“I love that idea of straddling fashion as a designer and fine art as a painter,” said artist Andrea Bergart, who this month launches a line of basketball handbags.
Bergart’s work “draws a lot of inspiration from streetwear and sports. I make art based on a lot of fashion street patterns and my experience playing sports growing up being an athlete.” She sees the new accessories venture as “an extension of my studio practice. I don’t think of it as my fine art. It’s a way to energize my studio and all fuel my other work, too.”
The artist’s introduction to handbag design came through her experience assisting painter Chris Martin, who in November collaborated with Christian Dior on a limited-edition range of Lady Dior bags. “I worked on that bag with him for Dior that got me excited about the potential of making a handbag. Otherwise, I would have never entered that world.”
Each bag is made in New York City, of youth-sized basketballs. “It’s a little smaller more comfortable on the hip,” she said. Her line also includes a limited run of soccer ball, volleyball and football designs. They come fully lined and fitted with custom leather hardware. Each bag will be sold directly out of Bergart’s studio for $960. She will take appointments through her web site.