Pharrell's auction house JOOPITER is in possession of some new precious treasures, with the latest soon set to make sneaker history. For its fifth sale, JOOPITER will offer up three ultra-rare, unreleased Supreme x Nike SB Dunk High shoes for an auction appropriately titled "Chasing Grails."
See, fellow sneaker lovers: these Supreme x Nike SB Dunks are first-iteration prototypes of the 2003 collaboration — essentially, the one-off designs which were never commercially released and never to be seen by the public (well, until now).
"Thought to be locked away in a vault, or destroyed, these 2003 one-of-one prototypes for the highly collectible and beloved Supreme Nike SB Dunk High, are amongst the rarest of sneakers to ever come to market, a complete set of each colorway," Caitlin Donovan, Head of Global Sales at JOOPITER, says to Highsnobiety.
"The legend has it that this design was rejected by Nike, replaced by the iconic gold stars. From the collection of Ryan Chang, one of the most respected collectors in the industry, these three shoes represent the key elements of collectability — rarity, provenance, and condition."
Despite tales of being sent through the shredder or locked away in some mysterious chamber only accessible by an elite few, the 2003 Supreme SB Dunk High samples are indeed alive and well.
On the Supreme x Nike SB Dunk samples, fans will notice gilded Nike Futura logos instead of the golden stars seen on the actual released 2003 pairs and the 2021 SB Dunk Low collaboration.
As revealed by Donovan, the shimmery Swooshes apparently didn't get the thumbs up and got scrapped. So then, it was back to the drawing board, and thus Supreme's starry Dunks were born.
Set to hit JOOPITER's website starting on September 26, the Supreme x Nike SB Dunks prototypes appear in the classic colorways of Red, Columbia Blue, and Orange, inspired by Nike's "Be True to Your School" pack from the 80s.
JOOPITER acquired the pairs from renowned sneaker collector Ryan Chang, who's all too familiar with grails. 1985 Black Toe 1s, Paris SB Dunk, and Nike SB Dunk x Futura 2000 are just a few laced-up gems lurking in Chang's collection. 'Nough said.
It's also worth pointing out that most Nike samples arrive as single half-pairs. Supreme's Nike SB Dunk High prototypes come as three finished pairs, making them even more valuable in the eyes of a sneaker beholder.
Indeed, Supreme's Nike SB Dunk Highs are estimated to fetch between $30,000 and $50,000 at JOOPITER's "Chasing Grails" auction, marking the shoes' first time on the secondary market, by the way.
We told you. It's sneaker history.
"The secondary sneaker market has propelled to the forefront of collecting culture, with the most reputable auction houses in the world establishing departments for this modern category, resulting in record sales in the millions of dollars," Donovan said to Highsnobiety.
"JOOPITER is excited to bring to market three of the most elusive and collectible sneakers in the world, the Supreme Nike SB Dunk High Prototype, in our first exclusive sneaker auction, Chasing Grails."
If any interested bidders are wondering, JOOPITER's sale for the Supreme x Nike SB Dunk High prototypes will kick off on September 26 and last until October 3 at JOOPITER.
Now, JOOPITER is ready to make a collector's year with the sale of a sneaker artifacts.