The colors black and red hold special meaning for Jordan Brand. The controversial ‘bred’ color way of the original 1985 Air Jordan 1 has become emblematic of basketball legend and also the birth of global sneaker culture.

When Chicagoan and photographer trashhand thinks about the colors black and red, he considers the duality of his city. The pleasant, kind assuredness Midwesterners are renowned for can quickly turn to fierce loyalty when Chi-town rocks its team colors.

In celebration of October 18, which commemorates the date Jordan violated league regulations on court, Trashhand explores the connection of the Chicago community to black and red in a photo series.

Big thanks to @OJDIDITT, @PRENTISZ and @UGLYBRANDON, who worked with @TRASHHAND to style themselves around this year’s Air Jordan 32 Bred.

@PRENTISZ

My whole life I’ve been in Chicago. I grew up on the West side. Memories of Jordan go back to the early 90s. I would say I remember the second half of the six rings – so, the final three rings. I was pretty young, but remember winning the championship, riding in the city, the rooftop, going in my Dad’s car and celebrating the Championship.

When I looked at the [AJ] 32, I caught the resemblance of the Jordan 2, the first luxury basketball sneaker. I saw the little panel on the side and thought it would go nice with leather. And I just love black and red.

Black and red has become the like the official colorway for Chicago, we really see it that way. I’m not sure if those two are my favorite colors because of my basketball team or if I was just born in black and red. I’m not sure.

Going to games, our motto is “see red.” It’s a turn-up. Once you put the black and red on, you want to let people know you’re from Chicago and representing that way.

@OJDIDITT

I’m from Champagne, a college town two hours south of Chicago. I’ve always been back and forth. I grew up around basketball. My grandparents were huge fans when Michael Jordan was playing. My grandmother is not with us anymore but she definitely used to go to all the games.

I’ve always had Jordans, ever since I was a baby. The first pair of Breds I ever got I think were the [AJ] 13s. They were baby shoes. My mom still has my baby shoes. Of course, most of them got trashed as I was a little kid. Now I have about 25 pairs.

When I wear black and red, 90% of the time it’s basketball related. If I’m going casual, day to day, I’ll put on some basketball shorts and a vintage tee. I found these shorts and they’re super rad ’cause they’re a smaller size, not a huge men’s size.

I think it’s really awesome that the most legendary [basketball] player played for Chicago. It’s really cool being from this city and having such an important tie to black and red. I take ownership in that, I’m proud of where I’m from.

@UGLYBRANDON

I’m originally from Baltimore, and then moved to Atlanta, and then to Chicago. It was a city that’s kind of low key. It’s not like New York and LA, but it’s still a true city. I’ve been here probably four years now.

Since I can remember my favorite colors have been black and red, to be honest. My mom bought me my first pair of Jordans and I grew up with black and red. Those are classic colors. They’re competitive colors. When I saw the [AJ] 32s, I thought they were futuristic. Lately I’ve been on the old school 90s vibes.

I remember my first pair of black and red Air Jordan 1s. I never took them off my feet. Literally. I probably slept in them. They still go with everything now. I have a beat up pair and a super clean pair. Sometimes I could wear a blazer with pants to match – black, obviously. White T-shirt under. They go with everything, honestly. Classic shoe.

 

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