When the Air Max 1 first hit retail, they sold for $75. Now, they appreciate 28% each year. Some of Nike’s most revered collaborations centered around this iconic shoe, including the long running Air Jordan series.
But what inspired the Air Max 1? What made it so culturally relevant that the shoe’s design is celebrated over 40 years after release? The secret lies in the Air Max 1’s transparent air bubble. Located near the sole of the show, the air bubble gives customers a window into the shoe’s inner workings. Customers have been fascinated by how their favorite products work for a long time.
Tinker Hatfield, the designer of the Air Max 1, got the idea for a window into a sneaker’s inner workings from the Pompidou Centre in Paris. Unveiled in 1977 by Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers, this building is famous for having its ductwork and plumbing exposed to passersby.
Rogers got the idea for an “inside out” building from a watch his mother gave him. That watch? The Accutron Spaceview. First released in 1961, the Accutron Spaceview gave its wearers a transparent window into the first fully electronic wristwatch. Its cultural impact has spread far and wide. Learn more about how this all has sparked a creative revolution below: