Describing it as 'nuts' is not very eloquent or cultured of me but seriously, this sculpture is visually nuts in a fabulous bonkersly beautiful and surprising way. Putting my lack of articulation aside, the artist explains it waaaay better anyway...
In my work I wish to discuss how attitudes to wearing birds parts have changed. Is this just because of fashion, or has society become more caring of animals? I wish to stimulate the viewer with the uncomfortable nature of the feather, to question our callousness treatment of animals and birds, and ask how we sub-consciously classify animals – pet or pest, valued or worthless, beautiful or plain and why.
This work struck me as amazing because of two reasons, the first, as I mentioned earlier, because it is so surprising and the second because of its colour - the intense and striking spectrum available only from feathers.
The bulk of the reason I love birds is due to their plummage, yes I appreciate that makes me superficial but I have never fully forgiven them for leaving their "criticism" all over a particular large and labour intensive print I had left drying in the sun out back...
Hmm, moving on.... back to their plummage, it's colour-tastic. It's the best inspiration for colour specification I know of: the mardi-gras in riot thats appearing on many a bird these days: from lorikeets to Lady Gaga; and courtesy of the galah comes the North Shore interor designer's palette of choice: soft smokey greys and neutrals accented with a splash of colour. Nice one, Mother Nature. A thousand design agencies thank you.
So, back to Emily, here are some more of her brilliant (and vividly named) sculptures...
From the series Dog Flu, comes The Long Haired Dashcock
The Spanudgie II and The Galahier
The Baby Budgie Beagle, the Golden Haired Dashant, the Lakeland Galah
and the Rozellador!
Emily also creates jewellery like the Turtle Brooch and for her latest work she is transforming kitty cats, like this great work, Catty Bird.
And finally her Myna Squadron, shown below, is moving "the work in a new direction - combining the man-made form with the bird. Planes are colonising the skies. Birds no longer dominate our view of the heavens."
I get such a kick - visually and mentally - when ordinary everyday sometimes mundane things are shown from a new perspective. Either through words or images: challenging you to think again, see again, make you smile at the new view or even laugh at yourself for your previously pedestrian or lazy view.
Some of Emily's work was recently on show at the Flinders Lane Gallery (one of the many reasons I wish Melbourne was closer) as part of Exploration 12, an annual show showcasing emerging and unsigned artists.
So keep your eye out for the exhibition next year plus when you're next on Flinders Lane, pop in to see what wonderful eclectic thought-provoking arresting art FLG have on their walls that month.
Flinders Lane Gallery
137 Flinders Lane, Melbourne VIC 3000
Tags: art, melbourne, peacock
Coco Chanel once famously said, “Before you leave for the day…take one thing off…”
And it is an adage I have long subscribed to. Even in the 80s when fashion resembled the collison site of a rainbow lorriket with a Jackson Pollock painting and that ‘one thing’ was the smallest of the seven fluro bangles.
Now Ms Chanel has obviously never met New York’s, Iris Apfel.
At 88 years old, this “Rare Bird of Fashion” wears colour sublimely fabulously in a vibrant and effervescent manner worthy of her status as ruling doyenne of iconic personal style.
Growing up in New York to a mother who “worshipped at the alter of accessories” and an eccentric decorator father who worked with legendary interior designer, Elsie de Wolfe. She was hardly going to be a wallflower.
Iris and her hubby created the textile company, Old World Weavers, specialising in restoring and creating traditional fabrics in the traditional methids. Not only did this give them the opportunity to travel the world (in style on transatlantic steamers and European trains worthy of an Agatha Christie novel), working with some the finest craftsman and artisans of the fabric world, but these trips also gave Iris the opportunity to add to her huge collection of accessories and fashion along the way.
Nothing was sacred, elephant head dresses worn as necklaces, chunks of turquoise turned into belts and a flea market priest’s tunic transformed into a coat for posh dinners (that BTW she worm when dining at the White House during Nixon’s reign as he supposedly never turned the heating on!!)
She wears her outfits (yes ‘outfits’ as ‘clothes’ does not do them justice) effortlessly with a class and pizzazz (yes, ‘pizzazz’ I know it hasn’t been used in vernacular since Kylie did the Locomotion BUT heck its appropriate). Anyhoo, Iris embraces colour in such a wonderful way that is inspiration enough to get the most devout monochromaticists busting out the fluros.
“When you don’t dress like everybody else, you don’t have to think like everybody else.”
Iris's eye for colour has led to some serendipitious collobrations.
Her limited edition range for M.A.C (with portrait by Bruce Weber, no less), is inspired by her Rare Bird status, lipsticks include, now, wait for it, Flamingo, yes, told you it was the bird to watch! Which is light milky bright coral, Morange (loudmouth orange), Party Parrot (bright red-pink), Pink Pigeon (bright cleanest pink), and Scarlet Ibis (bright orange-red). A eyeshadow called Robin’s Egg eyeshadow and a Toco Toucan nail polish.
With such visually vivid names like those who said birds were 'so last year'???
Iris also has a jewellery line for HSN based on her very own collection. But if that’s not enough to consolidate her position in hallways of inspiration then howabout Jimmy Choo designing a shoe after you?
P.S. And one last note from the Guardian’s Jess Morley-Carter:
“She is far from immune from fashion snobbery, and has been known to rail against fat people wearing stretch jeans, and anyone at all wearing flip-flops”!
Awesome, I certainly hope jeggings are in her Room 101 too!!!
Images: Bruce Weber, Chester Higgins, Martha Camarillo, Thames & Hudson, Vogue Australia, Vogue Nippon, Architectural Digest, Getty Images, Zimbio, M.A.C, HSC and Jimmy Choo
Tags: accessories, colour, fabric, personality
Romancing the colour palette
I love BIG colour and who else but home grown fashionites, Romance Was Born, does it so well??
Images from Romance Was Born
Tags: , Fashion
Bright shining mecca of design
If you were wondering where all the cool kids in their watermelon sneakers were hanging out, well, it appears to be Koskela's new space in Rosebery. Good grief, its overload of inspiration!
The space itself is every stylist dream, the muted texture of the distressed brick walls and cracked concrete flooring contrasting with the vivacious pops of colour (strategically) strewn around.
Next to that sits a shrine to kids - beds made from branches made up with bedlinen from Rachel Castle, decorate with knitted toys and covetable velvet cushions. Am in love with the huge wombat made from a tree trunk.
Wander further along past the workroom to spy a selection of art installations, Kosela tables with fluro yellow dipped legs, a selection of goodies from Bonnie and Neil. And if thats not enough there's a homewares section replete with ceramics, knitted cacti and a wide selection of arty teatowels (only thing missing were the Materialistic ones...).
All images taken at Kosela. Check it out yourselves and absolutely don't forget to leave enough time for the taste sensation of lunch at the canteen Kitchen by Mike.