The Notorious B.I.G.’s legacy is getting a new luxury-world honor. This week, Sotheby’s will auction exclusive pairs of Christopher Wallace Air Jordan 13s for hip hop’s 50th anniversary, as part of a collaboration with the late rapper’s eponymous memorial foundation.
The special-edition sneakers were originally made in 2017 to commemorate the iconic Brooklyn rapper’s 45th birthday but have remained under tight lock and key—until now. The design pays homage to the both Biggie Smalls legendary rhymes and his personal style. The kicks are anchored by a muted black with red accents throughout. On the tongue, you’ll find a silhouette of the rapper and iconic phrases from his lyrics, including “It was all a dream” and “If you don’t know, now you know”—both from his hit Juicy LP. The shoelaces have the word “dream” inscribed on its aglet. The sock liner, meanwhile, carries through the black and red colorway in a classic flannel pattern. And given that these are Air Jordans, it’s no surprise that the sneakers also reference another GOAT—number 23 himself: “2023” is stitched into the sneakers to commemorate the Jordan Year 2023 celebration.
“We are thrilled that the Jordan Brand and the Christopher Wallace Memorial Foundation have entrusted Sotheby’s with these exclusive pairs of sneakers honoring the legacy of The NOTORIOUS B.I.G. as part of the Jordan Year 2023 celebration,” Brahm Wachter, head of streetwear and modern collectibles at Sotheby’s, said in a statement. “The auction marks the only opportunity for collectors and enthusiasts alike to acquire these special limited-edition sneakers that bring together the legacies of the greatest athlete of all time with the greatest rapper ever.”
In another nod to Michael Jordan, the online sale will put up 23 pairs up for grabs between January 23 and February 3. The auction house estimates that each set will fetch between $2,300 and $5,000. Proceeds from the sale will go to the rapper’s namesake foundation, which helps fund educational programs and campaigns to empower inner-city youth. If you’re interested in catching a glimpse of the kicks before they are gone—you can see them on public exhibition at the Sotheby’s New York galleries for the duration of the auction.