Based in Seaford, near Eastbourne, Wildbangarang, a start-up founded by entrepreneurs Adam Jay and David Pearson in 2014 is teaming up with the National Gallery to launch a range of leggings emblazoned with works of art from the likes of Vincent Van Gogh and Ambrosius Bosscheart the Elder.
The National Gallery, which looks after more than 2,300 paintings created between the mid-13th Century and 1900, approached Wild Bangarang with the innovative suggestion, and Jay and Pearson were only too happy to oblige, they say.
“I am delighted that Wild Bangarang has been able to work with an institution as prestigious as the National Gallery”, says Jay; “this project has been a welcome challenge and we are excited about future ventures that will undoubtedly follow.”
Wild Banagarang are more used to creating designs for leggings that feature images based on popular computer games like World of Warcraft and Power Rangers, but taking on the ultimate “misunderstood genius”, Vincent himself must represent the pinnacle of leg-warming fashion.
So far, the company has created lines featuring the acclaimed masterpieces “Sunflowers”, and “A Wheatfield, With Cypresses”, by Van Gogh, as well as “A Still Of Flowers in a Wan-Li Vase”, by Bosscheart.
Many art aficionados who may well have entertained fantasies of Vincent Van Gogh between their thighs can now have the next best thing; Vincent on their thighs.
And the good news, there is so much scope for scaling up. Picasso based leotards, anyone? Garish lycra cycling shorts featuring Edvard Munch’s the Scream? It would certainly let the bus drivers know you’re around.
Wild Bangarang have also acknowledged the support they have received from Locate East Sussex, who were instrumental in planning the start-ups move to “The Cave”, a creative space housed in the Blatchington Industrial Estate, Seaford.
Already the company has expanded to five staff, and has ambitious plans to grow further and faster. “Seaford is the perfect place for creativity”, Jay enthuses, “its good value for money and offers a great lifestyle.
“Being close enough to London to visit The National Gallery the same day we were approached about this project is just one of many benefits being based here”
Wild Bangarang’s ultimate ambition is to bring manufacturing to Seaford; as Jay travels the world in pursuit of the latest, greatest fashion, comic and licensing events, he is constantly on the lookout for ways to bring it all back home to Eastbourne.
It was after being posted to London whilst working as an art dealer that Van Gogh first became depressed – if only he’d known what lay only a 45-minute train ride away.
As Chris Thomas, Business Manager of Locate East Sussex puts it: “Many creative businesses are moving to East Sussex at present. It is clearly a place with a vast creative community and somewhere that offers companies of all kinds and sizes the space to think and to grow.”
It looks like flower power is well and truly making a comeback. And this being Van Gogh, we’re looking forward to a range of ear muffs next, and maybe some starry, starry tights?