Salvatore Ferragamo (Italian, 1898-1960). Platform Sandal, 1938. Leather, cork. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Gift of Salvatore Ferragamo, 1973 (1973.282.2). Image copyright © The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Image source: Art Resource, NY.

French. Shoes, 1690-1700. Silk, leather. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Rogers Fund, 1906 (06.1344a, b). Image copyright © The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Image source: Art Resource, NY.

Chinese. Manchu Woman's Shoe, 19th century. Cotton, embroidered satin-weave silk. Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn Museum Collection, 34.1060a, b. Brooklyn Museum photograph.

Walter Steiger. Unicorn Tayss, Spring 2013. Courtesy of Walter Steiger. Photo: Jay Zukerkorn,

Balenciaga. Block Heel, Spring 2013. Courtesy of Marie-Amélie Sauvé. Brooklyn Museum photograph.

Casuccio e Scalera per Loris Azzaro (Italian). Sandal, 1974-79. Leather, synthetic material, cotton. The Bata Shoe Museum, P03.0040.AB. © 2014 Bata Shoe Museum, Toronto, Canada.

Italian. Chopine, 1550-1650. Silk, metal. Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of the Brooklyn Museum, 2009; Gift of Herman Delman, 1955. 2009.300.1494a, b. Brooklyn Museum photograph, Mellon Costume Documentation Project, Lea Ingold and Lolly Koon, photographers,

High Heels, Below the Knee Constructions of Architects and Designers

Victor (American). Platform Sandal, circa 1940. Leather. Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of the Brooklyn Museum, 2009; Gift of Vivian Mook Baer in memory of Sylvia Terner Mook, 1983. 2009.300.1614a, b. Brooklyn Museum photograph, Mellon Costume Documentation Project, Lea Ingold and Lolly Koon, photographers.

Nicholas Kirkwood. Pumps, Spring/Summer 2013. Suede with gold and clear Swarovski crystals. Courtesy of Nicholas Kirkwood. Photo: Jay Zukerkorn.

Aperlaï. “Geisha Lines,” Fall 2013. Leather. Courtesy of Aperlaï. Photo: Jay Zukerkorn.

Zaha Hadid X United Nude. NOVA, 2013. Chromed vinyl rubber, kid napa leather, fiberglass. Courtesy of United Nude. Photo: Jay Zukerkorn. Chromed vinyl rubber, kid napa leather, fiberglass. Courtesy of United Nude. Photo: Jay Zukerkorn.

Winde Rienstra. Bamboo Heel, 2012. Bamboo, glue, plastic cable ties. Courtesy of Winde Rienstra. Photo: Jay Zukerkorn.

JANTAMINIAU. L’Image Tranquille, 2013. (Handcrafted by René van den Bezrg.) Courtesy of JANTAMINIAU. Photo: Jay Zukerkorn.

Christian Louboutin. Metropolis, Fall/Winter 2010-11. Calfskin and silver spikes. Courtesy of Christian Louboutin. Photo: Jay Zukerkorn.

 

 

 

Brooklyn Museum
200 Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn
718-638-5000
New York
Killer Heels:
The Art of the High-Heeled Shoe

September 10, 2014-February 15, 2015

One of the most provocative and iconic objects of desire will be explored in the exhibition Killer Heels: The Art of the High-Heeled Shoe, on view at the Brooklyn Museum September 10, 2014, through February 15, 2015. Through more than 160 artfully-crafted historical and contemporary high heels from the seventeenth century through the present, the exhibition examines the mystique and transformative power of the elevated shoe and its varied connections to fantasy, power, and identity.

Killer Heels: The Art of the High-Heeled Shoe will be organized in six thematic sections — Revival and Reinterpretation, Rising in the East, Glamour and Fetish, Architecture, Metamorphosis, and Space Walk— encompassing early forms of the elevated shoe, architecturally-inspired wedges and platforms, razor-sharp stilettos, and shoes that defy categorization. The exhibition also features six short films inspired by high heels that were specifically commissioned for this exhibition from artists Ghada Amer and Reza Farkhondeh, Zach Gold, Steven Klein, Nick Knight, Marilyn Minter, and Rashaad Newsome.

