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Bringing together all the greats—from Air Jordan 1 to Air Presto—Nike  and Virgil Abloh reinvent sneaker culture with the collaborative project  The Ten and redesign 10 sneaker icons. Experience engineering ingenuity and Abloh’s investigative design process: each shoe is a piece of industrial design, a readymade sculpture, and a wearable all at once.

In 2016, sportswear manufacturer Nike and fashion designer Virgil Abloh joined forces to create a sneaker collection celebrating 10 of the Oregon-based company’s most iconic shoes. With their project The  Ten—which reimagines icons like Air Jordan 1, Air Max 90, Air Force 1, and Air Presto, among others—they reinvigorated sneaker culture.

Virgil Abloh’s new designs offer deep insights into engineering ingenuity and burst with cultural cachet. Drawing on the genius of the original shoe using lettering, ironic labels, collage, and sculpting techniques, Abloh  plays with language and sculptural elements to construct new meaning.  Inspired by the wit of Dadaism, architectural theory, and avant-garde  happenings, he analyzes what makes each shoe iconic and deconstructs it into an artistic assemblage, making each shoe into a piece of industrial design, a readymade sculpture, and a wearable all at once.Icons traces  Abloh’s investigative, creative process through documentation of the  prototypes, original text messages from Abloh to Nike designers, and  treasures from the Nike archives. We find Swooshes sliced away from Air Jordans and reapplied with tape or thread, Abloh’s typical text fragments in quotation marks on Air Force 1, and All Stars cut into pieces. We take a look behind the scenes and witness Abloh’s DIY approach, which gives each model in the Off-WhiteTM c/o Nike collection  its own unique touch.

The book documents Abloh’s cooperative way of working and reaffirms the power of print. For its design Nike and Abloh partnered with the acclaimed London-based design studio Zak Group.  Together they conceived a two-part compendium, equal parts catalog and  conceptual toolbox. The first part of the book presents a visual culture  of sneakers while a lexicon in the second part defines the key people,  places, objects, ideas, materials, and scenes from which the project  grew. Texts by Nike’s Nicholas Schonberger, writer Troy Patterson,  curator and historian Glenn Adamson, and Virgil Abloh himself frame the  collaborative work within fashion and design history. A foreword by  Hiroshi Fujiwara places the project within the historical continuum of  Nike collaborators. 

  • Author: Virgil Abloh 
  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Taschen, 2021
  • 352 pages, 11.7" x 10"
  • ISBN:  9783836585095 
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