Black History Month and Pan-Africanism are honored in a collaborative offering from legendary producer and hip-hop historian DJ Clark Kent (Rodolfo Franklin) and the heritage sneaker imprint K-Swiss. Garbing the latest generation with threads that complements their hustler spirit has been core ethos of the collection.
Over the years, Rodolfo Franklin not only has been recognized for his exploits in music, which has allowed him to be the sonic foundation for a plethora of industry titans like Jay-Z and The Notorious B.I.G., but his admiration and reverence for sneaker culture has made him an authority in the community. Though his pioneer status stands out as a significant aspect of his career, his generational, cultural relevancy and pride for his Panamanian heritage made him an exemplary option to foster akin spirits, “honor the past and embolden emerging young black leaders in all facets of life.” When approached, he stated his initial reaction was as such:
“When K-Swiss asked me to do a project for Black History Month, the one thought I had was “Black History is everyday. I wanted to create a shoe that was simple, clean, premium, and straight to the point. The colors on the stripes represent OUR Black Power, Black Pride, and Black Beauty. It is my honor to share them with you.”
The timeless construction of the Classic 88 is sustained, while the inclusion of a sail hued, premium leather upper adds a luxe flair and fuller shape. What can be seen as a titular motif for the brand, the five-stripes are given a slight redressing of three colors. Red symbolically represents the blood that unites all individuals of Black African ancestry, black affirms the diaspora and green champions the bountiful, natural prosperity of Africa. Signature details synonymous with the court-style kicks, such as the three-piece toe and D- ring lace-up impart and molded rubber outsole, fostering durability and comfort; complete the drop.
Available in both men’s and women’s sizing, the new DJ Clark Kent x K-Swiss shoe will be available exclusively at Foot Locker and Kswiss.com at $80 USD. For more information, please visit kswiss.com.