The priceless legacy of Dr. Martens and the 1460 boot

The priceless legacy of Dr. Martens and the 1460 boot

Andrea Tuzio · 4 months ago · Style

A transversal icon that has crossed 60 years of history while maintaining its essence intact, which over time has been enriched, consolidated and entered by right into the collective imagination. Dr. Martens has become a symbol that has penetrated the social fabric starting from an intrinsic link with the British working class and then become a representation of expression and individuality thanks to musicians, free thinkers and sub-cultures around the world who have worn the brand enhancing it and making it unique in the world of footwear.

However, if there is one model that best represents this incredible journey, it is the iconic 1460 boot

But to tell the genesis of this timeless must-have, we have to go back in time to 1901 and go to Wollaston in Northamptonshire, a county in central England in the East Midlands region, where Benjamin Griggs and Septimus Jones founded a company that manufactured boots.
The partnership between the two went on for about a decade, and once it was over, both continued to manufacture footwear locally. 

More precisely Benjamin and his son Reginald gave life to R. Griggs & Co. Ltd becoming in all respects the heart of the English footwear industry producing very robust and durable work boots.

At this point in the story, we are around 1945, we have to move momentarily to Germany, to Munich, where a 25-year-old soldier, Dr. Klaus Maertens, while recovering from a broken foot after WWII, invented an air-cushioned sole for his boots. He made a prototype of a shoe fitted with the new cushion and presented it to an old college friend, mechanical engineer Herbert Funck, who was enthusiastic about it.

The two went into partnership using now disused military supplies as raw materials, and in 1947 they began production that led them in ten years to set up an important business based mostly on the sale of boots for mostly elderly women. 

Let’s now go back to England and go forward to 1960. At that time the Griggs company was managed by the third generation of the family: Bill was at the head, followed by his brothers Ray and Colin and his son Max. 
The turning point of the story arrived by chance, as it often happens. 

Bill was reading a shoe magazine and his eye fell on an advertisement advertising an innovative air-cushioned sole, the very one made by Dr. Klaus Maertens and Herbert Funck. 

Griggs acquired an exclusive license plus made a number of essential changes that still represent the unmistakable iconography of the Dr. Martens 1460 boot: the yellow stitching, the grooved edge of the two-tone sole, a unique sole pattern and a heel loop with ‘AirWair’ branding, all accompanied by the slogan “With Bouncing Soles”.

April 1, 1960 is the date of birth of this absolute icon that will remain forever imprinted thanks to the intuition of calling it 1460.
The 1960s coincided with a collective awareness that led to a series of decisive social changes that would radically alter the collective way of thinking.

The 1460 quickly became a symbol of rebellion and of the countercultures that were developing in that period, starting for example from the skinheads who made it their distinctive sign – to emphasize that at the time the skinhead culture was born and remained a social movement, multicultural and non-political and that included young people of the British working class.  

The first real prominent personality to wear them publicly was the leader and guitarist of The Who, Pete Townshend, as a representation of his working-class pride and as an expression of rebellion. 
In this way the boot 1460, from a simple work shoe, made the final leap into the global counter-culture becoming an emblem. 

The ’70s defined even more the imagery and iconography of the boot thanks to all the subcultures that were born numerous, such as the first wave of glam, punk and two-tone that all had a common denominator: the 1460. Each new wave adopted it as a representative shoe, a distinctive sign of self-expression that came straight from the heart of British youth culture.
Real music icons of the time such as the Sex Pistols and The Clash made the boot an essential part of their aesthetic and consequently of that of the entire punk rock movement.

The 1980s marked the landing of 1460s in the United States thanks to American bands going to play in England and sensing and understanding its appeal and legacy.  And in 1984 they began to be sold on the other side of the Atlantic as well.

In the following decade grunge dominated the American music scene: Eddie Vedder wore them during concerts and Marc Jacobs brought them on the catwalk with his iconic Spring/Summer 1993 show.
In 2000 the brand went through a period of decline, but thanks to a series of collaborations with top designers and brands – such as Raf Simons and Stüssy in 2009, Pendleton, Supreme, Bape, Off-White, NEIGHBORHOOD to get up to the present day – Dr. Martens has never lost its appeal. Martens has never lost its attractiveness and on the contrary, it constantly remains at the side of contemporary revolutionaries and rebels who still today fight and struggle to change what is not working in the world and who uphold those values that society today needs more than ever to be supported. In this way it continues to affirm and attest even more strongly its decisive aesthetic, cultural and social impact and its absolutely priceless legacy.

The priceless legacy of Dr. Martens and the 1460 boot
Style
The priceless legacy of Dr. Martens and the 1460 boot
The priceless legacy of Dr. Martens and the 1460 boot
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“Okja” in ten frames

“Okja” in ten frames

Giulia Guido · 2 weeks ago · Art

Okja” is a 2017 film directed by Bong Joon-ho. Although it did not rake in awards like the subsequent “Parasite“, “Okja” ranks among the South Korean director’s best works and features an ensemble cast that includes Tilda Swinton, Paul Dano, Lily Collins, Giancarlo Esposito, and Jake Gyllenhaal.

The film tells the story of a young girl who for most of her life has raised a genetically modified “super pig,” building a bond of mutual affection with him. But their lives are set to change drastically as the industry that actually created the animal must take it back to begin the slaughtering process.
This is an exposing film against the mistreatment of animals within the meat industry that manages to deal with the topic by focusing on empathy and friendship. For this very reason in 2019 it was named one of the most influential films of the decade by the New York Times. 

