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"Everything that is dead quivers. Not only the things of poetry, stars, moon, wood, flowers, but even a white trouser button glittering out of a puddle in the street....Everything has a secret soul, which is silent more often than it speaks."
Wassily Kandinsky

A Cabinet of Curiosities

  Acrylics & Assemblages by Rebecca Nichols 

A Cabinet of Curiosities: An eccentric exhibition of the mysterious, the exotic & the bizarre.

 Artist Statement 

When I first began to create assemblages I became fascinated by the idea of a thought contained; a moment captured, preserved yet inaccessible behind glass in a wooden structure. I discovered that with deliberate selection & placement of each element I could create a pallet of objects, each with its own distinctive visual eloquence. Later I began to seek to uncover the secret soul of the inanimate; to elevate lost, damaged & perhaps mundane objects through a veiled web of affinities.
 The process may seem intuitive at times, yet an associative thread is ever-present & a mysterious congruity between each fragment always exists. My inspiration comes primarily from the language of esoteric symbolism, the world of nature as displayed in the Cabinets of Curiosities of the 16th & 17th centuries & from my studies of astronomy; the cosmic curiosities, strange & beautiful whorls of galaxies & the alchemy of stars visible in nebulæ & supernovæ.

All insect, bird & animal remains incorporated into my assemblages are the result of death by natural causes or accident (e.g. road kill).  No living creature has ever been harmed in the creation of my artwork.

Click on images to make them larger


"Quinta Essencia"
Size 7 ½"H x 7"W x 2"D




Size 7 ½" H x 7"W x 2"D



"Post Tenebris, Lux"
Size 7 ½" H x 7"W x 2"D


"Spira Solis"
Size 7 ½"H x 7"W x 2"D


"Arbor Vitae"
Size 7 ½"H x 7"W x 2"D


Size 7 ½"H x 7"W x 2"D

My childhood was spent in England &, for several years, in Singapore & Malaysia. As an adult I have lived & travelled extensively throughout the Far East & Europe, these travels & experiences having been a source of both personal transformation & creative inspiration. To quote Cardinal Newman; "To live is to change, & to be perfect is to have changed often". I feel my life thus far has been a sequence of profound changes, with each transition occasioning a re-awakening; a metamorphosis. Whether living in a foreign country, beginning a new career, or exploring new avenues of artistic expression, I continue to challenge myself intellectually & creatively.

  I reside in the historic neighbourhood of Ghent in Norfolk, Virginia with my loving, supportive & very patient husband of 24 years & my precious kitties.

Juried Shows:
Mid-Atlantic Art Exhibiton 2009
'Crux'- Mayer Fine Art Gallery, Norfolk, VA   2009 - Second Place
New Waves - Contemporary Art Center of Virginia 2005  
Mid-Atlantic Art Exhibition 2005  

Individual Show:

Solo Show at Bonnie Arnold's, Norfolk, VA 2006

If you have any questions regarding my artwork or if you would like to see more images, please e-mail me at catlady64@cox.net
All sizes listed are height x width x depth.


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Agora Gallery Contemporary art gallery established 1984, located at the center of the New York Chelsea fine art galleries district. Art consulting services are provided to corporate and private art collectors. Collective exhibitions feature diverse contemporary art of various genres including painting, drawing, sculpture, photography and mixed media. Artist portfolios are reviewed.



I love the assemblages! They simultaneously evoke the natural history cabinets of the past and suggest an imagined version of a post-scientific futurism. Ultimately, I read them as comments on time at many, many levels (from "freezing" the moment, to evoking the past, to projecting a future when time is understood differently, not as sequential but as continuum: science and alchemy as undistinguishable).

Dr. Manuela Mourão, Associate Professor, Literature
Old Dominion University