Candelabrum, Seven Fragments, 2002-2003
Following a tradition of functional silversmithing, Myra Mimlitsch-Gray reflects upon traditional craft practice within a contemporary sculptural context. As a highly skilled technician and an intellectually alert artist, she challenges representations of social and cultural inheritances, domestic norms as well as art historical convention. Material and process as the basis of craft contribute to this work as traditional object; at the same time it is a bold contemporary response to traditional practice. Sterling silver has always been of intrinsic value, always a commodity. The melting forms of Mimlitsch-Gray’s candelabrum not only signify and incorporate the common re-smelting of silver, but also the aesthetic demands of this contemporary practitioner, bringing the past into the present. The use of sterling silver formed through traditional technique also radicalizes her intention to confront the known, the familiar and the understood. Simultaneously amusing and sad, this candelabrum examines the expressive potential of a recognizable yet unfamiliar domestic object.
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