Unknwn and Renowned L.A.’s previously delayed “Hands in the Sky” T-shirt officially launches for preorder today and will be available for 72 hours only.
“The T-shirt signifies difficult conversations and actions, encouraging everyone to ‘move toward your fears’ in hopes of embracing, evolving and growing from them,” said Unknwn cofounders Jaron Kanfer and Frankie Walker Jr. in a statement to WWD. “We originally postponed the release to stand in solidarity with the Black community demanding justice. We wanted to let those voices speak and be heard, and not distract from conversations about social injustices and the steps for taking action such as voting.”
The T-shirt shows raised hands on the front with the phrase “Embrace the Unknwn” and “Move Towards Your Fears” on the back. Retailing for $50, all proceeds will be donated to the LeBron James Family Foundation. James is also cofounder of Unknwn.
The partners delayed the T-shirt launch in light of the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisc. James helped lead a brief NBA boycott last week, but all teams decided to resume play.
When revealing the postponement, Renowned founder and fellow Akron, Ohio, native John Dean said: “Making it very clear, we demand justice and accountability from those who commit heinous acts against people who look like me.…We are tired.…We feel disrespected and we demand justice. This T is releasing to address these exact issues we have been facing. It’s time to start having these uncomfortable conversations.…Cuz we not asking no more.”
Dean and the Unknwn team linked up to partner on the piece fairly recently. The founder has been connected to James long before this partnership as they both graduated from the same school: St. Vincent–St. Mary.
Dean started Renowned in 2011 as a hobby and gave products to people in his neighborhood. When he attended Ohio University, he began producing T-shirts in the school’s team colors. He said there may be a follow-up to this piece very soon.
“To be able to continue to create pieces that amplify Black lives and Black voices has been and will always continue to be the core of who we are,” Dean said. “For us, ‘Embrace the Unkwn’ — “Move Towards Your Fears’ manifested seamlessly because we want to encourage our consumers to step out of their comfort zone and become more comfortable exploring those uncomfortable conversations.”