RWA is arriving soon, and with it, a great deal of attention to shoes. Alas, I have learned of The Most Awesome Shoes in the Universe, and there is only one pair. Please meet Rudi, a graduate student studying romance novels, who sent me an email with the subject line, “I made something cool and I wanted to share.”
I've spent the past couple of weeks working on a visual art piece that celebrates my love of romance novels. My work is pair of high heels that have been decoupaged with romance novel covers (both old skool and recent releases). They are entirely functional and I have plans to wear them … pretty much everywhere .
Essentially, they were for an assignment and will be in a small exhibition/showing that was organised by my tutorial tomorrow night (part of the assignment criteria included distributing the work) but I'd actually rather share them with romance readers because I know they'd have a deeper appreciation for them.
And did I mention the title of the work? I've called them “The Sole of a Romantic”. I live for puns, especially in regards to assignments.
They were technically for a writing class but the brief was deliberately vague and open ended because really, what is writing? Well, in my case writing is decoupaging a pair of high heels in romance novel covers.
Here is Rudi's Artistic Statement:
“The Sole of a Romantic” is a mixed media work that explores the tie between the image and text for romance novels, while celebrating my love of the romance genre as a reader.
Often when people find out that I read romance novels they tell me I “don’t seem the type” by which they mean I seem too smart/cynical/young/anti-cats to be a romance reader. Apparently reading choice is just as much a performance as any other aspect of identity, so with that in mind I decided I needed to perform my romance reading much more overtly. (Emphasis Sarah's) It was no longer enough to simply read, discuss and enjoy romance novels. I needed a way to wear my heart on my sleeve.
As a community we are often judged by the cover of our books, as though these images of windswept, provocatively posed men and women represent the text within the novel. However, cover snark and conversely the celebration of well executed covers has become an integral part of discussions surrounding romance novels within communities like The Bitchery for exactly the reason that the images so rarely reflect the text.
By taking an object that holds a tradition of femininity and sexuality, and covering it in images from romance covers I created a work that allowed me to perform and celebrate my love of romance novels anywhere I went in an act of decorative subversion.
Artist: Rudi Bremer
Photography by Phil Verness
Hold on to your hair, because your head might explode. Not even kidding. When I saw these pictures, my jaw dropped to my clavicle.
OH MY GOSH DARN HECK ARE THOSE NOT THE MOST FABULOUS THINGS?!
Congrats on a fabulous achievement, Rudi. I hope you got a big ol' sparkly A+ on your assignment!
ETA: Rudi's shoes, which are going to be turned for her assignment today, have also made their fabulous way to NPR's Monkey See blog! I'd say she more than met her exhibition requirement, yeah?