When Wallace Chan read an ancient poem by the famed Chinese poet Cao Zhi praising the Goddess of the Luo River's beauty, an image of a flower manifested in his mind. The flower - light, tender, curved and spirited - danced in the wind in all her glory. To bring his dreams and imagination to life, he created Faerie, a flower born not on land, but far deep in the sea where fish are her companions, and pressure her nutrients. Her beauty, unprecedented and incomparable to any on the earth, soars from the creator's inner world and becomes a brooch of vibrant color and meaningful detail.
Faerie's heart of rubellite is full of passion and hope. Delicately carved amethyst around the red gem express the more soulful side of her character. The word "amethyst" is taken from the Greek améthystos, meaning "sober", and the stone is seen as a symbol of spirituality. Amethyst is also a jewel of temperance, and by wearing it the soul is protected from all things toxic in nature.
Flowers dance for the sun. Bright strips of radiant yellow diamonds and petals of gold reflect its glorious warmth atop Faerie's fluttering form. As the sun alone is not enough, diamonds are set as raindrops and dews, injecting energy into the flower and encouraging her to bloom. On her petals, carved water motifs represent her pulse and vitality. Indeed, when a petal is placed under a microscope, its veins reveal waters, mountains and nature's sublime.
Every flower is a destined story that is eventually elevated to the unearthly world. The edges of Faerie's petals are blue - a blue bird of happiness, or a once-in-a-lifetime's blue moon. In Hindu culture, gods and goddesses have blue skin. Blue is also the color that makes the real surreal; Faerie's blue edges make her a dream.
The flower is beauty, love, youth, life, pleasure and enlightenment. With titanium as the structure, a floating flower dazzles with elegant, meandering curves. With rubellite radiating beauty and grandeur, shining diamonds and amethyst petals full of soul, the spirit of a true Faerie comes alive.
TEFAF Maastricht, The Netherlands, 2017 SHAPESHIFTER: Solo Exhibition of Wallace Chan, Christie's Gallery, Hong Kong, 2019
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