To help honor culture and identity, Old Navy is collaborating with three artists to create limited-edition t-shirts through its Project WE initiative. Project WE is a collection of graphic tees designed by a team of diverse artists to celebrate cultural events and movements like Heritage Months and Black Lives Matter.
“Project WE is an artists’ collaboration with a mission,” said Sarah Holme, Old Navy’s Executive Vice President of Design, earlier this year. “We wanted to give these incredible artists a canvas to share their visions, and we hope the works will inspire and spark conversation with our community.”
The three artists Old Navy worked with for the new collection are Manuela Guillén (Cuban/Salvadoran, she/her), Favianna Rodriquez (Latinx, she/her), and Ruby Marquez (Chicanx, they/them). Guillén said she was inspired by “the Latinx dream, the love for the culture, and the resilience of our people” and her “desire to see a world that is better for one another” according to her Instagram.
With her design, Rodriquez wanted to celebrate the “unique, complex and beautiful culture” of the community she belongs to. “My design is about friendship, connection and celebrating our culture, especially during this key moment in history when people are craving support and mutual aid from their communities more than ever,” Rodriquez wrote on Instagram.
Marquez’s t-shirt design features a vase filled with colorful flowers that “pays respect to my indigenous roots.” It also was an opportunity for them to take an “existential look at myself, my roots, identity, and all that sort of fun emotional stuff you deal with as a Latinx person.” And they dedicate this piece of art to their mother, who they would not know how to do without.
Old Navy is also donating $1 million to Boys & Girls Clubs across the U.S. to provide more art in low-income classrooms. Through this donation, they plan to assist the youth art programs of America to provide equitable access to arts experiences because “research shows participation in the arts is tied to positive outcomes ranging from greater self-esteem to rates of college attendance, but fifty percent of the lowest income elementary schools lack an arts classroom. “
Visit oldnavy.com to purchase Guillén, Rodriquez, and Marquez’s designs.