DETAIL: Toots ZYNSKY 'Pennellata' 2004, 'Filet de Verre' fused and thermoformed colour glass threads
Wendy RAMSHAW | Prospero's table

Great Britain 1939
To Perth, Western Australia 1978-1979
Prospero's table
group of jewellery in display case 2004
mixed media
Lent by Wendy Ramshaw
Photographer Graham Pym

Prospero, the protagonist of Shakespeare’s play The tempest, survives after being set adrift in a boat with his daughter and develops magical skills, which he uses to conjure a storm to shipwreck his brother and his companions on the island where he himself was marooned. Wendy Ramshaw’s Prospero’s table does not appear in the play – it is conjured by her as an object floating in space, something that only Prospero could summon to his side and for which he held the only key. The contents of its many locked compartments are jewellery and objects related to Prospero, the sea or the spirits that inhabit his island. Invoking Prospero’s powers of transformation, Ramshaw’s assembled jewellery is rich in association and material ingenuity, combining precious traditional materials with those of high technology in transformations of meaning and purpose.

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