Zapatos Rojos | Red Shoes

Zapatos Rojos|Red Shoes is an itinerant installation originally organized by artist and architect Elina Chauvet in 2009, in Ciudad Juárez, Mexico. It was comprised of 33 pairs of red shoes, each representing a woman who had disappeared in that community, and designed to draw attention to the fact that women were being killed without any consequences.

Since then, Chauvet has continued to develop the installation into a call to bring awareness and to work in solidarity to fight violence against women all over the world. She has re-installed the exhibition in several countries around the world including: Italy, Norway, Spain, Argentina, Chile, Ecuador, Brazil, Sweden, Canada, Germany, France, the United States and Mexico.

In the fall of 2017, GVSU Modern Languages Professor, Zulema Moret arranged for Chauvet to direct an installation of the Zapatos Rojos|Red Shoes in Grand Rapids. This exhibition documents many of the community groups that participated in painting the shoes, as well as the installation on October 21 at the Richard M. DeVos Center courtyard on the Pew Grand Rapids Campus.

abstract picture of white gloved hand holding pair of red shoes with black background

Luis Fonseca, Red Shoes, GVSU Installation

pairs of red shoes arranged across brick courtyard

Emily Frye, Red Shoes (detail), GVSU Installation

close up of woman spraying shoes with red spray paint

Luis Fonseca, Grand Rapids community members paint shoes for the Red Shoes Project (detail)

group of college students sitting on tarp in grass paying shoes red with brushes

Emily Frye, GVSU students paint shoes for the Red Shoe Project (detail) 


To learn more Zapatos Rojos | Red Shoes Project, installation, and Elina Chauvet, check out these resources:

Pair of sequin heels painted red, sitting on pavement in courtyard

Luis Fonseca, Red Shoes (detail), GVSU Installation


March 6 – June 19, 2020
West Wall Gallery
301 Fulton St W
Grand Rapids, MI 49504


Previous Exhibit Locations:
November 1, 2019 – February 28, 2020
Russel H. Kirkhof Center Gallery
1 Campus Dr
Allendale, Michigan 49401 

Gallery hours are reflective of exhibit building location, including changes made due to semester, holiday, or campus-wide event.



For special accommodation, please call:
(616) 331-2563

For exhibition details and media inquires, please email:
Joel Zwart, Curator of Exhibitions
[email protected]

Page last modified March 16, 2020