The Swiss-based platform Sneakerness will have its debut at Cologne’s Expo XXI venue this coming Saturday with top name-brands including Nike, Adidas and Reebok showing their latest designs. The consumer-oriented showcase also will serve as a platform for retailers, artists and sneakers fans. With an exhibition space of 1,200 sq. meters, Sneakerness hopes to attract at least 1,000 visitors, according to Pascal Prehn, who organizes the German edition of the show. An integral part of the event, which also takes place in Zurich and Vienna, will be art projects centered on sneakers, such as graffiti artists who will customize sneakers and canvases. In addition, a local artist will paint a canvas with a sneaker from Element. Sneakerness Cologne will be open from 1-8 pm and the admission fee is €3. The upcoming dates for the show are June 5 in Zurich and October 9 in Vienna. Sneakerness had its official kick-off in Bern, Switzerland in September of 2008.

—Susannah Carey