Deerskin 9 Year Anniversary

Deerskin was founded in 2014 by Dylan Matsuno in Honolulu, Hawaii. An untimely project, Deerskin spent it’s first couple years rooting a foundation with local artists and skateboarders in a developing scene. From 2016 to 2020, Deerskin sat stagnant as Matsuno pursued an education in fashion design at Parsons School of Design in New York City. With pressures of rebranding a company that was started prematurely, Deerskin became an afterthought while Matsuno’s projects at Parsons revolved around personal topics, such as his family’s history, tradition, and involvement in Hawaii as Japanese-Americans. Upon graduating, Matsuno was determined to pay respect to Deerskin’s original community of skateboarders by filming what would be Deerskin’s final skateboarding video, while simultaneously making clothing at the intersection of his work from Parsons and the pre-established identity of Deerskin. In July 2022, Matsuno would unknowingly embark on a new chapter in Providence, residing with the curator of Apartment 13 Gallery and longtime collaborator of Deerskin, Joshua Boulos, inevitably resulting in the current iteration of Deerskin.

For the past nine years, Deerskin has evolved publicly yet has remained to be a project space rather than a “brand” or “business”. In celebration of it’s 9th anniversary, Deerskin featured Anna Ørberg’s painting, “Wallsticker (misleading neoliberalist quotes)”, on an edition of 20 Gildan t-shirts screen-printed by Custom Ink and priced at $20 in reference to the earliest Deerskin t-shirts, comically resulting in a negative profit. “Do what you love and you’ll never have to work a day in your life” reads Ørberg’s painting. A unique edition of six one-offs screen-printed on secondhand American-made novelty t-shirts personally sourced by Dylan Matsuno were also released, serving as a contradition and representation for the Deerskin of today.