Reebok & Jean Michel Basquiat
Part of hip hop producer Swizz Beatz's revitalisation of the Reebok brand, the latest silhouette to be given the Basquiat treatment (as part of Reebok's ongoing collaboration with the Jean Michel Basquiat Estate) is the Chi-Kaze, a 're-engineered' silhouette that incorporates a Kamikaze Hexalite sole with a Freestyle upper....
Jean Michel Basquiat began his artistic career back in 1976, painting graffiti on the New York streets (under the pseudonym SAMO) with friend and fellow writer Al Diaz. Further into his creative life, Basquiat's style developed from raw street graffiti into work influenced by the Neo-Expressionist movement, allowing his art to take on many new forms. After developing a friendship with fellow famed artist of the era, Andy Warhol, the pair collaborated on several art-based projects and cemented their status as two of the biggest creative icons of the 1980s.
The Reebok Basquiat Chi-Kaze comes adorned in Basquiat's signature 'graffiti-scrawl' style, and features a broadly CYMK (cyan, yellow, magenta and black) colour make-up. The artwork varies on both left and right shoes, ranging from quick brush strokes sweeping across the toe box, to scratched-out illustrations on the upper collar. Basquiat's signature can be found on the rear upper of the shoe in a vibrant magenta tone, and strategically placed upon the tongue tab is his crown icon 'stamped' over the Reebok 'R' logo. Illustrated portraits can also be found inside the shoes on each insole.
The shoe is part of a series of releases and is a continuation of the ongoing Basquiat project. Previous releases have included the Ventilator, Omni-Pump and women's Freestyle silhouettes. Creative director Swizz Beatz is also rumoured to be releasing Keith Haring and Andy Warhol collections, but no further release dates have been confirmed as of yet.
The Reebok & Basquiat Chi-Kaze is available now from select retailers, including Cologne-based sneaker store The Good Will Out