EXPO ‘New Tastes – Twelve New Graduates’ – Kath Libbert Jewellery Gallery (UK) – 10 Nov. 2016–29 Janv. 2017
( Darcey Skelly, Space Cows From Space)
Twelve New Graduates
Delectable jewellery, metalwork and silversmithing! Our annual pick of the most delicious new talents selected from all across the UK and Ireland!
Kath Libbert Jewellery Gallery, which this year celebrates twenty years at Salts Mill, Saltaire, has selected and exhibited the work of new graduates since its inception. In numerous cases these emerging talents have gone on to gain wide acclaim for their work, and many continue to be represented by the gallery. For the exhibition New Tastes Kath serves up twelve sumptuous collections cooked up by new graduates from all over the UK and Ireland: ‘Spotting and then supporting the work of cutting edge new graduates has always been extremely central to the ethos of the gallery. Forging a career straight out of college is really challenging. Now, more than ever, it is vital to exhibit and encourage these incredibly talented jewellers and metalsmiths at this formative stage in their careers.’
Wanshu Li, Edinburgh College of Art -
Rob Anderson, Sheffield Hallam University - already a winner, bagging the prestigious 2016 Business Design Centre New Designer of the Year Award for his Japanese ceramic inspired ‘family’ of earthy steel vessels entitled ‘Heavy Hands’. Their meditative beauty arises from his carefully considered making process – a wonderfully tactile collection with great presence.
Hayley Brooks, Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design, Dundee -
Chen Cheng, Birmingham School of Jewellery -
Sheng Zhang, Birmingham School of Jewellery –
Room for more?
We are also delighted to serve up collections by: Francesca Lobb, Manchester School of Art; Felicity Lynden, University of Edinburgh; Freya Alder, Glasgow School of Art; Stephanie O Leary, Middlesex University, London; Michaela Murrain, De Montfort University, Leicester, and Amanda Denison, Winchester School of Art.
Wanshu Li, Edinburgh College of Art – ‘Go with the Glow’ is a taste explosion – sensual, soft to the touch jewels, in a riot of fluorescent UV reactive nylon wire, inspired by raves, laser light shows, and jellyfish!
« My jewellery is focused on exploring the multisensory experience and making tactile wearable pieces, which involve different sensory experiences such as vision, sound, and touch. The inspiration for the jewellery series “Go with the Glow” stems from capturing the moving moments in the natural world. I was deeply attracted by free-swimming marine animal. For example jellyfish, which is soft, light, and glowing with the characteristics of amazing colours. I was also fascinated by dancing, rave party and laser light show.
I developed my work by experimenting with acrylic, moving beads, UV reactive nylon wire, UV light and fluorescent paints resulting in light-weighted tactile, colourful and playful pieces. The nylon wires under UV light creates an amazing fluorescent effect and provide a pleasant visual enjoyment for the wearers and viewers. Moreover, the pieces create subtle sounds, following freely with the movements of the body. »
2009-2013 | BA Jewellery and Silversmithing College of Art and Design, Beijing University of Technology
2014-2016 | MFA Jewellery and Silversmithing Edinburgh College of Art
Wanshu Li, Edinburgh College of Art – ‘Go with the Glow’- bangle in acrylic, seed beads, fluorescent plastic tube and nylon wire. Photo by Shannon Tofts
Wanshu Li, Edinburgh College of Art - ‘Go with the Glow’- brooch in acrylic, seed beads, fluorescent plastic tube and nylon wire. Photo by Shannon Tofts
Wanshu Li, Edinburgh College of Art - ‘Go with the Glow’- pendant in acrylic, seed beads, fluorescent plastic tube and nylon wire. Photo by Shannon Tofts
Wanshu Li, Edinburgh College of Art – ‘Go with the Glow’- ring in acrylic, seed beads, fluorescent plastic tube and nylon wire. Photo by Shannon Tofts
Amanda Denison, Winchester School of Art
« I am inspired and intrigued by the traces left behind through dilapidation and decay and by the marks stamped on the urban environment. And I am drawn to repeated elements that distort and change.
I have a fine art background and this influences my approach to jewellery making. I live and work in West London and take numerous photographs of the details I discover as I walk the streets. These are incorporated into my work through mark making and drawings on my enameled surfaces.
