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Kanye West created the new Supreme

The success of Yeezy Gap's first pop-up reminded us that hype culture is never over

Kanye West created the new Supreme The success of Yeezy Gap's first pop-up reminded us that hype culture is never over

Mile-long lines, hours of waiting, and a horde of people ready to storm tees, hoodies, and long sleeves. Looking at the photos from the Yeezy Gap pop-up that opened yesterday in New York, the first thing that comes to mind is Supreme from its heyday, when at the height of streetwear every Thursday became what was seen yesterday in Times Square. If, however, the Supreme phenomenon has slowly lost weight and relevance, the success of the store, active only yesterday and ready to land in other American cities, proved that the word hype still has reason to exist. Almost totally black space and dozens of bags filled with clothes, despite the bare layout-some have hailed it seeing it as a critique of fast fashion-the photos and videos that have arrived online testify to the positive outcome of the first physical release of Kanye West's new fashion endeavor, now bored with his collaboration with adidas and who sees Yeezy's future in his six-handed work with Gap and Balenciaga.

While it is impossible to quantify the economic success of the operation, it is undeniable how West has managed to deliver on many of the promises he made in the past, when at the time of the announcement of his collaboration with Gap the word "democratic fashion" made some people's mouths twist. Between the online pre-orders of the first drops and an operation like the one seen yesterday in New York, those who wanted to take home one of the items part of the collabo most likely did so without a problem, while Kanye and Gap took home not only the sales - the Perfect Hoodie in the black version sold for more than $14 million - but also the physical and tangible hype, that of the lines outside the stores and the crowds in front of the checkout counter ready to check out. Something that probably hasn't been seen in a long time, since the end of the so-called hype culture the one that perhaps never really ended, but only changed.

If Kanye West deserves credit, it is that of having been able to read the change in the streetwear market, a change of which Ye himself was perhaps the architect, where the hype for Supreme, Palace, and the brands that until a few years ago were part of the forbidden dreams of many has been replaced by that for luxury fashion, aspirational par excellence, and which sees in Balenciaga the natural continuation of many of the discourses left open by streetwear. Thus, just as before the collaborations with Stone Island and The North Face knew how to ignite the public's desires, today the one between Yeezy, Gap, and the Kering brand does the same in an operation in which everyone comes out a winner: West as the creator of the operation, Gap bringing home a renewed brand awareness and Balenciaga, whose branding remains absent from the collection, in building tomorrow's buyers. It is obvious that such an operation, despite its success, has an expiration date, the one that will come when the insatiable fashion public sets its eyes on its next object of desire.