25 January 2013 - 27 February 2013
The juxtaposition of small and large is significant in Bliss, as is the
use of contrasting materials such as wool and silver. Our relationship
to the small, "cute" primates is different to the "friendly", life-sized
companions - perfectly sized to mirror human fallibility. Similarly,
our response to the soft toys contrasts with our reading of the
jewellery. In these "serious" objects, mimicry has also been employed -
so, although imitative at first glance, their functionality has been
subverted by the artist. The artist wants us to look closely and
question the hard truth of what we see. Each monkey is paired with a
recognisable object made from sterling silver: a non-functional hearing
aid, a pacifier, and a monocle. Although these items can be worn on the
body - for some of us they demand a rethinking about the criteria used
to define jewellery.
The selection and arrangement of the soft and
hard objects engages the viewer in play; we are encouraged to "monkey
around". Ultimately, the recognition of these objects as jewellery,
signals a level of acceptance - possibly even a readiness for action.
Stella Chrysostomou is a conceptual jeweller based in Nelson.