Monday, 7 November 2011

Beyond Function

Street Intervention Installation | Adam SmithAlot

Historically the creative relationship between artists and sneakers has been self-contained within the boundaries of customization. Here the preoccupation with decoration relinquishes the potential for the sneaker to act as anything beyond a blank canvass. In contrast from a design perspective, the shoe’s intended function is rarely considered an issue let alone beyond the difficulties it provides for decoration. The artist’s need to accommodate for a changing canvass, through the obvious culprit of wear, typifies the most difficult of these decorative challenges.


For the artist to engage with the shoe on anything other than a decorative basis, it has to be made into an entity of its own right. By severing the shoe from the individual/athlete (who might wear it), the sneaker becomes a static object, seemingly paralyzed by its inability to perform its intended function as an item of dress. It is in this state that an artist can begin to play with ideas of its identity, symbolism, silhouette, animation, form and even its function again. The work of street artist Adam SmithAlot is a case in point to this approach. His playful method allows an accessible point of entry into the world beyond the simply decorative and the material.

Street Installation 1

Street Installation 1

Street Installation 2

Street Installation 2

Street Installation 3

Street Installation 3

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