Donald Glover knows how to make the most out of a landmark cultural moment. The polymath creative used
his Childish Gambino’s headlining set at last weekend’s Coachella as the center point for a number of projects. For one, the debut of his new film, Guava Island, was timed around the performance. For another, a number of attendees at the festival received a surprise when Glover airdropped pairs of his yet-unannounced line of adidas shoes right to their phones.
Now, as weekend two of Coachella approaches, Glover has officially unveiled his collaboration with the apparel giant. Dubbed “Donald Glover Presents”, the partnership involves three new shoes connected to a series of short films.
For the footwear, Glover put his own spin on a trio of classic adidas designs: the Nizza, the Continental 80, and the Lacombe. The guiding concept is that the wear-and-tear of your shoes tell the tale of how you wore them, so Glover’s designs are actually made to look kind of shopworn. The stitching is uneven, the eyestays are inside-out, and the coloring on the iconic 3-Stripes looks hand painted. Even the canvas of the sneakers and the laces themselves are made to encourage fraying, adding more “story” the more you wear them.
Explaining the look and thought behind the designs in a press release, Glover said,
“Rich is a concept. With this project, I wanted to encourage people to think about how their stories can be told on their feet. Value isn’t quantified by what you wear, rather the experiences from them. And you make the decision on what works for you, you live through your own lens. The partnership for me is about being able to exemplify what doing your own thing truly looks and feels like.”
That principal extends to the short films accompanying the products. Starring Glover alongside Mo’Nique and directed by Atlanta and Guava Island writer Ibra Ake, the shorts place the new sneakers in the context of their creator’s celebrity. With Mo’Nique ripping into Glover for being “Hollywood,” she teasingly reminds him to stay connected to his true self while he chops wood inside, harvests honey, and takes up painting.
Check out the videos below, followed by a look at some of the “Donald Glover Presents” sneakers. More details are available on adidas’ website.