SHAKER BELL is a special limited edition project for THE THING by LA-based artist Ricky Swallow in collaboration with Werkstätte Carl Auböck, the legendary Viennese metal and design workshop. Their shared interest in everyday objects and materials, fine craftsmanship, and process through metal work has led to the creation of this unique object - which is also their first collaboration. Swallow is also a collector of Auböck objects, having discovered them in Vienna while travelling for an exhibition in 2007.
Swallow designed SHAKER BELL alongside his issue 29 for THE THING Quarterly. Both use as their starting point the shaker peg, originally designed by Shakers to adhere to their guiding principals of simplicity, utility, and honesty. As in all of his work, Swallow hand-constructed the original forms out of ordinary materials - cardboard, tape, and glue, in addition to the wooden pegs. The bells were then handmade in Vienna at the Auböck workshop as a limited edition of 100. The pegs for the bell were individually modified and fitted by Jim Christensen.
Each bell is stamped with both an Auböck and TTQ/RS stamp, and comes with a signed and numbered edition card in a custom wooden box.
- Ricky Swallow
Ricky Swallow (b. 1974) has been the subject of solo exhibitions at MoMA PS1, New York; University of California Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive; The Suburban, Oak Park, IL; Kunsthalle Vienna; Ian Potter Centre, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne; and the Australian Pavilion of the 2005 Venice Biennale. Two person exhibitions include Lesley Vance & Ricky Swallow, The Huntington Art Gallery, San Marino, CA; and Swallow Swenson, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney. In 2014, his work was included in the 2014 Whitney Biennial, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; and Made in L.A. 2014, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles. Other group exhibitions include Labour and Wait, Santa Barbara Museum of Art, Santa Barbara, CA; Coconut Water, White Flag Projects, Saint Louis, MO; Against the Grain, Wood in Contemporary Craft and Design, Museum of Arts and Design, New York; Aquatopia, Nottingham Contemporary, Nottingham, and Tate St Ives, Cornwall; and Out Of Australia, The British Museum, London. In 2015 Swallow was in residency at The Chinati Foundation, Marfa, TX and presented a solo exhibition at David Kordansky Gallery, Los Angeles, CA. Swallow lives and works in Los Angeles.
More info on Ricky Swallow can be found here.
- Werkstätte Carl Auböck
Founded as a metal workshop for girdling and chasing back in the 19th century, the Carl Auböck workshop is still located in the 7th district of Vienna in Bernardgasse 23. In its foundational years, the workshop mainly produced the so-called ‘Wiener Bronzen'. In 1926 the workshop was passed down from father (Karl Auböck I) to son (Carl Auböck II), who attended the Weimar Bauhaus and then continued with the development of products until his passing in 1957. His son Carl (III) continued likewise until 1993. Today the workshop is run by Carl (IV).
More information on the Werkstätte Carl Auböck can be found here.