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Converse x Keith Haring Takes Street Style Back to the Underground

Keith Haring rose to fame during the 1980s, especially for his Subway Drawings. When fixtures that usually sported advertising posters were left empty, Haring would draw his motifs on them in chalk. His work, including the Subway Drawings, featured clear lines and were inspired by graffiti, and always had multiple meanings. “Haring’s signature Pop Art style embodied the belief that people can change the world through creativity. A driving force in Haring’s career was to ensure that his work not only advocated for the oppressed by uplifting them, but that it remained accessible to all. The same is true today,” says Converse. The shoe company is using Haring’s art to decorate new shoes, and to keep that influence alive.

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Converse x keith haring

The Converse x Keith Haring project will feature Chuck Taylors in both high and low, plus the Run Star Hike version and a Pro Leather shoe. The Chuck 70 High features an organic canvas upper in white with black graphics on the side. Pops of red add contrast and the black laces finish the look. Haring’s artwork is found on the sides and on the tongue. The Chuck Lows feature even more of Haring’s art. The white base is covered in black and red figures, and the shoes come with a white shoelace. For the Run Star Hike, the uppers are done in black and feature white figures and red accents. The sole follows this pattern with the heel in black and the forefoot in red. Finally, the Pro Leather follows suit with the Lows, offering a white base covered in drawings.

“In the ‘80s, American pop artist Keith Haring chalked his art across New York’s vacant subway billboards, making them accessible to all,” Converse said when announcing the collection’s impending launch. “For the first time, his artwork finds a canvas on Converse icons of self-expression—from classic Chucks to the style-forward Run Star Hike, plus clothing and customisable designs.”

Converse is offering all four sneakers with a small apparel collection that consists of three T-shirts and a bucket hat. The clothes feature Haring’s art as well and come in the same colour palette as the shoes. You can discover the uplifting meaning behind Haring’s work while you sport them in these new styles.

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Mark Jessen

Mr Mark Jessen

Mark Jessen studied English at Brigham Young University, completing a double emphasis in creative writing and professional writing/editing. After graduating, Mark went to work for a small publisher as their book editor. After a brief time as a freelance writer, Mark entered the corporate world as a copywriter. These days, his hours are spent mostly in proofing and editing, though he continues to create content for a wide variety of projects. In 2017, Mark completed UCLA's Creative Writing Certification. A prolific writer, Mark has over 20 years of experience in journalism.