The work of the innovative shoe designer and Stanley Picker Fellow Marloes ten Bhömer will be showing at the Victoria & Albert Museum as part of London Design Festival 2013, commissioned through her Stanley Picker Fellowship, in which she investigates the ‘woman in motion’ as an engineering problem and the role high heels play in the cultural construction of female identity. The designer will be discussing her working practice at a special LDF lecture on Monday 16 September at 2pm in the V&A Hochhauser Auditorium (free event; no booking required) and her work will be showing in the Museum’s Fashion Galleries throughout LDF from 14-22 September.
Entitled A Measurable Factor Sets the Conditions of its Operation this new display continues research staged in an exhibition earlier in the year at Kingston University’s Stanley Picker Gallery, presenting a series of investigative pieces, processes, tests and trials for a new footwear collection informed by engineering principles that purposefully shirks fashion trends and styles, based instead upon ten Bhömer’s extensive research into the structural parameters required to support a foot (in a high-heeled position) whilst in motion. This series of structural, aesthetic and cultural experiments reveal links between rationalised parameters, aesthetic intuition and structural understanding, the new display for LDF relating to objects in the V&A permanent collection. By considering ‘the woman in motion’ as an engineering problem, ten Bhömer exposes and questions the role high heels play in the cultural construction of female identity
Her work recently featured on the cover of the August 2013 edition of Vogue Italia, where the model was seen wearing Blackfoldedshoe (2010) constructed from a single piece of folded leather, highlighting how the designer’s highly experimental and research-based approach to footwear design is now being embraced by the world of mainstream fashion.
Image: Material Compulsion 2013 HD video still. Courtesy the Artist