No. 5

Thigh Highs with Riconneaus

Written by Chava Krivchenia by Sandra Myhrberg

Eugène Riconneaus greatest desire is to treat each pair of heels and couture sandals with the respect anyone should give woman’s feet, a respect taught to him through a true shoemaking education and a love of fashion and its power.

He greets me from across the country not out of obligation but because of a love for his art. Riconneaus makes art of all types sometimes using designs that reflect the distance travelled during a skateboarder’s journey. Ramps are constructed and paint is put on wheels just like Rauschenberg did in the piece Monogram (1955-59).

Riconneaus’ fascination only starts with the wheel, the mannerisms of women creates the driving inspiration for Riconneaus’ art concepts. By observing and reflecting upon women’s movement Riconneaus is able to design his perfect shoe. The final products effortlessly communicates woman nature and the silhouette.

He focuses on each of his pieces to be one of a kind both in his shoes and fine arts practice. His affiliation with the skating community may mislead a customer into thinking that the company and Riconneaus have a laid back attitude,(too general) but the culture requires risk and endurance. When I asked how he responds to the deadlines imperative in the fashion industry, he responded that he believes everyday carries deadlines regardless of the fashion calendar. He may be spontaneous in his social life but in business and in shoemaking he is a methodical. He started his business with one hundred Euros that he invested along with all of his time and energy and the start of his shoe business. Now the business is invariably successful, with waitlists and demand from all around the world, and an online store.

Despite this success, Riconneaus still maintains his control over all aspect of the creation process. Hand-painting individual shoes and maintaining a high quality of production. When asked about future projects Eugene Riconneaus says that tomorrow, he will be launching a store on the moon.