The objects, both traditionally made and conceptual in nature, explore and play with the elevated shoe’s sculptural, architectural, and artistic possibilities. Early shoes on view include mid-seventeenth century Italian chopines made of silk, leather, and wood, European leather and metal pattens from the eighteenth century, and nineteenth-century cotton and silk embroidered Manchu platform shoes from China. Other highlights of Killer Heels are Marilyn Monroe’s Ferragamo stilettos (1959); stiletto mules of silk, metal, and glass by Roger Vivier for House of Dior (1960); and a wool “heel hat” made by Elsa Schiaparelli in collaboration with Salvador Dalí (1937-38). Contemporary heels in the exhibition include “Printz,” from Christian Louboutin’s Spring/Summer 2013-14 collection; Zaha Hadid’s chromed vinyl rubber, kid nappa leather, and fiberglass “Nova” shoe (2013), made in collaboration with United Nude; Iris van Herpen’s 3-D printed heel, “Beyond Wilderness” (2013); a black leather platform bootie with an 8-inch heel designed by Rem D. Koolhaas for Lady Gaga (2012); and Céline’s fur pump (2013) covered in mink.

Killer Heels: The Art of the High-Heeled Shoe is organized by Lisa Small, Curator of Exhibitions at the Brooklyn Museum, and will present works on loan from both established and emerging designers and fashion houses, including Manolo Blahnik, Chanel, Tom Ford, Zaha Hadid, Pierre Hardy, Iris van Herpen, Nicholas Kirkwood, Christian Louboutin, Alexander McQueen, Prada, Winde Rienstra, Elsa Schiaparelli, Noritaka Tatehana, and Vivienne Westwood, as well as works from the Bata Shoe Museum and the Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art that include classic shoes by André Perugia, Pietro Yantorny, Salvatore Ferragamo, Roger Vivier, and Beth Levine.

A fully illustrated catalogue will accompany the exhibition and will include essays by Lisa Small; Stefano Tonchi, Editor-in-Chief of W Magazine; and Caroline Weber, Associate Professor of French at Barnard College and author of Queen of Fashion: What Marie Antoinette Wore to the Revolution. The exhibition will travel to venues to be announced.

Roger Vivier. Virgule Houndstooth, Fall 2014. Calf hair. Courtesy of Roger Vivier, Paris. Photo: Jay Zukerkorn.

Ghada Amer and Reza Farkhondeh. A Pause in An Abstract Painting, 2014. Preparatory drawing for the film Higher Me (working title), 2014. Acrylic, pencil, tape and gel medium on paper. Photo: Brian Buckley.

Chau Har Lee. Blade Heel, 2010. Perspex, stainless steel, leather. Courtesy of Chau Har Lee. Photo: Jay Zukerkorn.

Iris van Herpen X United Nude. Beyond Wilderness, 2013. Courtesy of United Nude. Photo: Jay Zukerkorn.

Rem D. Koolhaas. Eamz, 2004. Courtesy of United Nude. Photo: Jay Zukerkorn.

Vivienne Westwood. Super Elevated Gillie, 1993. Courtesy of Vivienne Westwood. Photo: Jay Zukerkorn.

Prada. Wedge Sandal in Rosso, Bianco, and Nero Leather, Spring/Summer 2012. Courtesy of Prada USA Corp. Photo: Jay Zukerkorn.

Miu Miu. Cammeo Baroque Leather Wedge, Fall/Winter 2006. Courtesy of Prada USA Corp. Photo: Jay Zukerkorn.

Christian Louboutin. Printz, Spring/Summer 2013-14. Courtesy of Christian Louboutin. Photo: Jay Zukerkorn,

French. Boots, 1900-1920. Leather, cellulose. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Alfred Z. Solomon-Janet A. Sloane Endowment Fund, 2007 (2007.57a, b). Image copyright © The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Image source: Art Resource, NY.

Noritaka Tatehana. Atom, 2012-13. Faux leather. Courtesy of Noritaka Tatehana. Photo: Jay Zukerkorn.

André Perugia (French, 1893-1977). Evening Sandals, 1928-29. Leather, metal. Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of the Brooklyn Museum, 2009; Gift of Mrs. Carleton Putnam, 1981. 2009.300.1612a, b. Brooklyn Museum photograph, Mellon Costume Documentation Project, Lea Ingold and Lolly Koon, photographers.

Rashaad Newsome. Still from Knot, 2014. Single-channel video installation, color, sound. Courtesy of the artist.

