Maximillian Boden

BA (Hons) Jewellery Design 2010

Central Saint Martins

Description

For my degree project I was exploring the concept of masculinity. I wanted to challenge and question society’s ideas of what is perceived to be masculine. To do this I looked at objects one would normally associate with men. This project was inspired by my dissertation on homoerotic imagery in heterosexual male aimed media. I learnt about how with the boom of the economy brought on the birth of the ‘new man’ or the ‘metrosexual’. Mark Simpson (1994) in his article ‘Here Come The Mirror Men’ defines this new breed as ‘Metrosexual man, the single young man with a high disposable income, living or working in the city (because that’s where all the best shops are), is perhaps the most promising consumer market of the decade’

From this I began to look at male grooming and the idea of narcissism. I came up with a series of medals entailed ‘The Best A Man Can Get’. I electroformed actual Gillette razors then plated them in 24ct gold. I attached them to ribbon similar to those used on war medals, and made into brooches. My aim was to make a statement about how one was more likely to get recognition for how you look, with the obsession with celebrity culture, than something you actually do.

I was also looking at gym culture and the daily rituals men do in order to achieve the ‘Adonis’ form. I overwhelmed by the amount of supplements on the market, and really questioned whether they actually fulfilled their promises of ‘Super Sizing’ the consumer. Using a mixture of used steroid vials, needles, blue string and gold plated square wire, I redesigned at crucifix to make a reference to how men get so focused and dedicate their lives to it, in order to achieve physical perfection, it is as if it’s a new religion, entitled “The Gym Is My Religion”

I want my work encourage the wearing or viewer to stop and possibly re-question everyday object and their meaning or place in society.

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