Kanye West's Grammy-Worn Yeezys Sell for Record-Breaking $1.8 Million
The artist's Nike Airs are now the most expensive pair of shoes sold on record
Published Apr 26, 2021The shoes that Kanye West wore to the 2008 Grammy Awards — his super rare Nike Air Yeezy prototype — have sold at auction for a record-breaking $1.8 million USD, shattering the record previously held by Michael Jordan's Air Jordan 1s.
The seven-figure shoes were bought through Sotheby's auction by investing platform RARES, a sneaker marketplace that deals in limited edition and highly sought-after footwear, as confirmed by CNN.
"Our goal in purchasing such an iconic shoe is to increase accessibility and empower the communities that birthed sneaker culture with the tools to gain financial freedom through RARES," CEO and RARES co-founder Gerome Sapp said of the purchase in a release.
Sapp called the acquisition "a piece of history." The shoes are now listed on RARES' website.
As previously reported, Sotheby's head of streetwear and modern collectibles Brahm Wachter said the shoes were "critical to the development of the Yeezy franchise, which has become one of the most important sneaker and lifestyle brands in history."
The size-12 Yeezys feature the classic Nike swoosh, a "Y" lace embellishment and a leather foot strap. Originally created in 2007 at Nike's "Innovation Kitchen" in Oregon, the prototype would go on to retail at $215 a pair in 2009. Kanye's own pair were sent to auction from sneaker collector Ryan Chang.
West's Grammy Yeezys — originally valued at $1 million at Sotheby's — beat out Jordan's record-setting autographed and game-worn 1985 Nike AJ1s, which were sold for $615,000 at Christie's auction last year.