As part of Adidas's new spring line of End to End sneakers for Foot Locker, the German shoe manufacturer has created an EndtoEnd Project exhibit in an empty lot on Lafayette and Houston. Adidas had different graffiti artists create designs for shoes in an East London warehouse, so in bringing the finished shoes to the states, Adidas has the artists tagging a replica of a NYC subway car!
Cue for a quote from City Councilman Peter Vallone Jr. He told amNew York, "Graffiti has nothing to do with sneakers, so basically it's just another despicable corporation trying to look edgy by promoting a crime in search of profits. [It's] like posting a billboard calling on teens to break the law." A retired police officer also told AMNY that foreigners are mostly the ones tagging subway cars today: "The problem is, New York is like the Holy Grail. It's where the graffiti movement got started."
And now is as good a time as any to recall Judge Jed Rakoff's 2005 ruling allowing Marc Ecko's graffiti party to go on:
"By the same token, presumably, a street performance of 'Hamlet' would be tantamount to encouraging revenge murder... As for a street performance of 'Oedipus Rex,' don't even think about it... The denial of the permit on the stated grounds that the demonstration will 'incite' others to actually paint graffiti on subway cars is a flagrant violation of the First Amendment and cannot stand."
[Ecko had received a permit for graffiti artists to tag fake subway cars to coincide with the release of the video game, Getting Up, but the city revoked the permit.]
This morning, there were easily at least 10 cops nearby, but this afternoon, we only saw one. And at any rate, Adidas's subway car is a whole lot more realistic than Ecko's subway car facades. The subway car, with DJs providing music, will be around until 8PM. More pictures, plus bios of the artists, after the jump:
Masters of the Trade Each piece of signature footwear showcases the artists' unique, individual talents and tastes. The graffiti masters include:
Skore - For more than 20 years, Skore has been a staple part of the subculture in the U.K., participating in every aspect of the art form. His development of lettering styles combined with technical skill and original flair has kept him a primary influence for many graffiti writers worldwide.
Can2 and Atom - Can2 and Atom juxtapose traditional letterforms and characters with searing colorways and incredible attention to detail. Together, they have influenced a whole generation of modern-day graffiti artists.
Siloette - Based in the U.S., Siloette's illustrative style of character and letter painting has made her one to watch, with an incredible use of color and unique flowing style.
Rime - Known for pushing the limitations of lettering, Rime's pieces are a combination of vivid colors, cartoon-style outlines and bold tags. He is one of the most respected writers in the U.S., and has influenced many others both within and outside of the graffiti world.
Scien - Working alongside his wife Klor, Scien developed the infamous 123 Klan collective in 1992. Well known for crisp outlines and clean detailing, his repertoire now extends beyond graffiti: the 123 Klan is established as one of the finest design and illustration agencies in Europe.
Smart - Combining traditional New York lettering with creative hand styles, Italian-based Smart has quickly become a name to be reckoned with. All of his work has a raw and funky twist to it, utilizing great colorways and inspired detailing.