PUMA, Cellerator Inhale, 2000; synthetic materials, EVA, rubber; Collection SFMOMA, gift of PUMA; Photo by Ben Blackwell
Featuring over 150 shoes from more than a dozen companies such as Adidas, Converse, Nike, Oakley, Polo and Prada, Design Afoot traces the recent evolution of athletic footwear design in which the line between fashion footwear and high performance shoes has blurred. It presents shoes that are both expressive and disciplined, integrated and collaged, and both representative of what they do and part of an overall tribal outfit. The exhibition showcases these shoes in lines of shelves that give the viewer a chance to compare the various attributes of these objects. "Within the context of the Museum, we will judge these athletic shoes for the design they have to offer even as they disappear in the blur of movement and advertisement," states Aaron Betsky, SFMOMA curator of architecture, design, and digital projects.