Julia deVille: Can The Voices Of The Living Be Heard By The Dead?

Exhibition  /  22 Oct 2013  -  09 Nov 2013
Published: 24.10.2013
Emma Goodsir

© By the author. Read Copyright.

e.g.etal presents Julia deVille’s largest yet collection of fine jewellery. The 60 strong collection of engagement and cocktail rings, necklaces and bracelets are composed of multiple clusters of classic claw-held precious stones.

Artist list

Julia deVille
Iconic jewellery retailer e.g.etal mounts the largest collection of fine jewellery by famed taxidermist Julia deVille

Asymmetrical arrangements of diamonds (white, cognac & black), sapphires, emeralds and rubies combined with larger cushion cut lemon quartz, London blue topaz and garnets to name a few, set in 18 carat gold draw upon motifs from Renaissance, Baroque and Victorian jewellery tradition.

Julia’s work is informed by the acceptance of death expressed in Memento Mori jewellery of the 15th to 18th centuries as well as Victorian Mourning jewellery. The collection is created with then intention of becoming heirlooms, passed down from generation to generation. A communion between the living and the dead. As for many of Julia’s title’s, the name for the exhibition is a line from a Nick Cave song.

Julia’s work is designed to serve as contemporary Memento Mori—a reminder of mortality. Her jewellery is characterised by the use of symbols of death from past eras. In examining mortality, the pieces incorporate motifs that encourages the wearer to identify with their own fate and challenge a prevalent culture that obsessively plans the future: forget an unknowable tomorrow and instead embrace the present.


The work is launching exclusively at e.g.etal from Tuesday 22nd of October.
Exhibition dates 22 Oct – 9 Nov

About Julia de Ville
Arriving in Australia from New Zealand on the cusp of adulthood, deVille trained as a jeweller and undertook a taxidermy mentorship. Driven by a strong commitment to animal rights, deVille’s sculpture assemblages belie the heroic, trophy-hunting culture associated with mounting dead animals. In a form of gentle protest she combines precious and semi-precious gems and metals with antique ‘ready-mades’ to challenge our disregard for and consumption of both wild and domesticated fauna.

Julia’s sculpture work is part of the anticipated ‘Melbourne Now’ exhibition at the NGV and is also featured in the 2014 Adelaide Biennale. She was commissioned by Hobart’s MONA to create a permanent installation in 2011, and also won the Wallace Art Awards 2013 and the City of Hobart Art Prize in 2012. She has taken out the People’s Choice Award in the Woollahra Small Sculpture Prize twice, and in 2006 her work was included in the MCA’s important Primavera survey exhibition. She exhibits regularly in Australia and overseas.
Moved to here: Julia studied at Northern Melbourne Institute of TAFE and has also completed several taxidermy mentorships.