CHICAGO- Up on a ladder, drilling screws into a cinderblock wall, Evan La Ruffa is hanging locally produced art in the new adidas flagship store in Chicago. “It’s a great space” says Evan, “and the neighborhood is a perfect fit for the adidas brand and this art.”
The art is from IPaintMyMind
, Evan’s non-profit that supplies art and curriculum to Chicago Public Schools that have lost funding for the arts. “Because of this partnership with adidas we’ll be able to put art in three schools in the next few weeks.”
The store, which sits under a section of the cities iconic elevated train system is located in the heart of Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood. The space is full of connections to the local creative community, including an original sculpture at the front of the store by Chicago artist POSE, and custom murals created by Tubsz, a south side native that specializes in Calligraffiti.
“The adidas Originals flagship store in Chicago shows our ongoing commitment to exploring new and innovative ways to be part of the local community,” explains Pascha Naderi-Nejad, Senior Brand Director adidas Originals. “Now our largest adidas Originals store in the world, everything about it exemplifies how we partner with creators who have shared values and an ability to push the bounds of creativity.”
The store also has an “EL” train inspired dressing room, and a community wall giving customers a way to share information about upcoming events. “We’re continuously inspired by Chicago, and the store enables us to celebrate the pioneering culture and creativity the city has to offer ”says Naderi-Nejad “We are excited to be based in Wicker Park and look forward to building new relationships in the neighborhood.”
The art work from IPaintMyMind was created by “Sonnenzimmer”, a local pair of established artists that specialize in layered prints. Every quarter the work will be switched out with another local artist’s work. As Evan and his team hang the last piece, he puts away the drill and says “that’s another 60 pieces of art going to schools that have lost their funding.”