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The Enchanted: Keren Richter for VANS “Wellseley” Kicks


Psychedelic color schemes, '60s motifs, San Francisco landmarks, and video game-like environments are particularly inspiring for San Fran-born, Brooklyn-based visual artist Keren Richter, who holds an Art History degree from Columbia University and who studied graphic design and illustration at the Parsons New School of Design and Central Saint Martins College. The 28-year-old illustrator and painter boasts an impressive portfolio of clients, ranging from Urban Outfitters to MTV and Boost Mobile.

Now, Richter has teamed up with Vans Footwear yet again (she first collaborated with the brand on a Fall '08 sneaker) to produce another memorable, collectible, limited edition sneaker featuring her hypnotic, enigmatic artwork.

The Keren Richter "Wellseley" skate shoe, pictured above, features a canvas/suede upper, a mosaic-print lining inspired by Islamic textile patterns and stained glass design and  a rubber toe cap. Available in purple or pink, the sneaker depicts a fantasy world where Greek mythology (notice the female archer), fairy tales (check out the castle-like structures), '60s color schemes and prints (peep the neon pinks, oranges and greens, as well as the geometric patterns adorning some of the buildings), and Super Mario-esque landscapes collide. Aside from the melting pot of visual references, Richter's design also boasts a punk rock sensibility, channeling a slight malaise and angst (notice the girl with the running eye make-up pictured near the front of the shoe). Richter's design, then, transcends time and space, opening itself up to many interpretations — and doesn't all great art spark discussion?

The kicks just dropped on Feb. 1st, and they're available at Vans stores and retailers like Journey's, Zappos, Nordstrom and Action Ride Sport.

Keren Richter x VANS "Wellseley" sneaker, $55. Visit Vans.com

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