Gilded fibreglass sculpture, photograph, sand flow.
Curated by Chris Briffa Architects.
S&S Bathrooms showroom, Lija, Malta, 2011.
The bathroom is all about surface. The fixtures, wall coverings, and lighting reflect our use of the room to clean and modify our own dermal surfaces. We scrub, polish, shave, and moisturize ourselves in order to present our most confident looking and feeling selves. A properly accented bathroom becomes at some point a reflection of both our outermost selves refreshed and ready for whatever the day brings and our innermost private selves at the point of washing ourselves clean of that days ups and downs. The choice to place the Golden Man of Malta and the gold leafed Maltese Falcon in a bathroom appointed in black and gold is at first unsettlingly humorous. Who wants a gold encrusted human peacock with the volume turned all the way up on his fashion meter and a gilded fiberglass falcon looming over their bathtub? Look deeper, beyond the tank top with a golden dragon running up stripes, beyond the knuckles ensconced in the aurum of status, beyond the hollow gleam of precious metal. The Golden Man is reflected in the room itself. Both of their surfaces are covered in black and gold, two colors that represent two distinct emotional and spiritual depths and directions. The gravity of black and the elevatory possibilities embodied by gold coupled with the sands of time on the floor representing our common human body provide a meditation point for the occupant of the bathroom at his or her most private moment. The visual relationship between the Golden Man and the falcon is one of warning, things may not be what they seem, things may be strictly empty beneath the surface. Yet the image of the man points in a different direction, our surfaces, our clothing and hair, our adornments, all the things that originate in the bathrooms and dressing rooms of our spaces, empower us in our daily lives. If we look good we feel good. The Golden Man is proof that what "good" looks like comes truly from within.