When Pierre Davis made her debut last year in February at New York Fashion Week, she became the first Black trans woman designer to show on the CFDA’s official calendar. Her Los Angeles–based brand is named No Sesso, Italian for “no sex/no gender,” and it has always been about uplifting marginalized people.
Davis and co-designer Autumn Randolph brought together close friends and family to shoot their autumn/winter 2020 collection, which was created from mostly up-cycled clothing. Titled “A Vignette of the Renaissance on 24th Street,” it was influenced by the free-flowing self-expression of the Harlem Renaissance. “We are in some way moving in the same direction and that is what feels most parallel to the Renaissance — Black people shining through closed doors and making themselves seen and heard,” says Randolph. “Underground artists are emerging, and people are tapping into their power and creating waves and breaking boundaries.”
The duo celebrates Black creativity during a period of historic change, when inequalities revealed by the pandemic have combined with a global movement for Black lives. “We know our resilience is the honey, the fuel, and the glue to keeping us afloat,” Randolph told the Cut. “No Sesso has always upheld creativity and beauty in our community and specifically among Black people. When we design we always think about what’s happening in the world currently. We want our work to uplift our community and we show it with everything we create.”
See all the images from “A Vignette of the Renaissance on 24th Street,” shot by Clifford Prince King, below.