Nike Graphic Studio's 2nd art exhibition and benefit runs today at ACE CLEANERS (403 SW 10th Avenue at Stark Street, Portland, Oregon). We've already run a preview, but wanted to get a beneath the surface and learn more about the event and what it means to the local community. To that end, COMPLEX caught up with Christopher DeGaetano, Senior Graphic Designer, and Eugene Serebrennikov, Apparel Designer, at Nike to discuss his role in putting March Madness: Old School vs. New School together.
Interview by Ira LaFontaine.
Hit to jump to read Christopher DeGaetano and Eugene Serebrennikov's thoughts on creativity and presenting art for charity.
Can you tell me a little about what to expect from March Madness: Old School vs. New School?
This is not your average art show. You can expect to find an energetic atmosphere rich in Nike culture with dope beats, creative heads and amazing artwork from some of the top designers in the industry! You can also expect to find hand painted canvases, street inspired art, 3-D creations, custom figurines, projection art, unique apparel designs and of course fresh kicks!
What led you guys to get the graphic studio involved in an art show?
We realized quickly that we were lucky enough to be working with some of the hottest artists around. The idea to showcase all of art skills under one roof came naturally. It was then we realized that we could also use our talents for a greater cause, and give back to the community.
Do members of the Nike Graphic Studio tend to do a lot of outside artwork, or is this a special thing for them?
What's great about the Nike Graphic Studio Art Show is that it provides a platform for the rest of the team to step up and be creative in a more traditional and organic format.
There are a handful of designers here that do outside artwork and participate in solo and group shows. What's great about the Nike Graphic Studio Art Show is that it provides a platform for the rest of the team to step up and be creative in a more traditional and organic format. It connects the creative collective here at Nike and enables the team to engage in art on a whole other level.
It's a testament to be able to organize an event like this in a big company, how has the process of organizing it been for you?
Initially the idea and process came about quite naturally… but after the success of our first show last September we realized that we had created a monster. For this second, upcoming show we've stepped up our game and brought in some recruits to help with the process. We've got a small crew of large talent who all do their part to make it happen.
For the first show the proceeds went to Japanese tsunami relief, which was pretty timely, what led you to get involved with S.E.I?
This time around we wanted to connect with a charity that was closer to home. Nike already has an existing relationship with S.E.I and we wanted to strengthen that. We feel there is no better way to give back to our community then supporting and inspiring today’s youth.