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The Chandelier of Lost Earrings
by Lauren Sagar :: Portfolio
Sagar and Campbell’s recent work Chandelier of Lost Earrings attracted unprecedented public interest winning the Arts Category in the National Lottery Good Causes Awards. Initiated in 2011 at St Mary’s Hospital Manchester, the project invited staff to gift single earrings, which had formerly been part of a pair to the artists. Earrings were gifted alongside a few written words about the personal significance of the jewellery and its missing counterpart. Individuals donating the earrings had often kept the jewellery for a number of years. The lone earrings held strong associations for the owner of a particular memory: a gift, a holiday or a momentous occasion. The majority of earrings were of little material value: plastic, metal or diamante, their worth lay in their sentimental resonance. Collecting both the individual earrings and their idiosyncratic histories, Sagar and Campbell formed a diverse community around the work.
Through word of mouth and a concentrated social media campaign the project expanded collecting 3500 earrings from individuals over 12 months. Echoing the decorative adornment of the accumulated jewellery Sagar and Campbell amassed the gifted earrings into an opulent sculptural chandelier. The bejewelled glasswork of the chandelier suggests a preciousness that mirrors the treasured value of the gifted earrings for each of the projects participants, weaving together the singular earrings and their individual narratives in a mesmerising display.
The sculpture is floor standing.
It is 2.5 m high by 1 m wide.
It is made from steel, acrylic and aluminium chain, crystals….and lots of earrings! And weighs around 75 kilos.