It was a visit in 2012 to Street, a small Somerset (UK) village with a big Shoe Museum that 'tipped the scales' for John Perry. Upon returning to New Zealand he started to consolidate shoe, and shoe-related, material collected on an ad hoc basis over the past 40 years.
John Perry says:
It all started with a vintage pair of child's boots in mint condition that I had come by in the early 1970s and then put on display in the local museum. The second acquisition in my collection was another child's boot that I rescued from the Kaukapakapa rubbish dump in the mid 1970s, the rest is history. There were a couple of other shoe-related factors that have contributed to my collecting of this material. One was my visit to the first exhibition of shoes in a museum in New Zealand, in the early 1990s, at the Dowse Art Museum. The second was my contact, over a 20-year period in Rotorua, with an amazing woman collector Norma Evans. She had amassed during her lifetime a collection of over 3000 miniature shoes from around the world.
These factors in retrospect have all contributed to my collecting these nineteenth and twentieth century artefacts. I trust that you enjoy this humble installation.
John Perry is a private and professional collector. In careers as an artist, gallerist and inspirational director of a public art museum he has remained a committed private collector. His own collection is renowned as being vast in scope, globally concerned, unorthodox in content and historically significant. He now works as a collector/retailer and consultant to auction houses, other collectors and public institutions.