The best way to sum up Oscar Niemeyer‘s career over the last eight decades would be as the “Master Builder of Modern Brazil”. A bastion of the Modernist movement during the last century, Niemeyer pursued an abstract utopia of symmetrical forms. However, one particular attribute set him apart from his counterparts was that design need not be define only by utilitarian needs, but aesthetics as well. Thus, his exploration into the full potential of reinforced concrete and the “curved” structures he is now known for. Even at a grand age of 104, Niemeyer continues to work on a wide range of building projects, along with overseeing his namesake foundation.
In honoring Niemeyer’s countless contributions to architecture, design, arts and the creative process, CONVERSE will be introducing the CONVERSE x Oscar Niemeyer Collection. Five silhouettes in all, each an interpretation of Niemeyer’s vision, from the Chuck Taylor All Star Hi, which employs a poem, written by Niemeyer himself, as its upper and a distinctive red accents, a reference to his Ibirapuera Auditorium in SÃ£o Paulo. The element of red is also on Chuck Taylor All Star Ox and other designs, a symbolic nod to Niemeyer’s political lean. In addition to the Chuck Taylor All Star, the collection includes Chuck Taylor All Star Chukka Boot in natural suede, Converse Skid Grip Oxford slip-on, and Jack Purcell. The collection will be available starting tomorrow, October 23rd, at select retailers as a Brazil exclusive.
SAO PAULO, Brazil (October 22, 2012) Today, CONVERSE Inc., announces the launch of the Converse x Oscar Niemeyer collection. Created inspiring by Oscar Niemeyer’s artwork, world-renowned architect, visionary and creative ambassador, the limited edition collection features five Converse silhouettes, each interpreted through Niemeyer’s outspoken architectural vision.
Born out of a shared passion for creative expression, the new footwear collection launches in Brazil on Tuesday, October 23, 2012 as part of a collaborative effort between Converse and the Oscar Niemeyer Foundation. Inspired by Niemeyer’s motto “It is not the right angle that attracts me…,” the exclusive range celebrates the Brazilian architect’s non-linear design ethos that is present in all of his works.
“Converse footwear includes some of the most iconic, original and modern designs in history,” says Penny Ericson, Vice President, Converse Jack Purcell and Premium. “As one of the great artistic visionaries of our time, Oscar Niemeyer’s work represents those same qualities and we’re excited to help bring that to life with this new collection.”
Born in 1907, Niemeyer’s career spans over eight decades, having established himself as one of Modernism’s greatest pioneers. Through his contemporary use of concrete and bold approach to design, Niemeyer introduced a new way to build “curved” architecture, which has since become his signature, recognized throughout the world. Niemeyer’s bold design approach and outspoken voice revolutionized the way the world looks at architecture and design.
About the Collection
The Converse x Oscar Niemeyer collection features five new iterations of Converse silhouettes, each with a nod to Niemeyer’s legendary curve and his creative, rebellious point of view:
- The collection includes a Chuck Taylor All Star Hi sneaker with an all-over canvas print featuring the architect’s famous handwritten poem about curves. Featured in a bold red, the tongue creates an unmistakable reference to the dramatic entrance of SÃ£o Paulo’s Ibirapuera Auditorium.
- The Chuck Taylor All Star Oxford model continues the use of the red curve, this time outlining the edge of the upper, creating a bold contrast to the sneaker’s white canvas. Natural leather accents on the toe bumper, tongue and midsole complete the look of this casual sneaker.
- The collection also includes a Chuck Taylor All Star Chukka Boot rendered in a rich, natural suede, was inspired by the monument “Torture Never More”, designed by Niemeyer in 1986. The lining in leather features the architectural illustration referencing the social movement “Landless,” further reinforcing Niemeyer’s beliefs.
- A Converse Skid Grip Oxford slip-on features the signature curve as a red outline of the upper and an additional reference to the poem of Curves on the right shoe’s toe. Red stitching and natural colored leather patches on the heel give the overall design a textured look and feel.
Rounding out the collection, a stylish Jack Purcell sneaker features a red and white lace option and the signature Jack “smile” as a playful representation of Niemeyer’s curve.
The Converse x Oscar Niemeyer collection will launch at exclusive retailers across Brazil on October 23. The sneaker range will retail for R$170 R$270 (85 135 USD) and is available in unisex sizing 3.5 11.5.