In “Okja,” the state of mind of the protagonist and her animal are reflected in the colors of the sets and the choices related to the cinematography, curated by Darius Khondji (Seven, Midnight in Paris, Uncut Gems), which manage to completely capture the viewer. 

Okja
Okja
Okja
Okja
Okja
Okja
“Okja” in ten frames
Art
“Okja” in ten frames
“Okja” in ten frames
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The illusion of calm in the illustrations of Kento IIDA

The illusion of calm in the illustrations of Kento IIDA

Tommaso Berra · 2 weeks ago · Art

You know the sky on certain summer days, when you couldn’t find a cloud miles away and everything above our heads is a delicate blue, the color of the sweetest of spun sugars? Illustrator Kento IIDA finds in this atmosphere of calm the inspiration for his works, images of tranquil landscapes but leaving an atmosphere of suspicion, as if something unforeseen will happen soon, or as if something unforeseen has just happened, far from the eyes of possible witnesses.
In these vignettes there are always elements or signs that suggest a movement that breaks the calm, sometimes the movement has already happened or is in progress, as in the case of cars launching from bridges or space missiles lifting angular clouds to the sky like marble sculptures.

Kento IIDA (who is based in Tokyo) incorporates elements of Japanese tradition in his illustrations, thus traditional buildings and views of snow-capped peaks that hint at Mount Fuji appear in these ambiguous scenes, as well as baseball players, a national sport in Japan and probably the artist’s favorite.
There are not only clear skies in the views, however; poetry is also provided by clouds, often single and isolated, or by gloomy skies that sound like an omen, in an increasingly suspended and uncertain time.

Kento IIDA | Collater.al
Kento IIDA | Collater.al
Kento IIDA | Collater.al
Kento IIDA | Collater.al
Kento IIDA | Collater.al
Kento IIDA | Collater.al
Kento IIDA | Collater.al
The illusion of calm in the illustrations of Kento IIDA
Art
The illusion of calm in the illustrations of Kento IIDA
The illusion of calm in the illustrations of Kento IIDA
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Vickie Vainionpää’s code-generated works

Vickie Vainionpää’s code-generated works

Tommaso Berra · 2 weeks ago · Art

Artistic expression is now no longer bound only to manual gesture, and in some cases not even to the artist’s choice. Vickie Vainionpää‘s works in fact follow that artistic strand in which works are the result of codes, of an algorithm that creates unpredictable solutions by reworking basic information. The Montreal-based artist creates his works through a generative code, which traces a certain number of points placed in a Cartesian plane.
The result is that of twisted shapes like guts or extraterrestrial organic creatures, in which even the color and shades are dictated by the generative code.

The forms are then the basis for oil paintings on canvas, in which the digital forms acquire a presence and matter through the texture of the support, the shadows and the layering of color. Some of these canvases are recently on display in New York at The Hole NYC gallery for the artist’s solo exhibition entitled “Software.”
In Vickie Vainionpää’s works, the relationship between man and machine merges, the physical and virtual experience become interconnected to the point of blurring the genesis of everything. Who creates? Who is created by whom? A series of questions that help read and complicate the present.

Vickie Vainionpää | Collater.al
Vickie Vainionpää | Collater.al
Vickie Vainionpää | Collater.al
Vickie Vainionpää | Collater.al
Vickie Vainionpää | Collater.al

Vickie Vainionpää’s code-generated works
Art
Vickie Vainionpää’s code-generated works
Vickie Vainionpää’s code-generated works
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Stefano Vitale trusted folk art

Stefano Vitale trusted folk art

Tommaso Berra · 1 week ago · Art

Arriving in the United States, in Los Angeles, to study at the University of Southern California, Stefano Vitale sought a way to express his hitherto unexpressed ideas using the skills he had at his disposal. Art began to figure as the most precise and sincere tool through which to do so, so he began a path that led him to a career as an established artist, thanks to his colorful and metaphysical illustrations, evocative of magical worlds in which nature dialogues with man, in which figures are suspended in mid-air in starry skies and under the hot Sicilian sun.

In the early years of his career, Stefano Vitale insists on a recurring subject, a one-eyed Madonna, a subject certainly influenced by the sacred iconography he studied and explored throughout his travels in Mexico and Central America. “I have always trusted popular art more than official art,” Vitale explains.
His look toward an elemental art is reflected in the style that uses simple lines, leaving the decorative component to color. The subjects are celebrations of joy or primal bonds such as that between mother and child or man and nature. Plants and leaves are superimposed on faces, while the sky is always a central subject of the compositions, signaled by the presence of bright stars or moons that make magical nights and sunsets.
Stefano Vitale’s work has then been linked for more than two decades by his collaboration with Donnafugata. For the Sicilian winery, the artist illustrates bottle labels, visually representing an imagery of flavors and smells that originates in Sicily, finds its inspiration from music and the Leopard, and seeps into sensory memory. Below are some of the labels created by Vitale for Donnafugata.

Stefano Vitale | Collater.al
Stefano Vitale | Collater.al
Stefano Vitale | Collater.al
Stefano Vitale trusted folk art
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Stefano Vitale trusted folk art
Stefano Vitale trusted folk art
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