Intricately illustrated pieces that transcend the status of mere sneaker to wearable art, The Nou Project is a new, artist-designed bespoke sneaker brand born in New York City.
Conceived by Saudi-born Nour Al Tamimi and co-designed with Lebanese-born Basma Chidiac, The Nou Project aims to broaden the sphere of art consumption and support emerging artists by providing them with a platform to gain recognition. The first collection brings forth three emerging artists: Nydia Lilian from Mexico, James Rawson from the UK and Rex Chouk from Saudi Arabia, each with their own unique style varying from street art, digital image manipulation and pop art.
With minimal lines and stitching, the high top, grain leather sneakers are presented as a blank canvas for each artist to creatively showcase their artworks. The limited edition sneakers are numbered from 1 to 300, highlighting their uniqueness. Inspired by asphalt and street art, the soles feature a unique, grainy recycled rubber. A new technology was developed to create this sustainable sole, truly bringing art to the street. Together with the artist collection, The Nou Project features a classic line where the sneakers are offered in white, nude and black.
Born and raised in Lebanon, Basma Chidiac began her career with a Bachelor Degree of Commerce from McGill University in Canada and then moved to work for renowned Chalhoub Group in Dubai in strategy and innovation. Basma quickly decided to broaden her knowledge and skillset with a move to New York to attend the Fashion Design program at Parsons The New School for Design, a field of study that allowed Basma to acquire the fundamentals of fashion design. During her degree, Basma embarked on several apprenticeships in renowned fashion houses such as Philip Lim and Marchesa. Working primarily with experimental styles, her main inspiration is derived from studying trends in technologically enhanced fashion. Driven by curiosity, her new collection aims to limit the divide between clothing and their wearer through discovering new tech infused ‘Smart Fashion’.
Born in Saudi Arabia, Nour Al Tamimi developed a strong penchant for Art whilst studying Fine Art at Tufts University and the Museum School of Fine Arts in Boston. Shortly after graduating, Nour explored her other love – fashion – and relocated to Milan where she studied Fashion Styling at Istituto Marangoni. After an internship at British Vogue, she returned to art by earning a MA in Art Business at Sotheby’s Institute of Art in LA. It was then in 2015 when Nour, inspired by the growth of sneaker culture in the city, worked on a concept that combined the two things she loves most: art and fashion. For her final project, she created a sneaker brand that combined her passions, which formed the groundwork for The Nou Project.
The design duo met at Coachella Music Festival in 2014 where they bonded over their similar interests and creative outlook. Nour relocated to New York and the pair began to work on The Nou Project.
After working at Phillip Lim and Marchesa, Basma developed her own aesthetic through her work as a designer. Nour was inspired by the growth of sneaker culture and wanting to support new, emerging artists, and hence The Nou Project was born.
The Nou Project is a new, artist-designed bespoke sneaker brand featuring intricately illustrated pieces that transcend the status of a mere sneaker to wearable art. Following the resounding success of the first retail space launching in Level Shoe District Dubai, The Nou Project continues to share their creative vision globally branching out into New York City and Beirut.
Launching in Beirut, The Nou Project unveils an exclusive partnership with renowned concept store, Le66. Presenting a wide array of brands from global names to emerging brands, Le66 has a unique position in the market for affordable and distinctive luxury clothing perfectly aligned with the The Nou Project vision. New York City also welcomed The Nou Project with a bang. A vibrant pop-up was hosted by some of the latest artist collaborators and attended by diverse sneaker and design aficionados from Soho and beyond.
Le66 Beirut will stock the first collection of sneakers from the brand, bringing forth three emerging artists: Nydia Lilian from Mexico, James Rawson from the UK and Rex Chouk from Saudi Arabia, each with their own unique style varying from street art, digital image manipulation and pop art. Together with the artist sneakers, the minimalistic classic styles with simple lines and stitching will also be available as high-tops and low-tops in black, nude and white.
The Nou Project is now available to purchase online at www.thenouproject.com as well as physical retail spaces in Level Shoe District, Dubai Mall and Le66 Beirut Concept Store, Downtown Beirut.