A summer exhibition at the Harbour Gallery inspired by the theme of “perceptions – the way in which something is interpreted”
For this exhibition, Athene created a range of party necklaces based on her personal perceptions of colour with a series of accompanying essays.
This body of work expands on the colour theory essays written for the Gate House Gallery exhibition earlier in the year, entitled WORK IN PROGRESS.
The colour de jour – there’s always one nowadays. It’s simply inescapable. We can’t just wear what suits us anymore, we have to wear this year’s latest colour. How has this happened to us again? I thought, as a society that we’d outgrown the fashion rules about prescribed colours passed down from on high from the fashion powers that be. It’s not the fifties any more! Surely we can wear what we like and be who we like?
And of course we can, there are no actual rules anymore. But here we have a colour that is so incredibly all pervasive it feels like someone had written some new secret rules and passed them around when I wasn’t looking.
It’s not even green any more for godsake, it’s “Greenery”. How did the power of collective brainwashing commonly known as the media, manage to create this in my head? It’s just a colour, it’s only a colour. IT’S SIMPLY A COLOUR. And not even a nice one, it’s green, what’s all the fuss about? Colour of school uniforms across the country, naff carpeting in run down buildings, shoddy 70’s cars, all the stuff that has never been cool, at least not in my lifetime. But when I look out of my workshop window onto my garden in April and see the myriad of shades, all green, all different yet complementary. I get it. New life…promise…hope even. Again that warmth in my chest, a deep breath, an elated feeling, a realisation (My god, get a grip, it’s just a colour) that we’re on the edge of something amazing. We’re just about to blossom into a new season and feel the benefit of spring. An excitement, an expectation, but with it also a calmness and a knowing that all will be fine, what will be will be. There’s an almost religious acceptance – and this from a deeply non- religious person – of the infallible turning of the earth, of Karma, an acceptance of the cycle of life, (rather than the Disney version, the circle of life) and proof of it’s existence and benefit and standing above all else in the world.
That’s what they’re selling with this colour – LIFE, GROWTH, NEWNESS… And then it really dawns on me…I’ve always loved green, the colour of the leaves, the grass, the new growth. I’ve just never considered it as a fashion shade, and yet here we are. Like the New Look tag line says “It’s all about Newness”. Aren’t they clever, the fashion industry, the pantone people, the interior people, to have re programmed my head again somehow, to make this colour so desirable? Rebadged, repackaged, just like it is each and every single year in the spring time, and we just let it grow anew each year without even considering it as a fashion colour. And when was the last time we had green interiors? Dark Regency green maybe? Seriously, we even bypassed green in the seventies, it’s not that pretty a colour surely? Maybe there was a bit of green nylon about on the odd sixties day dress, but nothing to write home about. But this is so fresh, and so new, wow that’s an impressive feat, to make something so ubiquitous as the colour of the first spring leaves into a fashion statement.
Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you “Greenery” – that never before seen shade.
Except for every time you’ve ever seen a tree. Or a hedge. Or some grass.