Daily Dose: Stilettos and Skyscrapers

Add to TwitterWe’re all familiar with the well-worn path of singer/songwriter turned actor turned director, or celebrity figure to government official – but what about architect turned shoe designer? According to this month’s Architectural Record (and a little research of my own), it’s not as rare or unheralded as you may think.

This history of architects trying their hands at footwear weaves along the prolific, celebrated careers of Frank Gehry, Bernard Rudofsky and Rem Koolhaas to arrive at the contemporary talents of Annie Mohaupt, Julian Hakes and Zaha Hadid. Let’s take a look at some of their creations:

J.M. Weston shoes; "Dancing Windows"

Frank Gehry's shoe design for J.M. Weston side-by-side with his "dancing windows"

UnitedNude shoe; CCTV Building

Rem D. Koolhaas' shoe design for UnitedNude coupled with uncle Rem Koolhaas' design for the CCTV building

Melissa shoe design; Abu Dhabi Performing Arts Centre

Zaha Hadid's shoe design for Melissa alongside her design for the Performing Arts Centre in Abu Dhabi

Mojito shoe; Mobius Bridge

Julian Hakes' Mojito shoe paired with his design for the Mobius Bridge

Surprised? I was. But, to quote Gehry, “Shoes are very architectural and always have been… You shouldn’t have to differentiate between disciplines.” That seems to work here, with fashion and building. Extrapolated to sports and politics and I’ll retain my skepticism. Let’s just say I’d be much more enthusiastic about wearing a boot by Antoni Gaudí than I would be about living in a country coached by Michael Phelps. No offense to Michael, of course…

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Image Sources:

Gehry: http://pixdaus.com/single.php?id=59573 and http://rawshoes.wordpress.com/2009/05/13/humeurs-an-encounter-between-artists-and-artisans/

Koolhaas: http://www.coolhunting.com/archives/2006/12/united_bamboo_s.php and http://www.newraleigh.com/articles/archive/edifice-rex/

Hadid: http://www.inhabitat.com/2008/08/06/zaha-hadid-turns-shoe-designer-teams-up-with-melissa/ and http://www.yankodesign.com/2007/02/02/abu-dhabi-performing-arts-centre-by-zaha-hadid/

Hakes: http://www.flickr.com/photos/hakesassociates/3641644280/ and http://gizmodo.com/5365882/wait-this-is-a-shoe

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