pull up a (bejewelled) pew

A few years ago, while I was living it up artist-style in Hackney, I was invited to contribute some work to an art fair in a local gallery. The idea of the show, titled 'Now or Neverland', was that every participant went to the gallery 24 hours before the show opened and were allowed one or two found items to use as the basis of their piece. They then had 24 hours to make the piece and install it in location. The show was also given a theme: Rococo.

MANY ARTISTS. 1 SMALL SPACE. NO TIME TO WASTE. This second annual On The Fly Art Fair is born out of an open invitation to conceive, make, and display works of art within the span of 24 hours. Artists will be presented with a mystery set of compulsory gallery-issued booty the night before the exhibition is launched. They have been ordered to create works from the prizes of a Hackney hunt for discarded treasure, conducted by Ingrid Z, Dayvid Lott, Patrick Wolf and Jo Apps.

I know, I know... how on earth are you supposed to make something Rococo-themed - sumptuous, decadent, lavish, indulgent - with a bunch of random found items? Well that was the fun of it, and no one knew quite how it would turn out... Everyone had their own take on the theme: some came as the embodiment of Rococo wearing outfits made of rubbish and glitter, some made conceptual pieces which evolved as the night went on, including the Director of the gallery, Ingrid Z:

...and some people made smaller, only slightly extravagent items. I was one of those people.

The first thing that came to my mind when I thought about 'Rococo' was the style of chairs popular at the time (perhaps I had been hanging out with designers for too long?) so I decided to base my piece around that idea. The items I had been given were from a board game, of which I have never known the name, and consisted of lots of action cards and other playing cards with various scenarios on them.

I had to incorporate these into my chair idea, and, instead of making tiny chairs out of the cards, which perhaps I should have done thinking about it now, I made flat illustrated chair pieces using the cards and some old images of Rococo-style chairs, which were then adorned with glitter, diamante bits and sequins, and made into jewellery - brooches and pendants. I then developed the range (!) to include other pieces of Rococo furniture adorned with glitter. Having only 24 hours in which to make something exhibit-able within a certain theme was a great motivator - there was no chance to stop and think about it, you just had to get on with it.

One of the main reasons for choosing the idea was the fact that I hadn't often seen images of furniture in jewellery and I thought it'd be a pretty neat idea. Little did I know there are plenty of us chair jewellery fanatics out there...

2 hellos:

Tails of Tranquility said...

I love your story behind the chair selection! Thank you so much for including my arm chair necklace. Laura xxx

Vixie said...

You're welcome, Laura - it's super cute!

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