Arts & Entertainment

Somerville Artist Translates Passion for Sports and Sneakers into Smartphone Treasure Hunt

848a6b5506e69f47456c_sompixsneakerflag.JPG
A Stukes original from his personal collection, trimmed in camouflage and topped off with an American Flag. Credits: Rod Hirsch
c71ed70437fbdf5be82a_sompixsneakershark.JPG
A Stukes original, a take-off on the nose of an WWII fighter plane. Credits: Rod Hirsch
a5ea45bf93c0512bceec_sompixsneakerjerome.JPG
Sneaker artist Jerome Stukes. Credits: Rod Hirsch
3671cd28b6ec5321153a_sompixsneaker1.JPG
Jerome Stukes places the sneakers in plain view outside of the Somerville Library. Credits: Rod Hirsch
5eaa4b289bc07444a82a_sompixsneakermessage.JPG
Jerome Stukes puts out a message online with clues to the whereabouts of the sneakers.
0e4ea923cbcd3cfa1f1b_sompixsneaker2.JPG
Message instructs the person who finds the sneaker to contact Stukes for the matching sneaker. Credits: Rod Hirsch
0fc9c9cfc397da6c85cd_sompixsneakerwinner.JPG
Artist Jerome Stukes completes the winning pair of sneakers for Julian Gonzalez. He was a perfect match for the size 10 1/2 customized sneakers. Credits: Courtesy Jerome Stukes
848a6b5506e69f47456c_sompixsneakerflag.JPG

SOMERVILLE, NJ - A local artist has launched a truncated Smartphone version of “Pokemon Go” with a few pages added from “Where’s Waldo.”

It’s his online challenge to borough youngsters with clues to the whereabouts of a customized pair of sneakers.

                The latest game comes on the heels of his first foray into “buried treasure.”

Sign Up for E-News

Last week, he put one of his customized sneakers in the crotch of a tree in Mercer Park and sent out clues online.

These games require some sleuthing, street smarts and footwork.

                Artist Jerome Stukes posted these clues on Tuesday to help treasure hunters:

“Located at a place for kids where there is no playground,” and “it may ring a bell if you read into it.”

The sneaker was placed in plain view alongside the steps into the Somerville Public Library on West End Avenue. On the front lawn adjacent to borough hall next to the library is a firemen’s monument that includes a large cast bell.

Less than an hour later, Julian Gonzalez showed up on his bicycle to claim his prize. The size 10 ½ sneakers were a perfect fit.

Accompanied by his father, Jerome Gonzalez, they had first stopped at the Yestercades video arcade on Division Street and cycled throughout town before they narrowed down the location.

The winners of the online treasure hunt are instructed by a card inside the sneaker to contact Stukes so that they can receive the second sneaker.

Stukes, 38, a borough resident and 1997 graduate of Somerville High School, had some formal art training, but is mostly self-taught; his medium is a reflection of several passions, he explains.

“I’m a sports fanatic myself; an arts fanatic, a sneakers fanatic and now I have the ability to combine all three,” he explained.

He promises more games and more sneakers hidden around town at Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas.

He likes the idea of giving back to the community, especially kids whose families may not be able to afford the high-priced sneakers.

“I want to be charitable with it, do what I can for the kids,” he said.

He’s also thinking about offering apprenticeships to young, aspiring sneaker artists which would enable him to increase production and expand his product line.

Stukes started out creating customized, abstract footwear for himself, and began to market his specialty sneakers online about two years ago.

His handiwork is featured online at www.instagram.com/sbdkustoms/ where he has over 1,500 followers and hundreds of satisfied customers.

He’s created two pairs of custom-designed sneakers for a member of the Hip Hop group Naughty by Nature, and a pair of spikes for Shamarko Thomas, a special team player for the NFL Pittsburgh Steelers.

“I’m not an athlete, but I can make them look good,” he said.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Montclair

Ironbound Residents Plead for Parking at Zoning Board Meeting

July 15, 2018

NEWARK, NJ - The city zoning board of adjustment yesterday approved variances for one of three new residential Ironbound developments despite a group of residents voicing concerns over parking.

The board approved variances for YK Group Development Consulting, based in Newark and Lakewood, to build a four-story 28-residential unit development at 526-532 Mulberry St. with 16 on-site parking ...

Safety in Numbers: NJ Computer Scientist Races to Develop Unhackable Code to Protect Everyone’s Data

July 15, 2018

Newark boasts a large – and growing – tech force. Brainwalk, an occasional series, will introduce you to some of its rising stars.

You’ve seen the ominous headlines. Armies of hackers working at the behest of hostile nation-states 24/7 to steal intelligence from our defense agencies. Apolitical hacker-thieves breaking into companies to cop trade secrets and our credit ...

Upcoming Events

Mon, July 16, 7:30 PM

Mayo Performing Arts Center, Morristown

Bruce Hornsby & The Noisemakers

Arts & Entertainment

Carousel_image_967d6f84545049a66b3f_giacometti_nose

Tue, July 17, 7:00 PM

Montclair Public Library, Montclair

Giacometti at Montclair Public Library

Arts & Entertainment

Wed, July 18, 7:00 PM

Hospital Conference Room 2 (Ground Floor), Glen Ridge

Becoming a Parent

Health & Wellness

Montclair Police Blotter: Business Burglary, DWI Arrests and More

July 8, 2018

MONTCLAIR, NJ - The following blotter was released on July 3, 2018 from the Montclair Police Department:

Arrest:
06-28-2018 (Porter Place) Mr. Lonnial Hargrove (48yoa from Irvington) was arrested and charged with
DWI.
06-29-2018 (Bellevue Avenue) Mr. Avi Shvetz, 52yoa from Montclair, was arrested and charged with
DWI after striking a parked vehicle.
06-30-2018 (Lackawanna Plaza) Mr.

'Servant of Two Masters' exudes foolish fun

‘Servant of Two Masters’ makes for foolish, frivolous fun

By Liz Keill

MADISON, NJ –Carlo Goldoni’s “The Servant of Two Masters,” in a rousing translation and adaptation by Bonnie J. Monte, has the outdoor audience at The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey laughing and clapping all the way through.

The yearly production, held at the amphitheatre on the ...

Festival of the Sea at St. Francis in Brant Beach, Aug. 8-12

July 15, 2018

BRANT BEACH - Everyone enjoys the excitement of a summer carnival.  It brings out the child in all of us.  Since 1975, St. Francis of Assisi Parish has been hosting the Festival of the Sea Carnival, annually.   The Festival of the Sea begins Wednesday, August 8, and continues through Sunday, August 12. The carnival will be open nightly (weather permitting) from 6:00 to ...