Edition:
India
Pictures | Tue Feb 25, 2020 | 7:10am IST

The art of the shoe: Louboutin on exhibit

The Paris building that inspired shoemaker Christian Louboutin's obsession with stiletto heels is, nearly half a century later, home to a retrospective on his career. Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, France, February 21, 2020. 
REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

The Paris building that inspired shoemaker Christian Louboutin's obsession with stiletto heels is, nearly half a century later, home to a retrospective on his career. Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press...more

The Paris building that inspired shoemaker Christian Louboutin's obsession with stiletto heels is, nearly half a century later, home to a retrospective on his career. Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, France, February 21, 2020. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Close
1 / 18
Louboutin - best known for producing shoes with soles painted lipstick-red - used to go to the Palais de la Porte Doree to look at exhibitions when he was a boy.

He remembers a sign with a picture of a spike-heeled shoe with a red line through it, banning women from wearing stilettos to protect the wooden floors.  REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Louboutin - best known for producing shoes with soles painted lipstick-red - used to go to the Palais de la Porte Doree to look at exhibitions when he was a boy. He remembers a sign with a picture of a spike-heeled shoe with a red line through it,...more

Louboutin - best known for producing shoes with soles painted lipstick-red - used to go to the Palais de la Porte Doree to look at exhibitions when he was a boy. He remembers a sign with a picture of a spike-heeled shoe with a red line through it, banning women from wearing stilettos to protect the wooden floors. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Close
2 / 18
He spent hours reproducing that image in his sketchbooks, laying the foundations for his career as a designer.

"I owe a lot to the drawing," he told Reuters. "I reproduced it a lot, changing the colors a bit, changing the form a bit, but I always drew ... a shoe in profile, without knowing that it could be a profession."  REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

He spent hours reproducing that image in his sketchbooks, laying the foundations for his career as a designer. "I owe a lot to the drawing," he told Reuters. "I reproduced it a lot, changing the colors a bit, changing the form a bit, but I always...more

He spent hours reproducing that image in his sketchbooks, laying the foundations for his career as a designer. "I owe a lot to the drawing," he told Reuters. "I reproduced it a lot, changing the colors a bit, changing the form a bit, but I always drew ... a shoe in profile, without knowing that it could be a profession." REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Close
3 / 18
After an apprenticeship with Paris fashion houses, Louboutin set up his own brand and a shop in 1991. He attracted a line-up of high-profile customers including film stars, musicians and royals.

While working on one prototype, he saw someone next to him painting their nails, borrowed their varnish and tried putting some of it on the sole.

"It was a revelation," he said. "It became a trademark and I'm happy that I kept it." French shoe designer Christian Louboutin speaks to reporters during a press preview of his exhibition. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

After an apprenticeship with Paris fashion houses, Louboutin set up his own brand and a shop in 1991. He attracted a line-up of high-profile customers including film stars, musicians and royals. While working on one prototype, he saw someone next to...more

After an apprenticeship with Paris fashion houses, Louboutin set up his own brand and a shop in 1991. He attracted a line-up of high-profile customers including film stars, musicians and royals. While working on one prototype, he saw someone next to him painting their nails, borrowed their varnish and tried putting some of it on the sole. "It was a revelation," he said. "It became a trademark and I'm happy that I kept it." French shoe designer Christian Louboutin speaks to reporters during a press preview of his exhibition. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Close
4 / 18
There is a whole room devoted to his "nude" shoes that match the wearer's skin tone.  REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

There is a whole room devoted to his "nude" shoes that match the wearer's skin tone. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

There is a whole room devoted to his "nude" shoes that match the wearer's skin tone. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Close
5 / 18
The exhibition, entitled "Christian Louboutin l'Exhibition" showcases the inspirations behind the designer's work, landmarks in his career, and contemporary artists who have re-interpreted his work.  REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

The exhibition, entitled "Christian Louboutin l'Exhibition" showcases the inspirations behind the designer's work, landmarks in his career, and contemporary artists who have re-interpreted his work. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

The exhibition, entitled "Christian Louboutin l'Exhibition" showcases the inspirations behind the designer's work, landmarks in his career, and contemporary artists who have re-interpreted his work. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Close
6 / 18
Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Close
7 / 18
Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Close
8 / 18
Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Close
9 / 18
Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Close
10 / 18
Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Close
11 / 18
Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Close
12 / 18
Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Close
13 / 18
Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Close
14 / 18
Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Close
15 / 18
Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Close
16 / 18
Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Close
17 / 18
Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Creations by French shoe designer Christian Louboutin are displayed during a press preview of his exhibition "L'Exhibition[niste]" (The exhibition[ist]) in Paris, February 21. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Close
18 / 18

Next Slideshows

Best of Berlinale

Highlights from the International Film Festival in Berlin.

25 Feb 2020

Best of Milan Fashion Week

Backstage and collection highlights from Milan Fashion Week.

24 Feb 2020

Best of the Brit Awards

Highlights from the Brit Awards in London.

19 Feb 2020

Brit Awards red carpet

Style on the Brit Awards arrivals carpet in London.

19 Feb 2020

MORE IN PICTURES

Spectacular fall colors around the world

Spectacular fall colors around the world

Mother Nature puts on an autumn show.

Chile anniversary rallies turn violent as churches burned, police fire tear gas

Chile anniversary rallies turn violent as churches burned, police fire tear gas

Tens of thousands of Chileans marked the one-year anniversary of mass protests that left over 30 dead and thousands injured, with peaceful rallies on Sunday devolving by nightfall into riots and looting.

Fighting and recriminations shake Nagorno-Karabakh ceasefire hopes

Fighting and recriminations shake Nagorno-Karabakh ceasefire hopes

A new ceasefire in the mountain territory of Nagorno-Karabakh was in jeopardy with Azerbaijan and ethnic Armenian forces reporting shelling and heavy fighting.

Defiant protesters take over Bangkok streets

Defiant protesters take over Bangkok streets

Thousands of anti-government protesters took over key intersections in Bangkok defying a ban on protests with chants of "down with dictatorship" and "reform the monarchy."

Life and death in COVID units around the world

Life and death in COVID units around the world

Inside hospital wards around the world where medical staff are treating the most severe cases of coronavirus.

Top Photos of the Day

Top Photos of the Day

Our top photos from the last 24 hours.

India this week

India this week

A roundup in pictures this week

Plastic pollution for sale at New York pop-up store

Plastic pollution for sale at New York pop-up store

Products made entirely of plastic bags line the shelves at this pop-up store to raise awareness of the material's environmental issues.

Thai police use water cannons on defiant protesters

Thai police use water cannons on defiant protesters

Thai police used water cannons and pushed forward with riot shields and batons on Friday to try to disperse thousands of protesters who defied a ban on protests for a second day.

Trending Collections

Pictures

Podcast