Urbancoolab (UCL) wants to revolutionize streetwear. At least in terms of how it’s designed. The Toronto-based AI-powered design and commerce platform announces the launch of Stich, an AI robo-designer or to put in other words: an artificial intelligence hub that collaborates with musicians, visual artists and content creators to design and sell their own bespoke streetwear collections.
After three years in development, Stich shall capture user’s creative language to help craft bespoke capsule collections. And this is how it works: Users will provide artistic input in the form of artistic renders, logos, symbols, photo imagery and slogan typography, prompting Stich to study, learn and characterize each member's personal design ethos. The program will collect and synthesize thousands of images, logos, lyrics, and wave-forms gathered from the web to then use engineered empathy and semantic analysis to reinterpret the inspiration. Stich will then contextualize that design inspiration to form distinct graphics in which to build streetwear collections around.
“If a few designers can influence legions of creatives the world over, imagine what 100 of them can lead to? Or 1,000? Or 10,000? Our mission is to discover the next graduating class of streetwear maestros, who will then open the doors for future creators to walk through,” says Idris Mootee, CEO and Creative Chief at UCL. “Collabs are an ideal way of speaking to the visual and cultural richness and complexity of today’s consumer, allowing brands to communicate the varied aspects of their visual identities and increase relevancy.”
While offering this AI feature, UCL wants to destroy prejudice or fear against technology or man against machine angers. “Whether we want to believe it or not, advanced robotic automation is the key to our future. While many scoff at the thought of robots taking over tasks once carried out exclusively by humans, manmade machines have the ability to do so effectively without rhyme or reason. Meant to obey human command at every turn, advanced technological programs operate in the absences of mandated breaks and can carry out functions without the fear of harmful repercussions. In this way, man will never be able to compete with machine,“ the company states. UCL wants to go even further and believes that with new technologies streetwear can reach a new creative level. An example is its own AI-generated streetwear brand, Fear of What. The label gathers visual pain points, kicking off a process of artistic analysis through UCL’s artificial intelligence machine, Stich. For its inaugural collection, the AI hub gathered and used a throng of ghastly images with intrinsic angst built in as its creative focal point. To achieve this, distinct media elements taken from the worlds of literature, art, fashion, fairy tales, medieval history, punk culture and cult-classic horror films, were fed into the mainframe, creating a set of graphics.
UCL has also some project collaborations in the pipeline and will hook up with conceptual oil painter Amar Stewart, illustrator Marco Melgrati and electro-pop musician Kiesza.