Jordan Brand believes in the excellent qualities of its roster athletes like Dallas Wings Forward Satou Sabally to change the world through the game. In her hometown of Berlin, Sabally and the Jordan Brand are partnering to refurbish a local basketball court at Tempelhofer Feld, one of Berlin’s public parks which used to be an airport, providing young girls and outlier communities a safe space to play.
“I’m very interested in the concept of intersectionality,” says Sabally. “As a woman, you have to constantly fight battles that other people never have to think of. Refurbishing the court is a small step in giving marginalized groups like young girls the same chance to play basketball, have fun and stay safe.”
The design is created by local artist Bahar Bambi. The design expresses Bahar’s experience of multi-cultural Berlin by using her signature Turkish patterns and Satou’s Gambian heritage as inspiration.
“As a kid, I always hung out on the street courts,” says Bambi. “I’ve always admired the competitiveness and team spirit of the game. Watching basketball while I paint is one way I get inspired to create. The dedication and focus that players like Satou bring to the game is motivating to me.”
Bambi says she met Satou through social media a number of years ago, discussing the possibility of a project together. Years later, the two met in Istanbul, where they quickly connected over their shared Berlinese background. Linking her work to basketball is special for Bambi—she sees both basketball and art as universal languages for connection across borders.
Like across the world, young girls from Berlin experience more barriers that prevent them from enjoying sport in a safe, non-discriminating way. Starting from the court unveil on July 16, Jordan Brand and local community partners like Sp0rt365 – TiB eV, Türkiyemspor, Berlin Braves, Seitenwechsel, Gangway, Ballsie and Coach Ireti will offer free, ongoing basketball classes during the summer dedicated to girls from a variety of multicultural backgrounds.