Anya Gallaccio

Gallaccio is known for her work with organic materials such as ice, flowers, fruits and sugar. Her installations often change over time as they melt, decompose or sprout new life. In preserve ‘beauty’ 2000 gerberas are sandwiched between huge panes of glass and left to wither and rot. Gallaccio has described gerberas as a ‘disposable commodity’, mass-produced all year round. Her work challenges romantic ideas of nature and culture, life and death. This was first displayed in the window of a London gallery, where it became a metaphor for Gallaccio’s perception of the male-dominated art scene.

Gallery label, May 2007

I have fallen in love with Gallaccio’s Installation. I like how its challenging the preservation of beauty and showing that beauty fades. The name of the piece ‘Preserved “Beauty” also has another meaning as thered flower is a cross between a Daisy and a Gerbera which is known by the name ‘Beauty’. This work also interacts with the viewer by challenging more than one sense. The smell of the rotting flowers is hard for the viewer to ignore. This could challenge the idea of the work being a performance between the artist and viewer.

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