Barbara Astman Collaborates with Jonathan+Olivia on “Newspaper” Scarves

Artist Barbara Astman has long been preoccupied with everyday scandals, victories, and tragedies seen and read in newspapers. Her attachment to this daily morning ritual previously culminated in the 2007 mural installation, “The Newspaper Series,” where stripes of printed pages were collaged and assembled into a commentary on today’s media-obsessed culture.

Now, thanks to über-cool Toronto fashion boutique Jonathan+Olivia, you can now wrap yourself in Astman’s prints from that series — via a line of limited-edition silk scarves.

Launching today at J+O, the capsule collection comprises four exclusive prints of her photo-based imagery, on which she collaborated with J+O co-owner Jackie O’Brien.

Astman, who is represented by Toronto’s Corkin Gallery and showed at the Armory Show earlier this year, said in a statement, “The scarf project evolved out of my love for printed media, specifically newspapers. I’ve always had an interest in fashion and a desire to create wearable art. This project with Jackie and J+O is the perfect opportunity.”

The artist and boutique co-owner — who met at a previous J+O event, where they started exploring ways they could meld art with retail — have limited production of each print to just 10 scarves, which will retail for $295.

For O’Brien, it’s also the chance, in her own words, to have “one of the ‘must-have’ accessories for fall: printed scarves. We love that these scarves are limited. It makes them covetable.”

The art-meets-retail project will also include an in-store installation, in the form of a window display involving the scarves.

— Rea McNamara

Images courtesy of Jonathan+Olivia and Corkin Gallery