Fascination with Footwear


The V&A have scored a hit with their exhibition, Shoes: Pleasure and Pain. If you haven’t yet seen it, do try and make it along there. Shoe-obsessed is a fairly common state of mind, though in truth footwear holds a certain fascination for even the most level headed. This exhibition is heaven for both.

Comfort is paramount for Ops&Ops, but who hasn’t endured some pain at some time squeezing into strange shapes or a pair fresh out the box? Yet the overriding sense at finding a ‘perfect pair’ is one of euphoria. This duality runs through the show with more than 250 pairs of contemporary and historic shoes from around the world on display.

We loved seeing design classics – Ferragamo wedges, Courrèges go-go boots – up close, recoiled at the 3-inch lotus shoes made for bound feet and were fascinated by boots that made the wearer walk bow-legged.

Divided into three sections: Transformation Seduction and Status, there are fairy-tale slippers, winged stilettos, vertiginous platforms and gold-leaf decorated sandals from ancient Egypt, plus films, animations and interviews with designers.

Go see it, it’s not solely for the shoe obsessed but it is for those who hold a fascination for footwear!

Courreges boots providing answers to a Fascination with Footwear
Fascination with Footwear, jewelled evening shoes
Mary Quant ankle boots: Fascination with Footwear