United Nude is a classic case of modern mythology: Rem D Koolhaas (not to be confused with his uncle of OMA) and Galahad Clark—of the storied British bootmakers—launched the forward-thinking shoe brand in 2003 as a new synthesis of design and fashion.
Spanish performance artist Alicia Framis invited them to create a "shoe suitable for outer space" for her "Moon Life" project, a multidisciplinary speculation about intergalactic travel and living in space. True to its unconventional nature, United Nude arrived at a flat pack platform heel:...a high-heeled shoe both elegant and sexy while not be limited by the extreme conditions of space such as temperature and pressure. Additionally, United Nude's goal was to create a shoe that can also function in a gravity rich environment.
The further the journey, the more it will cost to transport by weight and volume. Therefore United Nude formulated their own criteria for their Moon Life Shoe: to create something as light and compact as possible while remaining fashionable. The outcome is the United Nude Flat Pack shoe.
The shoe consists of slotted carbon fiber members that join the molded insole and outsole pieces—according to United Nude, "assembly takes no longer than 10 minutes for each shoe"—where the leather upper is completed with a length of lace. This last piece is "interchangeable and suitable for customizing. This way, the shoes can be changed and updated over time, which should be convenient as the supply of shoes in space will be limited."
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