Countdown to ‘Watch our Steps’ at the Dutch Design Week, 4 days to go!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012 This week we will be counting down to the start of Dutch Design Week 20-28 October in Eindhoven, which will premiere the spectacular exhibition ‘Watch our Steps’ organized by SLEM, a new education and innovation centre for footwear.

Countdown to ‘Watch our Steps’ at the Dutch Design Week, 4 days to go!Countdown to ‘Watch our Steps’ at the Dutch Design Week, 4 days to go!

The exhibition will feature the best footwear graduation works from academies around the world, from Hiko Mizuno and Bunka College in Tokyo, to Polimoda in Florence and London College of Fashion to ArteZ in Arnhem and many more. It promises to be the footwear event of the year!

The DDW audience can vote for who they think has the best work and the final decision will be made on Friday, October 26 by an expert jury, which includes Liza Snook of the Virtual Shoe Museum! The winner will receive the Global Footwear Design Award, which involves tailor made training and consulting provided by the broad network of SLEM. This will help the winner make a head start with his or her career; in whichever direction he or she would like to move forward within the shoe business.

From now on we will give you a sneak preview each day, until Saturday the 20th, when the exhibition opens and you can all go and see it for yourselves and/or get the digital catalogue from!

Only four more days before the ‘Watch our Steps’ exhibition opens at Dutch Design Week in Eindhoven…. we are so excited to be in the jury who decides on the winner! Our fellow judges are Jan Jansen, Charles Bergmans and René van den Berg, Holland’s top three shoe designers, Inge Specht, curator of the Dutch Shoe and Leather Museum, Bea de Roo, renowned footwear forecaster and Nicoline van Enter, creative director of SLEM, the footwear education and innovation centre that organizes the exhibition.

Head of the jury and presenter of the Global Footwear Design Award Night on October 26 is Victoria Koblenko, famous actress and professional shoe addict! You can join the award night on Friday evening the 26th, from 19:30 to 22:30. It promises to be a great evening for all shoe lovers, professionals and amateurs alike, with inspiring lectures by René van den Berg, Nicoline van Enter and Diane Becker, design consultant for Camper footwear. Tickets cost 25 euros and are available through

Today’s sneak preview of the ‘Watch our Steps’ exhibition features men’s shoes by Aku Bäckström, who recently graduated from Royal College of Art in London. Aku’s Finnish background shines through in his work, which shows a modern ‘hunter gatherer’ approach to footwear design. What stands out most are his experiments with last shapes and constructions. He takes parts out of lasts and distorts them, creating a clunky, orthopaedic and even clown like look. The seemingly random yet highly skilled way he makes rugged heels and outsoles, using stacked leather and wood, is something we have never seen before.

More Aku Bäckström shoes in the Virtual Shoe Museum.

Dutch Design Week
SLEM Hall 2 of the Klokgebouw at Strijp S

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