Black-owned, London-based brand A-COLD-WALL* and Nike reignite their long-standing collaboration to deliver a new version of the signature Air Max Plus 98 named the TN98. Inspired by ACW*’s industrial roots, expressive nature, and experimentation, the TN98 takes the beloved silhouette that debuted 25 years ago to new heights aesthetically and design-wise. Crafted by Creative Director Samuel Ross, the TN98 offers an upscale yet understated take on the cult classic in three different colors — “Onyx,” “Stone,” and “House Blue.” For this week’s official “Kickin’ Facts” review, I chose the Onyx colorway because I always bet on Black and you should, too.
Let’s start with the blacked-out, full-grain leather upper of the ACW* TN98 that was treated with a specialist finish to speed up intended degradation. In addition to that technique, it has a thermo-molded exoskeleton and minimalist branding. The minimalism applies to the ACW* and Nike logos discreetly placed on the tongue, back heel, and on the lateral side, while the iconic Nike Swoosh is laser-etched and almost unrecognizable. Finishing details include satin black laces and a grey sneaker box that further implies ACW*’s industrial nature.
For the campaign, Ross enlisted a fellow British comrade, photographer Gabriel Moses, who shot the TN98 colorways with different backdrops. One image that sticks out is a reinterpretation of 17th century artworks that depicts models hoisted in the air wearing all different colorways of the TN98. Additional photos feature each shot individually against a stark and austere background where the TN98 takes centerstage. The result is simplistic yet strong imagery that perfectly matches the sneaker’s design language.
What are your thoughts on the TN98? Which colorway would you cop?
The A-COLD-WALL* x Nike TN98 “Onyx” was released globally on Sept. 21 for $220 and is still available at a-cold-wall.com and select retailers.