Art & Innovation

Traditional Arctic Footwear from the Bata Shoe Museum Collection – Closes April 30, 2022

Situated at the very top of the world, the Arctic spans over fourteen million square kilometers and eight countries. While its landscape seems harsh and inhospitable, over forty distinct cultural groups have thrived here for centuries. And among the most beautiful and innovative of their products are the footwear and clothing they created to meet environmental challenges and express cultural meanings.

Drawing from the BSM’s extensive circumpolar holdings, and building upon information gathered from extensive, museum-sponsored fieldwork, Art and Innovation showcases a vast variety of footwear, garments and tools. These highlight the artistry and ingenuity of the makers and reveal different cultural identities, crafting techniques and spiritual meanings.

Did you know that the BSM has a streaming audio guide for this gallery available to all visitors free of charge (in English and in French)?  Click here for more information.

For media requests please contact Rosmarie Gadzovski, Head of Communications
For image requests please contact Suzanne Petersen, Collections Manager/Registrar.

In this episode of the BSM’s web series “The World at Your Feet”, Senior Curator Elizabeth Semmelhack examines the techniques and skills used by Canadian Inuit women to create intricate and beautiful designs on traditional kamiks.