Acronym® Dynamics Lab
Combining teachings from design leader Errolson Hugh with advanced 3D technology, the ACRONYM® Dynamics Lab at Solebox Hub inspired a select group of Berlin designers to explore the full potential of contemporary design.
To broaden the design possibilities and global accessibility of the Nike Blazer Low, the latest collaboration from ACRONYM® x Nike, Sunst conceived and implemented an ambitious multifaceted project based on the design and 3D printing of removable heel clips.
Inspired by Bosozoku, Japan’s car-tuning subculture, Hugh’s Nike Blazer Low could be “souped up” with specially designed heel clips. Developing that idea further, a phygital design program and environment was designed, and developed, enabling ten young Berlin designers to create their own unique wearable clips. These 3D designs were then specially modelled for 3D printing and made freely available to download on an open source website.
Taking Bosozoku as a starting point, Sunst’s techy interface mixed Anime aesthetics with custom ACRONYM® typefaces designed by Japanese graffiti artist NESM – oriental simulation fonts celebrating diversity. After first developing a framework, the designs combined overloaded moving animations of the scanned shoe with futuristic patterns that drew from the outlandish additions of the Japanese subculture. This diverse visual language complemented the varied backgrounds of the young designers, who took their experiences in design, fashion and art to each produce a distinct range of heel clips.
The 3D models were then made freely available on an open-source digital platform programmed by Sunst. Visitors to the website could download the designers’ models (scaled to size) and immediately use them for their own use.
The multi-functional interior was designed as a dystopian mash up of 3D print labs and car-tuning workshops. Neons were mixed alongside elements of solid materiality (long strips of black sheet metal and the aluminium cladding) to produce an artificiality that reflected the exaggerated Bosozoku additions. The design referenced ACRONYM®’s own Nike Blazer Low by frequently employing the technique of laser cutting to produce protruding ghillies – a military technique for concealment made to stand out rather than to blend in.
Workshop & Exhibition
Finally, the 3D printed models were affixed to the shoes and showcased in the specially adapted exhibition room at the Solebox Hub. Beneath the tables, tablets displayed moving animations of the 3D designs of each individual artist. Releasing the 3D heel CAD files to the public gets to the core of the project, which was ultimately to encourage creativity in the community by enabling anyone to design and craft their own unique heel clips.