When visiting Prague, one of the things we did was to see Manolo Blahnik′s exhibition called The Art of Shoes at Museum Kampa.
Manolo Blahnik, famous from Sex and the City and thanks to the Sofia Coppola′s movie Marie Antoinette went to Prague to install and introduce the exbisition personally.
The legendary shoemaker was born in 1952 in Santa Cruz de la Palma in the Canary Islands. His father was from Prague and he escaped to Spain from occupied Czechoslovakia. In Spain he met Blahnik′s mother and they stayed to live at her family′s banana farm, where little Manolo grew up.
The purpose of the exhibition was to show the Manolo Blahnik′s work not only as shoes, but especially as art. There are 212 pairs of shoes and 80 sketches that you can see at the exhibition. They are from Blahnik private archive which contains incredible 30 000 pairs of shoes. Each produced pair starts with an original sketch which is drawn before the shoes are made. It was very interesting to compare the sketches with the real models. The exhibition is divided into six parts according to their theme. They are called Gala – this part includes also the shoes made for Marie Antoinette movie, Geography, Art and Architecture, Nature, and Materials. The heart of the exhibition is the largest part dedicated to the personalities who had a big influence on Blahnik.
Although at first sight the production of women′s shoes may seem as something superficial, in reality their production hides a lot of art and skill. While designing the shoes, Blahnik was inspired by either abstract elements or by work of famous artists like Mondrian, Kupka or Velazquez. The final version of the shoes was many times influenced also by many paintings and symbols of female beauty. Whether the design was inspired by art, nature or ethnic elements, the shoes always remain modern and elegant. Blahnik´s shoes are always stylish and hit the trends but also have a timelessness thanks to the artful materials and shapes.
You can see the exhibition until November 12, 2017, then it will go to Madrid and will finish its tour in Baťa Shoe Museum in Toronto.