The Giant Shoe on Liberty St.
Question Corner: September 2017
by Tim Athan
From the September, 2017 issue
Q. At 811 Liberty St. is a home with a giant shoe suspended on their porch … Why??
A. The shoe may look familiar to some passersby; for years, it was a fixture in the front window of Park Shoe Repair on N. Fourth Ave. It's the work of Mark Tucker, co-founder and creative director of the annual FestiFools and FoolMoon events. He emails:
"It may be the first papier-māché piece I ever made-I was fooling around with the techniques I learned while I was on sabbatical in Viareggio, Italy during the period of time that I was the Art Director for the Michigan Thanksgiving Parade (1987-89). The shoe was a gift for my friend Kay Kendall [Ann Arborites, February 2017], who supported me immensely when I was just out of college. The old broken shoe wasn't just a way to represent Kay's latest business venture (Park Shoe Repair) but was also a metaphor for the many miles she's traveled, both literally and figuratively, to get there. She's a self-made person, extremely hard working, inspirational, and generous to a fault."
When Kendall sold her business, she gave the shoe to the new owners. When we told her its whereabouts, she visited 811 W. Liberty. Homeowner Ella August, who got the shoe from the new owners, was happy to reunite it with the person who inspired it. The shoe now hangs on the porch of Kendall's home at Kingsley and Ashley, a whimsical accent to her bountiful flower gardens.
Got a question? Email firstname.lastname@example.org
[Originally published in September, 2017.]
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