Translucent spheres of Anna Butwell

No matter how grey, white, graphic and snow-covered Advent is, no matter how you feel, as if you are covered in a heavy cotton blanket, there are moments when your gaze jumps forward. When glimpses of normal life break through the constant, pandemic, and now warlike background stress that you don’t necessarily feel, but which is inevitably there and within reach, like a fog. The anticipation of the holidays. The bubble on the Christmas tree, glittering in the same way as in the years when the virus, let alone the war, were just plots for dystopias. That glitter is as unreasonable and irrational as the festivities themselves, or as student love, you name it.

Anna Butwell (US/Germany) strings a necklace of translucent spheres, enclosing there memories of 1999 student love in Manhattan. New York is love itself, especially if you remember all the films about Christmas in snowbound New York and how two people, trapped in a snow-covered hotel, find each other. The films do not say for how long. But I still want to go to New York every year when it snows (that I want to go every year is a different story). And here, jewellery is not afraid to appear cheap and shiny, like the youth that doesn’t care about gold or nickel, that wants to walk through the square, get giddy on cheap beer and look romantically at the clouds of steam coming into the street from the subway below.

The artist says:

The year was 1999, the location lower Manhattan. I, from a small town, he from Frankfurt. We met as college freshmen, the first time in both of our lives allowed to roam free. Most often slightly buzzed on cheap 40’s of Olde English beer, purchased with a long forgotten souls fake ID, roam we did. Through the empty glittering streets of the financial district, past the ever putrid Fulton Fish Market, through the glistening streets of China Town. On one tour, we stumbled upon what was akin to the 8th wonder of the world for us; a plaza of AstroTurf volcanos, spewing steam into the lower Manhattan air. This plaza, now long gone, became one of our most beloved stops. It was only later that we learned the steam we were inhaling was a waste byproduct of the subway system.

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