The shoes you wear… and how they are connected to my art
Many years ago, back in my early student years, I had this really fun idea. Some found it a bit morbid, while others gave me worried looks… but I am used to that.
For some reason, I cannot remember exactly why, I chose to use shoes as my subject matter. Shoes as packaging of the human foot…. and packaging which eventually shapes its’ contents. Not being the biggest fan of high heeled shoes, I developed the idea of the high heeled shoe eventually shaping the foot, very similar to the old Chinese tradition of keeping women’s feet small and childlike, through tortuous means. (Ok, now I remember the reason…)
So this is how I imagined your foot would look like if you would continuously wear the common high heel shoe:
Different stages as documented in my sketchbook, eventually turning into a kind of horse-like hoof. (Mind you, horses are very elegant, so maybe nothing wrong with women striving to have feet like them?)
I even worked the idea into a life-size clay-sculpture (one of my first objects done in clay) based on one of the imaginary middle stages of the deformed foot:
And now the reason why I dug up these old sketches and the sculpture for you and why I am writing about it in my blog today: Recently I found this in the newspaper:
I always like it, if I find that somebody’s thoughts, somewhere in the world, are similar to mine. Isn’t it amazing? And often with a tiny little envy I wonder why their thoughts make it to the newspapers, great art shows or into designer shops with huge price tags, and mine don’t….?
And I know the answer: because my sketches stay safely tucked away in my piles of sketch books, my sculptures are catching dust on my windowsill and my personal confidence still needs a lot of nudging and pampering and support before I can truly believe in myself and take my ideas and art work to the next level. And I also know: the idea was cool, but far away from resolved, my sketches were fun, but not great and my sculpture was a beginner’s object, which got damaged before it could ever be shown… fortunately I have come a long way since that horse foot idea.
Besides: the designer horse shoe idea is cool – but honestly: have you ever seen somebody walking around in those? Or are you secretly wishing you could afford such silly designer hooves yourself? Or know anybody who does? Naaah – me neither, but I know quite a few wonderful people, wearing comfy, good-looking shoes, who have my art on their walls or at least know somebody who does. And hey – you are reading my blog and not theirs! Da! ;o)
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