This one-of-a-kind ‘Sky Tower’ Necklace, by Anna Hu embodies her unique and captivating creative practice – a vision that is rooted in New York, infused with Eastern and Western culture, and combines bold Western craftsmanship with Eastern aesthetics. This necklace incorporates details and techniques that reflect the beauty of Western contemporary art, while the centerpiece – a precious jadeite plaque – symbolizes the essence of Chinese culture and history.
This jadeite necklace is inspired by Pritzker Architecture Prize winner and distinguished French architect Jean Nouvel’s design of 53 West 53 located in the heart of New York City. Also known as the MoMA Expansion Tower, this structure is revered as a site of artistic excellence and according to critic Nicolai Ouroussoff, it is ‘the most architecturally significant addition to the Manhattan skyline in recent years.’ ANNA HU’s global headquarters will soon also reside at this prestigious address, with an official opening date projected for late 2020/early 2021.
Extending skyward above MoMA’s galleries, Nouvel’s adventurous use of angled lines over a glass façade manifests the unique elegance and sophistication of contemporary art. Completed in November 2019, this staggering skyscraper serves as a hallmark of a new era of artistic trends, brimming New York’s skyline with transformative possibilities.
The building’s distinctive multi-faceted conical nature inherits the stylistic legacy of New York’s classic high-rise towers. Inspired by the building’s tapered design and influenced by the powerfully aesthetic possibilities of the architectural structure, Anna Hu introduces these ideas into her conception of this jadeite necklace.
In order to embody contemporary art in her design, Anna focuses on the use of titanium, instead of gemstones alone. The structural majesty of the building is represented by intricate geometric shapes with angular triangular patterns, while the beauty of the towering glass façade is evoked through the masterful interweaving of clear strong lines that emulate purity and calmness. The centrally mounted jadeite pendant is detachable and may also be worn as a brooch. As tribute to the East, this pendant is shaped as a propitious shield from the ancient Chinese Royal Army that protects its wearer symbolically.
In addition, sophisticated details can even be found on the reverse of the necklace – engravings that are reminiscent of the auspicious clouds seen throughout Chinese culture and tradition, symbolizing blessings, joy, safety and health. These details reveal Anna’s ingenuity as she explores flowing vivid metallic curves set on the reverse of triangular titanium tiles – an incredible juxtaposition.
Lot 62 simultaneously pays homage to the spectacular position that Jean Nouvel’s MoMA Expansion Tower holds in the field of contemporary architecture while also portraying the beauty of Eastern culture and its history. In this timeless masterpiece, Anna proves that tradition is indeed immortal at what is a clear turning point in her own contemporary aesthetics.