Inspired by bony relics from past meals (also trips to the beach and to the dentist’s chair), Alexis Canter has managed to make chicken bones beautiful, a real achievement in this city, where they are often the nastiest of sidewalk blemishes. Small wishbones, collected from her mother’s kitchen, are cast in solid gold and strung on thin chains ($420). She also pulls them apart, using only the winning half to make dangly earrings that may bring good luck, though she cannot legally guarantee anything. In addition to wishbones, she has formed stars from the malleable exoskeletons of cuttlefish for stud earrings and is about to unleash charm necklaces. Naturally, the charms are wisdom teeth supplied by brave, Vicodin-hazed friends. But the chicken bones are her defining item, in more ways than one. Canter’s mother grew up on a chicken farm and decorated her house with chicken imagery, probably not having foreseen this form of entrepreneurship, but pleased to contribute.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on December 28, 2004