The Louis Vuitton x Nike Air Force 1 Auction Raises £25.3M

Looking to surpass the magnitude of the Dior x Jordan Brand collab a few years back; the Louis Vuitton Nike Air Force 1 by the late and great Virgil Abloh went on to break records at Sotheby’s global online charity auction. 200 pairs of the Louis Vuitton Nike Air Force 1 Low sold for a record-breaking $25.3M USD. This is almost triple the expected total sales of $8M across all 200 lots.

With more colourways of the LV x Nike Air Force 1 Low rumoured for a release sometime this year; let’s go check out the details of the first colourway and discuss the purpose of the auction.

From January 26, 2022 to February 9, 2022, Sotheby’s opened the highly awaited auction of the Louis Vuitton x Nike Air Force 1 by Virgil Abloh. With 200 available pairs in various sizes, bidders from all over the world sought a place in sneaker history. Each pair has a starting bid of $2,000, then people gradually outbid one another throughout the duration of the auction.

Sotheby’s set an estimated maximum bid of $15,000; clearly, that benchmark seemed more of a minimum bid than the maximum as most lots sold for over a hundred thousand dollars. A grand total of $25.3 million in US Dollars was taken, which broke the world record of sneaker and fashion auctions.

Why all this hype?

Well, Virgil Abloh worked for both Louis Vuitton and Nike/Jordan Brand, with this posthumous release being a celebration of his legacy. All sales from the auction will go to Abloh’s “Post-Modern” Scholarship Fund; an organization intended to raise scholarships for African American students looking to work in the fashion industry.

The extremely limited sneaker features a Brown calf leather base with signature LV monogram patterns. The vamp, Swoosh, and heel panels incorporate the LV Damier checkerboard pattern. Off-White details such as the quoted words appear on the “AIR” cupsole and the laces.

Louis Vuitton branding dresses the heel panel and tongue.

All pairs come with a Louis Vuitton Orange Taurillon Monogram Leather pilot case; seemingly a subtle nod to the orange Nike boxes.

While this pair will never see a public release, rumour has it that the rest of the previewed colourways during Louis Vuitton’s SS22 runway show will see daylight sometime this year. However, because of the extremely limited quantities, Louis Vuitton clients will get first access to the pairs. Other sources claimed that another auction will take place for the upcoming LV AF1 releases.

Virgil Abloh himself may have not witnessed this auction occur, but his legacy is forever cemented in the name of the sneaker and fashion industries. Nike also already resumed releasing some postponed Off-White Nike products in early 2022. Expect even more unrevealed Virgil Abloh designs to come out from the archives soon enough and hope we get a release in honour of him.

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