About Shoe Shop

Shoe Shop is a series of events and project nodes that reflect on the human movement in public space, particularly walking. The project works with collectives, young and established artists (writers, filmmakers, photographers) that look at, analyse and reconceptualise, the literal physical movement of walking in its geopolitical setting, contributing to a changing discourse on Pan-African and global human mobility and migration.

The project provides fragments of a public space in Johannesburg and beyond to think, walk and talk movement – remembering demarcations and physicalities, negotiating space, imagining futures and simply enjoying the physical act of walking.

Shoe Shop is curated by Marie-Hélène Gutberlet, a German-based curator, film scholar and writer, and Cara Snyman, South African writer and curator. They have both worked together on the subject since 2010.

The project includes photographic installations in public space; the opening of a month-long pop-up space; a film programme; a series of lectures/short presentations; artist walks, performances; a photography and a film workshop. A major publication will also accompany the festival.


6 May

The first Sunday, 6 May, is dedicated to launch the Shoe Shop project with a marching party leading from Braamfontein to the Drill Hall via Joubert Park, featuring the Alexandra Field Band, Rangoato Hlasane & Malose Malahlela and the Thath’i Cover Okestra fusing with Kwaito/House DJing. The official launch will start at the Shoe Shop, 6 De Beer Street at 11.30am. More


Exhibition in public space

The exhibition of photographers’ work in Johannesburg comment on a search for public space. Side-walks, shop fronts, outside walls and bus shelters in Naledi, Braamfontein, Hillbrow, Parktown, the Maboneng distinct become exhibition spaces for works by artists Jodi Bieber, Musa Nxumalo, Guy Woueté, Sokona Diabaté, Thabiso Sekgala, Fatoumata Diabaté, Amadou Sow and Emmanuel Bakary Daou. Photographs are printed on large billboards and smaller posters. The specific installations point at geopolitical meanings and have various levels of access for different groups of the population – provoking a discussion on accessibility of art and on public space.
Posters are also available to visitors to Shoe Shop to continue parts of the exhibition elsewhere.
The exhibition takes place at different locations. Works will be seen between 1 and 31 May. More


Gata le nna, Walk with me – film programme at The Bioscope

The programme assembles mainly films by African directors of the past decade. They lead us to reflect on walking as a political reality and cinematic motive. The film programme runs on Thursdays at 7:30pm and Sundays at 3pm at the Bioscope for the month of May and further screenings in cooperation with the Film + School project that involves learners from surrounding schools.
Venue: The Bioscope, 286 Fox Street, Maboneng, Johannesburg 2094
Gata le nna, “walk with me” brochure download (PDF)


The Shoe Shop

The month-long pop-up project space is the venue for smaller events, lectures, presentations, as well as a meeting point for artist walks and performances.
Venue: Shoe Shop, 6 De Beer Street, Braamfontein (2 to 30 May; Finissage: 1 June).
Opening: 2 May, 4pm





* The film workshop invites practitioners to look at the motive of walking in African cinema. Annett Busch together with Khalo Matabane, Andy Amadi Okoroafor and Idrissou Mora-Kpai lead the workshop at the Bioscope (on invitation; 7 to 10 May).
Download the Film Workshop Brochure (PDF)

* The photo workshop offers the participating photographers the opportunity to experience Johannesburg (3 to 5 May).
Further details will be available as soon as possible.




The Shoe Shop reader is published by Fanele/Jacana Media and includes contributions by Kemang Wa Lehulere, Penny Siopis, WJT Mitchell, Sissy Helff, Gael Reagon, Thenjiwe Nkosi, George Osodi, Jean-Bernard Ouédraogo, Andries Walter Oliphant, Ismail Farouk and others. It aims to create a critical and thoughtful space to consider film, photography and literature related to migration on the African continent. The book also serves as a bridge between the previous iteration of Migration and Media in Bamako, Mali, and the South African-based Shoe Shop.