Exhibition Opening: 5:30pm - 7:30pm 18 March 2014
Exhibition: 18 March 2014 - 19 April 2014
Summer is over and the coconuts are coming home to roost – in Melbourne, at least. And the man we all look up to, Lord Coconut, is again raising the bar, making filial love visible with the “Dear Father” exhibition. Inspired by Lord Coconut’s first private gallery Down Under in 1887 which was filled with treasures, brought over by boat, from his adventures in Africa, Asia and various Pacific Islands, the “Dear Father” exhibition is an Internet era interpretation of his collecting ways and the love for his father. At the modern day Lord Coconut’s Emporium of Wonder, artists are exhibiting a piece of jewellery or small scale sculpture, inspired by a blank postcard (circa 1910) Lord Coconut collected from different countries during his travels. The jewellers and artisans were then required to write a short message similar to what Lord Coconut may have written to his old man. The combination of the postcards, the messages and the subsequent inspired gifts, form the basis of this exhibition. And while the “Dear Father’ Exhibition is a modern homage to Lord Coconut’s globetrotting and artefact collecting ways, it also allows us mere mortals to bring homage to all the special men – and fathers – in our lives.
Exhibition pieces and their details
Cufflinks from Moschio Angioino, Napoli, Italy $800 Sterling Silver and Amethyst Dear Father, I hope this reached you well. I am sending you the post card showing the Castle Nuovo, because we did not venture there. The talk here is all of the cholera and even though the authorities deny it every body is talking about it and our party has stayed away from area’s like the ports where the castle is. That is also why our stay here was as short…in fact we stayed only long enough for the “Argentierre” terence contea to attach the amethysts to these cufflinks that had been given to me by aliA earlier. I trust you will appreciate the skulls and bones representing life in death. It has been too long and I hope to be returning soon. Your faithful son.
Anastasia Grace Birbas
Ring from Musta Church, Malto $110 Oxidised Sterling Silver Dear Father, I miss you dearly.
Ring from Constantin-Saule und Moselbrucke, Trier, Germany $400 Sterling Silver Dear Father, This ring was found at the site of the ancient Roman amphitheatre in Trier…. once given to a gladiator who fought there, it’s said to have been fashioned from a sterling silver nail cast from the Shoe of Pegasus. Yes the famed winged horse of Zeus. To me the pattern recalls the tall columnar cells of tissues as viewed with Galileo’s wonderful compound microscope. In any case I thought it a beautiful token that you might enjoy. Yours Sincerely
Monkey Head from Rock of Linea, Gibraltar $198 Coconut Shell, Glass, Acrylic/Enamel Paint Dear Father I had a close encounter with the natives today. One of them stole my lunch! I don’t begrudge him that because I have a soft spot for these furry fellows. It wouldn’t be Gibraltar without them. With Love
Tie Pin from Rue de Coqueiros, S. Vicente, Cabo Verde $150 Sterling Silver, Copper and Fine Silver Dear Father, Paradise found! Little silver tie-pin for you. Neck-ties all the rage now, you know! Get your man to give it a polish every now and then, won’t you? Damn hot here on St Vicente. Good rum. Need it. Off to cooler climes next. Love to you all, especially Aunt Cissy.
Gents signet ring from Porte de la Mendoubia, Tanger, Morocco $650 Sterling Silver and 9ct Yellow Gold Dear Father, Sending you the warmest of wishes from Morocco. The most ornate part of Africa I have travelled thus far. With Love
Pendant from Victoria & Albert Inn, Netherhampton, Sailisbury, Wilts, England $120 (SOLD) Porcelian and Pewter Dear Father, Your family made me most welcome and send greetings. Small gift for Mother. Fond Regards
Sakura cufflinks from Monument of Iiko, Yokohama, Japan $440 Sterling Silver, 18ct Gold and Shibuichi (silver and copper alloy) Dear Father, I find myself in the bustling international trading port of Yokohama. It is spring and the sight of cherry blossoms in bloom is exquisite. There is an almost reverential attitude towards this flower they call ‘sakura’. It symbolises the impermanence of life and elicits a sense of sweet melancholy. This awareness of the transient nature of all things serves to heighten ones appreciation of their beauty. I had half expected to see the legendary warrior class, the samurai, strolling the streets, but alas they are no more as it is now forbidden to carry swords in public. I was fortunate to see one of these magnificent swords which was decorated with the sakura motif. Surprisingly the Japanese well to do favour western attire and I came across these sakura cufflinks and instantly new I must have them for my dear father. Your loving son
Neo-Edwardian Cufflinks (two pairs) from Temple Elephant, Ceylon $594 pair Found & Refitted Ornate Vintage Elements/Layers Dear Father, A quick note from the steps of the Holy Tooth Temple – Kandy, Ceylon. We’ve disembarked here from my rail tour of the Eastern parts of the Empire. It’s simply quite marvellous how many animals feature in this balmy Ceylonese vista! Bullock teams heave to & fro the station. Snake charmers conjure cobras from their baskets in the market place. Temple Elephants stand chained to stop them trample fields of unplucked tea. They do rock so, with stares blank ahead, but their majestic tusks ensure they’ll hold a prestigious place in the upcoming procession… A separate package to you has been dispatched. Contents should please Mother’s love of kempt French cuffs. Fondest regards, your son
Ring from The Park Rouken Glen, Scotland $220 Sterling Silver Dear Father, Today I find myself at The Park Rouken Glen, an exemplary model of fine Scottish countryside. The Crum family have owned the lands since 1852, and during his occupancy, created the most beautiful walled garden. I send you this ring momento that illustrates a birds eye representation of these statuesque gardens. Your Loving Son
Belt Buckle from Puente Nuevo y Molinos, Ronda, Spain $190 (SOLD) Beef Bone, Leather and Brass Dear Father, In Ronda cavalry were trained for battle by fighting bulls. They now face the bulls on foot for sport in front of large crowds. Whether this is brave or foolhardy is not for me to say. Warmest Regards
Spoon from Buffalo Park, Banff, Canadian Rockies, Canada $395 Sterling Silver Dear Father, Here is all fishing, hunting and hot springs bathing. Star filled evenings; dining and sleeping in Swiss chalet luxury. A great many Europeans here – pity the poor, wretched Cree, Blackfoot and Kootenay Indians all but wiped out by the smallpox. Here is a small spoon used by clay-pipe smoking gentlemen for the good measure of their tobacco – I suppose Mother will take it for making the tea. Much love, hope all are well. P.S. Buffalo are very impressive beasts – their coats fetch high prices.
Fishing Lures from Alnwick Castle, Northumberland, England $115 Multi-media Dear Father, I am well now, I had fallen of my horse in the forest near Alnwick Castle, as I came too, there was a man, looking at me, he talked to my whilst he was seeing if I had any broken bones, is name is Alan Percy, he is a duke, can you believe that. As it is I broke my left leg. He rode away to get help, he came back and took me to his Castle. Father, his wife got the Doctor and he was very kind. I have out done my stay here. I am well now. I have become very good friends with this man named Alan, while we sat around while my broken leg healed, we made these fishing flys, we would sit in the afternoons and sip Brandy and talk the hours away. I’m sending these fishing flys to you father, as a gift, I have missed you and our family. How is mother, I know she worries. Your loving son.