Capturing the Human Experience Through Sneaker Art
Artists Didi Rojas, Paa Joe and Matija Bobičić explore self-expression, death and nostalgia through the portrayal of footwear in their work.
Any sneaker enthusiast can testify to the fact that footwear is personal. Beyond being a tool of self-expression, shoes have long been a source of comparison to the human experience, best expressed with the popular “walk a mile in my shoes” idiom. That’s why it’s unsurprising that footwear has also served as a perhaps unlikely inspiration for artists—even Van Gogh depicted muddy boots in his “Shoes” painting in 1886. Today, it’s impossible to talk about footwear in art without paying a tribute to a streetwear favorite: sneakers. From ceramics by Didi Rojas, to fantasy coffins by Paa Joe and paintings by Matija Bobičić, we spoke to each of these artists from around the world to learn what sneakers can tell us about what it means to be human.
I think of shoes as self-portraits of their wearers
WRITER: Laura Pitcher
PHOTOGRAPHY: LAUNCH F18, Ruttkowski;68, Didi Rojas and Matija Bobičić