In Japan basketball manga has inspired thousands to embrace the game and its culture. Seen decorating the walls of Sole What? and soon to be collected by fans, this year, Nike joins forces with a select group of manga artists to share the Nike Dunk story.
Chapter 1 1984. The NBA bans Michael Jordan from wearing the Air Jordan – it goes against the NBA’s policy of the single-coloured shoe. Then gameday, Los Angeles, California, 1985. The Nike Dunk sets the world ablaze. In breakthrough school colours it proves an instant hit and taps into the fierce loyalty of US college fans.
Chapter 2 1992. After a decade of its release, the Nike Dunk makes a frenzied journey across the Pacific Ocean to Japan. With its high ankle support and thin sole, skateboarders fall in love with its innovative use of colour and a sleek style that’s ready to meet the street.
Chapter 3 1997. Japanese collectors find Nike Dunks in the discount bins of America and resell them in the hole in the wall shops of Ueno, Tokyo. The passion for vintage college sneakers sparks a craze and the work of street mags, limited distribution and word of mouth only serves to heighten the phenomenon.
Chapter 4 2008. The present. Having been born on the hardwoods today the Nike Dunk lives amongst a global neighbourhood from New York to Nagasaki amongst skateboarders, BMXers, ballers, rappers, rockers and regular people. The story continues….
Nike’s new re-mastering of the Dunk sees a return to its original, high-contrast colourways of red, blue, white, yellow, orange, grey and black. Check it at Sole What? 2nd Floor, Mid Valley, The Gardens.
This report was published in the April 2008 issue of JUICE.