Artist Gwen Murphy calls her series “Foot Fetish.” Within a pair of old shoes, she can see expressive personalities. She adds those animistic personas with clay ash and acrylic paint. Since 2005, she’s made about 150 of them.
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A fetish is an object believed to have magical powers to protect or aid its owner I see a shoe as a kind of fetish, because it has a presence, and the power to protect and transport us. Since I was a very young child I have looked at shoes and found them looking back at me, each pair with its particular personality and facial expression. When shoes are lined up near a door or in a closet, they are trusty steeds, waiting to serve. Mouths yawning open, they sometimes look sleepy, grouchy, or fierce; sometimes they look like they are singing. They are like a species of beings made entirely of pairs of identical twins. This series of sculptures is my way of bringing forth the presence I see in each pair of shoes.
-via Nag on the Lake