Beth Levine (American,1914-2006 ), Herbert Levine Inc. (American). Kabuki Evening Shoe, circa 1965. Silk, metal, wood. Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of the Brooklyn Museum, 2009; Gift of Beth Levine in memory of her husband, Herbert, 1994. 2009.300.1636. Brooklyn Museum photograph, Mellon Costume Documentation Project, Lea Ingold and Lolly Koon, photographers.

Christian Dior (French, 1905–1957). Roger Vivier (French, 1913-1998) for House of Dior. Evening Slippers, 1960. Silk, metal, synthetic, glass. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Gift of Valerian Stux-Rybar, 1980 (1980.597.6a, b). Image copyright © The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Image source: Art Resource, NY.

Marilyn Minter. Still from Smash, 2014. Video, color, sound. Darren Lew, director of photography. Todd Stewart/Picturefarm, editor. Courtesy of the artist and Salon 94.

Storyboard for Steven Klein, Untitled, 791, 2014. Courtesy of Steven Klein Studio. © Steven Klein 2014.

Nick Knight. Study for La Douleur Exquise, 2014. Photo courtesy of Nick Knight and SHOWstudio.

Chopine, possibly 1740s, Venetian, Silk cut velvet with gilt-metal lace trim and linen lining, silk satin ribbon, metallic woven trim, metal nails, wood, and leather, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. The Elizabeth Day McCormick Collection, Photograph © Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

Foot Fashion, the Stylish Byproducts of Bipedalism

Pair of pattens, early 19th century, Wood, leather, and metal, Overall: 13.5 x 8.5 x 25.4 cm, Other (patten): 5.7cm, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston,The Elizabeth Day McCormick Collection, 44.571a-b,© 2009 Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

Pair of doll boots, French (Paris), 1870s, Leather, metal buttons, H x L: 51 x 44 mm, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Gift of Anne Bennett Vernon, 2000.971.20, © 2009 Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

Woman’s stilts (kabkabs or nalins), Turkish or Syrian, 18th-19th century, Wood inlaid with mother-of-pearl, ivory, wood and lead, Overall (a): 27.5 x 19 x 23 cm, Overall (b): 27.4 x 23.2 x 21.7 cm, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, The Elizabeth Day McCormick Collection, 43.1542a-b,© 2009 Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

 

 

 

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
465 Huntington Avenue
617-267-9300
Boston
Walk This Way
September 27, 2007-March 23, 2008

The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (MFA) has a world-renowned collection of shoes from throughout the ages, which it will showcase in the exhibition Walk This Way. From ancient Egyptian and Nubian sandals to contemporary designs by Vivienne Westwood and Marc Jacobs, the collection provides fertile ground for exploring the shoe and its cultural significance. About 25 shoes, shown individually or in sets, will be placed throughout the Museum’s galleries and “paired” with a wide range of works from the MFA’s encyclopedic collection of art to which they are related historically, artistically, or culturally, providing insights into their design and use. For example, a pair of 17th-century slap-soled shoes will be exhibited with a genre painting by the Dutch artist Eglon van der Neer, in which a man wears a similar style, and a pair of wedges with rococo carved heels from the current MIU MIU collection will be exhibited with 18th-century carved furniture.

While shoes serve a practical function, they have long been prized as highly ornamented objects of obsession. At their most sensible, shoes, boots and sandals were made from simple, readily available materials that stood up to wear and tear, such as the plaited reed sandals of ancient Egypt or wooden clogs, or geta, worn by Japanese. At their most lavish, high-status shoes, like those worn by well-heeled Hollywood celebrities, European royalty or Indian princes, have been embellished with diamonds, rubies or pearls. Whatever the materials or cost, shoes have always reflected the time and place in which they were made and worn, the status of the owner, and the skills and creativity of the people who designed and produced them. Walk This Way is a treasure hunt throughout the Museum, and offer intriguing surprises for both those seeking every example on display, and those who happen to stumble upon them.

Alexander McQueen Floral Engraved Boots, Fall, 2010.

Valentino Lace Effect Wellington Boots.

Woman’s shoe, 1991 , Designed by: Vivienne Westwood (English, born in 1941), English, Printed twill-weave cotton, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Textile Income Purchase Fund, Photograph © Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.