Three months ago, we learned from Tony Peralta and Jose Morales, aka Uptown’s padrinos, that Nike planned to release a pair of Air Force 1s to pay tribute to the Dominican Republic. And now we finally have more information about the fire shoes.
The “De Lo Mio” Air Force 1s, which were developed in collaboration with Dominican designer Cesar Pérez, feature a red and blue swoosh and domino lace dubraes. The shoe also includes the word “República” on one heel and “Dominicana” on the other.
“Since hitting the scene in 1982, the Air Force 1 has always been a canvas for self-expression,” Nike’s website reads. “An unstoppable force that was adopted by New York City’s most fashion forward, the AF1 has always been synonymous with Uptown. The iconic silhouette was the perfect platform to pay homage to one of NYC’s most influential cultures and communities: Dominicans. Used as a term of endearment for a close friend, the spirit of ‘De Lo Mio’ is the true embodiment of All For 1.
Nike will drop the shoes, which retail for $165, on November 17. But just ahead of that, the company released a campaign shot by six NYC-based photographers of Dominican descent.
Meet them below.
Adeline Lulo, 25, is a Washington Heights-born, Bronx-raised photographer. She spent her summers in the Dominican Republic, which inspired her to photograph her community. She attended Parsons School of Design.
On Instagram, she wrote about her excitement. “It is a dream come to true to shoot for Nike while also paying homage to one of the most influential cultures and communities, DOMINICANS!” she wrote. “It only made sense to do this in Washington heights, the largest concentration of Dominicans in the US.”
26-year-old Alberto Vargas – who has photographed Princess Nokia, Gabriel Garzón-Montano, and other musicians – is inspired by his culture. “I fell in love with photography in the Dominican Republic,” he told i-D. “The country and its people will always be a subject in my work. I’ve also been documenting my family since I was a kid, and will continue to do so in the coming years. Focusing on the contrast of the lifestyles in New York versus the Dominican Republic.”
Born in the Dominican Republic and raised in the Bronx, Cheril Sanchez is known for her portraits, which are romantic and delicate.
Raised by immigrant parents, 27-year-old Elvin Tavarez remembers where he comes from. The New York-based photographer has photographed Nina Sky and Messiah. He also quite an impressive fashion portfolio, having photographed for Barragán and Luar.
Juan Veloz, who splits his time between LA and NY, is a self-taught photographer. Veloz featured his grandma in his photos for Nike, and his mom served as the creative director.
Ralphy Ramos, 32, is originally from Santo Domingo. “Salute to all my Dominicans !!” he wrote on Instagram. “@Nike teamed up with @ceze.p to create these amazing AF1’s for our culture. We’ve come a long way and I’m extremely proud to be [a part] of this project 📸 ! let’s keep creating and inspiring.”