Zaha Hadid and Rem D. Koolhaas of United Nude announce a new limited-edition haute couture shoe designed by Zaha Hadid, launched at the iconic store L’eclaireur, 40 rue de Sévigné, Paris, on July 2nd 2013.
Zaha Hadid and United Nude’s Creative director Rem D. Koolhaas have been talking about shoes since they first met years ago. Hadid, an architect with a passion for shoes, and Rem D., the original shoe architect, agreed to collaborate on the design of a shoe with no preconceptions and ignore all the rules to create an entirely new form of shoe.
The result is quintessentially hadid. the revolutionary design of the NOVA shoe combines innovative materialization and ergonomic considerations with the dynamism of hadid’s unmistakable architectural language to convey an inherent sense of movement; revealing the experimentation and invention of Hadid’s process through every stage of design and construction.
“United Nude’s collections are provocative yet sensual. Rem D. Koolhaas’ unrelenting experimentation at the cutting edge of fashion never fails to capture our imagination.” explains Hadid. “I have always appreciated those who dare to experiment with materials and proportions. Our collaboration with United Nude reinterprets the classic shoe typology; pushing the boundaries of what is possible without compromising integrity.”
The NOVA design incorporates intricate striations juxtaposed with dramatic realignments, establishing a direct formal relationship with the shoe’s primary structure and expressing the dynamic forces applied by every step of the wearer.
Guided by her 30 years of experience working with complex structural principles on all scale levels, Hadid has developed an innovative cantilevered system that allows the staggering 16cm (6.25 in) heel to appear completely unsupported.
The rhythmic, articulated transformation of the shoe’s composition encapsulates the seamless integration of materials, inventive engineering and highest standards of comfort. As Hadid’s most recent expression of this symbiotic association, the NOVA shoe design transcends the disciplines of fashion and architecture.
“Zaha consistently reinvents the program with her own ideas and interpretations. Her visionary creations are often unexpected, yet reinforce their origins,” says Koolhaas. “I could not resist the challenge to work with Zaha. We gave ourselves the greatest degree of experimentation and used the latest digital design and manufacturing technologies to create one of the most innovative shoes ever produced.”
United Nude’s advanced shoe engineering and Hadid’s remarkable design have combined in a most revolutionary shoe, for which an entirely new way of shoe making was invented. Techniques such as injection- and rotation molding, as well as hand-molded methods, such as vacuum casting, were combined. In fact, the NOVA is the first shoe in history to employ rotation molding, which is the only molding technique that allows for such a smooth and seamless result.
The upper of the shoe combines metallic chromed vinyl rubber and is lined with the highest quality Italian kid nappa leathers. The hidden platform and heel are composed of fiberglass and the outsole is made of rubber. The shoe, in sizes 35 to 40, will come as numbered limited editions of 100 per color and will be available only at very select stores such as L’eclaireur in Paris and both the Zaha Hadid Design and United Nude webshops.
A story that started with a broken heart. architect Rem d Koolhaas (not to be confused with his uncle, the world famous architect) tried to get back his girl by downsizing architecture to its most vulnerable scale; that of a woman’s foot. In 2003, together with seventh generation shoemaker Galahad Clark, United nude was launched. turning dreams into reality, their first shoe, “the Möbius,” was developed with the guidance of the great Sergio Rossi and technical shoemaker Maurizio Martignago in Italy. Ever since, United Nude has become the iconic brand at the intersection of fashion and design, creating products that are about clear concepts, elegance and innovation. While available in over 50 countries worldwide, United Nude has seven flagshipstores in Amsterdam, London, New York, Vienna, Tel Aviv, Seoul and Tokyo.
Zaha Hadid, founder of Zaha Hadid Architects, was awarded the Pritzker architecture Prize (considered to be the nobel Prize of architecture) in 2004 and is internationally known for her built, theoretical and academic work. Each of her dynamic and innovative projects builds on over thirty years of revolutionary exploration and research in the interrelated fields of urbanism, achitecture and design and fashion.
Hadid was born in Baghdad, Iraq in 1950. She studied mathematics at the american University of Beirut before moving to London in 1972 to attend the Architectural Association (AA) School where she was awarded the Diploma Prize in 1977. She founded Zaha Hadid Architects in 1979 and completed her first building, the Vitra Fire Station, Germany in 1993. The MAXXI: National Museum of 21st Century Arts in Rome, Italy and the London Aquatics Centre for the 2012 Olympic Games are excellent demonstrations of Hadid’s quest for complex, fluid space. Previous seminal buildings such as the Rosenthal Center for Contemporary Art in Cincinnati and the Guangzhou Opera House in China have also been hailed as architecture that transforms our ideas of the future with new spatial concepts and bold, visionary forms.
Hadid’s outstanding contribution to the architectural profession continues to be acknowledged by the most world’s most respected institutions including the Forbes List of the World’s Most Powerful Women and the Japan Art Association presenting her with the prestigious “Praemium Imperiale.” In 2010 and 2011, her designs were awarded the Stirling Prize, one of architecture’s highest accolades, by the Royal institute of British Architects. Other recent awards include UNESCO naming Hadid as an “Artist for Peace,” the Republic of France honouring Hadid with the “Commandeur de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres,” TIME magazine included her in their list of the “100 Most InfluentialPeople in the World” and in 2012, Zaha Hadid was made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II.