Lydia Chiu

Cuckoo Cage

Class of: 2026

Medium: Wood, wire

Faculty: Micki Spiller

Prompt: The assignment was to create a vessel, inspired by a piece of work found at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, in which to hold an object of our choosing.

The object of inspiration I chose at the Metropolitan Museum of Art is called a bibru, and is a Hittitian vessel with a stag bust on one end and the opening at the other end, creating a form resembling a mug on its side. I was unsure of how to incorporate such a design into a container for my object, but then thought of birds, bird houses, and cuckoo clocks, and decided upon the latter— my favorite option, since I adore cuckoo clocks visually. Additionally, I thought the idea would tie back to the bibru because, like the decorative element of the stag-head rendering the functional element of the vessel useless, though I was making something that appeared to be a cuckoo clock, it would not have working clock hands, rendering the design contradictory to its purpose, like the bibru. I titled it Cuckoo Cage because it is modeled after a cuckoo clock and, like a ribcage, surrounds a heart.