The Silent March of Ownerless Shoes


Each of the 127 pairs of shoes represents a woman killed.

127 pairs of shoes without their proprietresses. This is what remains of the women murdered by their men (husbands, partners, ex-fiancés, relatives) in Italy in 2012. Every pair of shoes is accompanied by a signpost, indicating the victim’s name, age and who killed her.

Zonta Club Casale Monferrato has seized the suggestions made by the artist E. Chauvet with his “Zapatos Rojos”, creating an installation approved by the artist himself. With this initiative, the Club brings the message ZONTA SAYS NO to the squares of Northern Italy. This initiative is part of the campaign HANDS OFF OF WOMEN promoted by District 30, Area 03.

The Municipality of Alessandria has chosen the installation as the closing event of a month dedicated to Women.


On Saturday, 23 March, in Alessandria’s central gallery Guerci, local government, Zonta Club Casale Monferrato and Zonta Club Alessandria, in cooperation with Anti-violence centre me.dea, have provoked people with 127 pairs of shoes, silently denouncing feminicide, a crime which cannot be ignored, neither in Italy nor worldwide. The shoes chosen for this representation are of every kind of style and make, because there is no single “model” of woman as victim of violence. This phenomenon hits indiscriminately: housewives, mothers, students, female employees as well as businesswomen.

SONY DSC “It doesn’t make any difference which kind of shoes the victims wore, heels or ballerinas, sneakers or flip-flops. They were women who have been killed because they refused someone or because they made a choice which differed from what their partner wanted. Violence against women is often steeped in prejudices and stereotypes, a form of violence in themselves. Zonta clubs use these silent manifestations to say NO to violence against women and they do this not only on 8 March or 25 November; they do it all the time, because violence against women has no schedule,” said District 30 Governor Nadia Biancato during the event hosted in her city.

The community has been invited to bring other shoes, red shoes, to condemn feminicide, domestic violence, stalking, and any kind of psychological abuse and economic violence women have to suffer just because they are women.


3 thoughts on “The Silent March of Ownerless Shoes

  1. What a fabulous idea. DV needs to be made visible and this is an excellent way to get the message across. Very sobering.

  2. What a striking visual of the loss due to domestic violence. I’m suggesting this as a project for my own club. South Carolina is 2nd in the nation in domestic violence and this representation should get the problem noticed.
    Cherry Temple, Zonta Club of Myrtle Beach

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