Watch: Levi's x Fresco Steez Collaboration Honors Black History Month

by Kevin Schattenkirk

EDGE Media Network Contributor

Wednesday February 3, 2021

Fresco Steez
Fresco Steez  (Source:Levi's)

In honor of Black History Month, Levi's has partnered with Fresco Steez for a line that pays tribute to Black political movements of the 20th and 21st centuries, according to Elite Daily.

Steez, a queer designer based in Chicago, has been an activist and community organizer for a decade and a half, focusing on racial justice, police brutality, the prison-industrial complex and cradle-to-prison pipeline, and housing disparities for Black people — which Steez's line draws awareness to.

In a press release, Steez said, "I wanted to draw on political history for this collection, and I want people to see, even down to the typeface used, the subtle references to different political struggles. We're not just talking about Black history, we're talking about Black futures. The future that we are moving towards is in a long tradition of Black people building power in uprising and political struggle."

(Source: Levi's)

Ten graphics in the collection refer back to Black liberation images, including a Pan-African flag beneath the words "Black Lives Matter," a fist pushing upward through roses and surrounded by the words "It is our duty to fight for our freedom," and a Black panther encircled by "all power to the people." As the latter most directly demonstrates, Steez was inspired by Emory Douglas, artist and Minister of Culture for the Black Panther Party.

Levi's plans to donate an undisclosed amount to Power U, an organization that, according to their website, focuses on "developing the leadership of Black and Brown youth and Black women in South Florida so that they may help lead the struggle to liberate all oppressed people."

Kevin Schattenkirk is an ethnomusicologist and pop music aficionado.