Designers and artists from all over the world honour the iconic shoe designer Jan Jansen with unique works of art that have been designed and made specially for the Jan Jansen Shoe Treasures project. Every work of art is inspired by shoes in the private collection of Jan & Tonny Jansen. The artists were given carte blanche to create new objects out of selected Jan Jansen shoes.
All of these artworks are for sale, some are truly unique, others are available in a small series. If you're interested in one of the works, please contact us with our contact form.
Introduction
Inge Specht
Curator Dutch Leather and Shoe Museum
In the history of Dutch shoe design, designer Jan Jansen takes a significant position. Both nationally and internationally speaking, Jansen during his career lifted the appreciation for shoe design to a higher level. At the same time he can be regarded as the creator of some of the most iconic shoe designs in the world.
Jan Jansen's career started in a time the Dutch shoe industry was responsible for the production of most of the footwear found in Dutch retail. Every factory employed one or more people who were in charge of collection development. At that time the word designer was not in use in the Netherlands. Of course there had been famous shoe designers outside of the Netherlands, like Salvatore Ferragamo, André Perugia and Roger Vivier. All famous craftsmen, that one way or another must have inspired Jan to have himself officially registered at the Chamber of Commerce as a shoe designer and a shoemaker in 1963. He also established his own shop and wholesale, a decision that might have looked like a reckless venture, but what – considering the downfall of Dutch shoe industry not so long afterwards - turned out to be a brilliant step in his career.
Probably he already had noticed the changes the Dutch shoe industry was about to deal with. Over the years his ability to pick up the signs of the time, long before others realized what was going on, became ever clearer. His creative skills to translate these signs into fresh and innovative footwear and his contacts in Italy turned out to be the right tools to establish his name as a worldwide benchmark for non-conformistic and remarkable footwear.
Jan has always had an interest in art. His shoes are always balancing on the edge of artwork and design, but never without losing sight of the original purpose of footwear; walking! This project, Jan Jansen Shoe Treasures, therefore is not only a tribute to an outstanding shoe designer but also to his extraordinary oeuvre that has been recognized by so many remarkable artists as the pieces of art they really are.
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