Swap your trea­sure for a stranger’s

Auckland City Harbour News - - FRONT PAGE - By JESS LEE

You would be hard-pushed to fit a year-long haul of mem­o­ries in one back­pack.

Claire Digneau will have to leave many trin­kets and sou­venirs be­hind when she fin­ishes her trav­els and re­turns to France.

But the 22-year-old has a novel ap­proach to the sit­u­a­tion.

She has or­gan­ised an ob­ject-swap ex­hi­bi­tion at Beres­ford Square’s Bridge Gallery Stu­dio where peo­ple leave be­hind one of their be­long­ings be­fore tak­ing home a stranger’s pre-loved loot.

‘‘I have to fit ev­ery­thing I have in a back­pack at some point and you get at­tached to things so you don’t want to just throw them away,’’ Digneau says.

‘‘I hope the event will con­nect peo­ple and will ex­tend the life of an ob­ject, al­low­ing the next owner to give it a new story.’’

Each per­son is able to leave a note with their ob­ject to ex­plain the back­story be­hind it or it can be com­pletely anony­mous.

The piece could be any­thing from a book or an or­na­ment to some art­work.

Digneau gave up her copy of Jack Ker­ouac’s On the Road at the ex­hi­bi­tion’s open­ing last night.

The self-con­fessed col­lec­tor says she would find it hard not to swap it for an­other item but may part with more than just one ob­ject dur­ing the 21-day ex­hi­bi­tion.

The first ob­ject re­ceived for the swap was a beer bot­tle sent from Ger­many with a story at­tached.

Dump­ster-div­ing for trea­sures thrown into skips around her Grey Lynn home is one of her favourite pas­times, Digneau says.

‘‘I’ve found so many things in dump­sters in the street ac­tu­ally. I’ve got a very old jew­ellery box that I found one day in a dump­ster that would prob­a­bly be re­ally ex­pen­sive in an an­tique shop.

‘‘It’s go­ing to be so hard to leave things be­hind.’’

Digneau hopes peo­ple who take part in the ex­hi­bi­tion will make con­nec­tions through its Face­book page and give more back­ground to their ob­ject.

The event will run un­til Septem­ber 10 and is open from Thurs­day to Sun­day from 10am to 6pm.

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