Neiman Marcus is selling battered and ripped sneakers for $1,425. At first glance, these look ripe for as much mockery as those $425 mud-stained jeans. But if you believe in fashion as art, you can also follow the argument that there’s something a little more legitimate about the Maison Margiela Future Destroyed High-Top Sneaker.
The white sneakers appear to have been slashed with a knife so that their bright yellow stuffing is visible. And they’re covered with staples, as if someone survived a tiger attack at the office and then used whatever was nearby to keep their shoes on their feet. These shoes are not pre-dirtied to approximate blue-collar style, however; they are gleaming throwbacks to Martin Margiela’s deconstructionist work of the 1980s, inspired in part by the work of Rei Kawakubo’s Comme des Garçons.
The Future high tops gained major attention as part of Kanye West’s Maison Margiela-designed wardrobe for his Yeezus tour in 2013 (you know, the one with the masks). You can still buy intact versions for the more reasonable price of $895. The house is now under the creative direction of John Galliano, and it was responsible for Katy Perry’s red wedding confection at this year’s Met Gala — so those sneakers aren’t the most avant garde Margiela work making headlines this week.
“It’s a far more edgy answer to Golden Goose’s ‘Distressed Superstar Sneakers’ that featured scuff marks, ripped laces and duct-tape reinforcements,” Footwear News wrote about the Future Destroyed kicks.
Those Golden Goose shoes, which first came out in 2015, were meant to be a reaction to the “brand new, fresh-out-of-the-box sparkling white sneakers” that dominated the market, Net-a-Porter vice president of global buying Sarah Rutson told Yahoo Style at the time. But the kicks drew backlash for looking a lot like the shoes of someone who couldn’t afford to buy any new shoes — let alone a $400 pair.
Last week, the media ripped the muddied “Americana workwear”-inspired PRPS jeans available at Nordstrom. “They’re a costume for wealthy people who see work as ironic — not iconic,” Mike Rowe wrote about the jeans. It remains to be seen whether the Future Destroyed sneakers will draw as much ire.
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