We figured we’d get this one out before lunch, because quite a few of you aren’t going to want to eat and look at these pictures. Others will ask “What’s the big deal?”
Kerry Howley, an art student from Middlesex University in London, produced collection of necklaces made from human hair inspired by wallpaper pattern and she’s getting quite a bit of attention for it. What makes it so captivating is the juxtaposition of beauty with something humans are naturally inclined to find a little repulsive.
“My concept is a material exploration of attraction and aversion and how we can feel these seemingly opposing emotional responses simultaneously.
The necklaces are made of human hair, a material we are familiar with and take pride in. However once off of the body it becomes an innate source of aversion. I wanted to see if I could make discarded hair attractive again.
Through the familiar form of a necklace, and using patterns and symmetry that we instinctively find aesthetically pleasing, I hoped to create a delicate balance between the viewer/wearers feelings of aversion and attraction.”
They really are quite lovely, but they really do skeeve us out. You might ask if we’re equally as skeeved by leather and we’re not, but that’s because we don’t place cows and humans on the same level. If we did, we’d just cut up a neighbor the next time we had a barbecue and didn’t feel like shopping for meat. Still, it’s an interesting reaction to explore: why the revulsion for the idea of wearing someone else’s hair on your bare neck? We wouldn’t be so repulsed by a wig made of human hair, so why do our minds automatically make the distinction?
What about you? Do you think these are gorgeous? Do you think they’re disgusting? The two aren’t mutually exclusive, by the way. Would you wear pieces like this?
[Photo Credit: artsthread.com]