Over 100 WOW® fans crammed into Te Papa’s Eyelight’s Gallery last Saturday to hear the maker of this week’s wearable speak. Its Bells for Her by Sean Purucker.
Sean Purucker lives in LA where he works as a costume fabricator. He grew up, however in Alaska. Bells For Her harks back to his Alaskan childhood – to memories of snowy winters, of sleighing, of jingle bells. Bells For Her is inspired by his mother, who is a music teacher.
As with most of Sean’s work, Bells for Her began as a pencil sketch. Sean remained true to the drawing until it came to his choice of fabric. Originally, Sean had imagined the garment in pink – that is until he discovered a bright blue next to the pink. Blue certainly seems truer somehow to the Alaskan spirit – evocative of cool brilliant blue skies.
Sean entered Bells for Her in WOW®’s Visual Symphony section in 2012. For this section, entrants were invited to to create a garment that made sound. On stage each sound was woven into a musical score by Gareth Farr, one of New Zealand’s leading composers and percussionists.
As the garments didn’t come with instructions, Gareth spent time working out ‘what would happen if you wiggle that or … shake that’.
Sean had expected the model simply to shimmy on stage to ring her bells. Gareth, however, had other ideas. As the model shimmied and jingled, a scantily clad male dancer appeared armed with a pair of tiny mallots and played her bells.
Bells for Her earned Sean second place in the Visual Symphony section. Sean has been a regular WearableArt™ entrant since 2008, and has accrued a number of awards including winning the Children’s Section in 2011, the Weta Award in 2010 and the WOW Factor Award in 2008 for a spectactular group of punk birds.
‘Wearable of the Week’ is posted in conjunction with The WOW Factor: 25 Years in the Making, which is on display at Te Papa until 17 August 2014. For more on the World of WearableArt™ visit WOW® online.