Nike is so much more than just a sportswear company. They push the boundaries of what we put on our bodies. We saw the swoosh pull off one of the most revolutionary inventions with the Nike Adapt BB, but Nike also innovates in areas other than sports technology. The brand uses its platform to allow its customers to make what they want, be it for themselves or for others. We know how impactful it can be for the community; take the Sean Wotherspoon Air Max 97/1 for example. That sneaker alone increased the interest in sneaker culture manifold. Now, Nike has given the floor to budding designers with their Nike: On Air competition.
Nike selected six winners from six cities – New York, London, Paris, Seoul, Shanghai, and Tokyo – to design sneakers inspired by their communities back in their hometowns. With the help of Nike’s own team of designers and developers, the swoosh has announced the final designs from the winners.
Nike Air Max 98 La Mezcla
by Gabrielle Serrano
Serrano hails from New York City and her sneaker represents one of the most important features of the city: the people. She decided to use the Air Max 98, slapping a gradient black to white panel along the heart of the sneaker to symbolize the racial, cultural and ethnic diversity found in the city.
Nike Air Max 97 London Summer of Love
by Jasmine Lasode
Lasode went with a more personal touch on her Air Max 97 design. Using her experience of having a first date at Primrose Hill as inspiration, her shoe encapsulates love and summer in London with its bright colors.
Nike Air VaporMax Plus Paris Works in Progress
by Lou Matheron
Matheron took inspiration for her design from a building under construction in the French capital. She used colors from the construction site in the sneaker’s colorway: the grey of the nuts and bolts and the yellow found on the caution signs. She added a nice touch by keeping the swoosh in place with “screws”.
Nike Air Max 97 Neon Seoul
by Gwang Shin
Gwang Shin looks to the bright neon lights found in Seoul as the inspiration for the sneaker. The sneakers come in a black, matte upper contrasted with vibrant colors – drawn from the South Korean flag – on the panels nearer to the laces. The giant, 3M swoosh on the medial side of the sneaker also represents the vibrancy of the city.
Nike Air Max 1 Tokyo Maze
by Yuta Takuman
Takuman drew inspiration from the many subway lines found in Tokyo as he slaps a labyrinth graphic on the upper. The embossed upper represents the city’s concrete surfaces while the red air bubble pays homage to the famous Tokyo Tower.
Nike Air Max 97 SH Kaleidoscope
by Cash Ru
Ru’s Air Max 97 is a representation of how he sees the clouds floating along the Shanghai skies. With layered uppers and pull tabs, they symbolize how the clouds merge and dissipate to form many different figures and shapes.
The designs will start to release to the general public in April. Watch this space as we get more details on release dates.
Nike is a company for the masses as they want everyone to feel comfortable wearing their products. Check out NikeID to have a go at creating your own sneakers.
What do you think of the final designs from the Nike: On Air competition? Which was your favorite? Let us know in the comments below.
Read more: Nike lines up special edition Air Jordan 1 Mid releases this week