Jewellery by Roberta Bernabei and Michael Shaw

Exhibition  /  27 Sep 2003  -  18 Oct 2003
Published: 08.05.2006
Rita Marcangelo
Roberta Bernabei. Necklace: Untitled. silver and resin. Roberta Bernabei
Necklace: Untitled
silver and resin
© By the author. Read Copyright.

© By the author. Read Copyright.

Artist list

Roberta Bernabei, Michael Shaw
Roberta Bernabei

The focus of my attention is the space surrounding the human body and its transformations due to the body's movement; in addition to those spaces generated by the proximity of multiple bodies. The memory of the aesthetic and functional aspects of the domineering claws situated around the perimeter of paper dolls, and their analogy to the role of settings in traditional silversmithing, inspired the series of works that protect and display objets trouvés. A process of subtraction prompted the discovery of intriguing 'memory spaces'. The systematic study of these memory spaces was transposed to those spaces surrounding the body through an intuitive cataloguing of specimens. Through the analysis, limiting, and objectification of the presence of this absence, and by combining it with extreme states of nature, the key to reading the macrocosm may emerge from the microcosm. By creating 'life givers' the intention is to transmit protection through fragility and solidity. 'Life givers' were described by Lévi-Strauss when writing about the Boroboro tribe of central Brazil: "For them, life is connoted with activity and hardness, and death with softness and inertia [...] Their ornaments make hard that which is soft so they substitute those reprehensible parts of their bodies that prefigure death." By reconsidering that primordial font of archaic methods of measurement, that is to say, the human body, I use its surrounding spaces as a parameter of measurement in objects that enable the wearer and observers to understand and reconsider the confines of their bodies and the surrounding world.

Michael Shaw

I believe that art is ineffable and possesses the capacity to take us to a state where there are no words, only being. It is manifested in universally beautiful forms that touch all humans irrespective of culture and context. The creation of such forms is my practice. One current concern is the 'deflection of geometry' in singular sculptural forms, such as the figure of eight, manifested in such a way as to reduce the duality of form and space.
Michael Shaw. Brooch: Untitled. silver. Michael Shaw
Brooch: Untitled
© By the author. Read Copyright.