Thursday, June 4, 2009

Answer 13 - The Radiant Energy

The Answer XIII (13) is a pure performance piece of footwear based on "Radiance", Reebok's 2010 design theme. Radiant lines flow through the upper and creating zones of functionality; flexibility in the forefoot, breathability in the midfoot, and support in the heel. To achieve lightweight construction, without compensating on stability, the designer have been investigating the layers and pieces that could be replaced or removed. Visual simplicity is the result of the function. The designer wants "no frills" and "staying true" to the philosophy of achieving maximum performance with minimum effort required by an athlete.

This model has all the necessary performance features without overtly screaming where all the technical functions are (more so in the upper than the bottom). It is built close to the last, with the molded malleolus (ankle) to create sleek radiant feel. Hexride adds forefoot cushioning for explosive guards who is always on their toes like Allen. Midfoot arch is sculpted to follow the foot shape - Hexride pillars grow out from the sculpted midfoot arch to maintain the support while eliminating unnecessary weight.

Forefoot midsole on a typical basketball shoe is usually thinner than rearfoot, where as this shoe is completely opposite; forefoot midsole is higher than rearfoot. "We were able to achieve this type of look by attaching the upper over the midsole rather than the reverse. Thick PU sockliner compensates the loss of the rearfoot midsole, so the function is still there." says Kohei Kanata, the mastermind behind the A13.

"Creating a comfortable shoe is a given; what excites me the most is how much Allen loves the shoe. When we were in Detroit in January to show him the All-Star Answer XII (12), he was super excited to see the latest A13 sample. He loves the comfort and the look. He was holding the shoe the entire meeting and said he 'can't wait for the next season to wear this shoe'".
"When we design shoes for Allen, we want to push the creative boundaries and take chances on design. Just as much as people love/ hate on Allen, this shoe is going to be the same. It is what best fits him, both functionally and aesthetically. He is who he is, and this is what it is. This shoe is Allen Iverson".

アンサー13はリーボックの2010年のデザインテーマの1つであるRadiant (放射、光)を基に製作された正真正銘のパフォーマンスフットウェアだ。アッパーの放射状のラインはつま先が屈折性、中足部は通気性、後足部はサポート性を表す。安定性を保ちながら軽量な靴をデザインする為に、デザイナーは一つ一つのパーツを徹底的に吟味し、無駄なパーツを変更、または取り除いた。結果としてシンプルな顔立ちになったのは機能の現れでもある。無駄な装飾を省き、「できるだけ少ないエネルギーで効率良く最大限のパフォーマンスを引き出す」という考え方に従いたいとデザイナーは言う。「デザインも同じで、あまり“がんばり”が見えてしまうと逆にかっこ悪くなってしまう。」らしい。