Here at The Ethnographic Collections, we have the most wonderful collection of shoes. They were collected by Søren Ludvig Tuxen, zoologist, and a bit of a shoe fetishist. Since the beginning of this blog, we have featured a wide selection of his shoes, from the Icelandic leather shoes with the knitted insoles, these lush Russian velvet boots, the intricate Turkish harem shoes, to the fabulously named Gowrounotsaronchas from Greece.
Today, we travel to Indonesia, to enjoy these slightly odd sandals. We will let Tuxen himself explain, what they are all about:
“Indonesian kelom genlis. They were given to me by Mrs Pauline Sahertian-Bakhoven […] on the 12th of June 1958. Kelom genlis means ‘shoes, beautiful’ and they are typical Sundanese shoes from the environs of Bandung, West Java. Their soles and heel are made from crude rubber, and other than that they are made from lacquered wood […] The egg is decorative and made of wood. It signifies that the woman breaks an egg when marrying. Mrs Pauline Sahertian-Bakhoven was given the shoes by her mother at her wedding; she had the rubber sole fitted herself because of the asphalt roads. The egg is a fertility symbol”.