We have now launched our first concept store, Duke Street Emporium, with The Shop at Bluebird in the heart of Mayfair. Before opening we caught up with Nas Abraham, the first artist in a series of in-store collaborations.
In short, Nas is a creative mind about town. After studying Fashion Illustration at London College of Fashion, he set out to apply his breadth of skills in arts and design to a multitude of projects. His work draws from digital and hand-drawn media, culminating in a range of projects from illustration and prints to creative direction and even clothing. Nas is also a frequent contributor to style collective Individualism where he creates content alongside some of the biggest up-and-coming names in the world of menswear.
Nas’ most recent piece of work, namely a digital-meets-graphic installation, has taken shape in Duke Street Emporium. In response to a quote from his website, we wholeheartedly concur. “Inspiration is [indeed] contagious.”
Tell us about Individualism?
Individualism is a men’s style collective dedicated to educating and empowering men to be more courageous with their style and being comfortable with who they are. It’s a team of about 13 creative people who specialise in different areas from film, writing, photography, styling, design, advertising… You name it, we’ve got it it covered.
What is your role within the collective?
I was initially brought on board as an illustrator — hand drawing articles and stories to support our written content. I then became more involved with photo shoots and editorials and I now assume more of an Art Director’s role with Individualism.
What made you want to work with us?
I met the lovely representatives at The Shop at Bluebird, who introduced me to the artistic culture they promote, which is heavily cultivated in the new Duke Street hub. I was presented with the opportunity to display my artwork in a place that houses both the iconic British Heritage brand Jigsaw and the fashion-forward boutique, The Shop at Bluebird.
What have you created for Duke Street opening?
I have created two huge, mixed media murals placed on the walls of the new store. I’ve also created a conceptual moving image to project over three mannequins. Make sure you see the installation for yourselves.
Where in the store will it be?
The murals will be in the entrance of the store, very close to the window for all to see and the projections will live in lower ground floor.
What was your idea behind the piece?
I wanted to convey the concept of relationships, bonds and eternity in reference to Duke Street Emporium being a place of sociality, meeting with friends and the bonds we make with people. The projection has a similar concept but will be more focused on the aesthetic.
What sparks your creativity?
God the creator is my biggest inspiration, as well as artists and and other creatives. If something is created well and with passion — whether it be music, artwork, clothing, a building, etc. — it tends to resonate with me. I often place myself in their frame of mind, drawing inspiration from their creative process.
Who would you like to meet at Duke Street Emporium?
It would have to be Pharrell Williams. He’s a highly creative person who has inspired me since I was young. I think we would have a lot to talk about. Or I would just grill him with questions until he leaves! (laughs)