I enjoy the challenge of working with industrial materials and traditional processes to create distinctive hand made art Jewellery. I like to work with steel and to add silver accents. I incorporate enamels and patinas to add colour but my palette is subtle and restrained. After kiln firing my enamels are deconstructed and the shiny finish is abraded. This creates richly degraded surfaces with subtle areas of hue and tone and a smooth matt finish. Where patches of bare steel are revealed they are encouraged to rust. Each piece is unique for although I can repeat the processes there is always an element of chance and no two pieces are ever exactly the same. »
Amanda Denison, Winchester School of Art. – Enamelled steel necklace on silver chain
Amanda Denison, Winchester School of Art – Double enamelled steel brooch
Michaela Murrain, De Montfort University, Leicester
« My work is all about colour, shape and repetition. The idea of taking plain white, flat pieces of fabric and manipulating them to create wearable sculpture is what excites me as a maker. I am inspired by the bold characteristics of neck adornment within African culture and from this I created my ‘Chunk and Loop’ jewellery collection where I have translated subtle elements, such as the placement of colour and scale, to create tactile, vibrant yet sophisticated, contemporary wearables. »
Michaela Murrain, De Montfort University, Leicester – ‘Chunk and Loop’ necklace in hand dyed cotton
Stephanie O Leary, Middlesex University, London
« Drawn to the simplicity and elegance of clean lines in architectural design, Stephanie O’Leary is influenced by geometric structures which jut-out, protrude or extend from the existing ‘frame’ of their environment. Specifically scaffolding, cranes and power lines.
Scaffolding: “a temporary structure used to support the construction, maintenance and repair of buildings”.
What some may perceive as a temporary ugliness protruding out of the natural urban environment; she is drawn to its linear design, the contrast between permanence and degradation, and the transient nature of its construction.
Formed from various different components, scaffolding can be assembled in various different ways to integrate with and support a building; the structure can be assembled, disassembled, relocated and assembled again. In this sense, over time, the structure is in a constant state of flux, moving around the city.
By focussing on this dynamic, O’Leary uses universal hinges and industrial materials to create kinetic urban structures, which mimic the minimalist and fragmented aesthetic of London.
In combination with found objects, industrial and precious materials, O’Leary forms connections and links between discarded objects, material connotations and their environment in relation to urban cityscapes. »
Stephanie O Leary, Middlesex University, London – ‘Fragments’ – necklace in enamelled copper, steel, silver with fragment pieces encased in scaffolding inspired frames on articulated wooden chain
Stephanie O Leary, Middlesex University, London – ‘Roof Truss Brooch’ in wood, steel and brass
»Scaffolding: “a temporary structure used to support the construction, maintenance and repair of buildings”. «
Chen Cheng, Birmingham School of Jewellery – inspired by ballet, Chen’s delightfully playful series of rings and brooches seem alive, dancing on the body – every element of her finely manipulated metal wire mini sculptures move as the wearer moves.
« Chen Cheng believes that contemporary jewellery is interactive because it demands a response, which can either be physical or emotional. Through kinetic movement and visual interaction, her work is designed to be explored.
“My pieces invoke play. Every element is movable, and this quality enhances the physical movement of the wearer”.
Combining her own aesthetic and working style, Chen has taken inspiration from shapes and moving modes found in the human body, which are also expressed through modern and traditional ballet dancing. Applying this motion to express the mystique and magical forms of the human body was the key determining process in her jewellery design.
Using fine wire and simple metal shapes to create the minimal forms allows the audiences to pay close attention to the movement of the work. Akin to dancing, each piece’s “performance” holds its own surprise in style and character.
Chen hopes that her work will encourage the wearers to touch, feel and discover the meaning behind her work. She hopes that through a deeper appreciation of such interaction, jewellery can be better understood and more people would be able to appreciate the different expressions and styles of contemporary jewellery. »
Chen Cheng, Birmingham School of Jewellery – Dancing On My Own – kinetic ring
Chen Cheng, Birmingham School of Jewellery – Dancing On My Own – kinetic ring
Chen Cheng, Birmingham School of Jewellery – Dancing On My Own – kinetic brooch
Chen Cheng, Birmingham School of Jewellery – Dancing On My Own – kinetic ring
Francesca Lobb, Manchester School of Art
« Through the exploration of body adornment and personal possessions my practice primarily focusses around how an object evokes personal comfort for its owner. Through interrogation of pre-owned objects and our interaction with our personal belongings, my works emphasis is on the user’s experience. By observing these interactions I question how the design of an object can entice an individual to explore the piece and how this can provoke the wearer to form a personal attachment to the item.
Producing small scale objects with close attention to detail, I question how the user will interact with each piece. Creating intricate designs that evoke engagement, generates an individual narrative upon each item through the user’s choice of how it is worn.
