BAPE Notorious B.I.G Tee

BAPE 2002 Notorious B.I.G Sean Mortensen Tee

In 1996 Famous Photographer Sean Mortensen held a shoot with Notorious B.I.G. The iconic Rapper posed with a BAPE camo jacket. Apparently the jacket was not Biggie's but it was the photographers. Since it was too small he put it on his shoulder for the shoot. After seeing this, Nigo - the founder of Bape - created a handful of custom XXL pieces for Biggie since Bape did not produce these sizes at the time. Unfortunately on March 9th 1997 Biggie was shot and the custom pieces never got to Biggie in time.
In 2002 BAPE released a very limited quantity of tees with this image. Exclusively released in the Bape Japan Gallery and limited to 50 pieces. The scarcity, age and cultural value makes this one of the most rare and special Bape pieces ever.
A Bathing Ape or BAPE is a Japanese brand founded by NIGO in 1993. The name is derived from the Japanese idiom "A bathing ape in lukewarm water" and one of NIGO's favorite movies "Planet of the apes" from 1968. In the early 2000's BAPE emerged as a true cult brand. The Japanese brand reached global popularity among the biggest Artists in the world such as Kanye West, Lil Wayne, Jay-Z and Pharrell Williams, who later on created an entire new brand with NIGO. A Bathing Ape formed a cultural bridge between Japanese fashion and modern day American Pop Culture. Until this day, the influence of BAPE is undeniably present in streetwear fashion. It was the obsessive, perfectionistic, futuristic and sometimes misunderstood way of working that made NIGO the legendary designer that he is. However, some of those qualities may have caused financial issues within the company. In 2011 BAPE was sold for just $2.8 million dollars. An extremely low amount considering Supreme was sold for $2.1 billion.

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