Laolu Senbanjo brings stunning Yoruba designs to Nike

When Nike stacks up its global sales revenue for footwear, the African market is included in ‘Emerging Markets’ – a region that has grown by almost 100% over the past 5 years alone. On Saturday 26th March, the Air Max Convention kicks off simultaneously in New York, Tokyo and Hong Kong. Africa Fashion takes this moment to shine a spotlight on Laolu Senbanjo, a Nigerian visual artist chosen by Nike to collaborate one of the most amazing designs ever to the Nike Air Max range.

Having trained as a lawyer, creating an iconic design for a major sports brand has certainly given Laolu belief that anyone can Just Do It!

From what Laolu has said in recent interviews, Nike got the right person. Not only is he an incredibly fresh and talented designer – he’s also a big footwear fan. He has funded much of his work by taking vanilla trainers from Adidas and others, then creating bespoke designs for customers. If you have $500 for a single piece of foot-work-artwork, that’s fine, but the new limited edition Nike’s are likely to be better value for money (albeit slightly less unique).


It looks like Nike was an easy choice for his first global-reach project.

“My favourite Air Max is the Air Max 90”, said Laolu. “If I had to be specific, the Infrareds are obviously classic. The innovation, the constant need for improvement, excellence and quality. I love that it gives me a spring to my step, as if I can fly”.



If you find yourself near New York, Tokyo or Hong Kong over the next few days, you might be lucky enough to get into one of the Air Max Special Sessions.

As Laolu says, “I’m making my dreams a reality. This is my ayanmo. Create your destiny”.

We leave you with a video of Laolu – hard at work on one of his less permanent works.

You can vote for your favourite Air Max over on Nike – you have until 11pm GMT to cast your vote tonight!

Don’t forget to let us know what you think about Laolu’s designs over on Facebook – and follow us on Twitter to get all the latest stories first.

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