Wedged in between two seemingly monotonous apartment buildings, is one of the most colorful and photographed basketball courts in the world. The Pigalle basketball court is the perfect example of art meeting sports and a “Must Hoop” court for any basketball player living near or traveling through the 9th arrondissement of Paris, France.
Basketball enthusiast Stephane Ashpool engineered the court, striking a partnership between his French fashion brand Pigalle, and Parisian creative agency ill-studio to create this must-see landmark. Sporting powerhouse Nike also joined the party, as they were at the heart of the entire court makeover.
The surface is made up of bold blue hues, sunflower-stained strokes and grape-coloured gradients, replicating a vibrant sunset that surrounds players on the hard-court. The effervescent colours are a feast for the eyes, and tourists worldwide have made it a mission to visit the court on their trip to the French capital.
The court overlapped Pigalle’s clothing collection during their collaboration with Nikelab. The 90s inspired aesthetic is the reason behind the hot pink and blue gates, as well as the yellow, purple, pink and indigo colour palette.
The inspiration was from artwork called Sportsmen by Russian Artist Kasimir Malevich with strong colors and sharp lines. The team at ill-studio described the punchy approach.
“We wish to explore the relationship between sport, art and culture and its emergence as a powerful socio-cultural indicator of a period in time. We aim to establish visual parallels between the past, present and future of modernism from the ‘avant garde’ era of the beginning of the 20th century, to the ‘open source’ times we live in today, and our interpretation of the future aesthetics of basketball and sport in general.”
In 2020, the court was refreshed with a mathematical vibe, with numbers, plus signs, and and arrows, keeping the iconic look but with a clean refresh.