Skepta Teams Up With Nike for Air Max Collab

Skepta Teams Up With Nike for Air Max Collab

The Air Max '97 combines Nike air heritage with Morocco's tones and textures.

The Air Max '97 combines Nike air heritage with Morocco's tones and textures.

Text: Justin Ragolia

Nike's been doing a ton of air max revivals lately, and it's evident they've borrowed inspiration from fashion and music cultures in their redesigns. Yesterday, The Swoosh announced an upcoming collab with grime overlord Skepta for an all-new Air Max '97.

IMAGE COURTESY OF NIKE

For the "Air Max '97 Sk" the British-Nigerian rapper drew inspiration from the tranquil streets of Essaouira, a small port city on Morocco's Atlantic coast. He was originally drawn to the city as an escape from his hectic touring lifestyle, and given the rapid BPM, heavy trap beats, and quickening high hat taps heard on his recordings, we understand why. After his trip to Essaouira last winter, it became clear to the London native that he had found the serenity he'd been searching for.

When co-designing the shoe, he applied Morocco's copper tones to the meandering curves of the original 97's upper, and remixed them with the oil-like finish from the '99 Nike Air Tuned Max, the first pair of shoes he bought with his own money as a kid growing up in Tottenham. For the shoe's mesh patterning, Skepta drew inspiration from the embellished sportswear fabrics he noticed the locals sporting in Essaouira. Considering he's created his own line of minimalist, fashion forward tracksuits for Selfridges, it's safe to say the artist knows a thing or two about putting sportswear materials together in a fresh way.

As expected, Nike's making all the necessary tech updates to the '97 silhouette, including lighter-weight Nike Ultra tooling, a softer foam midsole, and augmented pressure levels in the Air-Sole unit.

The shoes are set to release on Nike+ SNKRS, online, and in stores on September 2nd.

IMAGE COURTESY OF NIKE

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