Exploration of traditional techniques within jewellery and metal work is integral within my practice to produce individual handmade items, which also allows myself as a maker to form a personal connection to each piece throughout its creation. »
Francesca Lobb, Manchester School of Art - ‘Watchmaker’s Brooch’ – from ‘Explore’ Collection. Worn on the inside of the jacket to reflect the significance of the user’s personal choice. Brass, chain, stainless steel and corked glass vials
Francesca Lobb, Manchester School of Art - ‘Watchmaker’s Brooch’ – from ‘Explore’ Collection in brass, chain, stainless steel and corked glass vials
Darcey Skelly, National College of Art and Design, Dublin – ‘Voyages of the Starship Stetson’ – a collision of two iconic fictional genres, Sci-Fi and the Western, paired in a crazy creation of her own imagining. Her concept, if the Cowboys of the Old West found a way to propel themselves into Space to colonise a planet. Darcey describes herself as ‘an illustrative maker’, a storyteller who aims to show there is more to a piece than meets the eye!
Darcey Skelly, National College of Art and Design, Dublin Space Cows From Space – Necklace
« Sheng Zhang is influenced by minimalist art and inspired by contemporary architecture. His passion concentrates on the exploration and expression of the relationship between internal and external spaces with significant contrasting elements such as forms, textures and colours.
The collection involves the utilisation of highlighted incisions and openings to imply and emphasise the link of internal and external space, as well as introducing light as an indicator of different spaces to allow the viewer to look through and explore the entire piece. This also strengthens the visual response, captures attention and produces curiosity for the viewer.
By employing simple geometric forms and contrasting colours, Sheng demonstrates a minimal style and visual language, which reflects his personality, philosophy and personal aesthetic.
Each piece is unique as a result of a carefully controlled and purposely structured making process. All the pieces are hand made in metal with appropriate techniques including plating and oxidising. The collection consists of functional and non-functional items. »
Sheng Zhang, Birmingham School of Jewellery – ‘Inside Out’ – brooches in oxidised gilding metal
Sheng Zhang Brooch – gilding metal, oxidising 2016
Felicity Lynden, University of Edinburgh – ‘Ruins’ necklace in resin embedded with iron oxide and steel mesh, with white metal and stainless wire
Freya Alder, Glasgow School of Art
« I am a designer, maker and jeweller based in Glasgow. My work tends to be informal, relatively un-precious and playful. I recently graduated from the design school at Glasgow School of art specialising in silversmithing and jewellery.
This work originally sprang from my love of illustrating the female form. I enjoy the long linear lines that so quickly represent a woman. With something like five strokes of a pen one can conjure a form, and a character within that form.
The subject of the nude woman is fraught with conflicts. The female form is often reductively objectified and generally devalued. I want my work to have a humour and an informality that isn’t often afforded to the subject of the naked women or indeed the discipline of jewellery »
Freya Alder, Glasgow School of Art – Brass Ladies – brooches hand pierced in brass
Freya Alder, Glasgow School of Art – Brass Ladies – brooches hand pierced in brass – The subject of the nude woman is fraught with conflicts. The female form is often reductively objectified and generally devalued. I want my work to have a humour and an informality that isn’t often afforded to the subject of the naked women or indeed the discipline of jewellery
Hayley Brooks, Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design, Dundee - the peaceful expansive landscapes of the Scottish wilds are captured in her sensitive collection of chokers and bangles – microscopic details of lichen covered rocks appear in richly textured soft silicone contrasting with sleek silver – ‘a personal souvenir – enabling the wearer to carry with them something of the peace and solace found in the Scottish landscape.’
« The Scottish landscape provides peacefulness, an opportunity to free your mind, and access to silence. A stark contrast to the every day hustle and bustle of city life. Through photography I capture things that interest me ranging from the textures and details in the rocks found at my feet to the wider expansive landscapes that give us a sense of place. I am interested in the natural reflection of the landscape in the details of the rocks – the macroscopic in the microscopic!
Through this innovative collection of contemporary jewellery I aim to raise awareness of the beauty of the Scottish landscape, as I want other people see what I can see in the rocks and stones. These immensely wearable pieces, combine alternative materials such as silicone and precious metal, and also act as a personal souvenir – enabling the wearer to carry something of the peace and solace found in the Scottish landscape. »
Hayley Brooks Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design, Dundee – Choker in silicone, anodised aluminium and silver
New Tastes introduces twelve new jewellery graduates: Wanshu Li, Edinburgh College of Art; Hayley Brooks, Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design, Dundee; Chen Cheng, Birmingham School of Jewellery; Rob Anderson, Sheffield Hallam University; Sheng Zhang, Birmingham School of Jewellery; Darcey Skelly, National College of Art and Design, Dublin; Francesca Lobb, Manchester School of Art; Felicity Lynden, University of Edinburgh; Freya Alder, Glasgow School of Art; Stephanie O Leary, Middlesex University, London; Michaela Murrain, De Montfort University, Leicester; Amanda Denison, Winchester School of Art.
OPEN DAILY 10 – 5.30 MON – FRI and 10 – 6 AT WEEKENDS