The alleged reason behind fashion designer Tremaine Emory‘s exit from Supreme is his experience dealing with systemic racism within the company.

According to Complex, an article published by Business of Fashion on Thursday revealed the Denim Tears creator shared details of why he no longer wanted to work for the streetwear brand in a resignation letter the outlet acquired. In 2022, the recognized label hired Emory as a creative director, and he credits the late Virgil Abloh as the groundbreaker who made the partnership for him possible due to his role at Louis Vuitton.

“Louis V wasn’t the whole thing. It was a step on the chessboard,” he said in a 2022 Complex interview when asked who he thought would fill Abloh’s role ahead of Pharell Williams‘ selection. “The sunroof is off. We used Louis. We use these things as leverage to push through. For example, the sunroof off the Trojan Horse is me getting a job at Supreme. Me and my job at Supreme doesn’t happen if the watershed moment with Virgil doesn’t happen in 2018. I don’t care how talented or good I am.”

Rumors were floating around that Emory was resigning from his position, but Supreme recently confirmed the two would be parting ways. BoF reported the Atlanta native stated some of his grievances with the fashion brand came from upper management’s “inability” to be transparent behind their decision to allegedly not move forward with their team-up with artist and filmmaker Arthur Jafa.

“This caused me a great amount of distress as well as the belief that systematic racism was at play within the structure of Supreme,” BoF claimed Emory wrote in his resignation letter.

Supreme denied the accusation in an exclusive statement the company gave the publication. It disclosed that “Tremaine’s characterization” of the organization and its potential collaboration with Jafa is inaccurate, and the firm “strongly” challenges his viewpoint.

“We are disappointed it did not work out with Tremaine and wish him the best of luck going forward,” Supreme said in a statement.

After Emory caught wind of Supreme’s statement, he posted screenshots of texts between him and James Jebbia, the founder of the clothing brand, after a private discussion they had with the head of HR about why he no longer wanted to work with Jebbia and his team. He wrote a long caption to accompany the post, which clapped back at the “lie” they’re choosing to tell in an attempt “to hide the systemic racism that lies deep within Supreme and almost all white Owned corporations.” In addition, the entrepreneur gave more insight into the discrimination he felt was happening within the company’s work culture.

“So the Tuesday after i resigned james jebbia pulled up to my crib ( the text above was sent by him after leaving my crib) and we talked about why i resigned,” Emory began. “the head of hr was there and a woman from vf was listening in on zoom.”

“James admitted he should have talked to me about cancelling images from the jafa collab because one of the few black employees( who ironically has quit supreme before I did partially because of his treatment due to systemic issues by the supreme…” he continued. “his words not mine) in the design studio didn’t think that we should be putting out this collab because of the depiction of black men being hung and the freed slave gordon pictured with his whip lashes on his back. James agreed there should have been discourse about the project with me being that I was the creative director and I’m black.”


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Jebbia nor Supreme has yet released a statement in response to Emory’s post. Emory was the creative director the fashion line hired, and there are no hints the brand is looking to fill the position.