Sunday, August 4, 2013

Travellers' Shrines

Over the weekend I completed my last pieces of work for our upcoming exhibition by making a few Travellers' Shrines. There is still a lot of tidying, polishing and adding hangers to various exhibition pieces - but the body of work is done

Quite a long while ago I made a prototype of such a portable shrine but never got around to making any more. But given the theme of exhibition I was inspired to make a few more.  The ones I have made are in the style of much simpler box type Tibetan travellers 'shrines' such as those in the photo below.

©2013 Barry Smith - Fiona holds and unfolds the contents of one of B&R's collection of 'travellers' shrines'
My shrines are square (about 8cm square and 2.5cm deep). They have a brass lidless box that slides into the silved-plated EPNS lid; and the brass box is lined with felt. The lids have folds and rivets on the four corners. In the end I will only put two into the exhibition as the third shrine just did not come together well enough to be exhibited and sold.

©2013 Barry Smith - Silver-plated EPNS shrine lids - formerly plate coasters
©2013 Barry Smith - Travellers' Shrines - lids and boxes showing contents
As you can see from the photos above and below each of my Travellers's Shrine will include: a small hammered EPNS bowl (about 40mm in diameter); an incense holder made from a goblet stem; a small stamped EPNS Peace Leaf (about 70mm long); a small bundle of Japanese incense; and a yet to be added silk cloth.

©2013 Barry Smith - Travellers' Shrines - lids and boxes showing contents 
©2013 Barry Smith - Travellers' Shrine - set out with incense burning
I imagine that people who would buy such a Travellers' Shrine would add their own 'sacred' pieces including: written sayings; crystals; amulets etc.

©2013 Barry Smith - Traveller's Shrine incense burner in operation
These are meant to be personal pieces that have history and sacredness added to them over time.


  1. Lovely box shrines to make one's own, Barry. I like the way you have folded the corners. Simply beautiful!

  2. my goodness B! this is such a wonderful concept! i foresee these would be so very popular.

  3. What price? If I can afford it, can I buy one you put in the exhibition with a red sticker on and send later? I love the idea and certainly feel the need for a personal shrine at the moment.

  4. J, R, L & P - thanks for your very positive feedback - always amazes me when such a simple creation can bring out the joy in us. R - I think the folded corners give the shrines a slight primitive handmade look. P - haven't got around to pricing them yet - will let you know as soon as I do. B

  5. Very beautiful, Barry, and I think these will be very popular. I missed the original post and that, too, is wonderful! I love the way your imagination keeps you being so creative. Every post is a treat!


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