Erarta Museum of Contemporary Art presents an exhibition by the French artist Laurence Jenkell whose creations spell out the recipe for a truly ‘sweet life’
As a schoolgirl, the French artist Laurence Jenkell was given sweets only by her grandfather — and only if and when her grades were good. ‘My mum kept telling me scary stories about dentists, and for many years candy was something of a nightmare for me,’ says the artist. Surprisingly enough, years later candy also became a source of inspiration for Laurence: one day, experimenting with bright melted plastic in her kitchen, the artist gave it a twist, styling it as a candy wrapper. From then on the creation of ‘sweet’ sculptures became one of her main passions. Jenkell, who believes that the beauty of art lies in the opportunity to escape from the daily routine, puts down the popularity of her works to the fact that they activate all senses: sight, hearing, taste, and smell.
For her sculptural pieces Laurence Jenkell searches out the most unusual materials, be it patinated bronze, Carrara marble, or Plexiglas imitating crystal. No matter what the ‘wrapper’ is made of, the viewers, drawing on their own experience, unmistakably get the message hidden within. Sweets make us feel happier, help relieve stress and overcome anxiety. By causing a release of serotonin, candy boosts brain activity and can even prevent seasonal colds. What can be more relevant during the damp and chilly St. Petersburg autumn and the nearly as bleak local winter? Even better news: you can get a taste of this ‘sweet life’ through art, no calories added.