One and One make One

At the end of 2014 I was asked poet and curator Jen Calleja to write a poem about a piece of fashion for the exhibition ‘Another Austria‘ at the Austrian Cultural Forum to celebrate Austrian design during London Fashion Week in February 2015. Jen curated the literary contribution alongside exhibition curator and designer in her own right Claudia Rosa Lukas.

I was given the extraordinary architecture inspired shoes designed by Carolin Holzhuber to write about, pictured below. I was fascinated by this pair in particular and the fact that each shoe is in fact, two shoes and can be worn in several ways.

Shoes designed by Carolin Holzhuber | Photo: Thuy Pham
Shoes designed by Carolin Holzhuber | Photo: Thuy Pham

each one is almost
but not quite one:

one, but two as well
one above and one below

first, one is above and
then one is below and
then one is above and
then one is below

two ones
not the same,
not quite.
one and one make one

– all together

here is the shoe, blue
and here is the shoe, white
there and here
blue and white
one each colour,
there are two
but they still make one

– absurd

the colours are cool
cool and smooth,
cool and clear headed,
calculating as a structural engineer shooting steel
sky high into blue and white.
cool leather,
skins turned blue,
turned white and facing each other
one high one low
here is the shoe
so where is the foot?

where should the foot
where should the shoe
where above
and where below?

which the foot
which the shoe
what foot
what shoe
should go
should it go

walking ?

it should be a shoe
in for each foot
but one and one
make two for one foot
and only one can go in each

making the choice between one and one
slows the pace
of shoeing the foot

four shoes for two feet
four that can only go
two at a time

A lovely reading of the poem by actor Christoph Dostal One was recorded too.

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