Inspired by Virginia’s Woolf quote from the essay Modern Fiction, Korean jewelry designer YunSun Jang established one of her most renowned collections, “I See a Halo Around You”. It explores the non-tactile relationship between the wearer and the space around them. Not only does the collection have an aesthetic appeal, but it is also a psychological embodiment of social alienation, manifested in the form of jewelry. Her designs connect the individual’s inner and outer spatial dimensions, demonstrating how accessories have the potential to transcend the boundaries of space.

I See A Halo Around You ⎮ Photograph courtesy of Yunsun Jang

“Life is a luminous halo, a semi-transparent envelope surrounding us from the beginning of consciousness to the end.” — Virginia Woolf

I See A Halo Around You ⎮ Photograph courtesy of Yunsun Jang

Jang states that her jewelry almost acts like a spacesuit surrounding the wearer. The designer essentially outlines bubbles with a delicate line of metal encircling the model’s head, hands and even legs. She eccentrically produces halo-like rings, closely resembling celestial aureoles that float around the wearer — barriers separating the wearer from the space around them.

I See A Halo Around You ⎮ Photograph courtesy of Yunsun Jang

I See A Halo Around You ⎮ Photograph courtesy of Yunsun Jang

The jewelry — though metallic — offers mobility with material that is flexible and can accommodate to the wearer’s movements. While the polished exterior looks rather robotic in a futuristic fashion, the material is also soft, due to the sleekness of the gold hardware. This simple juxtaposition in design delineates the prevalent theme of protection whereby the “halo” is a pure space that encases the individual. The literal emptiness and transparency of the “I See a Halo Around You” project, implies that one’s interaction with the world is not limited within the confines of the jewelry, and/or society.

I See A Halo Around You ⎮ Photograph courtesy of Yunsun Jang

I See A Halo Around You ⎮ Photograph courtesy of Yunsun Jang

It is no wonder that Jang has won the ITS Swarovski Award in 2015, as she uses her silversmith expertise to emphasis one’s bodily physicality and spirituality through the collection. Acting as an avant-garde jewelry piece, and even more as a beautiful artistic statement, “I See a Halo Around You” exemplifies a space in which an individual can “live, breathe and communicate, but simultaneously alienate you from the space around you”.

Written by Ally Chou

Edited by Sonia Wan

Many thanks to Yun Sun Jang for press materials.

“References”

Julie Fubiz (2017) Beautiful Futuristic Jewels by YunSun Jang, Available at http://www.fubiz.net/2017/02/14/beautiful-futuristic-jewels-by-yunsun-jang/ [Accessed 05/30/2017]

Artnau (2017) I See a Halo Around You By YunSun Jang, Available at http://www.artnau.com/2017/02/yunsun-jang/ [Accessed 05/30/2017]

Bloom Press (2016) Luminous Halos: YunSun Jang, Available at http://www.bloom-press.com/single-post/2016/09/09/Luminous-Halos-YunSun-Jang [Accessed 05/30/2017]

Royal College of Art (n.d.) YunSun Jang, Available at https://www.rca.ac.uk/students/yunsun-jang/ [Accessed 05/30/2017]