Monday, April 29, 2013

These Vintage Shoes A Tiffany Lamp Unto Your Feet

by Stephen J. Gertz

Say hello to the Karl Friedrich Schoensiegel Schuhmuseum in der Mappe (The Shoe Museum in Portfolio), an extensive archive of original watercolors, drawings, autograph manuscripts, and scholarly materials related to shoes and their historical and cultural significance by Schoensiegel, the Munich-based, erudite connoisseur of vintage footwear from around the world.

Schoensiegel was the most distinguished collector of such material during the first half of the twentieth century.

The collection is being offered by Librairie Jean-Claude Vrain of Paris.

The collection was last seen at Bonham's on June 22, 2011; the hammer fell at $42,700 including buyer's premium.


The archive is comprised of 349 watercolors, here sampled, and is grouped into several geographic and historical sections: Asia, Africa, America, Australia, and Europe; in Antiquity, the Middle Ages, and the Seventeenth, Eighteenth, and Nineteenth centuries. Each watercolor is vivid, bright and clean.

Schoensiegel visited museums throughout the world and made sketches of each interesting shoe he came across, later developing the sketches into fully-developed watercolor drawings. The Schuhmuseum in der Mappe was exhibited in Berlin in 1939.

The shoes, alas, are not rated for comfort or practicality, though it doesn't take a genius to understand that if you have to walk in what appear to be Viking boats with bows curved upward to Valhalla or tie the toes of your shoes to your knees, a casual passeggiata through the streets of Siena - or anywhere else - will be a challenge without a podiatrist or cobbler following in your wake.

All images courtesy of Librairie Jean-Claude Vrain, with our thanks.

Of Related Interest:

Vintage Shoe Art Walks The Runway At Bonham's.

Confessions Of A Vintage Shoe Fetishist.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Subscribe to BOOKTRYST by Email