THE TEN: AIR MAX 90

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WHITELIES appreciates the sneaker liaison of the year between NIKE & Virgil Abloh by presenting an exclusive release series of all ten reconstructed classics. NIKE x Virgil Abloh: Ten Icons Reconstructed launches globally at NikeLab stores and selected retailers like Colette, Dover Street Market, Voo Store, Comme de Garcons or SOTO Store beginning November 9, 2017.


Poised for a new decade, the Air Max retained this industry altering series’ revolutionary spirit. With a shape that, for many, is the platonic ideal of what a running shoe should look like, and endorsement from world-class distance athletes, a forward-mentality dominated every element of this sequel. Before the Air Max 90, visible air tech technology had become a phenomenon. This design, led by veteran innovator Tinker Hatfield, was about more — more Nike Air cushioning with a bigger unit, more flexibility through those forefoot grooves, more room for color with those textured panels, more options with those multi-port lace holes, plus more color when bolder infrareds and laser-like blues were introduced. Don’t mistake that for excess though, because this shoe weighed less than its predecessors. On the East Coast, the shoe captured a stylistic moment in time perfectly, while in leather form, it became synonymous with the militancy of West Coast rap. In Europe, the silhouette resonated with rude boys, rude girls and ravers. When the Air Max 90 made a grand return in the early 2000s, it became standard issue across several more subcultures.