Scratch the Surface Jewellery Show
17th March - 23rd June 2018
A variety of materials and techniques in contemporary jewellery making are showcased. Explorations of techniques which manipulate and change the surfaces of materials reveal more about contemporary jewellery practice.
Image; Gwyneth Williamson
Katherine Richmond – compressed vintage papers, silver & oxidised silver
Katherine’s jewellery explores the fragile relationship between people and objects. She uses books as a symbol of permanence and longevity to create wearable objects with a fragility that questions traditional notions of wear-ability. As an item worn close to the body, jewellery contains a strong emotional and physical relationship to the wearer and its small scale makes it the ideal collectible item. Katherine’s work challenges values of permanence and stability by embracing the beauty of the imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete.
Nicola Becci – silver, gold, brass with oxidisation and etching detail
Glaswegian Nicola Becci likes to leave a stamp on her jewellery; and it’s usually her handwriting. Her fascination with handwriting and the fact that no two persons can write the same is mapped out on a lot of her work, which is often described as quirky and a wee bit ‘off the wall’. Nicola’s influences also include the Catholic Church, the trappings of Royalty, playing cards and chess, calligraphy, and food and confectionery, which all have a place in her jewellery collection. Nicola enjoys making highly decorative pieces, often incorporating moving parts or hidden details that only the maker and the wearer know is there.
Clare Hillerby - found ephemera, silver and oxidised silver
Handwriting forms the starting point for Clare’s work. Old papers featuring handwritten messages by unknown characters are sourced, interesting sections are extracted; messages become ambiguous. They are combined with new metalwork, and contemporary stories emerge. Fragments of handwriting appear as pattern with hints of the original meaning. Contrasts of writing styles, scale, character, line, shape and colour are important, and combining various characters result in new conversations. Ephemera consists of postcards, stamps, linen maps, and sepia photographs. Original papers are layered with newly created metalwork influenced by markings in the found writing and textures from the current urban environment. Silver is oxidised for a depth of colour and to allow papers to become the highlight. Details of yellow gold tube riveting are used in construction and reference an industrial landscape. Old and new sit together in each piece Claire creates, with reference to precious and non-precious, decorative elements next to simple areas, the linear and the solid.
Ghost & Bonesetter – hammered and etched silver and gold
Karen works under the name of Ghost & Bonesetter and her collection reflects her interest in habitat, architecture and literature. She studied Fine Art at both Belfast and Manchester. Using line and colour as a language to explore the perimeters of print making and painting with symbolism as an allegory, Karen deconstructs situations, fairy tales, nursery rhymes or poetry that are part of our childhood and adult culture. Text gives the viewer additional information to view or provoke the underlying subject or concept and the stories told are both autobiographical and historical. Print making, artists books and exploring images on sculptural jewellery have become Karen’s chosen media over the past 15 years; in particular the mixing of techniques and materials. Karen’s techniques and interests came as a direct influence from her knowledge of etching and aquatint in print. The beauty of etching, both as a plate and print can challenge and excite and she has created many pieces of jewellery from the actual etching plate.
Rachel Brown – drawing on enamel
Rachel Brown is an award winning jeweller who explores the technique of drawing on enamel. This unusual enamelling process involves simply drawing onto the surface of the enamel with a graphite pencil. Rachel has eliminated colour altogether, a bold move in an otherwise traditionally brightly coloured medium, she uses white enamel, exploring the colours that you can get when firing white enamel together with the various tonal shades of grey from the graphite.
The theme of her work is mark making, exploring repetitive patterns, lines and textures. Familiar shapes often appear but no two pieces of work are alike therefore making the jewellery unique, one-off pieces.
Gwyneth Williamson – hammered and printed silver and copper
Gwyneth designs and makes silver jewellery from her studio at home in Leeds, while working part time at the Craft Centre and Design Gallery in Leeds. Having spent many years as a children's illustrator, Gwyneth undertook a short Jewellery Making course at Leeds College of Art, to give herself a new creative outlet and she hasn't looked back since. Gwyneth loves to explore organic and geometric textures, shapes and patterns, either by hammering, stamping or ‘printing’ onto the metal. Much of her design and inspiration comes as she is working; each piece, experimentation or happy accident, sparking a new idea. Much of her design and inspiration comes as she is working; each piece, experimentation or happy accident, sparking a new idea. The illustrator in Gwyneth can’t resist making little silver and copper characters which she turns into brooches, decorations and even mini ‘sculptures’. Influences come from art, design and the world around her. Gwyn enjoys mooching around a gallery as much as pootling through the Dales on her bike.
Rebecca Blakeway – etched silver and enamel
Rebecca’s work is inspired by intricate details and patterns found on surfaces we find around us, both natural and artificial. She is fascinated by the textures and lines which appear naturally or through wear over time. Creating simple forms in sterling silver or copper, Rebecca focuses on replicating these textures using etching and enamelling processes to achieve unique and detailed surfaces on her work. Each surface pattern is hand-drawn, making each piece individual and special to the wearer. Rebecca aims to evoke a response and realisation through her work in that beautiful things don’t have to be manufactured; they are in fact all around us.
Mizuki Takahashi – porcelain, enamelled copper and oxidised silver
Mizuki is an award winning contemporary jewellery artist, living and working in Worcestershire. She graduated from Hereford College of Arts in BA Jewellery Design with the Student of the Year Award. Almost all of Mizuki’s jewellery creations are unique and one-off pieces. Once a piece is made or during its process of making, it feeds her inspiration to get and grow new ideas for the next project. Practicing in mark-making and playing with paper gives her simple yet delicate design ideas in her jewellery making. Enamelling is Mizuki’s most recent fascination in her practice. She creates unique mark-making patterns on delicate enamelled copper surfaces using the sgraffito (scratching) technique. Every line she draws is individual and changes to the firing time in the kiln, different to each project. Oxidised black silver fastenings for each enamelled elements are carefully designed and handmade by Mizuki, whereby the black lines cast shadow lines parallel with the scratched enamel marks.
Naomi James - textured silver and gold and semi-precious stones
Naomi has always loved making things and has been making jewellery since she was 14 when a jewellery workshop opened in Lewes and she started evening classes. Since then she has enjoyed working in several shared workshops and has been at Rose Hill in Brighton for the last 13 years. Naomi has always designed as she worked, allowing the making process to inspire the final design. Many of her designs use real leaves, plant structures and feathers to create natural textures on silver giving her work a 'found' quality; almost as if the pieces were produced by a natural process. She particularly likes the contrasting textures of different plants which she combines in one piece of jewellery and complements with touches of 18ct gold.
Heather McDermott - stainless steel and silver
Heather specialises in contemporary jewellery taking inspiration from the shoreline on the Isle of Skye, where she grew up. The tideline of Skye is a treasure trove of unique objects discarded from the urban environment and deposited by the power of the Hebridean swell. Here rope, wood and plastic take on a subtle identity as wind and wave shape, and re-shape form and colour. These inspirational scenes are developed and translated in Heather’s work by utilising shapes and colours. Unconventional in size and structure, each piece is an expression of sculptural form and is designed to create a statement. The continually changing shoreline is her constant source of inspiration and collections are the contemporary interpretation of these surroundings. The industrial nature of the stainless steel is hand formed into soft geometric shapes mimicking fishing nets and lobster pots. Repetition creates a chaotic chain which is then embellished with simple vivid discs of colour inspired by washed up buoys.
Ghost & Bonesetter
Ghost & Bonesetter