Kari Woo, "Going Home," 2003, mixed media, 7" x 5" x 3".
KARI WOO, The Anatomy of My Heart
Influx Gallery, Calgary
Sept 18 - Oct. 28, 2006
By Dina O'Meara
When art is worn, it becomes jewellery, but seldom does jewellery become art. Artist Kari Woo manages the transition with a particular notion of space that gives each of her pieces a multi-functional appeal. A fourth-generation Calgarian, Woo has been working with precious metals for a decade, and returns to mixed-media jewellery assemblage for her latest show at the Calgary gallery she co-owns with three others. “It’s really a narrative of personal jewellery,” Woo says about The Anatomy of My Heart. “Jewellery is often such an object of sentiment and personal heritage — the passing down of jewellery is the passing down of history.” The centrepiece of Woo’s exhibition is a tiny house sculpture showcasing a silver ring. Instead of displaying a gemstone, the ring features a close-up photograph on silk of Woo’s father holding his mother’s hand on the day he left China at age 11. Woo often refers to architecture in her work, and much of her jewellery is representational of windows and doors, shelter and home. A recent first trip to China brought the themes together, providing Woo with a new perspective of her past and her art.
Represented by: Influx Gallery, Calgary; Object Design Gallery, Vancouver; distill gallery, Toronto; Zilberschmuck Art-Jewellery, Toronto.