Event Detail

Sentimental Ornamentation

February 14, 2017 11:00 am –April 8, 2017 6:00 pm
Location: The Fed Galleries
Object of Mourning by Renée Zettle-Sterling. Masks with decorative fabric forms that hang outward. Photo by Bree Mullen

Sentimental Ornamentation


Sentimental Ornamentation converges historical Victorian mourning practices and contemporary renderings, in order to consider complex codes of death practices and cultural obsessions with jewelry, clothing, and mementos associated with mourning.

"Throughout history, many traditions and rituals have been observed in relation to death and dying. In England, the death of Prince Albert in 1861 plunged Queen Victoria into a state of elaborate mourning that lasted for forty years.

The Queen's actions gave rise to a complex code of death practices and prompted a cultural obsession with special jewelry and clothing associated with mourning as well as mementos of the deceased. As photography was still in its infancy, these objects became a way to honor and remember loved ones on a daily basis. Clothing and jewelry channeled personal grief through a visible expression, giving way to the flowing patterns, intricate details, and excessive ornamentation we recognize today as motifs of the Victorian Era. Over the last decade, the era's impact on art and design has resurfaced time and time again." - Michele Bosak, Curator of Exhibitions

Exhibiting Artists:
Elizabeth Heyert
Nene Humphrey
Anya Kivarkis
Yuni Kim Lang
Spencer Merolla
Tim Powers
Jonathan Wahl
Marcel Wanders
Renée Zettle-Sterling

Above Image: Renée Zettle-Sterling | Object of Mourning: Veil #5 and 6
Image Credit: Bree Mullen

Individuals with disabilities who require special accommodations to participate should contact the KCAD President's Office at 616.451.2787 x1150 at least 72 hours in advance.
Make it
Loading spectacular images…