A post about a new Nike print based on tattoo design from Fiji, New Zealand and Samoa caused Facebook blood to boil this past week. Many thought it to be blatant appropriation and that a massive global brand like Nike should be in some way paying for the rights to use the designs.
In NikeBlog‘s description, the countries are acknowledged as sources of the design concept and tattoo design is even relatively well aligned within the context of this skin-tight range. It would be awesome if a proportion of the profits made from the sale of this range could be invested in development projects in the source countries, but crediting individuals, clans, villages, regions or even countries for each motif would surely be a political, cultural and artistic minefield.
I don’t want to endorse Nike in any way, but I would wear most things in this range. For me, it would be about wearing something with cultural relevance to who I am and where I come from, but also that our tattoo has always worked to emphasise and complement the curves and bends of the body and this range would do that for even the curviest of Nesian forms. However, it is possible that like many of the more funky Nike pants, sizing will not exceed Large and the big girls will be stuck in boring black. Mehh.