Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Kunstkammer & Keith Lo Bue

The December 2008 issue of Art & Antiques contains an interesting article about kunstkammer by Joscelyn Godwin titled "The Wonder Years." Kunstkammer are cabinets of curiosities mixing art, science and a little magic to create a marvelous world in miniature. Godwin mentions the "genius [of Joseph Cornell] for enclosing the most disparate objects in minimal space" and brought to my mind the fantastic assemblages and wearable art of Keith Lo Bue.

I've been a fan of Lo Bue for some time. I first admired his jewelry and later came to appreciate his work as assemblage. His web site is also a work of art. Lo Bue contributed to Assemblage 100 (curated by Dale Copeland) where you can find a characteristically unusual portrait with necklace. My favorite of his contributions is the macabre Unknown Female Head.

The Kunstkammer was the first museum in Russia, established by Peter the Great in 1718. The introductory page to this site has an intriguing photo of a room full of cabinets. (Hover near the extreme right or left side of the photo to extend the view.) Francesca Fiorani speaks of kunstkammer as "memory theater" in an article from Renaissance Quarterly (Spring 1998).

No comments: