adidas, a global leader in sportswear, has opened its Flagship store in Lagos, Nigeria. Located at 624, Akin Adesola Street, Victoria Island, Lagos it is the fourth adidas store to open in Nigeria in partnership with BrandCo. The adidas store is rooted in Lagos, known for its vibrant street culture, dynamic art scene, and enthusiastic football supporters.
The design of the store, which launched in April, was conceptualized, and brought to life by cmDesign Atelier’s Tosin Oshinowo, who is renowned for her innovative and sustainable designs—drawing inspiration from the corrugated zinc sheets used on many building structures in many parts of the city, like Makoko – the water city. The striking, minimal facade is constructed of a combination of solid and perforated corrugated sheets and combined with LED linear lighting to illuminate adjacent to the ridges of the corrugated sheets to create a dynamic optical illusion that is also interactive—using simple, functional materials to create an unexpected design emblematic of the city’s culture of creativity, regeneration, and resilience. When asked how her designs capture the spirit of Lagos, she stated that the design is built from experience and grit and celebrates the heart and spirit of Lagos, especially the city’s adaptability and go-getter attitude with no resolve.
The Flagship store showcases exclusive collaborations between adidas and renowned Nigerian artists, namely Osa Seven, Chinelo Ezewudo, and Ayoola Gbolahan. This pioneering effort strategically positions the store as a beacon of cultural significance, epitomizing the city’s vibrant creative spirit and longstanding reputation as a thriving hub for artistic expression.
The handpicked artists have masterfully crafted and elevated authentic artwork that resonates on par with the renowned international athletic and streetwear brand. Through reimagined signages and meticulously painted murals, their artistic creations vividly depict their deep-rooted connections to Lagos, capturing their unique perspectives and self-identity within the city.
Ayoola Gbolahan drew inspiration from the empowering BlueWoman ideology when crafting his remarkable artworks for the adidas store. Rooted in the principle of valuing women for their inherent humanity rather than their gender identity, the ideology deeply influenced Gbolahan’s creative process. His art pieces serve as visual manifestations of the ideology’s core tenets. ‘My artworks were created with this ideology in mind and serve as a representation of its core beliefs. I created one of the pieces using traditional materials such as acrylic paint, earth, and canvas” he said. By seamlessly blending traditional and digital mediums, Gbolahan explores the BlueWoman ideology in innovative ways, amplifying its essential message to a broader and captivated audience.
This collaboration with adidas emphasizes how multinational companies can offer unprecedented opportunities to ace their purpose-driven goals while utilizing the talent and creativity within the country. It also allows the customer, especially those who are not locals, to understand and connect with the culture of a city.
Creating a distinct ambiance that resonates with visitors was a major consideration for the store design. Chinelo Ezewudo envisioned a space where both visitors and customers feel an overwhelming sense of contentment, relaxation, and being fully present. She wants visitors and customers to feel content, relaxed and in the moment. “When people come across a piece of furniture that I designed, I want them to recognize the spontaneity of the design; how they are not only aesthetically pleasing, but that they are also pieces that will give the audience a sense of cosiness and conviviality”.
Through this partnership, adidas has recognized the spirit of Lagos’ creative community and has chosen to celebrate this vibrancy of the city by creating and supporting an ecosystem that celebrates diverse creative voices. When asked how he sees his artwork fitting into the overall vision of the flagship store, Osa Seven stated that the adidas Court mural artwork showcases the brand essence of adidas as a creator and hero archetype. His artwork which is titled “Making Queenz” features the story of WNBA stars, Chiney and Nneka Ogwumike to serve as a celebration of women who go above and beyond to inspire, motivate, empower, and serve their communities.
The store merges art and merchandise seamlessly with apparel and footwear for women and children on the ground floor while the men’s department is on the top floor. The store boasts premium adidas collections like Stella McCartney, Parley, Marimekko, and Thebe Magugu among others. Shoppers can also find the adidas hijabi/modest line, sports footwear and apparel for football, swimming, basketball, running, training, training, and golf as well as the staple and classic Stan Smith and Forum.
The Lagos adidas store is an extension of adidas’ commitment to inclusion, celebrating local art, and community growth. It is also a portrayal of the brand’s recognition of Nigeria as an important market and a nod to a desire to cater the finest standards to its people.
In true adidas manner, the Victoria Island store presents an impeccable shopping experience for everyone, with friendly, helpful staff and a relaxing atmosphere.
Photo credits: Copyright of cmDesign Atelier, Photographer Tolu Sanusi