Shantell Martin & Bata Shoe Museum
Art & Sole collaborator Shantell Martin recently created this large-scale installation at The Bata Shoe Museum in Toronto, where she's also exhibiting a pair of custom shoes as part of Out of the Box, North America's first ever exhibition on the history of sneakers…
Out of the Box: The Rise of Sneaker Culture is an exhibition that explores the history of the sneaker from the 19th century through to today. It’s the first exhibition in North America to do so, and it features over 120 sneakers representing the past 150 years. Found in the show are rare sneakers from the archives of adidas, Nike, Reebok, PUMA, Converse and Northampton Museum and Art Gallery, along with loans from the likes of Run DMC and Bobbito Garcia. The exhibition also includes sneakers from fashion designers such as Christian Louboutin, Pierre Hardy and Lanvin, as well as various limited editions and unique projects such as Shantell Martin’s hand-drawn custom sneakers.
Martin’s shoes take inspiration from her previous experiments with drawing on sneakers – a video of which can also be seen below. ‘I love to find a nice pair of white leather shoes,’ says Martin, ‘create a world of lines on them and then wear them out. Each pair is unique and now one of one waiting to be soiled by my New York street adventures. Often I'll also write questions on my shoes for people to read if/when they happened to look down at my feet.’
In addition to showing her sneakers at the exhibition, Martin was also commissioned to create a large-scale window installation as part of the show. ‘Unlike most museums,’ explains Martin, ‘The Bata Museum has an impressive window space which they thought would be a perfect canvas for me. Knowing that I work in a very free spontaneous style - all they asked was that I just do my thing - always the best of best briefs!’
For more information on Out of the Box: The Rise of Sneaker Culture, click here. The exhibition will be on show at The Bata Shoe Museum, Toronto, Canada until 30 March 2014.
To see more of Shantell Martin's work, visit her website here