Fashion elite shun Hudson Yards’ The Shed over owner’s Trump ties
Hudson Yards’ nonprofit arts center, The Shed, has been shunned by the fashion elite since owner Stephen Ross’ Trump ties were exposed in early August.
Sources say that Michael Kors, Vera Wang and the Academy of Art University were all slated to show their collections at the sleek, $475 million venue but have pulled out. Rag & Bone publicly nixed the space, which opened in April, right after news broke of Ross’ Aug. 9 Trump fundraiser in the Hamptons.
“Pretty much all of the events have been canceled at the Shed,” said an employee there. “We don’t know if there are going to be any fashion events here. I think a lot of the designers didn’t support Stephen Ross being on the board here.”
Fashion week creator, Fern Mallis, declared The Shed, “kind of over.”
“If you know people showing at The Shed, please tell me because I don’t know who is,” Mallis said.
Even the only brand seemingly brave enough to stage its runway show there — Helmut Lang — better suit up for a backlash.
As one anti-Trump fashion editor said of the Sept. 7 event: “I’m skipping Helmut — I wouldn’t step foot within The Shed.”
It’s a wild turnaround from January, when WWD reported that “for years, reports have been circulating that the [New York Fashion Week] shows would take place at The Shed once it was completed.”
“That was all pie in the sky,” said Mallis of predictions that the Shed would be the new runway mecca. “It’s not a self-fulfilling prophecy.”
While not directly addressing The Post’s questions, a representative for The Shed said, “Our objective, in everything we do, is to provide a powerful platform to realize the values we share of equity, diversity, and freedom.”
A Vera Wang representative maintained that the decision to nix the venue was practical, not political: “The Shed was simply one of many spaces we toured. We saw about 15 spaces and ultimately chose the space that worked for our show specifics.” A rep for the Academy of Art University had no comment and Michael Kors’ team did not respond to requests for comment.
Others though, are not shy about taking the opportunity to make fashion political.
On Aug. 7, designer Prabal Gurung declared that his New York Fashion Week show would not be held at the Hudson Yards’ Vessel due to the Trump fundraiser.
Now, a Hudson Yards source told The Post that it was the Vessel who turned down Gurung and not the other way around.
“Prabal approached us through a third party and was told that Vessel was not available to him,” said the source. (Gurung’s team did not respond to requests for comment.)
In a 10-part Twitter rant, Gurung claimed that he had been in conversation with the venue to host his label’s 10th anniversary fashion show this month.
“Removing our brand and selves from this is my choice and that is my decision,” Gurgung tweeted.
“The funny thing is, Prabal actually showed in front of the Vessel back during the auto show in April. We did a reveal of a new car with [luxury auto maker] Genesis and they separately had a partnership with Prabal,” said the source. “Why would Hudson Yards want a designer who already showed near the Vessel as part of a car reveal?”
Additional reporting by Jon Levine
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