If you love shoes or contemporary art in general, check out this final installment in my photo review series, Killer Heels, the Art of the High Heeled Shoe Exhibit from the Palm Springs Contemporary Art Museum, on loan from the Brooklyn Museum through today, December 13. They’re a fun and funky blend of art, history and fashion. You can see Part One here and Part Two here. (If you haven’t seen them, you don’t want to miss Lady Gaga’s fabulous boots!)
This first pair by Christian Louboutin, “explored fetishism by combining the stiletto with a ballerina’s pointe shoe, both of which force the foot into an artificial and constricted shape.” Burlesque dancers from the Crazy Horse in Paris wore the shoes for a series of photographs made with film director David Lynch.
And, painfully, this last shoe was for women in ancient China, where girls as young as five years old had their feet bound by pushing the four smallest toes under the ball of the foot, leaving the big toe protruding. The front of the foot and heel were forced together and bound, effectively breaking the arch. Tiny feet were highly prized by men and women in that culture as “markers of refinement, marriageability and sensuality. Women took pride in hand-making delicate slippers such as these.”
Thankfully, the practice was finally outlawed in 1912.
I’ve been fixated on shoes since seeing Killer Heels, The Art of the High-Heeled Shoe art exhibit last month, at the Palm Springs Art Museum through December 13, organized by the Brooklyn Museum. This pair by Chanel are called Heel, Haute Couture, Spring/Summer, 2010, made of leather, resin, plastic and metal, courtesy of Chanel. Very ornate, n’est-ce pas?
Part Two from the fabulous Killer Heels, The Art of the High-Heeled Shoe Exhibit at the Palm Springs Art Museum running through December 13, organized by the Brooklyn Museum. Part One is here.
These shoes were designed in response to the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan. The shoes are covered with flowers of a plant that is known to absorb radioactive material in the soil. As the person wearing them walks, seeds contained in the high heel are mechanically planted in the ground.
If shoes could kill.