The Brooklyn Museum, which will host a shoe-inspired exhibition this September, calls high heels “fashion’s most provocative accessory.” (A cummerbund quietly cries in the corner.) We certainly agree based on these nutso heels, created by Japanese designer Masaya Kushino.
Kushino’s bird-inspired shoes are part of a line called “Bird-witched,” so named for pretty obvious reasons. The shoes aren’t so much anatomically accurate as evocative in tooth and claw: they are feathered and scaled, and the actual heel is made to look like a bird’s dinosaur-like foot. The shoes are covered in real feathers, giving them a certain iridescence.
According to an interview with BlouinArtInfo, Kushino was inspired by the works of Edo-period artist Ito Jakuchu, who often painted the natural world, including birds such as chickens. Kushino describes Jakuchu’s aesthetic as “tinged with a bit of insanity,” which could certainly describe his own work with these shoes.
You’ll be able to see the “Bird-witched” shoes, as well as other designs from more conventional (and wearable) designers like Manolo Blahnik and Vivienne Westwood, at the “Killer Heels: The Art of the High-Heeled Shoe ” exhibition, running at the Brooklyn Museum from September 10th of 2014 to February 15th of 2015.