Vans and underground artist Robert Williams have some colorful new developments.
The label released a limited-edition capsule collection on Saturday featuring Williams’ celebrated psychedelic artwork on a trio of sneakers, shirts and a Fender Stratocaster guitar.
Vault by Vans x Robert Williams ranges from $50 to $2,500, available at select retailers and on Vans.com.
Williams’ groundbreaking 1979 book of graphic art “The Lowbrow Art of Robert Williams” defined “lowbrow” and “outlaw culture” in the art space.
The new footwear features three of Williams’ most striking paintings: “Flaming Cobras” on the Sk8-Hi 38 Decon LX, “Mafeasance” on the Authentic 44 Reissue LX, and “Jalapeña” on the Slip-On 98 Reissue LA.
All three silhouettes feature an illustration printed under a unique clear sole and Williams’ signature on the rear foxing tape.
The artist teamed up with Vans for a collection in 2009 and has worked with the brand on producing hand-painted shoes exclusively for collectors.
Speaking to Footwear News, Williams recalled one of his first experiencing customizing shoes. “You used to be able to get a large shoe company, to contract any shoe design,” he said. “Once, I had one company make blue suede shoes, red lizard and black lizard shoes. It used to be a $35 charge, but you just can’t do that anymore.”
William added that his partnership with Vans is a good match.
“It was a really exciting experience dealing with a business like Vans, a very sizable company, that would integrate their world with mine,” Williams explained. “When you see Vans dealing with a character like me, I think it is a sign of the power of youth culture.”