A pair of Nike Air Yeezy 1s worn by rapper Kanye West sold for $1.8 million, triple the previous record for sneakers, Sotheby's said Monday, as the market for rare sports shoes soars. The shoes beat the record held by a pair of Nike Air Jordan 1s which sold for $615,000 in August 2020 at a Christie's auction.
The record price for sneakers has been broken several times recently as what was seen as a niche market 10 years ago now attracts interest from the general public as well as leading collectors. "The sale marks the highest publicly recorded price for a sneaker sale ever," Sotheby's said in a statement.
That sale broke a record set in May 2020 when a pair of Air Jordan 1s sold for $560,000. Sotheby's in Geneva announced Monday that it would auction several sneakers worn by basketball greats including Jordan, Kareem Abdul Jabbar and Stephen Curry. The highlight of the May 1 to May 12 sale will be a pair of Air Jordan 1s worn by Jordan during his debut season in the NBA in 1984-85.