Manhattan Portage Celebrates 30 Years with Exclusive Art Collaborations

Keith Haring Collection and Djembe & Canvas Hand painted 3D Bags Kick off Art Series

Jun 11, 2013, 09:38 ET from Manhattan Portage

NEW YORK, June 11, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- After 30 years of designing bags that epitomize modern urban chic, Manhattan Portage's red label and skyline logo have become as iconic as the New York skyline it honors.


To commemorate the company's 30th anniversary, Manhattan Portage has planned several limited edition collaboration collections that will be announced throughout the year, following a tradition that has included past collaborations with such well-known brands as Walt Disney, Harris Tweed, Stussy, and Cyclope (Paris) among many others.

Manhattan Portage began with a simple concept —to respond to the needs of New York's then-burgeoning, fast-moving bike messenger community by lightening up and simplifying the satchels they used to carry urgent documents around town. And although there have been many imitators since, 30 years later, Manhattan Portage's messenger bags are still the go-to bag not only for NYC's road warriors, but for anyone wishing to emulate an urban lifestyle. 

Throughout the year, to mark the anniversary, the company is releasing several limited- edition collections produced in collaboration with a select group of influential artists and well known fashion brands.

Manhattan Portage and the Keith Haring Foundation have collaborated on a nine-piece, limited edition bag collection that features some of the eye-popping artwork Haring designed in 1988 for his Tokyo Pop Shop. The untitled artwork was part of a series of patterns originally applied to a variety of traditional Japanese items, including kimonos, fans, rice bowls, sake and tea sets.

Fusing Haring's instantly recognized cartoon and graffiti-inspired designs with Manhattan Portage's equally distinctive bags creates a synergy of style and art consistent with the energy and spirit that is characteristic of both.  A layered printing technique used to apply the artwork to the flap, pocket, or top of each bag renders the artist's graphic designs and bold forms as vividly as the originals.

Haring's striking embroidered signature appears on each bag, along with a specially designed 30th anniversary label embroidered with Manhattan Portage's globally recognized skyline logo. The collection retails from $59 to $155 in the U.S.A., and will be available worldwide this month.

"Creative achievements in all its forms are something that Manhattan Portage has always recognized and supported," says Su- Hwei Lin, President of Manhattan Portage." So it is an honor for us to collaborate with one of the most influential and well-known artists of his time, especially when his work emerged in New York City, around the same time as Manhattan Portage's first messenger bags."

In a second collaboration, Manhattan Portage commissioned Djembe (pronounced jem-bay) & Canvas to hand paint 30 of their renowned messenger bags with fluorescent 3D designs.

Each one-of-a-kind fluorescent 3D design depicts a famed New York City landmark, including renderings of Chelsea's Historic Flatiron building, Central Park's bow bridge, midtown's Art Deco Chrysler building and lower Manhattan's Brooklyn Bridge (whose lights glow when viewed under a black light), to name just a few.

D&C's fluorescent 3D masterful artwork is striking to behold with the naked eye, but it remarkably comes to life when viewed through chromadepth 3D eyeglasses.  In addition, under black light the painting glows fluorescent and the contrast of each layer is amplified by this glow, an effect made even greater when viewed through 3D glasses.  Two pairs of chromadepth 3D eyeglasses are included with each bag purchased.

Manhattan Portage's commemorative fluorescent 3D bag collection retails from $395 to $545 and can be purchased at the company's Manhattan Flagship store at 258 Elizabeth Street. You can view the virtual gallery online at

With its signature trademark, Manhattan Portage remains loyal to its New York Tough roots, while making strides to make durable and versatile bags adaptable to all walks of urban and not so urban lifestyles.

The Keith Haring Foundation, established by the artist in 1989, provides support to organizations that offer educational opportunities to underprivileged children and to organizations that engage in education, prevention and care with respect to AIDS and HIV infection.

Manhattan Portage has been designing and producing urban lifestyle bags since 1983 when it pioneered the manufacture of authentic messenger bags used by New York City's bicycle messengers. MANHATTANPORTAGE.COM

SOURCE Manhattan Portage