Debra Franses’s idea for Perfume Number 9 and the rest of the Art Bag collection first originated whilst the artist was studying at Central St Martins School of Art (2002-2005). Debra took a beautiful handbag from a top couture house and adapted it into a silicone mould for casting. She graduated in 2005 in Fine Art Sculpture.
These original resin sculptures, therefore weighing approximately 15 kilos each, are filled with random objects. Including guns, money bills, Coca Cola bottles, sunglasses, makeup, pocket watches, keys… and more.
Debra explores ideas centred on consumption and mass production. In other words, she recognises the relationship we have with material objects as consumable goods. With their kitschy elements these works are a clear nod to pop art, brought into the digital age. In short, we curate and display the emblems we love and they curate and display us.
Debra Franses was born in London in 1967. She studied Politics and Economics and subsequently pursued a career in advertising. She has lived and worked in New York and London, where she is now based. Most importantly, her Art Bags (including Perfume Number 9) have been exhibited in galleries around the globe.
In 2015, she produced some works for Coca Cola Museum to celebrate 100 years of the iconic coke bottle design. Her works were shown alongside pieces by an impressive selection of internationally-acclaimed artists, for instance Andy Warhol and Ai WeiWei. Most recently, one of her Art Bags was exhibited with Runway Gallery for our London Fashion Week takeover for Fashion Scout at Victoria House, London.
Debra says about Perfume Number 9 and her other Art Bags:
Each and every one of my bags are a distillation of who I have met, where I have been or what I witness in the world; because all interactions leave a trace in me which inspire my work. The Art Bag panel Perfume Number 9 represents this.
For the full selection of Art Bags by Debra Franses
Read the Debra Franses Interview – Forty Nine questions and art ain’t one