Nicole Polentas ‘Reinventing a Sense of Place. Crete and the Jewellery Object’ @ RMIT School of Art Gallery

17 04 2015

Regular readers will know of my bold parochial support of the beautiful souls I studied my RMIT degree with … and it’s with immense pleasure I visited one of our number’s PhD exhibition today.

Nicole Polentas has studied with passion and intense commitment for just over ten years now, and it is beyond incredible to see selected pieces from over the years in one place: ‘Reinventing a Sense of Place. Crete and the Jewellery Object‘.

exhibition installation

exhibition installation

It was unexpected, but I confess I was a little emotional walking through the exhibition. I remembered the first time Nicole experimented with her now-signature text ribbons; there are only a few moments when you can say you were there to witness the start of something beautiful.

The pieces are without question extraordinary; the exhibition design gorgeous and perfect.

exhibition installation

exhibition installation

I completely adore the constructs that underpin the front-facing elements … clean lines and beautifully executed. And her exploration of more colouring in her work is promising and brings an extra dimension; I especially like the pinks and greens. The materials listing is interesting in that it includes ‘Greek coffee’ and I wondered where it was used, perhaps in the resin components?

exhibition installation

exhibition installation

The work is personal; the stories close to the surface; her sharing generous and genuine; her intent clear.

I must admit to perhaps being too close to Nicole and her work to give an objective reading of the exhibition [though in reality, I rarely give objective do I(!)]. I think that knowing the artist means I see more layers in the work than a new observer may (maybe) and am too connected to be able to offer anything other than superlatives.

exhibition installation

exhibition installation

I do hope that in time her exegesis will be available for public reading.

I offer Nicole my warmest heartfelt congratulations and look forward to seeing her continued explorations and shows!

Reinventing a Sense of Place. Crete and the Jewellery Object‘ was a one-night-and-day only (examination) exhibition.

Please also see:

Please click below to read more of the media release (from her Events page):

Exhibition media: “Jewellery objects are often created within a context that mirrors the time and space in which they are made, and they increasingly contribute to practices that investigate place and identity. This project is about the ways in which jewellery objects can initiate an engagement with, and understanding of, cultural and personal place.

The research seeks to investigate jewellery as a nexus to critically engage with cultural and geographic space, conceptualising it through a complex framework of conscious and unconscious perceptions of place. This research project specifically examines my experience of Crete, through an investigation and manipulation of popular Greek folklore and musical narrative.

The project focuses on the role in which contemporary jewellery practices can re- interpret ideas of place and narratives of identity. This research establishes a personal ontology through re-imagined and re-invented micro-narratives, which investigate place as an impetus for creating jewellery objects.

This practice-based research project seeks to produce a body of work that highlights the symbolic interaction between the expansiveness of place and the plurality of identity, through both subjective and objective signifiers. Drawing from both personal and family repertoires, the project engages with politics, folklore and national identity, in order to decrypt and analyse facets of Greekness, through reconfiguring and re-inventing a sense of place, manifested by and within a jewellery object.

exhibition

exhibition


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2 responses

18 04 2015
Kevin Murray (@kmaustral)

Thanks so much for this Karen. I’m out of the country and really disappointed not to see Nicole’s show. It really seems to live up to its promise. I like the use of steps in the exhibition design. It gives the work real flow.

18 04 2015
Karen

I was terribly disappointed not to make the opening night too Kevin, as I believe Robert Baines made a wonderful speech.
The flow in the exhibition design is fantastic; it’s obviously been thought out with such care and understanding, and it supports the story-telling beautifully.




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