Fashion’s Favorite Farm

There are certain things the fashion industry will always love: The young and beautiful. Art and money. Nostalgia. A comeback. From time to time, it also loves to throw itself behind a cause.

By those metrics, Dan Colen is giving fashion a lot to love right now. A blue-chip artist represented by the mega-gallery Gagosian, he co-founded a farm called Sky High that donates 100 percent of its food to local pantries in upstate New York. But 20 years ago, Mr. Colen, now 44, was a main character in a cast of beautiful broken boys (nicknamed Warhol’s Children) who became the art world protagonists of New York City’s peak indie sleaze moment — an era for which fashion is currently throbbing with longing.

Among the infamous work from that time were the “hamster nests” Mr. Colen created with Dash Snow. (The two did copious amounts of drugs, then rolled around naked in shredded phone books.) Mr. Snow ejaculated on newspapers while Ryan McGinley photographed the whole scene, including Mr. Colen’s oft-mentioned genitals. But that was then.

Now, in addition to the farm, Mr. Colen is the chief creative officer of Sky High Farm Universe, which sells merch and can be found on many fashion hounds who may also be seen wearing luxury brands.

The 40-acre Sky High Farm spread in the Hudson Valley in upstate New York.Credit…Alex Hodor-Lee for The New York Times
Julie Miller, Phil Haynes, Josh Bartfield, Sarah Workneh and Nina Tucker at the farm.Credit…Alex Hodor-Lee for The New York Times

The Sky High Farm Universe logo features a girlish strawberry sitting on a boyish crescent moon, which serves as the common thread across a host of Sky High Farm Universe items spanning hoodies, T-shirts, knits, socks, hats and underwear. Some pieces are classic, like a denim chore jacket. Much of the collection is made from deadstock or upcycled materials. All of it is standard streetwear fare, ranging in price from $30 to $2,500 and sold at places like Ssense, Nordstrom and Dover Street Market.

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