Bullseye presents BodyWork

Bonnie Serkin wearing Heike Brachlow's Change!, 2011
cast glass and silver, 1 x 1 x 1 inches, 18 inch chain
photo: M. Schmitt

Portland, OR – BodyWork, on view November 30th through December 31st, brings together an eclectic group of artists working in glass. These artists have chosen to augment their more traditional studio practices with the making of wearable art. The creation of jewelry stretches the approach of the maker by forcing utilitarian concerns such as body placement and fit, while simultaneously expanding the potential for meaning through the relationship between the work and the wearer. A piece of adornment goes beyond its static value as an art object and is animated by its wearer, even to the level of performance.

This interaction between “the object, the internal awareness of the wearer and the observations of the spectator is what gives jewelry meaning,” Rebecca Scheer explains in her catalog essay for the Touching Warms the Art exhibition at Portland’s Museum of Contemporary Craft in 2008. “At its core, jewelry is about relationships – between maker and wearer, object and subject, giver and receiver, individual and society, and a variety of private and public experiences.”

BodyWork presents a unique facet of this collaboration between artist and wearer. Glass is both a traditional material for adornment and a surprising one. Its perceived fragility and even danger stands in stark contrast to the intimate and sensuous act of wearing it on the skin. Whether serving as armor for protection, talisman for luck, tool for seduction, or fuel for controversy and conversation, the jewelry featured in BodyWork invites both artist and wearer to embark on a collaborative exercise in the art of expression.

November 26, 2011