Friday, May 17, 2013

Personal Shrines

It is quite a long time since I made a series of personal shrines. In fact it is almost two years ago - I really find that hard to believe myself but the post on a shrine celebrating the moon is proof.

©2013 Barry Smith - Detail from Personal Shrine
As I did some two years ago I stop and ask myself - what are the personal shrines about? Well to tell the truth they are a small reflection of our own life. In our house we have a corner where we have a few candles, a bowl of words and an incense holder. It is the place where each morning we pause, have a juice, look out over the valley, choose a word to start out day. It is a quiet spot to give a start and focus to the day. In making the personal shrines I guess I am making pieces that can become the personal quiet spot for folk in their home - to start and/or end their day.

The thing about personal shrines is that what I offer is the beginning. People who purchase the shrines take them and personalise them. Folk will add crystals, icons, words, photos etc - whatever is the focus of peace and stillness in their life.

The two small shrines below reflect the themes of our upcoming exhibition - peace and stillness.

©2013 Barry Smith - Peace and Stillness Personal Shrines
©2013 Barry Smith - Peace  Personal Shrine
©2013 Barry Smith -  Stillness Personal Shrine
These shrines are made from leather bound wood covers from a very old but damaged book.  They can hang but given that they are about 220-250mm high and the brass shelf is very rigid they can stand nicely on a niche or corner in a home. The two back boards have brass or EPNS decorative bits cut from an old tissue box holder and EPNS tray respectively.

©2013 Barry Smith - Offering Bowl and Leaf on Personal Shrine
Each of my personal shrines will have a small offering bowl held aloft on a brass ring. The bowls will be made from EPNS drink coasters and the brass rings are cut from an old 'yabbie' bait pump. Each shrine will also have a small EPNS leaf with the word peace or stillness stamped into it. The offering bowl can also be used for incense. Both shrines need a few finishing touches.

Home made pizzas and red wine call so I must respond.


  1. So beautiful, Barry. And a beautiful way to bring some stillness and contemplation into our busy-busy-rush-rush lives.


  2. Hello, Barry.

    Lovely and heartwarming your works..

    Thank you for your visit.
    I thank for your usual and hearty support.
    The prayer for all peace.

    Have a good weekend. From Japan, ruma❃

  3. Hi MIA - good to see you - thanks for your positive support for the shrines. Ruma - I'm touched that you see the works for what they are intended - works of peace. Go well. B

  4. oh yes, no keeping red wine and pizza waiting ;-)

    these are beautiful mister B. they beckon for a pause and a stillness, beginning with them and ending within. I have experienced that personal shrines also hold a space that we find with them.... next time we visit we can drop into the stillness or peace swiftly, because a sacred space we have created is there for us. that was a lot of words for what i was trying to say!

    1. TL - I love those words "we drop into the stillness or peace swiftly" - that ios so true and that is what sits behind my work on the shrines. Thank you. B

  5. Beautiful pieces, Barry. I love the combination of metal and old book covers.


Comments are welcomed - it is good to connect with fellow travellers.