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    Nike Air Max 2090

    Nike Air Max 2090

    171 articles

    The past, present and future of the Air Max in one shoe.

    Air Max 2090

    Nike’s inaugural Air Max Day was held on March 26th, 2014, to celebrate the 27th anniversary of the Air Max 1. Six years later, in 2020, the event was all about honouring 30 years of the Air Max 90. And so, a brand new silhouette was released in that iconic shoe’s image. Enter the Nike Air Max 2090.

    Dylan Raasch, who was the Senior Creative Director of the Air Max, believes that this model reveals the story of how Nike’s trainers evolved in the 30 years between the AM90 and the AM2090. In fact, the designers behind the 2090 looked at this evolution and considered where it would take the line in the future. This became the inspiration for the forward-looking sneaker. 

    From the original, it has taken the heel cassette, the large mudguard and the combination of a foam midsole with an Air unit in the heel. However, these elements have been altered slightly – the heel features ridges that emerge from it rather than indented grooves, and the pocket of Air is twice the size of the original. The chunky cassette surrounding this pocket has also been brought across from the AM90, this time extending around the heel, with a smooth front half and ridges at the back. While these aspects give the Air Max 2090 the sporting heritage and cushioning tech of a runner, its newer elements make it a great fashion item as well.

    The updated Air logo and translucent textile upper reflect a more contemporary, refined aesthetic while still referencing the concept of the first Air Max: to make the technology visible. This approach is embodied too in the way the choice of materials communicates their structural importance: you can literally see through those parts which are lighter to the opaque structural components beyond. This combination has created a lightweight sneaker with speed and comfort at its core that is also underpinned by solid durability. Underfoot, the Nike Air Max 2090 has a new performance outsole that still includes tread delineations like those on previous waffle grip designs alongside flexible grooves reminiscent of the original. Even when pushing forward, the 2090 continues to reference the past.

    Raasch thinks of the Air Max 2090 not as footwear or fashion, but more as a form of transportation. He believes that shoes are going to evolve in a different direction to become utterly distinct to what we are used to today. This inspiration can be seen in the synthetic leather mudguard, which evokes the aerodynamic contours of an electric car. The chic, minimalist smooth white nylon ripstop and mesh also appear to take the shape of a futuristic car chassis. Even the three precision engineered holes on the Air Max 2090’s Air unit and its bright colour palette can be seen as hinting at a future where electric transport is the norm.

    The Nike Air Max 2090 brings together history, the present day and the future to forge the next generation of Air Max. This line has long been founded on innovation, and the 2090 is a powerful expression of that. It is a sleek, modern sneaker which feels retro and advanced at the same time, referencing shoes that have gone before while also predicting those yet to come.

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