On Wednesday, September 16, Converse will honor LatinX stories on the iconic canvas of The Chuck Taylor All Star as the brand releases its most comprehensive LatinX Heritage Month capsule to date.
Created for and by the community, a series of Chuck Taylor All Star styles aim to honor the stories that represent the diversity, duality and vibrancy of LatinX heritage, in their home countries, the United States and beyond.
The Chuck Taylor All Star ¡Mi Gente! is a series of three Chuck Taylor All Stars are the focal point of the capsule – sharing stories of heritage from Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic and Mexico.
In line with the collection, Converse is proud to partner with organizations like Boyle Heights Arts Conservatory, Homeboy Industries, Las Fotos Project, and ZUMIX: supporting LatinX communities throughout 2020 in Boston and Los Angeles, with a particular focus on creativity and civic leadership for young women and girls. In addition, Converse has commissioned a grassroots community of creatives to contribute murals in Mexico, Peru, Chile and Brazil to bring the idea of ¡Mi Gente! to life on the streets. The first murals will be complete beginning on September 15.
Check out each piece from the collection down, available September 16, down below:
PUERTO RICO: With the power of Afro-Caribbean rhythms and the freedom of the Bomba dancers of Puerto Rico, the Chuck Taylor All Star Hi and accompanying apparel are inspired by the white ruffle skirts of the women who lead the rhythm of Bomba. The footwear sees the colors of the Puerto Rican flag come to life on the All Star license plate and top gold eyelets allow you to lace up in style.
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: The Mirabal Sisters, also known as the “Mariposas”, may not have seemed the most likely revolutionaries but the fight of their lives became symbols of both democratic and feminist resistance. In their honor, an all-over butterfly print takes over the Chuck Taylor All Star while colors from the Dominican Republic flag come through the license plate.
MEXICO: This Chuck Taylor All Star high top celebrates Mexican American style and heritage: a deep blue leather ankle patch is intricately cut out in the style of papel picado—traditional Mexican paper folk art and sits atop an Otomi-inspired print on canvas.
The Chuck 70 ¡Mi Gente! celebrates a time when the Chuck Taylor All Star had evolved to become the pinnacle of function and utility for basketball, the canvas upper of the Chuck 70 features an all-over, color-contrast ¡Mi gente! print - serving as a call to action and unifying belief of the collection: it‘s family, a group you identify with, a culture, and an invitation to celebrate. The minimalist shoe is complete with unique details, including the Spanish letter ”ñ”, which is given center stage on the All Star ankle patch.
With ¡Mi Gente! By You, customizable Chucks featuring artwork by artists – Sentrock of Chicago and Ruth Mora of Los Angeles – allow for a personal take – with designs and color palettes that are as bold and rich in color as their stories.
Ruth Mora’s print taps into her lifelong passion and drawing career, which was first inspired by the graffiti and murals that are integral to LA street culture. Individual scenes of elote, ChicanX, flowers and more come together as a caricature of both her idea of Los Angeles and Mi Gente, which are intertwined: “Mi Gente for me starts first at home. That‘s the first thing that comes to my mind, I feel at home with not just my family, but I feel like Mi Gente, is people that make you feel warm and at home regardless of whether you know them or not. So, I really like that sense of togetherness that our culture has.”
Joseph Perez, who goes by his artist name Sentrock, was born and raised in West Phoenix, Arizona, and is currently based in Chicago, Illinois. A Mexican-American who channeled his creativity from street art into design approached his artwork for Converse through the introspective of central character: a young boy on a bike, holding a banner that says “con sueños”. Of the scenes surrounding the character he says, “he‘s surrounded by a lot of icons, but there’s a twist in the urban setting by adding a Nepal cactus and a snake and elements from my community. And I think it’s just saying, right now, if you put yourself in a little kid’s shoes – they want to have dreams. What can they aspire to be, what heights can they reach, what goals can they accomplish? With the seeds that are in their community, they’re nurtured, and they grow. That’s Mi Gente. It’s for the kids that have dreams, that are holding on to your heritage, but then still finding your identity where you’re at.”
Converse’s ¡Mi Gente! is the latest capsule demonstrating the brand’s commitment to support youth movements for positive social change. Converse’s ¡Mi Gente! capsule was born from the passion of three designers, who wanted to shed light on their heritage through the canvas of the Converse sneakers they work on each day.