A NEW contemporary art installation featuring 600 soft sculptural good luck charms opened at the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA) today and we love it! Room of Lucky Charms (2017) is a multi-sensory work created by Melbourne-based artist Kate Beynon for the sixth annual Bella Room Commission.
As part of the MCA’s Bella Program, the commission is pivotal to the museum’s commitment to access. In 2016, over 2,500 people of all ages with disability or access requirements experienced the Bella Room Commission by artist Kathy Temin.
Visitors can engage with the work by selecting, placing and rearranging the soft sculpture symbols to create patterns, messages and their own associations of meaning.
The work comes from Kate Beynon's personal perspective – a childhood immersed in lucky symbols from Chinese and Welsh culture. Imagery such as Chinese ‘happiness bats’ and Celtic knots decorated furniture, objects and textiles in her family home. Her maternal grandmother gifted her charm bracelets and carved jade pendants featuring lucky characters and signs.
In total, 11 symbols can be found in the room including plants and animals, such as the gingko leaf, orange, lotus bud and ‘happiness bat’; and symbols drawn from the human body through eyes, heart, lips and hands.
Visitors to the Museum can visit the room in various ways throughout the year by attending a Bella program, or by experiencing Artplay, a creative play session for children aged 5 and under and their families.