Moving to a brand new place, one’s friend circle is surely changed. Someone like me, a foreigner in a foreign place, the focus of life and friends is anyway following my husband. Michele is a musician. So most people I got to know here at the beginning are all people related to the music industry. One by one, little by little, music circle becomes art circle. I happily go around art exhibitions and activities with Michele to broaden our friend circle.
Barbara is a ring designer whom we got to know in the opening of an art exhibition. She’s actually a very good friend of Michele’s good friend. Two years ago, in the opening party of an exhibition, we’re chatting with a group of people that Barbara was included. She mentioned that she’s going to have a personal exhibition in Bassano. So some of us made an appointment and went together, which has become my very first intimate contact with Barbara and her artworks.
The first series of works I saw is Deinos. These rings seem coming from the space. Their shapes are irregular, fluid and seem to be heavy. When I picked them up, I was amazed by their lightness. The more amazing thing is, their shapes do not impede finger movement. There’s a great difference between their appearance and actual feeling one gets from touching them. The word “Deinos” comes from Greek. It means “frightening”. I used to think secretly that it’s probably because of the first impression and appearance of this series that people will feel hesitated to touch them so that Barbara has named it this way. However, I never have the courage to ask Barbara this question because I’m afraid to “sound stupid”…
I saw Deinos with some photos and catalogues of previous exhibitions. Mini cactus in wooden rings, colorful candle rings, special plastic rings inspired by the cannibal jelly in the old move “The Blob”, and all of them changed my perspectives and ideas about ring design. She invited us to her place for several times. And I gradually got to know that all the materials she uses come from a series of repeating test and in-depth studies. She is much interested in organic materials, likes to think liberally and experiments with various kinds of materials. On her bookshelves there’re lots of professional publications, from which I can tell her persistence and hard working of her dreams and makes me wait for her new ideas expectantly.
Image from designe's official web site.