Sankuanz for the Spring-Summer 2018 season pays homage to the late American artist Cy Twombly, using raw linen suits – some painted matte white to evoke plaster sculptures – as the blank canvas.

The line explores various facets of the artist’s universe, from bespoke silica gel-based fabrics dipped in signature Twombly pastels to the references to classical Mediterranean culture that often fed the themes of the artist’s expressive research.

The name Orpheus written on a baseball cap refers to his series based on Greek mythology, while texts from invitations from past exhibitions surface as prints on crinkled, natural linen bib-front shirts and cropped pants.

Covered in motifs recalling his graffiti-like scribbles, some of the tailored looks, cut with Italian flair, are directly inspired by Twombly’s masterpieces, while the shape of the suits nods to his home base: Rome.

The line’s strong bags and backpacks sport cartoonish oversized proportions and clever constructions, with certain styles unfolding like an artist’s toolbox.

Military and streetwear pieces, a signature of Sankuanz founder Shangguan Zhe, are also infused with references and images related to Twombly’s personal life. Black Mountain College lettering, taken from the experimental art school that the artist attended, features on the line’s sporty pieces. Sandy-hued oversized nylon parkas and jackets sport topstitched accents with loose raw threads, also evoking scribbles.

The worn-out nature of dark over-dyed cotton and natural linens contrasts with the synthetic aspect of acid pastels and bright colours, with layered fabrics and motifs in total looks conferring an intense visual impact.

Confronting antiquity and modernity, the exceptional and the commonplace, the collection plays on the dynamic between a youthful, contemporary allure and the passing of time.