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Fake News and True Love: Fourteen Stories by Robert Baines

Exhibition  /  16 Oct 2018  -  03 Mar 2019
Published: 04.09.2018
Fake News and True Love: Fourteen Stories by Robert Baines.
MAD, museum of arts and design
Curator:
Barbara Paris Gifford, Sasha Nixon
Management:
Michele Cohen
Robert Baines. Ring: Five Rings, California (?), 1969. Chrome plated silver, stone (?), case, print, pen on paper.. 15 × 24.2 × 21.5 cm. Photo by: Robert Baines. Robert Baines
Ring: Five Rings, California (?), 1969
Chrome plated silver, stone (?), case, print, pen on paper.
15 × 24.2 × 21.5 cm
Photo by: Robert Baines
© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.

Intro
The exhibition centers on fourteen fanciful news stories, of which Baines' jewelry serves as "evidence." Using rings, parures, neckpieces, and bracelets, the artist highlights the constructed nature of collective history, manipulating what is accepted as truth to address the influence that fake news, sensational headlines, and the fabrication of alternative realities has on our perception of events.

 

Artist list

Robert Baines
The stories, crafted and "fact-checked" by the artist, span from BCE to the present day and encompass an equally wide range of topics, including conspiracy, forgery, celebrity, politics, and migration. The jewelry and corresponding editorials together comprise unique artworks that support or question diverse moments in history, from the moon landing and the original discovery of Australia to President John F. Kennedy's alleged infidelity. Satirical and humorous in tone, the stories in Fake News and True Love expose ways in which a linear narrative can be a vehicle for myth, riddle, puzzle, and possible subversions of history.


Buzz Says “Wish you were here!”, The Times, 7/3/07 [headline]
Souvenirs from the Apollo 11 Moon landing surface as the European Space Agency gears up for a new fake trip into space – this time to Mars.
Five rings in a custom case dedicated to Buzz Aldrin’s “little darlins” and outfitted with an image of the astronaut on the Moon have caused a “buzz” in the lunar conspiracy community. The rings have been set with mysterious stones. If found to be Moon rocks the rings will be unprecedented evidence of a lunar landing that has not come from a government facility.

“Marilyn and JFK, Together Again!” Tribune, September 30, 2012 [headline]
A mysterious ring has been found with a note that reads, “Jack, with love as always from Marilyn.” The ring is crowned with an image of Marilyn Monroe in a heart. When moved, an image of President Kennedy coyly joins her in the mirror. Though not much is known about the ring, the date on the note (May 29, 1962) suggests it could have been a birthday gift to President Kennedy!


It’s easy to fall into the trap of sensational headlines. Even careful and informed readers must work to resist the pull of fake news, a phenomenon currently dominating American media. In his solo exhibition Fake News and True Love: Fourteen Stories by Robert Baines, the Australian contemporary artist explores this issue through the lens of jewelry. By making up and “fact-checking” news stories to accompany his works, Baines manipulates what is accepted as truth to address the influence that fake news has on our perception of events.
Fake News and True Love is a clever examination of jewelry as a document of popular cultural history. The artist’s fanciful pieces and accompanying “evidence” encourage belief in the fourteen stories he presents. Baines has fabricated alternate realities that span from B.C.E. to the present day and encompass an equally wide range of topics, including migration, conspiracy, forgery, celebrity, and politics. His rings, parures, neckpieces, and bracelets show the misunderstandings that design can create, emphasizing the constructed nature of collective history. Through satire and humor, he cautions that linear narration can be confused with myth, riddle, puzzle, and possible subversions of history. Is the story true or fake?
Robert Baines has shaped the fields of contemporary jewelry and jewelry history for over forty years. In 2010, he was named a Living Treasure-Master of Australian Craft for his significant contributions. In addition to teaching and maintaining his own contemporary jewelry practice, he studied ancient jewelry at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and masterworks in several other international institutions. Through these experiences, he has essentially learned to brilliantly copy jewelry—from the ancient to the modern—making him uniquely suited to a show of this caprice.


Previous iterations were shown at the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, as part of the Clemenger Contemporary Art Award exhibition, 2006; Designmuseo, Helsinki, 2008; Museum für Angewandte Kunst, Frankfurt, 2008–2009; and Handwerkskammer für München und Oberbayern, Munich, 2010.
Robert Baines. Ring: Five Rings, California (?), 1969. Chrome plated silver, stone (?), case, print, pen on paper.. 15 × 24.2 × 21.5 cm. Photo by: Robert Baines. Detail. Robert Baines
Ring: Five Rings, California (?), 1969
Chrome plated silver, stone (?), case, print, pen on paper.
15 × 24.2 × 21.5 cm
Photo by: Robert Baines

Detail

© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.
Robert Baines. Ring: Together Again, c. 1964 (?). Gold, paper, mirror.. 4 × 3.5 × 3.5 cm. Photo by: Garry Sommerfeld. Robert Baines
Ring: Together Again, c. 1964 (?)
Gold, paper, mirror.
4 × 3.5 × 3.5 cm
Photo by: Garry Sommerfeld
© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.
Robert Baines. Bracelet: Courtly Love, West German (?), c. 1050-1150 (?). Gold, silver, plastic.. 8 × 7.7 × 5 cm. Photo by: Robert Baines. Robert Baines
Bracelet: Courtly Love, West German (?), c. 1050-1150 (?)
Gold, silver, plastic.
8 × 7.7 × 5 cm
Photo by: Robert Baines
© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.
Robert Baines. Bracelet: Java la Grande, India, Goa (Indo-Portuguese) (?), c. 1650. Silver-gilt, iron, plastic, wood, paint.. Photo by: Robert Baines. Detail. Robert Baines
Bracelet: Java la Grande, India, Goa (Indo-Portuguese) (?), c. 1650
Silver-gilt, iron, plastic, wood, paint.
Photo by: Robert Baines
Detail
© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.
Robert Baines. Piece: Freshwater Point Jewellery Hoard, Phoenician (?), c. 650 BCE (?). Gold. 22 × 30 cm. Photo by: Garry Sommerfeld. Robert Baines
Piece: Freshwater Point Jewellery Hoard, Phoenician (?), c. 650 BCE (?)
Gold
22 × 30 cm
Photo by: Garry Sommerfeld
© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.
Robert Baines. Piece: Trophy, World's Worst Dog Owner, 2005 (?). Silver, chrome, found object, flock.. 25 × 6.8 × 6.8 cm. Photo by: Robert Baines. Robert Baines
Piece: Trophy, World's Worst Dog Owner, 2005 (?)
Silver, chrome, found object, flock.
25 × 6.8 × 6.8 cm
Photo by: Robert Baines
© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.
Robert Baines. Body piece: Leg Brace for Lloyd (Beverly Hills Small Animal Hospital), 2004 (?). Plastic, silver, steel, leather, paint.. 8 × 7.7 × 5 cm. Photo by: Robert Baines. Robert Baines
Body piece: Leg Brace for Lloyd (Beverly Hills Small Animal Hospital), 2004 (?)
Plastic, silver, steel, leather, paint.
8 × 7.7 × 5 cm
Photo by: Robert Baines
© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.
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