/  06.26.2021

As part of Virgil Abloh’s seventh collection as artistic director of Louis Vuitton’s menswear, the French luxury brand revealed Thursday (June 24) during Paris Fashion Week that they have partnered with Nike on new versions of its iconic Air Force 1 sneakers.

The shoes are inspired by hip hop, according to notes from the brand per WWD. Specifically, the sneaker’s design is drawn from the album art for It Takes Two by Rob Base and DJ E-Z Rock. The image shows E-Z Rock wearing a Nike Air Force 1 basketball trainer customized with a Louis Vuitton swoosh.

“The cover embodied the hip hop community’s early practice of hacking together high fashion and sportswear, sidelining diverging brands with equal reverence. A cultural symbol in its own right, today the Nike Air Force 1 serves as an objet d’art emblematic of self-generated subcultural provenance,” Louis Vuitton wrote in its collection notes.

The Louis Vuitton Air Force 1s are set to be released in 21 colorways. They made their debut Thursday in Paris during Abloh’s spring/summer men’s 2022 collection show. To showcase the collection, Abloh created the film Amen Break, which stars GZA, Goldie, Saul Williams, Issa Perica, Caleb, JIM JOE, Kandis Williams, Thelma Buabeng, Octavia Burgel, Lupe Fiasco, Damian Eugene Nagisa Williams and others.

“I always work in polar opposites and I’m always dialoguing with the formality of Louis Vuitton and the contemporariness of youth culture today — almost like a generation discovering luxury again, and I’m the conduit,” Abloh told WWD.

“We have straight-up A-line skirts. It’s liberating in 2021… The next thing in fashion isn’t in fashion. It’s in people, it’s in the atmosphere, it’s in the streets, it’s in the socio-political,” he continued. “Decision, gender, diversity — those aren’t even hot topics. That’s top line. That’s already been established. Now, it’s developing menswear into showing the freedom that can be.”

In regards to the Air Force 1s, Louis Vuitton has not shared a release date. Nevertheless, the collaboration marks another accomplishment for Abloh, who began his official partnership with Nike by reinventing 10 models of sneakers for his initial “The Ten” project in 2017.

Check out images of the Louis Vuitton Air Force 1 below:


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