Real Flex | Ora-Ito

“The sole is the most beautiful part of a trainer,” says Ora-Ito, French designer, as he displays his wall relief for the Reebok exhibition in London. Many internationally recognized artists were invited to participate but Ora-Ito’s stark white interpretation of the “iconic sneaker soles” of the RealFlex Reebok shoes dazzled and fascinated everyone at the exhibition.

Courtesy of Ora-Ito

The way his pop-art inspired relief of the trademark segmented sole twisted and flexed gave a vivid sensation of liveliness and fluid movement; like a giant that had just jogged through memory-foam. Ora-Ito’s incredible wall relief was made with HI-MACS®, a natural acrylic stone material, fabricated by Candido Hermida, which was chosen for its visual and tactile effects that allowed Ora-Ito to do his best work with it. Although it would seem rubbery and flexible, the HI-MACS® is in fact stone-like. Viewers were encouraged to get up close and personal and touch it.

Courtesy of Ora-Ito

Hermida commented on the project, “To work for a top designer like Ora-Ito, is always a challenge and a pleasure, his creations are wonderful in terms of design, but inevitably extremely complex in terms of fabrication. In this case the fabrication complexity was mainly because we had to understand the design and determine how to program the software that controls the CNC machine automatically, in order to achieve the 3d shape required.”

As Ora-Ito showcases just one element of the RealFlex shoe, this element (the sole) almost begins to grow its own identity. His relief is definitely a fine tribute to the Reebok shoes.
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