Tuesday, 27 May 2014

ICONS - jewellery for the famous and infamous, pieces reflecting cultural & design icons

I am currently showing in an ACJ Members' exhibition, a special piece I made for Patti Smith, inspired by her book Woolgathering. The materials I used were: Hand felted surface, Italian silks, silver, gold, English paper pieced patchwork, faceted blood (stones).

"The theme inspired pieces for stars such as David Bowie, Elton John, Patti Smith, Tilda Swinton, Sir David Attenborough and Vivienne Westwood, and work based on design icons like the Anglepoise lamp, classic cars, religious icons and reliquaries and the Shard building. A dazzling array of techniques, styles and materials selected by a panel of jewellery professionals: gallerist Kath Libbert, NCCD's Exhibitions Officer Laura Mabbutt, distinguished jeweller and Crafts Council Trustee Jane Adam, chaired by Professor Jack Cunningham, Head of the School of Jewellery BCU."

There is a Symposium for this exhibition on the 21st June from 2pm. I have been invited to speak at this event, along with fellow members Dauvit Alexander, & Helen Noakes. It's free to attend and you can book via enquiries@acj.org.uk

“There it lies on the ground before us, a drop of faceted blood, more real than a ghost, glowing. If we stir it may disappear.”

“Gathering what needs to be gathered. The discarded. The adored. Bits of human spirit that somehow got away. Caught up in an apron. Plucked by a gloved hand. From all this the cloud is formed.”

This is the third annual Members' exhibition, following the 2012 Diamond Jubilee and 2013 STAIN-LESS exhibitions.

Venue: National Centre for Craft & Design, Sleaford, Lincolnshire

Open: 17 May - 27 July 2014 free admission

Monday, 19 May 2014

Explore. Enchant. Emerge. An exhibition of artful jewellery and objects.

It's that time of year again when students are presenting their work in degree shows. After 3+ years of hard work and commitment I always look forward to seeing new makers collections. Birmingham School of Jewellery is one I am always impressed with, as the quality is diverse and also very high. They are lucky to have two amazing tutors in Zoe Robertson and Jo Pond....two pioneering maker/educators who obviously dedicate so much of their time and energy to foster the next generation of Jewellers.

Here are some of the highlights from this years group...

Abbie Williams: ‘Palimpsest’. Brooch, 2014, Plaster, Ink, Steel.

Amy Peace Buzzard: ‘Forgotten Shadows.’. Double Brooch, 2014, Silicone, silver, shibuichi and copper.

Bow Sangthong: ‘Mammalia’. Neckpiece, 2014, Cast soft foam, raw sheep wool and brass.

Harriet Rose Knight: ‘A Portrayal of Composure’. Bracelets, 2014, Birch wood and sterling silver.

Isabella Man Liu: ‘Mending’. Jewellery objects, 2014, Porcelain, Gold-plated pewter.

Nati Sarrazin: ‘Untitled’. Contemplative vessels, 2014, Patinated copper.

Ruth Conway: ‘Threads’. Brooch, 2014, Birch wood, cotton fabric, acetate and thread.

Youdi Lou: ‘Mister Dream’. Brooches, 2014, Brass, cold enamel paint.

"The graduates show 2014 will exhibit the delightfully diverse collections by the graduates of BA (hons) Jewellery and Silversmithing* and will run from Monday the 9th of June to Saturday 14th of June in the Exhibition Hall at the School of Jewellery, Birmingham."

"The show is a culmination of three intensive and formative years of training under the guidance of world renowned contemporary jewellers and as such is a fabulous chance to see the next generation of jewellery artists as they take their next steps into the field."

"The show seeks to stimulate intrigue, challenge perceptions of adornment and captivate each viewer with the wealth of different means, materials and aesthetic styles on display."

"The Diverse mix of nationalities has enabled this years graduates to cross cultural frontiers, to generate new thinking, this results in a visual feast of fresh ideas across the spectrum of jewellery design and related products. We look forward to welcoming you to The School of Jewellery." Zoe Robertson, Course Director.

Good Luck to all the graduates at Birmingham this year!

Website: www.jewelleryfutures.com Instagram: @jewelleryfutures2014 Blog: jewelleryfutures2014.blogspot.co.uk Twitter: @BRAND_newdesign

9th and 14th June. The Exhibition Hall at The School of Jewellery.

*Course title is now Jewellery Design and Related Products.

Monday, 12 May 2014

On my studio wall...

Some images of the objects on my studio wall at the moment. They were collected from the Kent and Sussex coast last month. I like the mix of manmade v's organic, ordered v's chaotic...

Sunday, 4 May 2014

Making More: Felt Brooches

For the last in the series of structured workshops, for delivering the four areas of my designs...here are the felt brooches.

I have not collected any 1940's felt flowers brooches for my own archive (yet ;-)...but this leather painted flower was an interesting find. You can still see some of the paint which has worn away over time.

And here are some of the Dryad felt brooches I made as part of my research and development. It was useful to see the kind of techniques they used. My designs are smaller in scale than these ones, which makes them more in keeping with the curtain ring brooches...but you can see my forget me knot brooch has a simialr stem to the Dryad designs.

Making More: Leather Bouquet Brooches

The next area we covered were the leather bouquets. A variation of the button brooches, using the same techniques but instead of buttons the curtain ring frame holds a posy of flowers, created by knotting.

And here is an original one from the 40's. One of my favourites as it was the first one I found, in an antique shop in Rye...it was the first one I had seen in real life!

Making More: Button Brooches

Here are some of the samples from the second round of workshops, on button brooches. Again inspired by the make do and mend jewellery from the 1940's. Instead of plastic wire I ended up designing versions with leather, as the colours and textures were more in keeping with the quality of the ones I had seen from the 40's. The modern plastics I had made experiments with were too bright and squeaky. The buttons I selected were made in the 1940's. I like the idea of giving an old object a new incarnation and purpose.

You can see that we used the same binding technique as the woollen versions from the taster day...but the leather is a little harder to perfect, it is less forgiving than the wool. Hence why we practised in the wool first, building up the skills as the workshops progress.

And here is one of the 1940's brooches. A very sweet bambi button.

Making More: Woollen Bouquet Brooches

Here are the samples pieces I made for the Making more taster day. A simple low tech brooch, that could be made at home on the kitchen table, or the galley table in our case! The idea is that you can make these works without a fancy studio and with minimum equipment. It's a good project for using up scraps of wool you might have kept from making other things.

And here are some of the brooches I have collected from the 30's/40's...which helped me research how they might have been constructed.