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How the Brooklyn Museum Will Get Dudes to a Fashion Exhibit

Driely S.
Driely S.

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If you're as dedicated to the city's amazing rotation of fashion exhibits as we are, then you've probably noticed that exhibit attendance—from Jean Paul Gaultier to punk to Victorian mourning to dance costumes to killer heels—has always been overwhelmingly female. But Elizabeth Semmelhack of Toronto's Bata Shoe Museum predicts, the Brooklyn Museum's latest spectacle might have a more even gender ratio, and perhaps it'll even draw in more men than women overall.

"I find it interesting that men have been willing to put styles and colors on their feet that they would reject in other outfits," Semmelhack, who originally curated Out of the Box: The Rise of Sneaker Culturetold The Cut. Sneakers that'll be on display this summer include everyone from Nike to Adidas to Converse to Louis Vuitton, and almost almost every pair is a men's style—though back at Bata, Semmelhack says their collections skew evenly between men's and women's pairs.

"Sneakers are a means of enfranchising men into the fashion system," she continued. "They allow men to break out of the uniformity of dress in which all men are expected to dress similarly. Think about a formal event: It's expected that all the men will dress the same, whereas no two women could possibly show up in the same dress." Which explains why dudes didn't linger at Charles James like we did.

The Rise of Sneaker Culture opens at the Brooklyn Museum on July 10th.

Brooklyn Museum

200 Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn, NY 11238 (718) 638-5000 Visit Website