Transition Gallery at Huntergather
68 Wigmore Street, London W1U 2SD


A subversive look at female adornment
played out on found handbags and real faces


Kirsty Buchanan / Annabel Dover / Paul Kindersley /
Cathy Lomax /Alex Michon / Alli Sharma / Corinna Spencer

15 October - 24 November 2013
Monday - Saturday 10am-7pm
Sunday 12-6pm


From the ‘Birkin’ to the ‘Del Rey’ the ubiquitous signifier of femininity that is the handbag has taken on the mantel of an iconic consumerist object far removed from its original useful intention. With this in mind Transition Gallery in collaboration with Huntergather have commissioned six artists to explore images of female adornment using found handbags as their canvas. The artists are not, however, designing luxury items; their reclaimed bags are merely used as the ground on which to paint preoccupations inherent in their own work, employing a mildly subversive and doubling enactment, which nevertheless takes on board an understanding of the status of the object. Alongside the painted bags Paul Kindersley's performative makeup demonstrations unearth and obscure classic beauties from the past.

In many of Angela Carter’s stories, jewels (which appear on many of the Ornament bags) play a fetishistic role, where they are the tools of seduction of a predatory male, which the author sees as a negation of femininity to which women themselves are attracted. Ornament explores, contradicts and delights in this female fascination.


Kirsty Buchanan's painted bag looks at someone looking at him or herself.
Annabel Dover isolates the jewels
worn by Rubens, van Dyck, Rembrandt
and Ingres' painted ladies.
  Cathy Lomax's
noir bags
depict the necklines of iconic femme fatales.

Alex Michon uses broken glass to stand in for diamonds in her depictions of the over arching femininity of drag queens.
Alli Sharma inspired by Angela Carter's Wise Children paints perfume bottles.
Corinna Spencer examines love and obsession with a series of painted gems.


Paul Kindersley Get The Look
a performative makeup demonstration in which classic beauties from the past are bought to life. The makeup becomes paint and the look grotesque as layers are added and beauty defined...


During Ornament the Huntergather store will also feature additional artworks by the artists, a unique jewellery collection by Julia Cook including collaborative works made with Katherine Tulloh and the Transition shop with its collection of independent publications and limited edition prints.



Clutch Control - huntergather write up Ornament
This is not a Handbag - DISNEYROLLERGIRL - observations and                         opinions from a fashion insider