Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 14 November 2019

The diamond-encrusted Apple AirPods that cost Dh73,450

The earphones have been reimagined as miniature works of art. Would you invest?

The fully functional diamond-encrusted Apple AirPods come with their own marble stand. Courtesy Ian Delucca
The fully functional diamond-encrusted Apple AirPods come with their own marble stand. Courtesy Ian Delucca

For Object No. 1 AirPods, the first piece in his New Materialism series, Ian Delucca asks us to view AirPods as art. In the artist’s hands, these everyday objects are given a bedazzling makeover and transformed into miniature pieces of sculpture.

The AirPods have Apple internal components coated in 14k white gold and dotted with 1,000 VVS diamonds, and they come with their own dedicated marble charging stand. Each pair is fully functional and marked with a serial number detailing edition number and creation date. They will be available in a limited edition of 25, and can be acquired prior to public release by contacting Delucca, who is based in Los Angeles, directly via Instagram.

With New Materialism, Delucca aims to meld art and commerce. He is appropriating capitalist techniques, symbols and processes, and reimagining existing products with a new appreciation for form. “New Materialism guides us into new relationships with the material world,” the artist says. “New Materialism is about taking these things that we’re very familiar with and altering them in a way that forces us to reset our perspective, to look at things more deeply, and to see our parameters as individuals deepen within us,” he adds.

“The AirPods are about developing an iconography and language as an artist. They hold in themselves not only form but a vast set of cultural information; containing a time and place, an idea of an economic system, both in what created them and what they communicate about the people who wear them,” Delucca explains.

So what other objects are on the list to get the New Materialism treatment? “We’ve been in the studio disassembling some of the hardest to get handbags, playing with the materials they provide,” Delucca reveals. “Object No. 2 will likely be shoes. Then large-scale wall works.”

Updated: September 11, 2019 05:43 PM

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