Female creatives wear the Nike Kwondo1 by G-Dragon

by | Dec 4, 2021 | Golf Shoes

In 2019, G-Dragon introduced its PEACEMINUSONE brand and Nike’s collaborative Air Force 1 “Para-Noise”, breaking new ground in the sneaker market. Two years later, he teamed up again with the Swoosh brand to present a special sneaker called Kwondo1.

The name Kwondo1 is a combination of the actual name of the rapper Kwon Ji-yong, Taekwondo and Nike’s iconic slogan “Just Do It”. The design is inspired by soccer shoes, golf shoes, bowling shoes and skateboarding shoes. With this release, the K-Pop star hopes to deliver the value of “Flowing Freedom Across All Borders”.

In celebration of Kwondo1, HYPEBEAST and HYPEBAE reached out to five women’s groups representing GD’s real-life value of Kwondo1, from Korea’s youngest baseball player to hand actress Ghootree.

Read our conversation with the people below.

Kim Ra-kyung, the youngest national baseball player in Korea

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Nike G-Dragon PEACEMINUSONE Kwondo 1 Collaboration Female Creatives Interview Ghotree Ryu Sungsil

Seunghoon Jeong / Hypebeast Korea

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Nike G-Dragon PEACEMINUSONE Kwondo 1 Collaboration Female Creatives Interview Ghotree Ryu Sungsil

Seunghoon Jeong / Hypebeast Korea

Kim Ra-kyung, Korea’s youngest national baseball player, greets us at Hwaseong Dream Park ballpark on a foggy weekend morning. She wears a down sweater with the Seoul National University logo and a blue uniform.

We met Kim the day she was playing on the JDB baseball team, made up of players born in the 2000s. In September of this year, the young team played their first game ever. The team name’s “JDB” stands for “Just Do Baseball” and has the same meaning as Nike’s iconic slogan.

Baseball is a limited career for women in Korea, where there is no professional women’s league, although more than 50 women’s baseball teams are officially registered under the Korean Baseball Federation. “The national team is not a job, but more of a status, so not really realistic support. The reality for female baseball players is tough. I know that. I think women who want to play baseball should have an easier time experiencing it. ”She says that’s the main reason we started the JDB baseball team.

Nike G-Dragon PEACEMINUSONE Kwondo 1 Collaboration Female Creatives Interview Ghotree Ryu Sungsil

Seunghoon Jeong / Hypebeast Korea

We asked Kim about the stereotypes she’s encountered in her career so far. “I think we don’t have to talk about these things anymore. I feel like the more fixated on it, the more I think about it. If you are sure of what you like, I hope you will take up the challenge. In retrospect, we were surrounded by so many things that are considered normal but turn out to be absolutely absurd. I don’t want to believe that stereotypes can’t be changed. Because they can change at any time. ”On the way back to Seoul after the interview, we found this sentence on Kim’s social media that she lives by:“ I will move forward with confidence, strength and vigor. ”

Ghootree, sign language artist and performer

Nike G-Dragon PEACEMINUSONE Kwondo 1 Collaboration Female Creatives Interview Ghotree Ryu Sungsil

Seunghoon Jeong / Hypebeast Korea

Ghootree is a sign language artist. “After my mother lost her hearing in one ear in an accident, I thought that perhaps most of us who are labeled ‘able-bodied’ are actually ‘potentially disabled’ . ”Although she is a“ non-deaf ”person who has almost no hearing impairment and can speak and hear, she continues to express herself in sign language. “Deaf people speak visually. These are not people who cannot hear, but people who can see well. ”

The creative started learning sign language since her family had a sudden accident. The reason she didn’t choose to become a sign language interpreter was because she believed she could contribute to society in other ways. She believed that if painting and performance could be conveyed through sign language, the public would become more aware of it.

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Nike G-Dragon PEACEMINUSONE Kwondo 1 Collaboration Female Creatives Interview Ghotree Ryu Sungsil

Seunghoon Jeong / Hypebeast Korea

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Nike G-Dragon PEACEMINUSONE Kwondo 1 Collaboration Female Creatives Interview Ghotree Ryu Sungsil

Seunghoon Jeong / Hypebeast Korea

Ghootree has faced discrimination throughout her career, and some criticized her for capitalizing on sign language. She understands this perspective, although it was never her intention, as she is aware of the many inconveniences deaf people face in a society composed primarily of non-deaf people. However, she shares that she was able to prevail because she believed that awareness could significantly change the lives of deaf people.

“I remember this one deaf person who came to one of my shows. They showed their support by telling me: ‘For the first time I was touched that we are creating beautiful art with our language and I hope you never give up.’ There is nothing more encouraging than these words. ”Ghootree’s ultimate goal is to create a scholarship foundation named after her in the hope of helping students with single parents and the deaf.

