To die upon a kiss, 2011, is the second of a trilogy of Murano glass chandeliers by Fred Wilson that examine the history and presence of Africans in Venice. Into the ornate form of the seventeenth-century Venetian chandelier, Wilson has introduced unexpected emotions and narratives. Through its title, which is drawn from Shakespeare’s seventeenth-century tragedy Othello, and in its gradation of colour, the work evokes themes of transformation. The deep black at the bottom of the chandelier transitions to an ethereal clear glass at the top, referencing the dissolution of the body in death. In Wilson’s words: ‘When looking at To die upon a kiss as a completed artwork, I saw my father’s life force in the blackness of the chandelier, draining down from the body as his spirit rose out. My father’s peaceful death occurred around the time of the artwork’s creation. Equally about Othello and my father, it is also about beauty and its uplifting, rejuvenating ability in times of sadness and remembrance. As a makeshift morgue sits outside the hospital near my home, this current pandemic is leaving a long solemn shadow. I believe intelligent thought, words and images (and light!) matter in helping us make it through the gloom’.