CULT OB­JET

VOGUE Hommes International (English) - - CONTENTS TRENDS - BY Axel THEMIN VOGUE HOMMES

An award–win­ning rap phe­nom­e­non for more than twenty years, he has sold a hun­dred mil­lion al­bums, and picked up so many Gram­mys he doesn’t know where to put them. Jay–Z could quite hon­estly have ap­proached his ma­ture years by step­ping back from it all, tak­ing a break and a one–way ticket to Mus­tique. But there were still things he wanted to say and to do, es­pe­cially in the com­pany of his wife, the queen of RnB, Beyoncé, to hold on to first place on the world pop scene, with his cool, im­pas­sioned maes­tria and a raft of hits. Add to this, his fash­ion switches that are as flashy as they are ef­fec­tive, tak­ing in bag­gies, caps worn back­wards and an en­tire range of king–size T–shirts and base­ball jer­seys, diamond–stud­ded caps, hefty gold chains around his neck and trans­genic sneak­ers on his feet.

In July 2018, un­na­nounced, the win­ning duo brought out a jaw–drop­ping clip made in se­cret one night in the pres­ti­gious gal­leries of the Lou­vre, un­der the sur­prised gaze of the Mona Lisa, who, for the first time, must have thought they were more fa­mous than she was. She even stopped smil­ing for a while. While Beyoncé sashayed around in a satin quilt, he stood back, calm and col­lected, with his hands in his pock­ets, know­ingly, with an air of be­nign au­thor­ity, in an im­mac­u­late two–piece suit [ which he would wear on stage at the Stade de France ] rather like the mys­ti­cal Gatsby. Jay–Z stands as an heir to Pres­ley, Len­non and Bowie. It is a well–es­tab­lished fact that the great style move­ments are born on stage, and an artist who wants to last can’t just make do with the trends of the day. They must in­vent their own, sense fu­ture trends, launch the next ones, and an­tic­i­pate those af­ter that. Jay–Z has given up sports­wear and streetwear, and re­vis­ited time­less clas­sics with a new per­sonal twist: a jacket worn barech­ested, a woollen cap on his head, with a Nor­man clock as a shirt­front. All it takes is a plain white suit for chic to come back to life. And lit­er­ally jump off the cover of this is­sue.

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