The Paris basketball court using a vibrant palette to merge art with sport

Nudged in between a row of buildings in the suburbs of Paris is a striking fuchsia pink, purple, orange and blue public basketball court. The result of a collaboration between French fashion brand Pigalle, whose founder Stéphane Ashpool is a big basketball fan, and Nike plus Parisian creative agency Ill-Studio, whose clients include Louis Vuitton, Pigalle Duperré makes a compelling case for using colour and design to attract more people to sport. The 480-square-meter space entices visitors through huge hot pink and blue gates that open out into a colour-saturated court of graduating tones. The palette was dreamt up by Ill-Studio in a nod to the 90s basketball style – in Ashpool’s opinion, the golden era of basketball – and to coincide with Pigalle’s latest clothing collection.

Ill-Studio launched the news on Instagram earlier this summer, in a statement that read, “through this new court, we wish to explore the relationship between sport, art and culture and its emergence as a powerful socio-cultural indicator of a period in time.”

This is not the first time the court has been made over in bright hues. It was originally renovated by Ashpool and Nike in 2009 and by 2014, featured a geometric-based design using primary colours in defined blocks. This latest incarnation, which is made out of EPDM rubber, metal and plexiglass, features more colour graduation – a blue floor merging into purple, pink blurring into orange on the walls behind bright pink backboards for the nets.

As Leonard Vernhet from Pigalle explained to The Huffington Post of the original concept, “the main idea of the project was to not only make a giant art piece in the middle of the city, but to create a real basketball court open to all the kids to play on.”

With a design like this, we predict the court appealing just as much to colour-loving tourists too. Definitely worth a visit if you’re visiting the French capital.


Jill Macnair


Jill Macnair has worked as an interiors journalist for 13 years, contributing to titles including Elle Decoration, The Sunday Times and The Guardian. She set up cult interiors blog My Friend’s House in 2009 with Ros Anderson and continues to run the forum daily.

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