First Look: Raf Simons’s Beautiful New Art Book

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"Fashion is not there to educate you, but to challenge you," Raf Simons shares in one of the numerous interviews included in his new coffee-table book, curated by i-D mastermind Terry Jones. "Sometimes I speak with young kids and I have the feeling ... not that they have no interest, but that they look at it a different way. This is the reason I chose to do fashion, to create a dialogue and bring people together." In the Taschen release, aptly titled Raf Simons, readers are guided through his impeccably tailored menswear line, reinvented Jil Sander, and new look since he took charge of Dior in 2012. Throughout, the book includes 120 pages of photographs dug up from the i-D archives as well as essays and interviews by Terry and journalist Tricia Jones, among others. Sprinkled between are quotes from the designer himself: "My own label is very much linked to my past and to my environment. It's darker, dirtier, and more underground ... " one reads, while another adds, "Isolation. Disorder. Incubation. They really represent certain aspects of my work and come from Joy Division. It goes back to my youth." Click through the slideshow for a quick trip into Simons's past to further understand the influences, thoughts, and inspirations defining fashion's future.

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