WHY ADIDAS IS HAPPY TO BE ON A NEVER ENDING JOURNEY
Creative courage, collaboration and a belief that the best things in life aren’t “perfect, polished or precious” is core to adidas’ philosophy of reinvention, Paul Gaudio, the iconic brand’s global creative director, told the audience at yesterday’s Johannes Leonardo session.
“We work to enable creativity within our brand,” he said. “We want our designers to express themselves, explore ideas and chase dreams. We try not to provide all the answers, we give people the space to take our brand into new places.”
He added that there would be no point collaborating with designers of the calibre of Alexander Wang and legendary tennis player Stan Smith if you didn’t want to bring “newness and freshness” to your brand. “Great creative collaborations are essential, because we know can’t do this alone,” he added. “We think of ourselves as a brand in beta, because our journey is never finished.”
Stan Smith, creator of the best-selling sneaker of all time, remembered wearing adidas’ classic design in the early Seventies, at the height of his fame as a tennis player. “It was the first leather shoe that had been made for tennis and it became a fashion statement right away,” he said. “I remember people wearing it walking down the Champs Elysees in Paris while I was wearing it on the court — and these were people who had no idea who I was.”
The new adidas Originals line, he added, continues to appeal across the sports and fashion communities: “I see 13-year-old girls and their mothers wearing them, young boys and old people, preppy kids and hip-hop kids. It’s amazing that it’s been accepted by all these cultures and ages.”
New York designer and self-confessed ‘sneakerhead’ Alexander Wang said adidas had been part of his life since his school days. “I’m such a fan and believer in this brand,” he said. “I’m honoured to be part of the adidas community. It’s a truly special collaboration.”