Ahead of Curry Brand launch last week, Stephen Curry helped refurbish the basketball court at Manzanita Recreation Center in his backyard of Oakland, Calif.
The art featured on the backboards at the court - and will soon also adorn the wall of the Rec Center as a mural - was a collaboration with Allison “Hueman” Torneros, a local artist personally selected by Curry for her creativity and work around the community.
That “Feel Good Flow” is channeled into the lead colorway for the new Curry Flow 8, the first signature shoe debuting under Curry’s namesake brand.
The number “001” can be found on the newly refurbed Manzanita court, representing the first of several projects and colorways aimed to develop safe and inspiring spaces for young athletes to hoop – and to further the brand’s broader mission of creating equal access across sports. Curry Brand aims to create 20 such locations by 2025, among its other impact goals.
In other words, the Curry 8 “Feel Good Flow” becomes the first creative expression of the brand’s ethos – performance powering purpose.
The Curry Brand team toured several local facilities and after speaking with local community partners and representatives such as J. Nicholas Williams, City of Oakland Parks, Recreation and Youth Development Director, determined they would have the deepest impact starting with the court at Manzanita Recreation Center. “Since our first touchpoint between Stephen and Under Armour with Oakland Parks, Recreation and Youth Development, they have come in and completely changed the game,” said Williams. “From day 1 their commitment to the kids has been evident - from Bushrod, to Concordia, to Manzanita – these investments represent so much hope for the Oakland community.”
This particular court represents not just a new, inspiring place to play, but also an opportunity for young people in surrounding neighborhoods to learn, grow and be positive mentors within their community. In addition, it will be an immense asset to Oakland Parks, Recreation & Youth Development Town Camps - which are funded by Stephen & Ayesha Curry's Eat. Learn. Play. Foundation.
“As a child growing up in the Bay Area I was drawn to the graffiti all around me, it was like finding art in the wild,” the artist said of her design that is featured on the shoe. “Because of this I've always been interested in the juxtaposition of colored paint on weathered industrial surfaces, inspiring me to get into mural art. I like the idea of my work being a bright spot among the grey, giving life to the landscape. And just like the city of Oakland, my work is layered, organic, and constantly flowing and changing.”
In addition to Hueman’s inspiring artwork, the Curry 8 “Feel Good Flow” features the new Curry Brand logo near the heel and on the tongue pull tab. The colorful sockliner is embossed with “001” and the Curry logo, with the following quote developed by Stephen and Hueman, hinting at the inspiration behind the shoe’s colorful pattern, that can be seen on the lateral and medial rand of the shoe:
The Town. Diverse. Progressive. Compassionate.
Artistic. Surrounded by natural beauty. Redwoods to graffiti trains.
Land of the underdogs.
Constantly flowing and changing most down to earth, realest people you will meet.
For Oakland by Oakland.
“The design brings a story, and an expression of home, community, and togetherness,” said Curry. “We’re bringing that to the first Curry court - we have the same design that’s on the shoe on the backboard...it makes you feel good when you put it on, knowing where the story and the background comes from.”
More about the Curry Flow 8:
The Curry Flow 8 is the first shoe to feature Under Armour’s new UA Flow cushioning platform, which provides unreal grip, with no skidding, no slipping, and no squeaking on the hardwood. Underneath Torneros’ artful design on the Curry 8 “Feel Good Flow” colorway, is a two-layer dynamic support system that allows the foot to move more freely while still being protected.
The shoe’s easy on/off pull loops are made with a soft-touch material and feature an “ICDATSC30” molded details, harkening to: “I can do all things”, Stephen Curry, and #30. A TPU heel counter has a 3-star molded detail, symbolizing Stephen’s career from a 3-star rated underdog to three-time NBA champion.