40 days 40 necklaces

From 25 September to 3 November 2015, for 40 consecutive days, I made a necklace every day.

The neckpiece Day 17 – chain of fools, was presented at the What Goes Around, JMGA-WA exhibition at Turner Gallery, Perth. It won the Best interpretation of the theme JMGA-WA Award

What interested me initially in this project was to create a momentum, a continuous focus in the creative process as well as in the making. It was an amazing experience that strengthened my confidence in my own creative ideas and my ability to bring them to life into 3D objects. I marvelled at the power of giving up control, letting go and having fun.

This body of work is an expression of the state of mind I was in at the time, with the title of each piece giving a clue on the mood I was in that day. Every evening I would post a photo of the necklace of the day on Instagram and on my blog.

I used a great variety of materials, mostly up-cycled and repurposed. I had a collection of materials, found objects and maquettes or experiments that I had gathered over time that I could draw from every day. It was a lot of fun to change style and materials completely from one day to the next. Play had a big place in this project. I learned flexibility, letting the materials and my hands go where they wanted to go, every day was a new adventure. I also quickly found out that a simple idea wasn’t necessarily going to be quick and easy to make.

I explored the notion of preciousness in my use of found objects. An object is special and precious to me because I never found any other like that, it is unique. It is also precious because I found it, I created a relationship with this object. Found objects are usually at the end of their natural life cycle and I like to I bring them back to life. The life I choose for them. I play god like a little girl assigning roles to her toys.

For some pieces I was inspired by existing artworks from other artists. In  “ceci n’est pas une pipe” on day 22, I re-interpreted Magritte’s demonstration that the image of an object is not the object itself. With the necklace I made I looked into the relationship between the name of an object and its function. If an object has lost its original function, the one for which it was called a certain name, it cannot be called by that name anymore. Ceci n’est pas une pipe – this is not a pipe, it’s a necklace.

On day 12, the neckpiece “framed” was made in reference to Otto Kunzli’s 1984 Beauty gallery series: “Susi, Andrea and Sabine”. My personal interpretation was that we are “framed” into a certain style of thinking and behaviour through our familial, social and cultural experiences. My life has been marked by experiences of absence and deaths, hence the use of black colour, while play had an important role my life, here symbolised by the red Lego piece.