Treasure Shrine

Celebrating the garden • Model & Book making • Soprammobili • RMIT, Melbourne
The treasure shrine is the first object in a potential series that I am deeply motivated by. The nexus between sanctity and design is an area I discuss often in the course I teach {ThingSpeak} which identifies this as being one of the earliest drivers of art and craft and consequently of design. From within this context I am inspired by the Indian sacred cloths, wooden Kaavads, mobile shrines and the Tabeez, metal pendants that carry sacred prayers, mantras or texts to guard and protect the wearer. It is the nexus of story, object and song as well as the power of consecration.
Inspired in concept by the Kaavad, the Treasure Shrine is an object that creates a space to honour and celebrate the small things that we collect, discover and value in our lives. It is a shrine to the idea of the garden and the profusion of offerings of beautiful things given to us by the natural world. The narrative inspiration is the garden with its flowers, and birds that so define Melbourne in spring. These include Eucalyptus, Lillies, Wisteria, Waratah, Magnolias, Camellias, Coral etc. with rainbow Lorakeets Kookaburra and Magpies. The shrine opens like a book – revealing the profusion of colour and intensity – offering a space of celebration – almost like a womb of intensity and life. Once closed it returns to its anonymous state – giving room for the letting go of objects that have been recognised and honoured and can be returned to the earth.

Soprammobilli Workshop with Antonio Arico, RMIT, May 2014

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