An Aesthetic Experience

The sound component is the interchangeable heel; each performs a sound that evokes memories of an individual. In this project I worked to capture two sounds: one of my father stomping on earth in the garden, and one of my mother walking in her clogs. Like music; footsteps have a sequential rhythm and alterations that help the listener unlock the information about the individual moving in space. In this way, the heels encourage the wearer to perform “in another’s shoes" and produce music that provokes memories, emotions, and forms a deeper understanding of the physical body and environment behind the sound. 

Having the parts all laid out on the ground like puzzle pieces invites a playful curiosity from the audience. Before long people engaged with the shoes by attaching different heels, hitting pieces on various surfaces, walking in them, and feeling the unique materiality present in each piece. Even though guests had not met the people represented in the various heel parts, many voiced that they could imagine the memory behind the heel based on their interpretation of its qualities. Similarly to my own process the assembly and disassembly of the shoes by others is an act of pure research, where people don’t know what they are looking for in advance and come to understand what it represents through investigation. The embodied understanding of this piece in exploration and in movement works in partnership with emotional memory to form an aesthetic experience.