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  • Calvin Ho China t-shirt design for NIKE World Basketball Festival ///

    close-ups of the design ///

    “CHINA” t-shirt for NIKE’s World Basketball Festival, by Calvin Ho ///

    Calvin Ho’s China design for NIKE World Basketball Festival 5 panel hat ///

    “CHINA” 5 panel cap for or NIKE’s World Basketball Festival, by Calvin Ho ///


    NIKE x NeochaEDGE x CALVIN HO for china at the first annual WORLD BASKETBALL FESTIVAL in NYC

    NIKE Sportswear (USA) tapped NeochaEDGE to create a t-shirt and hat graphic design representing China for the brand’s first annual World Basketball Festival, a four-day celebration of the game last month in New York City that brought together top basketball players from five nations – USA, Brazil, Puerto Rico, France, and China.

    NIKE’s brief to us: using the NIKE corporate “swoosh” mark, create an illustrated expression that captures the heritage, history, and spirit of Chinese basketball in a youthful, exciting way.

    With this brief, we worked with Hong Kong-based EDGE Creative Collective member Calvin Ho to create an image in one of his signature styles that incorporates several distinct visual elements that help tell (at least part of) the story of basketball in China. Take a close look at the graphic and you’ll notice the following:

    • Until the relatively recent launch of the CBA (China Basketball Association) professional league, the pinnacle of basketball in China was the country’s national team, a focus of nationalistic pride for the game. As such, we used “China” red and yellow throughout the graphic, and subtly incorporated the Chinese national flag’s five stars.
    • Notice the the 1895? Basketball was introduced to China in 1895 – during the Qing Dynasty – via a Tianjin-based YMCA.
    • The first properly organized Chinese basketball team was the Nankai Five Tigers, better known in China as “名扬天下.” We introduced the team’s Chinese name in the graphic with a modernized version of the same font used when it printed on the Tigers original jerseys (circa 1895).
    • What’s “125 – 25″? That’s a reference to China defeating Iraq at the 1948 Olympics to set a (still standing) Olympic record for the largest margin of victory.
    • The Great Wall of China is a centerpiece of any Chinese cultural / heritage story – in the graphic, we show it being used as a jump-shot platform for an aspiring Chinese basketball player going for a long three-pointer in one of the Wall’s distant watch towers.

    Check out the t-shirt and hat designs below. Let us know what you think. They will be sold in limited production throughout the U.S. and are presently available at Nike retail locations and at NikeStore.com. To purchase the “CHINA” t-shirt online, link here.

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