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Design Fashion

The World at Your Feet

Bata Shoe Museum

by (author) Elizabeth Semmelhack

Initial publish date
Apr 2020
Fashion, Fashion, Permanent Collections
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Apr 2020
    List Price
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Mar 2024
    List Price

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The Bata Shoe Museum has an extraordinary collection of more than 14,000 artifacts, dating from as far back as 4,500 years to the present day. Founded by Sonja Bata, the museum is one of the largest shoe collections in the world and is a wonderful source of inspiration for designers across the globe, including Manolo Blahnik, Christian Louboutin, Nicholas Kirkwood, and Sophia Webtser, among others.

The one hundred shoes featured in this volume are among the most important in the collection and display a fantastic array of styles. Creative director and senior curator Elizabeth Semmelhack uses these treasured examples to discuss society, culture, gender, fashion, and other facets of history that are revealed through the study of footwear.

The Bata Shoe Museum is located in Toronto, Canada, in a gem of a building designed by Canadian architect Raymond Moriyama. Since its opening in 1995, the museum has welcomed more than two million visitors to more than forty exhibitions. It is also renowned for its ground-breaking research and is consistently celebrated as one of the top fashion museums in the world.

About the author

Contributor Notes

Elizabeth Semmelhack is the creative director and senior curator of the Bata Shoe Museum, and her work focuses on the intersections of fashion, economics, and gender with a particular interest in the history of footwear. She has curated over twenty exhibitions for the Bata Shoe Museum, including the blockbuster traveling exhibition The Rise of Sneaker Culture and the ground-breaking exhibitions Standing Tall: The Curious History of Men in Heels, On a Pedestal: Renaissance Chopines to Baroque Heels and Heights of Fashion: A History of the Elevated Shoe, each with an accompanying publication.

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