It reveals and conceals, peels back layers, upon layers, upon layers. It is analog, and it is also digital. Gears and trinkets work tirelessly in a magnetic resistant field, noting the passing of time down to a pinpoint precision, looking slightly byzantine in the dial. This, is the new G-Shock GA-110 model, and with a complex dial that is this intricately layered, it seems like the most impossible concept to pin on the watch would be fun and play. But when the GA-110 debuted in flamboyant candy shades, it seems like contrast and shock is what G-Shock is aiming for.
Taking the concept of play one step further, G-Shock had reached out to the LEGO design whiz duo, Dee & Ricky, to put their signature touches on the watch. Surprisingly, the result is something that is quite characteristically Dee & Ricky, recognizably LEGO, but departs quite significantly from the duo’s usual work.
Prior to G-Shock, Dee & Ricky had worked with labels such as Pepsi, but in that collaboration, the duo recreated the Pepsi logo with LEGO. And before that, Dee & Ricky’s rise to fame probably came from Marc Jacobs picking up their playful LEGO pins for his runway show. Since then, the duo has led somewhat of an enviable life manipulating toys many of us loved as children, and doing something quite lucrative with them.
While those who are familiar with the dynamic duo would probably expect some kind of LEGO blocks to appear on the design itself, Dee & Ricky decided to shock the crowd and simply infuse the GA-110 with the essence of LEGO. Namely, primary colors, color blocked segments, and simply keeping things playful but not ostentatious. The Dee & Ricky G-Shock GA-110 may be eye-catching, but it is not conspicuous or jarring.
The watch first debuted at the Las Vegas JCK trade show in the beginning of June, and was launched with a big bang at the Bowery Hotel in New York City a few weeks ago. To celebrate the launch of a debut collaboration, both between Dee & Ricky and G-Shock, and also the first time the GA-110 has been used as a canvas in partnership, we have taken a little bit of time out to chat with both Tadashi Shibuya from G-Shock, and the crazed design duo, Dee & Ricky about this project.
Conversation with Tadashi Shibuya, Vice General Manager of Casio North America
Casio G-Shock is no stranger to collaborations. But this time around, why Dee & Ricky?
Our collaboration base model, the GA-110 is a brand new case and design for us. It consists f a lot of layered parts on the dial. When I saw the design for GA-110 the R&D department for the first time, I thought that it would be interesting to change the colored parts on the watch to reflect the colorways of LEGO blocks.
As for why we picked Dee & Ricky, I knew that Dee & Ricky were not only upcoming designers, but they were also cultural icons. I saw many pictures of them where they were wearing G-Shock. Since they are fans of the brand, I thought they would be great partners to collaborate with. Also, there is a natural connection between our brand and their street fashion-based audience.
What was your first impression of Dee & Ricky?
They are very passionate about design; and obviously, since they are twins, they have the same excitement. They are very creative twins! I was very impressed by them and recognized their talent immediately upon meeting them.
How did the collaboration come about?
The team and myself wanted to work with Dee & Ricky, so I approached them with the idea of doing a collaboration and explained why GA-110 fits the Dee & Ricky style.
What does G-Shock hope to achieve through this collaboration?
G-Shock has a broad lifestyle appeal in street fashion, culture, music, actions sports and more. The watch’s function and design reinforces our core competence–“Tough”. Using this collaboration, we want to convey G-Shock’s quality and toughness to the audience, while the audience also benefits from the Dee & Ricky appeal.
How do you think this collaboration differs from the others? What do you think this collaboration will bring to the table?
We have a reason behind why we chose Dee & Ricky. Not only Dee & Ricky, but also all the collaborations we have done in the past. Each collaboration is evaluated as a partnership between the G-Shock brand and the brands that make sense for our consumers. For this collaboration, one of the important points to note is that the GA-110 model is a brand new model and it is also our first collaboration using this case.
Since this model, as mentioned earlier, combines a lot of layered parts on the dial, in order to convey the uniqueness of the dial to our audience with G-Shock style, Dee & Ricky created a great design which represented exactly what we were hoping to achieve– to highlight the uniquenesss of this new G-Shock case through the pops of color, style and design Dee & Ricky created. Dee & Ricky worked in tandem and have created an amazing piece both brands are extremely proud of.
Conversation with Dee & Ricky
Will you introduce yourself to our readers?
Dee: Dee “Action” Jackson
Ricky: Hey what’s up! It’s Ricky here, the black Tony Stark.
Prior to this collaboration with G-Shock, what was your impression of the brand?
Ricky: The brand is definitely iconic and G-Shock also made watches that are just plain and simple. Simplicity trumps all.
You are no stranger to collaborations, but in terms of style, the G-Shock collaboration seems to have departed quite a bit from your previous work, such as the collaboration with Pepsi. What was your design concept for this collaboration?
Dee: The whole concept was for the watch to look and feel like a toy. It will have fun primary colors that make you feel good. We want you to look at your watch and feel like a kid again.
Ricky: The concept was about what we are currently doing to the fashion game, which is playing with it. We treat fashion as if it is a toy. We want to make it look as much like a toy as possible.
Was working on the G-Shock canvas different from working with LEGO blocks? What was the experience like?
Dee: It was as easy as building with LEGO blocks. It was fun. People expected something totally different. Haha. We tricked you!
Ricky: Nah, it’s the same. Just put some colors together to suit our liking and we agreed upon it, and POW.
Do you won any G-Shock? Aside from this collaboration, do you have any other favorites?
Dee: Yeah, I actually have a PEGLEG for G-Shock watch. The one with the American flag colorway. All American!
Ricky: Yeah, I got a few and there’s so many to like.
If you were to sum up the new collaboration in three words, what would they be?
Dee: Oh. Mah. Gawd. (In a flamboyant Ru paul voice)
Who do you see sporting this watch?
Dee: Michael Jackson, The Pope, Alf, my whole family because they will be getting some for free. Loic Villepontoux, Karim Rashid, Kat Stack$ and Dee & Ricky.
Ricky: Your girl, her sister, people interested in fashion, sports players, haters and mayors.
Is there any question you wish someone or we would have asked regarding the collaboration but didn’t? And what would the answer to that question be?
Dee: Why do so many people ride your wave, Dee & Ricky? Answer: While they are riding our wave, we are too busy hanging ten on this tsunami!
Ricky: *Thinks hard*….*Shrugs shoulders*