NikeLab’s new Vision-AIRS program targets NEWGEN designers, those who push boundaries in construction and material. Representing Central Saint Martins, Domus Academy and the Parsons School of Design, Azar Rajabi, Liam Johnson, Paula Canovas, Wanbing Huang and Shize He Nike Air VaporMax each created unique garments showcasing uncanny design foresight and unparalleled craftsmanship.
AZAR RAJABI (DOMUS ACADEMY)
“My work drew inspiration directly from the VaporMax as I wanted to best represent the essence of the footwear. The sole, a flexible product made of a single, inflatable airbag, inspired my research and material.”
Our thoughts: The large, adjustable hood with shirring details or pinches, suggests the idea of bendability. The reaction of the laces and their extension from the body exaggerates the human form in motion.
LIAM JOHNSON (CENTRAL SAINT MARTINS)
“I thought about how buoyancy and lightness could be expressed through air. I liked the idea of the piece feeling like a vortex or a dense, black cloud swirling around the body.”
Our thoughts: The black seemed to drink all the light and perfectly fit the concept of the vortex. It also has a plush bounce texture that ties in the idea of AIR, while the depth in color really lends itself to the product.
PAULA CANOVAS (CENTRAL SAINT MARTINS)
“I wanted to explore the malleability of the garment as air traverses through, and understand how the range of materials react to this force and surrounding environment. In order to display this floaty, bouncy dynamics, I was interested in incorporating interweaved knots, while padding the drapes with wadding gave a singularly inflated effect.”
Our thoughts: The organic construction allows for the intangible to permeate through the apparel and give the body a complete freedom of movement.
WANBING HUANG (CENTRAL SAINT MARTINS)
“The first idea came to life as an ode to all things airborne, with the lightness and flexibility of the Nike Vapormax providing a direct reference. The transparent air cushioning unit that acts as a standalone outsole inspired me to create a flawless outfit that creates harmony between body and environment.”
Our thoughts: The material molds around the body seamlessly. Its stretchable features allow the body to move freely and dramatically.”
SHIZHE HE (MFA FASHION DESIGN & SOCIETY, PARSONS SCHOOL OF DESIGN)
“For this piece, I used plastic packaging film as the material, which protects furniture from being damaged. I chose this material because it is not a traditional clothing fabric. Design must be brave in this same way — to try a different way or angle, and to re-think and experience the process.”.
Our thoughts: Visually it may seem hard, but touching the VaporMax gives a completely different feeling. The dress looks like a solid sculpture but it is, in fact, very light and flexible, allowing the body to easily move with the garment.
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