Sourcing Honey Bee Wings | Luci Jockel


The animal remains I use in my work are collected after the animal has died of natural causes. My works are memorials for the animals.  The bee wings of Bee Wing Lace Neckpiece came from the roof hives of RISD Museum, whose bees didn’t survive the winter. The rest of the wings I use come from hives that did not survive for many reasons- from harsh weather, to mites, pesticides, and even hungry bears. I’ve received wings from a beekeeper I met in Rhode Island, my father’s hives, or recently, from the hives on top of MAD Museum and Brooklyn Museum tended by beekeeper, Bruce Gifford.

This work begain with the idea to memorialize and mourn honey bees due to their decline, making a veil from their wings. So, I reached out to local beekeepers asking if they had the misfortune of losing their bees. I got a response from a beekeeper, Paul Whewell, who had lost his hives due to the harsh winter. In exchange for the bee remains, I helped him to rebuild his hives for next season- most of which survived that year.

He also gave me honey, beeswax, propolis, and mentored me in beekeeper so I could one day become a beekeeper. My Dad and I then began beekeeping and he continues to do so today.

As we experience more extreme weather due to the climate crisis, the bees and all other animals and plants are impacted. My goal is to bring awareness to this issue and reconnect with these beings.