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Press Release: Oliver Watts (with Minerva)
If the oath of designers everywhere is that “form follows function” Bonita Bub rescues a range of utilitarian industrial objects from the drudgery of function altogether. Trolleys, chairs, gyprock carriers, welding curtains are remade to their improve lines, their proportions and their materials in order for them to become art. It is as if the object undergoes a therapy— both a beauty therapy and a therapy therapy — to know itself once again. Made originally to shield members of a warehouse team from the blinding radiation arcs of welding equipment, this safety curtain set inside a gallery scenario is liberated from a roll in risk management and becomes sexy, fetishized and coyly see-through, as the window light saturates the gallery in colours of industrial PVC.
“Architecture starts when you carefully put two bricks together,” said Mies Van der Rohe, “ … there it begins.” Never supposed to deceive or to trick the viewer Bub decodes these industrial safety objects as an urbane spiritualist, and somehow, re-positions them as artefacts of reverence underlying their latent sublime beauty. Adopting the urban conceptualism of norm-core she rebels not by transgression or with subcultural flourish, but by repeating, exactly, a beauty of transcendent line she finds in a commonplace.