Notables Wearing Biker Jackets, 2016

White oil based Sharpie paint marker. Rob Pruitt is among the most influential and idiosyncratic artists of the past 25 years. Pruitt has exhibited his work internationally since the late 1980s, working across disciplines and media: painting, sculpture, and performance/social events, including his now legendary, artist-led Flea Markets.

Ugo Rondinone

Jacket with a Cause, 2016

Acrylic paint on leather. Swiss born, New York-based artist Ugo Rondinone is one of the most mercurial artists working today. Rondinone works in a series of related and often overlapping bodies of work that include his celebrated “clown” sculptures, geometric, “mandala”-like abstract paintings, rainbow-colored, illuminated signs, stacked and anthropomorphic rock sculptures, and works that relate to architecture, including his ongoing series of “door,” “window,” and “wall” paintings and sculptures.

Sterling Ruby

SR Leather Quilted-Yoke Moto Jacket {503967605}, 2016

Paint and patches on leather jacket. Sterling Ruby, based in Los Angeles, is known for his expansive practice that embraces painting, textiles, ceramics and sculpture, along with his ongoing collaborations with Raf Simons.

I like to think about art as being similar to poetry. It can’t be proven. It just exists.

- Sterling Ruby

Borna Sammak

Untitled, 2016

Dog leashes, dog collar and jacket. Borna Sammak is from an emerging generation of artists who freely takes discarded material or imagery from the “cultural garbage can.” His digital video works and his embroidered painting-like objects animate and collide a multitude of often conflicting aesthetics to create works that are often claustrophobic or even hallucinatory.

Anicka Yi

Untitled, 2016

Synthetic flowers, metal rings, metal mesh, vinyl, and kombucha leather with scobys. Anicka Yi has been described as an “artist-cum-alchemist” in relation to her approach, which considers the intersections (and tests the boundaries) of science, aesthetics and culture.

Lisa Yuskavage

Untitled, 2016

Embroidery on silk with leather. In the early 1990s, Lisa Yuskavage was one of the instrumental artists in the re-emergence of figurative painting. Yuskavage works both in and around the traditional genres of nude, still life, and landscape painting: pictorial traditions that she vividly disrupts through her complex, psychologically and sexually-charged subject matter.


All items are available for auction until March 22nd, 2016 HERE