MARSHA ELLE BARES IT ALL FOR THE NEW AFROPUNK X ADIDAS CAMPAIGN!
September 21, 2021
AFROPUNK and adidas have once again collaborated on an inspired release of the TRIPLE PLATFORUM. The new TRIPLE PLATFORUM takes its inspiration from AFROPUNK’s iconic black & white silhouette that has become synonymous with the brand’s non-conformist spirit. The new sneaker is the second release in the collaboration between AFROPUNK and adidas, under the campaign of “Live the F@%k Out Loud’. Revolutionizing the sport of basketball on the court in the decades since its inception, the TRIPLE PLATFORUM has evolved from the forum to become a style icon, and the silhouette represents an open invitation for self-expression. With the new TRIPLE PLATFORUM available worldwide and online on the 24th of September, AFROPUNK and adidas have pushed the concept of being unapologetic with your truth and identified creatives that have made remarkable strides in the creative space.
One of the creatives adidas tapped on for the campaign is the multi-talented bionic model, Marsha Elle. The singer/songwriter was born with proximal femoral focal deficiency; a rare condition that affects the pelvis and causes the leg to underdevelop, and has been using her condition to inspire young people to look past their limitations and live life to their fullest potential. Growing up, Marsha had difficulties embracing her condition due to being bullied and as a result wore oversized clothes to cover her prosthetic leg. It took a while for her to fully Live Out Loud without being apologetic and so we sat with her to find out about her journey.
You’ve mentioned that as a child you were bullied due to your amputation. At what point did you decide to block the haters? Was it one definitive moment in your life or was it a process of growth over years?
When I was 16, I went to amputee camp- “Unlimbited Camp”. It was there that I found a sense of community and belonging. From there, I was able to tune out most of the negativity because I knew that I wasn’t alone. And even when I would return home, I was hopeful that I could return to camp to find solace and remember my “Why”. That’s also where I pinned my single “Unlimbted“. It was a mixture of both a definitive moment and a process of growth. I still wasn’t comfortable within my skin and was still developing the confidence I need but, knowing that I wasn’t the only one struggling gave me encouragement.
You’re a singer, model, and activist, and you’ve expressed the importance of visibility especially for other young people who have been amputated. What does visibility mean to you?
Visibility is absolutely crucial specifically, in the entertainment/ modeling industry. When I looked around, I couldn’t find anyone that looked like me in the industry. That’s when I decided to become the role model I always wanted to see- The images the younger Marsha needed so desperately. I am the “first” for many roles and for that I am proud. I hope many more doors are opened and many more seats are Created for persons with disabilities. Inclusivity and Visibility must be intentional.
What advice do you have for other young girls out there who have not yet seen their “series of triumphs on top of triumphs over time”, but instead see challenges?
Remember, no one is posting their failures or hard times but, those are the times that matter the most. The challenges you face really provide growth and fortify your “why” and those obstacles will provide you with lessons that you can only learn through experience. There are no Losses in life, just lessons. Learn and grow. Never give up.
What has been the wildest moment/career highlight so far?
In 2020, I was invited to perform at the Grand Ole Opry in front of thousands of doctors, prosthetists, medical engineers from across the globe – some of the clinicians present treated me as a child and even my current prosthetic clinician was present. I received a standing ovation after my performance. Many came up with tears in their eyes – that was a full-circle moment for me. That was an ode to what happens when prejudice and political agenda are put aside and you provide a young, black, Haitian immigrant basic human resources. We excel.
How do you continue to “Live The F@%k Out Loud” on a daily basis?
I pray and release everything- I embrace change and I work hard and I believe in me even, when it doesn’t make sense. The universe always conspires to make it happen.
What attracted you to be part of this campaign with adidas and AFROPUNK, what does it mean to you?
I love everything Black – Afropunk is very much that. Adidas is a cultural brand from Run DMC to Yeezy and beyond. Both brands symbolize an era in time. so I’m proud to play a part in this historic collaborative campaign. It’s one that I can share many years from now and it will still resonate with the masses.
The adidas TRIPLE PLATFORUM is characterized by a triple-stacked sole constructed from supple leather on the upper, then branded with adidas insignias, including Three Stripes and the iconic Trefoil logo on the tongue. The shoe is available worldwide on September 24th and for purchase online and at selected retailers. Stay tuned for more. For more information, drops and news on the release, please follow our social platforms @afropunk @adidasoriginals.
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