The Liberation of the Feet: Demaking the High Heeled Shoe For Theatrical Audio-Visual Expression

Murray-Leslie, Alexandra and Johnston, Andrew

Proceedings of the International Conference on New Interfaces for Musical Expression

This paper describes a series of fashionable sounding shoe and foot based appendages made between 2007-2017. The research attempts to demake the physical high-heeled shoe through the iterative design and fabrication of new foot based musical instruments. This process of demaking also changes the usual purpose of shoes and associated stereotypes of high heeled shoe wear. Through turning high heeled shoes into wearable musical instruments for theatrical audio visual expressivity we question why so many musical instruments are made for the hands and not the feet? With this creative work we explore ways to redress the imbalance and consider what a genuinely “foot based” expressivity could be.