London-based Vivobarefoot launches three distinct shoe designs inspired by the compelling artworks of Jean-Michel Basquiat. Striving to challenge the status quo in everything they do, the collaboration aims to reconnect people and the planet through their barefoot footwear, forging a new path in what is a broken shoe industry. Designed using barefoot principles that are scientifically proven to improve your foot health, ‘The Made in Africa’ range honours the iconic artist’s radical aesthetic and African influence.
Paying homage to Basquiat’s legacy and connections to Africa, each pair is hand-stitched in Ethiopia with sales from all footwear sold going back to its makers and local communities. They are all printed and embroidered in Addis Ababa on soft wild hide leather, sourced from Ethiopian smallholder farmers.
Tapping into Basquiat’s disruptive artistic style, each footwear design features one of the artist’s most famous artworks. The first shoe design features the renowned ‘Untitled: Head’ painting, the second design incorporates the ‘Test Pressing’ artwork from the track cover produced for Rammellzee and K-Rob. The final design includes the renowned ‘Pez Dispenser’ illustration with a T-Rex wearing Basquiat’s notable crown motif.
Vivobarefoot founder, Galahad Clark, explains why his brand chose to base the collection on the artist, “I see Jean-Michel Basquiat as one of the most unique and original rebels who questioned the status quo and the world is crying out for more souls with such spirit. From our perspective, we don’t want to make shoes like everybody else, we want to make footwear that connect you to your sole – footwear that rewild the body, the mind and the planet”.
The Vivobarefoot x Jean-Michel Basquiat collection is now available, head over to Vivobarefoot’s website to grab a pair.