2020 celebrates 30 years of the Air Jordan 5. In true BLUP style, we pay tribute to this classic with a bespoke art remix and exploration of some all time favourite Air Jordan collaborations.
The Jordan 5 Retro High Off-White Sail’s have been released and are somewhat reminiscent of the Jordan 5 “Fire Red” which were first released back in 1990. The new collaboration embodies characteristics of the past and present, showcasing a fresher take on the modern retro approach. Between the translucent aged yellow upper mesh textile and the iconic 23 insignia, you can’t help but feel excited about the overall outcome of the sneaker and the possible outfits you can wear to match it with.
The creamy tones, contrasted with the grimy grey of the outsole, the vibrant red spiky pattern and Helvetica text work hand-in-hand, creating a feeling of nostalgia not to mention a hint of ruggedness for casual styling.
The reimagined classic sneaker is completed with the signature Off White zip-tie, further securing its ranking within the sneaker community.
Is this the best Jordan 5 collaboration we have seen recently?
Could Virgil Abloh have provided more? Was this collaboration needed? These are all arguable points, but for now the sneaker sits right with me!
My Air Jordan hall of fame:
AIR JORDAN IV X KAWS
The Air Jordan IV x KAWS cool grey, will forever be one of my favourite trainer collaborations because it really showcased the versatility of Jordan as a brand. This was my first experience of Jordan truly pushing the limits of a brand collaboration. The whole process of the trainer seemed well thought out.
The playfulness, the creativity and the cultural relativeness of the design was appropriate for what was going on in 2017.
This trainer wasn’t about hype, it was about merging the art and design world with sport, properly. Hence, the removal of the the traditional Jordan IV’s plastic silhouette instead, dressing the sneaker in grey suede topped with a glow in the dark sole, etched KAWS illustrations on the upper and the infamous XX signature from KAWS, replacing NIKE on the heel tab. This trainer was enough to satisfy KAWS fans such as myself and sneakerheads.
When creating my design, I kept KAWS’ signature skulls and XX at the forefront of my mind. The trainers are endearing and playful, so it was only right that the graphics were too. I chose to go with chrome-like elements giving the trainer something to pop out from contrasting the gritty suede of the upper on the trainer. I also wanted other elements of the graphic to hide within the mine-like structure hence the emerald green crystals and skulls emerging from within the chrome.
AIR JORDAN X TRAVIS SCOTT
The Air Jordan VI x Travis Scott Cactus Jacks! Not much more to say than a wicked collaboration that also pushed the boundaries on the capabilities of a trainer. This was the third time we had seen Travis Scott collaborate with Jordan and each time the trainers got even more experimental and exciting.
The mixture between earth tones and militarian aesthetic worked wonders on the Jordan 6’s.
We hardly ever see an olive green pair of trainers work well – the stash pouches, glow in the dark sole and the Cactus Jack lace lock were all small details that make the trainer a-one-of -a kind.
The inspiration behind my design for this trainer was to keep the canvas simple making sure not to take focus off the trainer but rather further communicate accents of the Wild West in order to complete the Cactus Jack narrative. I included different materials and objects such as rocks, wood tumbleweed and of course cacti, to compliment the expressive nature of the Jordan VI’s as they are also elements that stereotypically fit the Wild West narrative.
This article was written by Jamaal Purcell-Edwards, 21. Jamaal graduated from the University of Greenwich with a Ba Hons in Graphic Design and Communications.
He is currently a Junior Designer at Studio BLUP and also one of our selected BLUP50 talents for 2020/21.