The Air Jordan is not just the flagship product of the Jordan Brand; it is the flagship product of the entire basketball footwear industry. The Air Jordan for me has always been more than just a shoe, it is a product that is meant to inspire and aspire an integral lineage of footwear. Its performance features will trickled down and become the in-line qualities of the product line for seasons to come. In my opinion what is hurting the current Air Jordan game shoe is that its price-point keeps its construction methods too similar to the rest of the brands shoes and since all of them virtually feature the same construction methods, sole unit features and materials; then what product is the flagship?
I set out to use, new to the footwear industry; manufacturing techniques that would allow the Air Jordan to return to a polarizing statement product by elevating it to a new price-point that is unattainable by many but creates an aspirational product for the brand and its consumers.
Structural integrity while manipulating mass and form is the overlying theme for this project. I set out to remove structure where it wasn’t necessary and allow form to be created naturally by the volume of the athlete’s foot.
By using a 5-Axis mill to etch out the midsole of the shoe it allows you to really control and push the boundaries of what is necessary and what is not necessary in a shoe. The midsole features structural ribbing that reinforces where mass has been removed. The upper of the shoe is a sock that features woven herringbone bands that have structural and stretch elements that provide a custom fit. It also utilizes direct injected EVA that is placed in strategic locations to provide support without taking away from the function of the sock.
* Summer 2011
PROPERTY OF BRETT GOLLIFF