Vans‘ “Foot The Bill” initiative was founded in April 2020 to help small business combat the financial strain caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, but it’s since expanded into a full community empowerment program, the latest result of which is a spotlight of four rising Black artists in honor of Black History Month. Three of the artists included selected the Slip On while one opted to work on the Authentic, but each original design offers a deeply personal ethos and bold look.
First up is Detroit-based Sydney G. James, a fine artist and muralist whose vivid graphic shows a Black woman peeking through a camouflage-like green shroud. Next, multimedia artist and graphic designer Rewina Beshue from San Francisco presents a wavy, optical illusion-inspired black and white design atop the Authentic.
Oakland-based artist Chris Martin opts for a stark white and black Slip On, with an American Traditional-style dove breaking away from chains while carrying a cotton bough in its beak, and visual artist Tony Whlgn — who’s created album art for Big K.R.I.T. and Joey Bada$$ as well as worked in design at KITH — supplies a black Slip On with a sublimated design under a white tropical-style toebox graphic. To further the collection’s message, Vans will also be donating $40K USD to the Black Art Futures Fund.
All four designs are available at the Vans webstore now, and each is priced at $90 USD.
Elsewhere in the world of footwear, check out the latest installment of HYPEBEAST‘s Sole Mates series — featuring Chinatown Market founder Mike Cherman and the visvim Christo.