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Boky Hackel-Ward

The voyage that we impend upon in the darkness of a cloudy night,

in an effort to vanquish the enemy within; doubt….

Call it rupture, solitude, anguish, fear….

all of it, and more, thrown into one violent battleground

 called our psyche. 

Where were the gods then?

It has been this crossing that has forged me

as an artist

and as a human being. 

The gift, is emerging on the other side. 

The gift, is transcending and overcoming

the paralysis of silent faith and acquiescence.  

The gift, is that one day we find that thing, that medium,

and it no longer matters what we want to be,

because we are,

now and here. 

It doesn’t even matter if they get us or not. 

We are finally free to create!  

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Figurative Poetry

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Represented by: Hilton Asmus Contemporary   716 North Wells Street, Chicago, IL 60654, U.S.A.                         Tel.+1 312 475 1788

 Petley-Jones Gallery  1554 West 6th Avenue, Vancouver, Canada

Tel.+1 604 732 5353

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The restless gaze and the divided Ego


Enigmatic faces, masks, broken bronze portraits covered with gold leaf or platinum by Boky Hackel-Ward, present reinterpretations and transfigurations of her enigmatic face, sphinxes of mystery that materialize a tenacious will to affirm her attitude and artistic identity, as in Damaged for instance, in which the interior of the female figure cites an extract from the poem by Paul Géraldy, Mea Culpa: “Au Fond, vois-tu, mon erreur, ma grande folie, c'est d'avoir chargé ton coeur de tout le poids de ma vie” (taken from the book Moi et Toi), source of inspiration for the artist; or in Losing myself in you.


The artist, in her experimental eclecticism, in search of her artistic daimon, autonomous and self-aware, finds in sculpture a code of renewal of the intangible and the spiritual, practiced assiduously from 2013 and 2016, years of fervent study and work.


Boky Hackel-Ward is a restorer, painter, musician, performer and photographer who trained in Florence where she breathed, lived and absorbed the "grammar" of the Renaissance, always passionate about poetry, fascinated by the sound of words, with these sculptures she shows a surprising artistic maturity in her ability to conjugate poetry and figuration, introducing words, letters in which she finds her autonomous and recognizable linguistic code.


At the foundry battling the wax, then the bronze, in the interpenetration of poetry and anthropomorphic, stylized figures, combining words and shapes used to give life to sculptures that become éterrnelles. Her male and female bodies through words welded together determine enigmatic identities. In the communicative energy of language and in the universality of poetry, the artist yearns for rebirth, materialization and transfiguration of the verbum, evoking tension towards the absolute expressed with gold.


Her rigorous search for the re-novatio of classicism and the recollection of Visual Poetry (neo-avant-garde of the Sixties) materialize into bodies that invite the reflection on the difference between the male and female component. The woman is hopelessly Damaged, the man is configured with Kaboom!.  As documented in bronze, Kaboom!, a unique piece; composed with the words: “Particles Collide, Ignition, Fusion and Kaboom!”; that represents the clash between male and female particles, a total fusion of two disjointed entities as an expression of a carnal and creative merger that exists throughout the artist's search.


In the metaphor between the unexpressed struggle of the recognition of the Ego, you, us and other than I, a complex search configured through sculptures laden with autobiographical references, Boky emancipates herself, recognizing and freeing herself from the concepts of female and male identity, thus enhancing the psychological, cultural and social ones. She goes beyond the rationale of biological sex, finding in the creative force, the alphabet of her investigations on problems surrounding the development of identity on the distinctions between sex and gender, spirit and matter, art and poetry, verbal languages ​​and the metaphorical ones, so typical in men and women.


Plato, in 400 BC, questioned himself on the theme of gender identity and on the male and female elements present in every human being, further expounded upon by Freud. According to some psychologists it would be necessary to regain the bisexuality proper to the period of childhood. And we know that in art and mythology the hermaphrodite is the perfect being. This is the theme of Donalds Woods Winnicott's  “Creativity and its origins”, which states that “there is nothing new inside or outside of psychoanalysis in the idea that men and women have a predisposition towards bisexuality ", and art, like angels, has no sex. 

Her sculpture is a will for power in action, a form that occupies a space, a structure, a universal means of communication, in which gold is the auctores, a citation of a divine component, aimed at expressing a spiritual tension, in which words become prerequisites for formal and conceptual investigations on the subject of identity. For Boky Hackel-Ward the Logos becomes figurative poetry, lyrically expressed with sculptures against gender biases and the differences between the female and the masculine components in art while exploring the origins of intuition.


Jacqueline Ceresoli

 Art Critic

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