After TWELVE years of lusting, I finally bought a pair of Cydwoq shoes. I don’t know the specific count of my shoe collection, but this pair could put me over the 150 mark. For me, shoes are design objects. Form and function, via the hands of a true craftsman, come together to create a beautiful thing.
SFMOMA thinks shoes are design objects, too. They’ve featured some in their exhibits.
Shoe size rarely fluctuates with either weight or age and there is no wounding to our self esteem if a pair of shoes doesn’t fit well, unlike a dress or a pair of jeans. On the contrary, a great pair of shoes instantly changes our mood for the better. Putting on high heels lengthens our shape, changes the curve of our posture and that physical change can evoke an inner feeling of confidence and sexiness like putting on a smile can make us feel happy. We are suddenly, taller, thinner and shapelier. A pair of stilettos pushes that all out even further.
Most women will tell you that they love their shoes because of the way they make them feel. And many women are willing to play with shoes in a way they don’t play with other parts of their wardrobe.
According to co-curator Dr. Valerie Steele, “They’re an intimate extension of the body and seem to say so much about our attitudes, aesthetics, sexuality and social status.” Sculptural quality, she added, is another part of the appeal. “Maybe it’s because shoes are sculptural. Clothing, when not worn, just lies there flat, lifeless. But shoes seem to have an autonomous quality, which may explain why our obsession with shoes seems to have reached new heights.” The shoes displayed in this exhibition do indeed look a lot like art.