Gavin Mathieu, CEO, founder, creative director, and designer of SUPERVSN Studios, opened his first flagship store on Slauson Avenue after a 15-year grind as a visionary. In a recent interview with the L.A. Sentinel, Mathieu talks about his journey of curating the fashion/ media/ art brand.
SUPERVSN Studios is an L.A. based collective that creates thought provoking products, content, and experiences that inspire creativity and spark conversations. With placements in more than 10 U.S. cities and five countries, covered by Forbes, GQ, Women’s Word Daily, and Complex, the collective has collaborated with a multitude of household names like Amazon Music, Microsoft, Coachella Valley Music Festival, Tommy Hilfiger, and most recently PacSun.
On July 28, 2023, SUPERVSN launched their Fall STUDIO collection as a part of their third installment of a philanthropic fashion partnership with Pacsun in 100 stores nationwide and online with their foundation.
The STUDIO Foundation is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide students with the chance to work with industry leaders; the aim is for budding creatives to build a holistically sustainable foundation for their future, giving them the practical tools to put their passion into practice and foster strong relationships early in their careers.
Noted as one of his most fulfilling projects to date, Mathieu expressed, “Launching our STUDIO collection has been a dream and vision of mine for a long time, to create this brand that intersects culture and social impact. We’re able to donate a percentage of the gross sales to our foundation, which in turn is putting money towards paid internships for the next generation of creatives.”
Interns who participated in STUDIO’s philanthropic partnership with AEG’s Goldenvoice, Round Two, and 10 Summers, have most recently finished their 12-week cohort.
Mathieu credits his start in designing to one of his teachers who hosted a career day and allowed him the opportunity to connect with a designer to work with an off-brand version of Adobe Illustrator at age 15. Building community is a part of the SUPERVSN mission that is reflected in the foundation.
Mathieu recalled, “One of my teachers took it upon himself to host a career day, he brought a publicist, a fashion designer, and a couple other professionals to my classroom. I really took a liking to the publicist and fashion designer, I got their phone numbers, reached out, and one of them was able to get me a crack version of Adobe Illustrator. I started working on that every day and I fell in love with it. I started designing brands and t-shirts.”
From an adolescent until now, Mathieu has had his hand on every part of SUPERVSN’s expansion from the store to the website. The website is nostalgic to Myspace and Black Planet with its immersive content like the A/V tab. Allowing customers to interact with the site as an ode to what once was and how the collective has been able to adapt in the digital age.
Putting the power back in the hands of the entrepreneurs, he shared, “The industry itself can become loud and very chaotic, but I think brands like SUPERVSN stand out by being authentic and true to our message. We don’t chase a trend; we’re not looking to capitalize on current events as we have a clear mission to put out positive energy, we want to be uplifting to creatives and our community. Who we were yesterday will be the same tomorrow.”
Before SUPERVSN, Mathieu opened YOUth on Fairfax, a store and gallery intended to showcase the work and talents of other creatives. The vision has stayed consistent but has been interchangeable with each brand. When asked about the challenges and the highlights in his career, Mathieu spoke openly and honestly about his experience.
“One of the highlights has been getting the support from Black people, knowing that I can rest in knowing that my authentic view as a Black creator and designer will be appreciated by my people and not needing the validation of anybody else. That has been something I am thankful for and I am proud to be a Black designer, and proud to talk about Black culture through my work,” he said.
“The challenge has been the perception from the industry, sometimes it’s not used to seeing Black designers and entrepreneurs do it their way. I’ve never been that way or come from that, it’s been hard to get the acknowledgement from the media without their bias against Black creatives,” noted Mathieu.
“I’m so appreciative of the writers and the editors that have supported us because we’re not a traditional cookie-cutter brand.”
Explaining his philosophy, the creative said, “If I come together with you for the same vision, we become super. The world is our studio.”
Follow SUPERVSN Studios on Instagram at Supervsn Studios®️ (@supervsn) for updates and all the latest drops.