Naughty Shoes

Language is intriguing.  You can’t hold on to it, but in certain ways it is very concrete.  It floats in the air unseen, but it is held down by hard rules and made real by the written word.  In one language different words mean the same thing and one word different things. This then gets translated into different languages.  Sometimes this happens in a straight forward manner, other times there is overlap and confusion.  This is the part of language which intrigues me most.

The following series is based on the Dutch saying “trek je stoute schoenen aan”.  Literally translated it means “put your BOLD shoes on”  but stout can also mean naughty.  The thought that you sometimes need to be naughty to get the courage to do something captured my imagination.  I then put out a general inquiry on facebook for people to send me photos of what they considered their naughty shoes and add a short explanation of why they are “naughty” and when they would wear them.  After painting so many shoes and reading the accompanying descriptions, I saw how much our shoes actually say about ourselves.  These paintings could also be called “Shoe Portraits”.

The paintings below with only names are painted on prepared canvas paper with dimensions 30cm x 40cm


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