Lucie Kaas today announces the debut of a new, iconic kokeshi doll collaboration inspired by the legendary boxer and humanitarian, Muhammad Ali.
Ali is celebrated as a fearless humanitarian, civil rights activist, and one of the greatest athletes to ever live. At the prime of his boxing career, Ali was condemned by many and struck an uncomfortable nerve in mainstream America because of his opposition to the Vietnam War. Throughout his life, Ali used his influence to drive change, even when it meant risking his personal pursuits and livelihood. He was, and continues to be, the undisputed champion of social justice in sports and beyond, and defines what it means to be an icon.
In 2018 Lucie Kaas established a very clear objective to diversify their growing line of kokeshi dolls, which are marketed as a celebration of icons and trailblazers. At the time, the collection was homogenous; predominantly white and mostly male. The brand knew they needed to make a change. As noted by the brand’s Managing Director:
As the collection gained more and more popularity, we started to get requests from different celebrities and brands to make bespoke kokeshi dolls. We declined many of them but didn’t really have a clear vetting process. As a woman and minority myself, I felt the collection needed to be more diverse. When we refer to icons and trailblazers, they should be people who force us to think, reflect on who we are and where we are going; they need to have a message,” says Ellora Rasmussen.
As the objectives became clearer, the selection criteria became easier. In the latter half of 2018, Lucie Kaas was approached by Authentic Brands Group (ABG), which in conjunction with Lonnie Ali as trustee of the Muhammad Ali Family Trust (MAFT) owns Muhammad Ali Enterprises, to create a Muhammad Ali kokeshi doll. This was an obvious choice for Lucie Kaas - Muhammad Ali belonged without question.
“I find it motivating that often the icons we celebrate are actually those who shake-up the standards. We just wanted to tell the story of Ali, of someone who stood up for what was right, despite the commercial consequence. We could never have known two years ago that what Ali stands for would have even more relevance in 2020,” says Rasmussen.
“Muhammad Ali’s tenacity, dedication, and generosity continue to serve as inspiration for individuals everywhere,” said Katie Jones, VP of Brand, Entertainment at ABG. “We are pleased to introduce a collaboration that celebrates his greatness with a partner that is committed to driving diversity and positive change.”
The Lucie Kaas kokeshi doll collection includes some of the greatest legends and icons within the fashion, art, music, and cultural world. The collection grows each season with the dolls making their place in the world of designer collectibles. Muhammad Ali is one of many important additions to the Sketch.inc for Lucie Kaas collection.
See Muhammad Ali here.
About Muhammad Ali
As one of the most influential athletes and humanitarians of all time, Muhammad Ali is responsible for some of the most legendary moments in sports and civil rights history. More than 50 years after he emerged as a Gold Medalist at the 1960 Rome Olympics, Ali remains one of the most recognized and beloved icons in the world. His incomparable work ethic, revolutionary techniques, and fearlessness towards standing up for his beliefs, all contribute to the legend that is Muhammad Ali. Among his countless awards and accolades, he was named Sports Illustrated’s “Sportsman of the Century,” GQ’s “Athlete of the Century,” is a United Nations Messenger of Peace, and has received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and the Amnesty International Lifetime Achievement Award. Muhammad Ali’s legacy is celebrated across pop culture, and continues to inspire today’s most influential athletes, artists, musicians and humanitarians around the world.
About Authentic Brands Group
Authentic Brands Group (ABG) is a brand development, marketing, and entertainment company, which owns a portfolio of global media, entertainment, and lifestyle brands. Headquartered in New York City, ABG elevates and builds the long-term value of more than 50 consumer brands and properties by partnering with best-in-class manufacturers, wholesalers, and retailers. Its brands have a global retail footprint in more than 100,000 points of sale across the luxury, specialty, department store, mid-tier, mass, and e-commerce channels, and more than 6,000* freestanding stores and shop-in-shops around the world. Pending acquisitions in Q3 2020*.
ABG is committed to transforming brands by delivering compelling product, content, business, and immersive experiences. It creates and activates original marketing strategies to drive the success of its brands across all consumer touchpoints, platforms, and emerging media. ABG’s portfolio of iconic and world-renowned brands generates more than $14 billion* in annual retail sales and includes Marilyn Monroe®, Elvis Presley®, Muhammad Ali®, Shaquille O'Neal®, Sports Illustrated®, Dr. J®, Greg Norman®, Neil Lane®, Thalia®, Nautica®, Aéropostale®, Forever 21®, Juicy Couture®, Vince Camuto®, Herve Leger®, Judith Leiber®, Barneys New York®, Brooks Brothers ®*, Frye®, Lucky Brand®, Nine West®, Jones New York®, Frederick's of Hollywood®, Louise et Cie®, Sole Society®, Enzo Angiolini®, CC Corso Como®, Hickey Freeman®, Hart Schaffner Marx®, Adrienne Vittadini®, Taryn Rose®, Bandolino®, Misook®, Spyder®, Tretorn®, Tapout®, Prince®, Volcom®, Airwalk®, Vision Street Wear®, Above The Rim®, Hind®, Thomasville®, Drexel®, and Henredon®. Pending acquisitions in Q3 2020*.
For more information, visit authenticbrandsgroup.com.