Kanye West Announces Adidas Yeezys, Gives Motivational Speech

Are Kanye’s new shoes dropping in June?
Photo: Getty Images

If you were awake for, like, half of last year, you’ll know that Kanye West has a lot of grievances with the fashion industry. Ye’s been airing out his issues for quite some time on the Yeezus tour, radio interviews, television, Twitter—you name it, he’s covered it. Well, those fashion monologues eventually led to Kanye breaking off his relationship with Nike, who was at the center of much of his wrath after they kept pushing back the release date of the hotly anticipated Red Octobers (which surprise-dropped in February), and Adidas swooped in, offering Kanye a reported $10-million contract and the chance to design his own line for the sports brand.

Today in Germany, where Adidas is based, Kanye hosted a pep rally of sorts for the company, performing, monologuing, and revealing that—get excited—there’s a new Yeezy coming in June (whether that means we’ll be able to get our hands on them then or if that’s the timing of our first look is still unclear). Rather than the fired-up tone of his so-called “rants,” Ye leaned more toward motivational speaker for this appearance. In his presentation, he shared on everything from sketching shoes in the fourth grade to how ranting is his oxygen and how he just wants to make “usable art.” Here are the best Yeezy-isms from his Adidas presentation.

  • For me and my friends, all that were in the office with me today, coming out of Chicago, growing up seeing ballplayers, I loved their shoes, getting kicked out of class in fourth grade for sketching—to get to the point to be able to make your own shoe and have people react to it was such an amazing feeling that I can never let that go.
  • When I create, and when we create, it’s not based off, you know, the word you hear all the time, the idea of “celebrity advertising.” That 24 hours to get to China, three days ago, it’s not about celebrity advertising.
  • There’s nothing I love more than to sit there, put the fabrics together, and think about the way people will react to the creations in real life. The way they can use these products, shoes, coats, jackets in real life.
  • I know it just looks weird when you see someone famous for one thing attempting to create in a different space, but Thomas Edison wasn’t limited to one career.
  • People always get mad when I bring up different names to do some kind of comparison. Today, I’m not coming to you saying, “Hey, I want to be the next Walt Disney and the next Steve Jobs”—my usual stuff I usually say. I’m saying with this opportunity to create, I feel like I can be myself.
  • I came from an art background. I was in art school from five years old to eventually an art scholarship. Then, when I had the opportunity to create music, I did that. Along that road, I collaborated with as many artists as I could because I had to be inside of that place where you can put together color palettes and now put together fabrics.
  • This isn’t something where we just take other people’s ideas and put our name on it. We’re creating an entirely new idea of the way to wear and use apparel.
  • This is the company that was experienced and brave enough to give me the opportunity to create.
  • So, all of the so-called ranting that you heard was—if you are creative, that is your oxygen. If you are creative, that is your food. And people are quick to say, “What do you want? You have a sports car.” Would you agree to take a sports car if someone said, “You can have this sports car, but we’re going to drop it in the water and you would drown inside your sports car”? You’d rather walk, right?
  • Creativity is my oxygen. I have to create. And I don’t care how crazy I look to anyone as long as I can make the best product for all of you.

How long until June, again?

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