Ty Dolla $ign for President
WORDS + PHOTOS BY: SARAH HURLEY | LEAD + FEATURED IMAGE COURTESY OF: BILLBOARD
With the presidential election coming up, artists are rallying together to rev up awareness. This weekend, Ty Dolla $ign’s three-day L.A. pop-up shop, called Campaign, promoted his latest album of the same name and highlighted his own views on the current state of the government. Besides his music, the space explored the importance of civic engagement, voting, and advocacy.
Westwood Westwood stopped by on Friday to preview the store, decorated with a gathering of red, white, and blue balloons arched over a secret service-like security personnel guarding the entrance. A line of fans—some arriving before sunrise—wrapped around the building waiting for the shop’s 4 PM opening.
The pop up took place in a high-ceilinged gallery space with stark white walls which held a live DJ, an art gallery with work from eight different artists, a green screen photobooth, custom screen print t-shirt station, and merch sprawled with slogans like “Make America Wavy Again.”
The patriotic elements of stately velvet ropes, a podium, campaign posters, and a red, white, and blue color palette were offset by an airbrushed ice cream cart, 3-wheel bicycles with light-up spokes and attached screen print presses, loud bass-heavy rap music, and raw artwork. Michael Comrie, one of Ty Dolla $ign’s creative contributors, explained that the concept for the design is a throwback to ’60s presidential campaigns paired with an overarching theme of anti-establishment–a commentary on issues of social injustice.
“[These topics are] very close to Ty’s heart—especially with his brother having served time in prison on a wrongful conviction.” Michael explained.
More specifically the new album’s message is: “Fuck Donald Trump, fuck Hillary Clinton, fuck the police; and let’s just make America wavy again,” Michael explained.
Then Ty Dolla $ign arrived. The rapper looked around with seeming approval accessorized with an unlit joint between his lips. His first hit was like his very own kind of ribbon cutting ceremony—as the first wisps of smoke wafted through the air, the doors opened to the public.
Check out Ty’s new album, Campaign: