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Meet The Picasso Of Harlem: Jay West Paints Custom Denim Jacket for Levi’s Eureka Innovation Lab


I’m in New York trying not to get too overwhelmed by the hustle bustle of the crowds and the traffic. At the same time, I indulge in the thrive of the people in this city: you can smell the creativity, the passion and the extravagance.

As this is the mecca for innovation, I wondered about pioneering artists taking design and art to the next level. That’s how I popped into New York-born pop-expressionist artist Jay West, also called The Picasso Of Harlem. His work is the one which blends well-liked traditional art with contemporary, dynamic expressionism, making it pop-expressionist work.


West was invited by Levi’s Eureka Innovation Lab to use the brand’s new trucker jacket as a white canvas for his pop-expressionistic art.

The artist then brought his personal and artistic expertise and touch to Levi’s denim. This fusion resulted in a mix of contemporary urban artwork with iconic designs! He made a customized Levi’s jacket from hand-painted denim patches sewn together as if it were a surrealistic collage.


It’s fascinating to see artists working hand in hand with brands and adding an entire new level of creativity, artistic expression and fresh allure to the things we wear. I’m wondering who will get invited by Levi’s next to use clothing as empty canvases to express their art. Such a mesmerizing way of combining art with clothes and of creating unique, wearable pieces of art.

But even more fascinating is to be in cities such as this one, in which you look out the window, see the lights and the skyline and the people on the street rushing and looking for action, love, and the world’s greatest bagel, and knowing that you’re in the right place for creativity to explode and for great things to happen.

Laura Beltrán Villamizar  is a Bogotá born, bred in Florida, The Hague, Buenos Aires, Brussels and Berlin. An epicurean traveller and photographer – she also romanticises cities and coffee way out of proportion. Life brought her to Amsterdam, where she currently lives and works. She loves slow travel, slow food and slow journalism and can also have a cup of freshly brewed coffee at any time, any. She can eat her weight in avocados and loves music, nearly all sorts. She embraces dancing, and playing and DJ’ing, adoring beats and drums and hips being shaken.