TOMS Haiti Artist Collective

“Before, I was cutting metal but I had to focus on painting after the death of my father to help my family. I’ve been painting for five years and I want to paint more and more.” Haitian artist, Norelus MacKenly, 18.

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Haitian artist, Norelus MacKenly and his blue ocean design. Source: Toms.com

Philanthropic shoe brand TOMS, known for its One for One principle that matches every purchased pair with a new pair of shoes donated to a kid in need, took this time a different approach by commissioning 30 Haitian artists to design a limited edition of TOMS shoes.

Photo Source: Toms.com
Photo Source: Toms.com

The project behind this initiative is to support the recovering country by creating jobs for these 30 artisans with the collaboration of Haiti-based Caribbean Craft , an organization dedicated to work with Haitian artisans.

In addition, it gives the artists the opportunity to show and express to the rest of the world  their cultural visions while portraying the Haitian scenery, community and life-style on the footwear.

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Haitian Artist Carlène Ruben painting her pink flower design. Source: Toms.com

The shoes, which are individually hand painted by local artists between the ages of 18 to 45 in a Haiti based TOMS atelier (workshop) will be available for both women and men for a price of $68.00 at the TOMS website or US flagship store.

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Source: Toms.com
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Haitian artist working on his design. Photo source: Toms.com

For years, I have been inspired by the perseverance and passion of Haitians and the work done in Haiti by people such as Donna Karan and others. The Haiti Artist Collective is the first small step toward us going beyond One for One in Haiti. Our ultimate goal is to provide sustainable jobs that drive artistic expression and generate a desire with customers throughout the TOMS community to participate in this exciting new program,” Words by the company’s founder Mycoskie.

Below is a short video about Haiti Artist Collective and its artists:

All pictures and information are take directly from Toms.com

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