Twenty years ago, Helmut Lang became the first fashion designer to advertise his brand on the tops of yellow taxis, a practice that has since gone on to be expenditure in most companies’ marketing budgets. Helmut Lang paid homage to its Vienna-born founder last year by taking out ads on hundreds of New York City taxis, but this year, the fashion label launched a Global Taxi capsule collection as tribute.
The program, which is available for pre-order today, features reworked taxi logos on short sleeve and long sleeve t-shirts and hooded sweatshirts. The label re-released its original New York Taxi collection and extends the program to London, Paris, Tokyo and Hong Kong, with special reworks of each city’s respective taxi logos.
To celebrate the launch, Helmut Lang tapped five young local photographers to shoot the collection in each city. Alexandra Leese, Tom Emmerson, Alex Lee, Patrick Welde, and Kenta Nakamura photograph taxi drivers with their cars in Hong Kong, London, New York City, Paris and Toyko, respectively, and also capture the energy and culture of each city.
In Hong Kong, a driver sits on the hood of his car in a parking garage, meanwhile in Paris the driver is seen on the road and on the job. In addition, photos of the drivers in London and Tokyo show stark differences in rural and urban locations, but share a sense of pride for one’s car and occupation.
The collection and campaign is more than nostalgia for Helmut Lang. The label turns to its heritage to engage a new audience and continue its evolution.