Cassius Hirst & Prada Collaborate On Reimagined America's Cup Sneaker

Cassius Hirst & Prada Collaborate On Reimagined America's Cup Sneaker

Cassius Hirst & Prada Collaborate On Reimagined America's Cup Sneaker

Cassius Hirst and Prada have joined forces to release contemporary styles of the classic Prada shoe designed by the UK artist.

Cassius Hirst and Prada have joined forces to release contemporary styles of the classic Prada shoe designed by the UK artist.

Text: Natalia Finnis-Smart

Prada's signature Linea Rossa America's Cup Sneaker emerges again. The luxury fashion house has tapped artist Cassius "Cass" Hirst to create his take on the shoe which has existed within the Prada catalog since 1997, its initial creation for the Luna Rossa sailing team for America's Cup. Cass' work has been sported by Rihanna, A$AP Rocky, the late Virgil Abloh, and more.

Arriving in four distinctive styles and twenty-two colorways with no identical pairings, Cass reinvents the sneaker's 20th-century composition for the newer generation. Their names ATT4CK, D3CAY, SUST4IN, and REL3ASE take inspiration from the music world while showcasing Cass' interests in sonic artistry and his passionate fans. Each title dubs after the 'envelope,' or the life of a sound and its evolutionary stages, translating to the America's Cup Sneaker's transformation over time. They also indicate each shoe's distinctive nature that suggests its look and feel, like ATT4CK's hard-edged arrangement, molded spike embellishments, and finished with neon spray or the distressed leather of D3CAY.

Prada's and Cass' trademarks also appear on the footwear, accompanied by a co-branded Prada box including Cass' logo and a scan of his brain. "The brain scan represents hope and knowledge in a world of shadows and uncertainty," Cass expressed in a statement. "The brain is where the thoughts happen – for me, it all became about creativity and the creative process. I've learned that sometimes we have to look inside ourselves to see what's really going on. We shouldn't be afraid of that."

The UK native has always had a knack for fine art, growing up in a household where art exposure was imminent. Cass's involvement with sneakers started at age 14, when he painted his first pair, a gift for his father, Damien Hirst's world-renowned artist. The rest is history. "I was painting shoes, taking photos, and turning those photos into complex vinyl stencils that became abstract designs. I would mask off part of the body of the shoe, and then wrap the whole shoe in the stencil. It looked crazy," shared Cass. "I sent a photo to my dad, and then he sent a photo of that to Miuccia [Prada]. And she said, 'This looks amazing, let's do something.' The best part about this project – this collaboration – was how willing Prada are to invest their time, to be open to ideas, to challenges. And to really commit to something new."

"The Cass x Prada collection finds parallels between the bold work of this fresh talent and the heritage of Prada – the sense of the hand, an excellence in manufacture, a constant search for innovation, a restless urge to re-examine and reinvent our history," conveyed Lorenzo Bertelli, Prada Group Marketing Director and Head of Corporate Social Responsibility. "Here, the iconic silhouette of the Prada America's Cup sneaker becomes a canvas for creation, offered in a special capsule. Something unique, something new."

Explore Cassius Hirst's creative process for the line below.

The Cassius Hirst x Prada capsule sneaker collection is available now on Prada's official website and in select Prada boutiques.

Credits: IMAGES COURTESY OF PRADA

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