The Shoe in Art — Van Gogh

Van Gogh, Pair of Shoes, 1886

This is one of Vincent Van Gogh’s most discussed shoe paintings. As detailed in a 2009 Harper’s Magazine article, van Gogh bought these shoes in 1886 at a Paris flea market. He took them to his atelier in the Montmartre district, tried to wear them, and when that was not successful, decided to use them as props. The shoes “soon became the most celebrated footwear in the history of modern art.”

The shoes look like a pair of lace-up ankle boots with a combination of nine metal eyelets and hooks.

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