Annika Kedelauk and Rainer Kaasik-Aaslav
“Joint/The Grey Everyday Life of a Hedonist” is a conjoint jewellery exhibition by contemporary Estonian artists Annika Kedelauk and Rainer Kaasik-Aaslav.
The idea for a joint exhibition did not come by chance. Although at the moment, Annika and Rainer are creating individually, expanding their original and unique style, their creative biographies are not only similar but intertwined. Representing the young generation of Estonian jewellers, Annika and Rainer have completed their jewellery studies in Estonian Academy of Arts
and are currently based in Tallinn. Back in their study years, together with another young Estonian jeweller Nils Hint they established an artist group known as OTSE!, which introduced a conceptual jewellery exhibition at (AV17) gallery in 2012.
Annika’s works have two distinct aesthetical themes. The first is objects inspired by various mechanisms and machines, characterised by the simplicity of their shapes, practicality and multi-functionality. The second is the little known, unexplored world of dark creatures, materialized by the author through a combination of repugnant images and light, elegant plastic.
Works presented at the “Joint” exhibition are the prolongation of the first aesthetical category. The collection, inspired by the old game – election set amazes with its authentic plastic figure as well as the sizes of works from small pieces of jewellery to the election set based installation with parts connected to integral whole by people rather than the huge bolts. Fasten with some “life” links the installation becomes a giant neck gem. Hereby the artist changes the main jewellery conception – the work might be treated not only as an aesthetical item but also passes into the constantly modernized, life and pulsating creature.
Rainer finds his inspiration in history, ancient mythology and collective memory. He bravely reinterprets widely known religious symbols and creates new, unexpected versions of myths. His detailed and precise works often resemble small stage settings or visual stories rather than jewellery. The author uses humour not as a way to make fun of the society and its shortcomings but rather as a tool to articulate the truth (however unusual or contradictory it might be).
The exhibition “The Grey Everyday Life of a Hedonist” is full of light irony and sarcasm, which help the author to explore the philosophy of a pleasure-based lifestyle. The jewellery presented at the exhibition reflect the manifestation and signs of modern hedonism in our everyday life. It seems like the non-binding hedonistic joy of life serves as salvation for those worn out by the artificial bourgeois idyll. However, the author arrives at an unexpected fact – a hedonist also suffers from routine; it is simply slightly different than ours.