BACK TO THE BRONX
What an honor and a pleasure to have contributed to FORCE: Nike Air Force 1 "BRONX ORIGINS" campaign which officially launched today. Thanks to my Parisian brother and Director Thibaut De Longeville I contributed to Nike's 25th Anniversary of the Air Force 1 back in 2007. This time 'round, assisting my brother / client, the legendary Paradise Gray with his role in this special campaign alongside other Hip-Hop OG's and emerging talent was a blessing. As Paradise is visually impaired, there were some challenges we faced getting him from Pittsburgh, PA to the hallowed grounds of Cedar Park in the Bronx. Factor in Paradise was on the mend for foot surgery and would need to be carefully wheeled (and at times carried) around a busy set for 8 hours, and you get the picture. In the end, Paradise's OG spirit, the power of Hip-Hop and his dedicated team, including Cody, Q and his daughter Tiara, prevailed. Saluting all the Bronx pioneers who played a role in this culturally and historically significant campaign and thanking Nike for its continued love and support.
The Bronx Origins Air Force 1 was heavily inspired by aesthetics, like Old English letters and vinyl records surrounding first generation Hip-Hop culture — but the design is timeless enough for the next gen to rock it, too. Bronx icon Grand Wizzard Theodore says, "There’s nothing like that old school sound, but I’ll always show love to the new school artists, too." The old and new school join forces to honor 40 years with the freshest kicks on the block.
Photo © 2022 Nike and Koe Rodriguez, respectively