Grails are that to-die-for pair of kicks that simply must be possessed — a coveted duo that completes a collection. Like the medieval legend for which they are named, Grails are much sought after, earnestly pursued, and ever-elusive. Get the story at GRAILS: the Sole and Black Culture, the newest exhibit at The Carr Center.

GRAILS focuses on the idea that, as objects, sneakers carry histories, stimulate nostalgia and are powerful conduits for African American cultural memory and experience. Relying on the stories of sneakerheads, tastemakers, designers and fanatics, GRAILS: The Sole and Black Culture elevates our footwear to the status of power object and paints a picture of significance of sneakers from the sole up.

The exibition opens Saturday, Feb. 15 at The Carr Center Gallery, 15 E. Kirby Street, Detroit. The public reception begins at 7 p.m. The event is free to attend, but registration is required. Click here to register.

“I think there are a lot of people out there like me who don’t understand the passion that people have for sneakers and just don’t know how to enter the conversation,” said Erin Falker Obichigha, curator of the exhibit.“Through this process, I have met and talked with some amazing individuals who have helped me to understand their love for footwear.”

One of those individuals is sneaker designer Cheresse Thornhill, the second woman of color to design footwear for Nike. Her works, to be included in the exhibit, are the much sought after 16.5 Dwayne WadePE, worn by Wade on court and the coveted Flight 45 Hi Jordans, worn by celebrities such as P.Diddy, Rick Ross and Lil Wayne.

This exhibit will also be feature footwear from several Detroit collectors including Jason Johnson, Marlon Thomas Jr., Will Sexton and Eugene “Geeno” Atchison.