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Dutch fashion designer and KU fellow launches shoe exhibition at Kingston gallery

By River Reporter Mar 7, 2013

A KU research fellow and Dutch designer has presented an exhibition at Stanley Picker Gallery near Middle Mill halls of residence.

By Lucy Brennen

A Dutch designer has presented an exhibition on shoe making: a hop, skip and jump away from Middle Mill halls of residence, in the Stanley Picker Gallery.

KU research fellow Marloes ten Bhömer’s work, features silkscreen prints and slow-motion video footage of her walking across a number of unusual materials including, baked beans, jelly and cake.

She said: “People seem mesmerised by the footage I have captured. The jelly clip is particularly effective as the detail of the ripples across the gelatin is astounding.”

Footwear in films

Ms ten Bhömer researched how the foot moves in a high heel and how our feet survive being put into the somewhat painful positions by analysing the way her own feet moved in high heels on different surfaces.

She was also intrigued by the way that women are portrayed by their footwear in films and how it can define the way a character is seen by the audience. A character may be portrayed as clumsy, sleek or stylish all depending on how she walks in her heels.

She said: “The shoe and its interaction with different materials can transform a character’s identity. It may be their heel breaks, or they slip, wade, or have to crawl across difficult terrain.”

Science, technology and art combined

The exhibition, A Measurable Factor Sets the Conditions of its Operation, is running in the gallery until April 6 where visitors can see the slow-motion film footage run across a 10ft wall alongside film clips of the characters that inspired her research.

Ms ten Bhömer’s distinctive exhibition has led to the director of KU’s Stanley Picker Gallery, David Falkner, to label her as ‘innovative’ for the way that she has combined science, technology, art, design and fashion in one exhibition.

Mr Falkner said: “She is thinking beyond shoe design and using her creativity to ask the most basic questions.

“Her approach to design from an engineering perspective is innovative and her use of such a wide variety of mediums, from digital media to silk screen printing, gives gallery visitors a real insight into her work.”

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