Thursday, February 18, 2010

Artist: Maissa Toulet





I recently discovered French artist Maissa Toulet's work, and I'm fascinated by her collections of trifles, reliquaries, and curiosities. Toulet assembles bits and pieces she finds in junk shops and antique fairs into mesmerizing displays. According to Toulet, placing these collections inside frames and in cases makes her feel free -- she needs the boundaries and limitations to express herself. The displays evoke a sense of the sacred, yet they also have an eerie quality about them, as if put together by a clever sorcerer with sinister intentions...

::If you live in Paris {or, lucky you, are going to be visiting}, you should check out Maissa's show at Gallery Marassa Trois, going on now until March 6.

P.S. These really inspire me to continue my quest to make my own cabinet of curiosities. I have collected a few things here and there over the years: stones, bones, feathers, strange little sculptures. Now I just need to figure out how to get my parents to part with one of their old glass apothecary cabinets!!!!

12 comments:

saragraph said...

i keep most of my doodads on my window sills in my bedroom. among them are a stone from red rocks, colorado; a crank-powered mechanical music box that plays happy birthday; a tiny ceramic jewelery box with three blind mice on it; postcards from new orleans; pictures; paintings; and other various treasure-junks.

this entry made me think of the archived teenage diaries and poetry i have from earlier days--humorous curiosities all. melanie and i have tossed around the idea of having a CRINGE-ish session of early diary readings, a la sarah brown's book CRINGE. maybe some time we could have a small gathering at some point and have a show and tell of curiosities plus a reading? sounds fun to me!

harps said...

I love the botanical vibe of the first one.
I, too, wish I had a way of displaying my collected curiosities...at the moment I just have stuff lying around everywhere. I need a big ol' cabinet to display things and keep them safe!

{Tara} said...

Sara -- Ok ,the cringe session sounds fun as long as I can just listen and don't have to participate...though I do have some poetry I wrote in undergrad that might be fun to re-live!

Harps -- It's hard to find just the right way to display everything, and it doesn't help that I live in a small apartment. Yet, I keep collecting things!

Lillian Chang said...

These are gorgeous!!
How inspiring to keep such interesting collections of trinkets displayed so beautifully...
Lovely! :)

Sam said...

Oh these are divine Tara! Thanks so much for the post! I've never seen her work before. Funnily enough, we have a quite well known Australian artist called Fiona Hall who does this sort of thing but she actually makes the things inside the cabinets out of beading or waxy soap etc and they are slightly creepy. I think I prefer this pretty work here!

Francy said...

I think I read about her recently. She's fantastic! I just stumbled on your blog and really love it! I added it to my blog roll.

pixiedrivein.blogspot.com

{Tara} said...

Lillian -- Agreed -- her work gives me so many ideas on displaying my own objects.

Sam -- Thanks for the tip on Fiona Hall...off to check her out now!

Francy -- So happy you stopped by!!

Maggie said...

So lovely! Beautiful and strange-my favorite combination.

ana b. said...

I've also been really fascinated by curio cabinets too! Hers appear to be a cross between a curio cabinet and a terrarium - using glass is a really cool idea.

Hope Chella said...

These pictures are very inspirational, as is your entire blog. I'm glad I stumbled upon it :)

http://hopechella.blogspot.com/

Hope Chella said...

Of course!! It is wonderful =)

http://hopechella.blogspot.com/

Aron said...

What an amazing looking collection. Too bad its in Paris.
We have a small curiosity wall we've been slowing collecting.
Thanks for sharing!