Gentle Step! - Bata Shoe Museum: Toronto, Canada. 1995 ©

Gentle Step exhibit at Bata Shoe Museum was one of the inaugural exhibitions at Mrs. Sonia Bata’s then newly opened Raymond Moriyama designed museum in Toronto.

Design & Construction Studio: MC Sq’d.
Creative Director: R.Milo; Chief Designers: V.Lawrence & R.Cortés; Museum Director: E.Maeder; Curator: J.Walford; Carpentry: Castelli Construction; Audio Components: M. Bates of Mystus Interactus; Costumes: Courtesy of the Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto.
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Designers and curators created a small mid 19th. century town using digitally printed antique wood cuts that were clad onto theatre flats representing a shop, gallery, ballroom, church, theatre, Victorian garden and a small town square.
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Entrance to the exhibition (above) led the visitor to an audio kiosk with interactive audio of recorded comments by fashion magazine writers and critics of the period.

Exhibition Poster designed by R.Cortés of MC Sq’d.
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My group recreated the display cases, lighting and the ambiance of a Victorian era shop as it may have looked and felt to a woman buying herself latest style shoes to match her dress before going out to see the exhibits at the newly constructed Crystal Palace in London.
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After the London’s Great Exhibition of 1851 the interest in attending the art galleries initiated a desire in young women to take up a new hobby of painting and drawing.
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Gilbert & Sullivan’s operetta Mikado became all the rage, which had an inevitable influence on shoes and fashion of the Victorians.