SAMSTAG ALUMNI 2002

Timothy Horn
Born 1964, Melbourne, Victoria

The 'precious' is central to Timothy Horn's concerns, although here a playfully camp irony has inflated and transformed it into the 'gorgeous'. The point of reference for Horn's jewellerylike sculptures is the court of Louis XVI, where aristocrats vied with each other to wear bigger, gaudier, more expensive jewellery to each successive court appearance. In this world, size does matter, and Horn has exploded the baroque ornamentalism of courtly refinement to a largerthanlife scale, creating hypertrophic fantasy accessories for the brash, the shameless and the proud. If 'queer sensibility' can be defined in part as a celebration of the fake and the ornamental, and a transvaluation of the hierarchies of 'taste', Horn plays these themes to the hilt, titling his monstrous baubles with trashy sexual puns such as Golden Showers, Pink Bits or Bump 'n' Grind.

Horn explores jewellery as a site for fantasy, selfexpression, eroticism and display. His Cinderella Complex series, crafted from nickelplated bronze, lead crystal and Easter egg foil, are like props for an upscale pantomime drag show, what he calls 'a queer rewriting of the Cinderella myth'. Glass Slipper, for instance, performs an Alice-in-Wonderland transmogrification of scale, turning a piece of bijou footwear into something both exquisite and monstrous. Bearded Clam, which translates details from the interior of Residenz the baroque masterpiece by eighteenth century architect Balthasar Neumann – hints, as in a glass darkly, at the cruel vanity of fairytale godmothers, discovering something dark and libidinal buried in the folds of genteel ornament, a coiled force, a Sadean civility.

Russell Smith from his Samstag catalogue essay, Making The Makers
 
2002 Anne & Gordon Samstag International Visual Arts Scholarship
2002 MFA, Massachusetts College of Art, Boston, USA
2001 Bachelor of Visual Art (Glass) (Honours), Canberra School of Art, Australian National University, Canberra
1998 Postgraduate Diploma (Sculpture), Victorian College of the Arts, Melbourne 
1996 Bachelor of Fine Art (Sculpture), Victoria College, Prahran 

Artist's website
http://timothyhorn.net/