Elsa Schiaparelli (Italian, 1890–1973)
Black wool felt
W. 11 in. (27.9 cm)
Gift of Rose Messing, 1974 (1974.139)
Schiaparelli's collaboration with Salvador Dalí reached the height of Surrealist absurdity in this high-heeled shoe from winter 1937–38. The idea for it, as recounted in Dilys Blum's authoritative book on the designer, was a photograph of Dalí wearing a shoe on his head and another on his shoulder taken by his wife in 1933. The hat was made to wear with a black dress and jacket embroidered with red lips that were suggestive of those belonging to the voluptuous actress Mae West, for whom Schiaparelli was designing movie costumes at the time.