“What If: Art on the Verge of Architecture and Design”

Moderna Museet | Stockholm

After centuries of experimentation, it might have seemed that there was nothing new under the sun where that glamorous fetish object non plus ultra, the woman’s shoe, was concerned. Then along came NikeTown, with its mutant materials and space technologies, and haute couture joined this revolution from below. Of all “the stuff that surrounds us,” footwear has perhaps taken the biggest design leap.

Spring Summer 2000, 2000, Sylvie Fleury’s display of shoes from the Paris season, testifies to a deep fascination with luxury goods and their “magical qualities,” as Karl Marx would have it. Such a fascination, verging on the obsessive, has been a part of art since Surrealism, but Fleury’s elegant installation, included in the Moderna Museet’s “What If: Art on the Verge of Architecture and Design,” takes commodity fetishism to a whole new level. Her shoes really are magic.

With “What If,” curator

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