At the end of the interview we asked Ghootree what kind of person she would like to be remembered as. She expressed her ambition to change society. “I just want to be a person who does my best all the time. I hope to be remembered as a person who tried to draw people’s attention to the blind spots of society. ”

Ryu Sung-sil, winner of the 19th Hermès Foundation Art Award

Nike G-Dragon PEACEMINUSONE Kwondo 1 Collaboration Female Creatives Interview Ghotree Ryu Sungsil

Seunghoon Jeong / Hypebeast Korea

In December 2018, an unknown woman named Cherry Jang with a white make-up appeared in a YouTube video. She streamed a live broadcast introducing herself as “Ambassador for Peace and Unification of the People of Korea”. A minute later, she posted a warning that said, “Emergency Notice. 5 minutes before the nuclear missile was launched. Please evacuate. ”In another video uploaded the same day, she preached about her experience in a first-class airplane seat and gave tips on how to obtain first-class citizenship. Cherry Jang died a year later, and an online funeral was held on her death.

The artist Ryu Sung-sil, who planned and played the “Cherry Jang Series”, tried to discuss Korea’s somewhat unhealthy “K-emotions” as seen by the fast-paced society. Ryu, a graduate of Seoul National University, also won this year’s Hermès Foundation Art Award with this one-person media work. We met the creative in an old shopping street in Euljiro and asked them about their latest ventures. In our conversation, she reveals that she recently started farming in Yongin, Gyeonggi-do. “I needed digital detox. When I live in Korea, I sometimes feel like I’m going to burn. ”

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Nike G-Dragon PEACEMINUSONE Kwondo 1 Collaboration Female Creatives Interview Ghotree Ryu Sungsil

Seunghoon Jeong / Hypebeast Korea

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Nike G-Dragon PEACEMINUSONE Kwondo 1 Collaboration Female Creatives Interview Ghotree Ryu Sungsil

Seunghoon Jeong / Hypebeast Korea

Ryu admits that she rarely uses the term “modern art” because of the social context it entails. For example, while the word “patriot” was perceived as a neutral word 10 years ago, it is used today as a politically biased concept. She says that modern art also seems to have coined the meaning of “difficult to understand” by critics. She adds, “The more work I put in, the greater my bias towards art and audiences, so I don’t know what to say.”

Ryu often had to explain her work as her art mostly deviates from traditional norms. With the title of winner of the Hermès Foundation Art Award, however, Ryu wants to “work on the refutation of conclusive views about modern art”. She comments: “Worldly goals don’t mean much to me anymore. Now I hope to become a person who, as an artist, has liked art for a long time. I felt that it could be a big deal for an artist to keep affection for my work. ”

Military Barbershop, Korean hairdressers based in the United States Armed Forces (USFK)

Nike G-Dragon PEACEMINUSONE Kwondo 1 Collaboration Female Creatives Interview Ghotree Ryu Sungsil

Seunghoon Jeong / Hypebeast Korea

The Military Barber Shop has been around for 40 years. After serving at Yongsan Base for more than 30 years, they relocated their shop to the Samgakji area in 2014 after the US 8th Army moved its headquarters to Pyeongtaek. There are currently two hairdressers working in the Military Barber Shop. Jang and Julia have been in business for over 25 and 15 years respectively. The generals in the photos hanging on the wall of the shop are long-time customers of the two barbers.

The shop is now loved by many across the country, but Jang and Julia explain that hairdressing is not a job that a woman can “proudly introduce” to. “Up until 10 years ago we had to deal with many prejudices and stereotypes. In the past there were businesses called ‘adult hair salons’. So when a woman said she was a hairdresser, people looked at her differently, ”says Jang. “There was no prejudice against Asian or female hairdressers within the military unit. Rather, there was a stereotype among foreigners that Koreans are good with their hands. We’ve always been nice to them, too. “Julia adds,” The discrimination outside of the US military was severe. Once I had to stop in the middle because it was so difficult to cope with. ”

Nike G-Dragon PEACEMINUSONE Kwondo 1 Collaboration Female Creatives Interview Ghotree Ryu Sungsil

Seunghoon Jeong / Hypebeast Korea

“The foreign clients we work with don’t give too much importance to a career as a hairdresser. They consider hairdressers to be friends. They always give me a warm greeting when we meet on the street. ”The two hairdressers share that they have been able to continue their careers thanks to the friendships they have made while cutting their hair. You eventually learned that if you continue to treat them and their work with loving care, people will be nice to you.

As the hairdressing culture in Korea begins to take hold, the attitudes of customers towards hairdressers are also slowly changing. The two barbers advise, “We are sure that all barbers do the same thing, but we try to work with craftsmanship. With numerous barbershops opening in the country, we think there are some barbers out there who just focus on looks. We can’t say this is all bad, but we hope they build a healthy hairdressing culture while trying to develop the skills that go with their looks. ”

Nike G-Dragon PEACEMINUSONE Kwondo 1 Collaboration Female Creatives Interview Ghotree Ryu Sungsil

Seunghoon Jeong / Hypebeast Korea