After obtaining an MA in Visual Arts at Sint-Lucas School of Fine Arts in Gent, Belgium, Nel Verbeke specialised in design. Fascinated by the research and conceptualisation of ideas, Verbeke usually starts with a textual input, such as a story or a definition, before determining its form and function. The notions of space and the interaction between different elements are at the heart of her research, which combines her background in visual arts with her training in design, with the aim of offering the viewer an experience through the objects.
In the objects of the Embrace Melancholy series, the artist was inspired by the feeling of melancholy to give form to her works. Her research into the materialisation of this feeling drew on multiple references, from visual arts to literature and philosophy.
Mirror/Hourglass is a mirror with an aged tint covered by a curved glass tube filled with sand and ashes, with copper and ash ends. An hourglass/mirror that can be turned over, this piece seems to be the perfect metaphor for the silent, meditative observation of the passing of time.