Balmain partners with artist Jeff Cole
Balmain announced on Friday that it is teaming up with artist Jeff Cole on the launch of exclusive artwork for the Balmain Unicorn Sneaker.
As part of the collaboration, Cole was inspired by the Unicorn’s futuristic silhouette to create exclusive digital designs inspired by the latest design from Balmain creative director Olivier Rousteing.
Cole was inspired to transform the one-of-a-kind sneaker into a singular equine shape. Relying on a hypnotic, nonstop loop, the design features bright colors and bold patterns that transform into black-and-white, gold and-white and multi-color tonal mixes.
Cole is well-known for his mastery of digital tools to create colorful illustrations and dynamic animations. As part of the launch, The Balmain Unicorn x Jeff Cole video will launch for a social-media push to introduce Rousteing’s latest sneaker designs.
“This really seems like a partnership that was destined to happen,” said Cole. “In fact, even before the Balmain team reached out to me, the Unicorn had already managed to grab my attention. As soon as I saw the first images of the sneaker, I immediately saved them to my computer. I remember thinking that the shoes were so unique, so unexpected, that they almost appeared to have been created on another planet before being dropped to Earth. And once Olivier made clear that he wanted me to feel absolutely free to push the art in any direction that felt right… well, I was truly inspired.”
Cole will premiere his designs during an exclusive event at Balmain's recently inaugurated Madison Avenue boutique. The premiere is scheduled to take place during this month’s NFT.NYC conference, which will highlight the minting of Cole’s Balmain Unicorn
animation as an exclusive NFT.
Bids for this series of NFTs can be placed from June 21 through June 24 2022 exclusively on mintnft.com marketplace. The winning bidder will also receive a special pair of Unicorn sneakers signed by Rousteing, an invitation for two to experience next September’s Balmain Festival, and more.
“I couldn’t be more pleased with the final artwork,” added Rousteing. “Jeff clearly understood the spirit of our new Unicorn has much more to do with the elusive beauty and rare strength of the legendary creature than with any literal interpretation of its shape. So, he avoided any expected clichés of hoofs and horns and instead channeled fantastic colors and compelling animations. I especially love how he was able to beautifully morph our Balmain Unicorn’s eye-catching lacing system and the upper's three parallel breaking waves into his creature’s facial features.”
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