What does it take to be an Olympian? You must train every day. You must meticulously watch your consumption. You have troops of individuals coaching you for years. As an Olympian, the acceptable margin of error is so minute – milliseconds and millimeters are the measures of success or failure. Your accomplishments are glorified and you are a national hero. Such is the same with an astronaut.
When our boys were sent to the moon, they were sporting an intergalactic Varsity uniform. The footage above, put together by Kasia Cieplak von-Baldegg of Atlantic Magazine from the Special Collections & Archives of George Mason University Library, showcases various Space Suit tests for the Apollo Mission. The suit chosen for the expedition is shown on a high school football field throwing the pigskin, you can overhear the panelists say, “The Redskins could use him.”
The Olympics medal stand is the pinnacle of achievement, proving an individual has bested the world's most talented competitors in their respective field. Fittingly, Nike has decided to outfit the American winning medalists with a pair of the 'Medal Stand' Air Force 1 Lows.
The first ever basketball shoe to feature Nike Air-Sole units for cushioning, the AF1 was originally released in 1982. Thirty years after its birth, the footwear icon is modernized with a reflective upper to celebrate the medal stand look. Inscribed on the left and right foot insole reads “land of the free,” and “home of the brave” respectively.
I got to wear these in yesterday and they’re pretty awesome. The first thing I noticed was the reflective material on the top… or maybe you don’t. There’s this subtlety to the material, which only in specific lighting the shoes appear to glow, it’s really fantastic. When I think about the future, it’s subtleties like that which come to mind. It’s not like you’re wearing dorky, glowing shoes, these are well thought out pieces of design which sit on your feet.
The other thing that really stood out to me is the transparent sole which makes them even cooler, in my mind. It gives the shoe a lightness, almost like you’re walking on air or light. Thankfully though there are no LEDs in the bottom of the shoe, making it look like you’re a grown-up toddler.
The shoes are being released today in the UK and I think around Europe, and then released here in the U.S. next week.
Wow – this is beautiful! French illustrator Ugo Gattoni has created an incredibly intricate pen drawing inspired by the 2012 London Olympic Games. Called Bicycle, the illustration shows an amazing looking race through the streets of London.
Published by Nobrow Press the print is a fabulous concertina publication which folds out to reveal a madcap vision of a bike race. Featuring elite athletes to cycle couriers, commuters, bankers, delivery boys, mums with kids, youths on stolen mountain bikes to fashionistas and hipsters on fixed gear bikes, it’s a fantastic print. You can order a copy of it now through the Nobrow website.
I have avoided talking about the convoluted mass of red steel and coiled stairs that stands next to the Olympic stadium because I’m not sure how I feel about it, let alone how to talk about it. This project has a name: Orbit Tower, and was designed as a collaboration between Anish Kapoor and Cecil Balmond. Since it looks like the tower will be in virtually every aerial shot of the stadium, maybe you’d like to know what exactly it is. It’s a tower with viewing platforms. And, of course, it’s so much more.
“I wanted the sensation of instability, something that was continually in movement. Traditionally a tower is pyramidal in structure, but we have done quite the opposite, we have a flowing, coiling form that changes as you walk around it. … It is an object that cannot be perceived as having a singular image, from any one perspective. You need to journey round the object, and through it. Like a Tower of Babel, it requires real participation from the public” — Anish Kapoor
Undoubtedly many folks will participate in the project during the Olympics, and even more afterwards. Orbit tower is the tallest work of art in London. For a mere 15 pounds you can take an elevator to the top of the perplexing steel arcs look out across the city. If you can also see inside the stadium, the cost of the ticket may save you a hefty amount compared to the cost of a ticket to sit inside the stadium.
Kelvin Murray is an ace photographer from London who’s created a wonderful series of photos highlighting sporting objects. It’s the lighting of each object that makes these photos so stunning. The way the shadows bend on the ground, and the vibrancy of the floor frames each object beautifully. It’s also pretty amazing that he’s able to make each object seem like it’s floating, just perfectly off the ground. Photography and surreality at it’s finest.