Growing Talent Exhibition

Growing Talent Goldsmiths

I was in London recently so got the chance to visit Goldsmiths hall to see the ‘Growing Talent’ exhibition. The idea behind this show was to bring together silvermsiths and jewellers who have been supported by the Goldsmiths’ Company showing the development in their work. So they would display their new and old work along side each other.

Each of the participants will show an early piece from their very first Goldsmiths’ Fair alongside one of their most recent pieces, demonstrating how their designs and skills have developed over the interim time.

It was a great display of craftsmanship and was packed with the most intricate, perfectly formed pieces but the really amazing thing in the show was how it showed the development of each maker. It was so interesting to take in the earlier pieces and then examine how the themes had evolved and changed. At first glance some work looked liked it had been made by a completely different person but on closer inspection you can see the same theme running through the work with each makers individual approach shining through in their work.

I think seeing two pieces from each maker is a really clever idea for a show as their design signature and style are even more evident especially when you see the time period between some of the pieces.

The other thing I really liked about the show was the catalogue. I normally flick through the catalogue and don’t give it a second look. Whereas this one had a short interview with each maker asking really interesting questions like ‘Who has influenced you most as a maker and ‘What piece of jewellery or silverware would you most like to own’

Since reading this I’m still trying to answer these questions for myself!

Katie Roberts

Olivia Lowe

 

Kamila Ruberg

Susan Jane Dunford

 

Tomasz Donocik

Kerry Seaton

Samantha Moore

 

 

Utensil, Current Approaches to Tableware

I visited the National Craft Gallery before I went on holidays to see the Utensil exhibition. The exhibition was being held as part of Kilkenny Arts Festival and was curated by Angela O’ Kelly.

As you will know from reading this blog I love to see the work of other silversmiths, unfortunately in Ireland there a few practicing silversmiths so the opportunity to visit exhibitions of contemporary silver work is rare.

That’s why I was so excited when I saw the line up for the Utensil exhibition, it had gathered together an amazing list of makers including some silversmiths from both Ireland and abroad. I had seen some of these silversmiths exhibit in London over the years but it was great to see this work in the lovely setting of the National Craft Gallery.

I was anxious to go along on the first Saturday of the show as the curator Angela O’ Kelly was giving a talk, going through the various makers and the inspiration behind their work. As the exhibition was made up of artists working in a variety of mediums and emerging Irish makers I really wanted to find out more about the work and of course Angela’s thoughts when curating the show.  The great thing about the show was how it combined product designers and makers in a variety of  disciplines. This for me really reinforced the theme of the exhibition seeing how each maker responded to the idea of  tableware and the ceremony of eating.

David Clarke Spoons

One of my favourite silversmiths David Clarke had his display of spoons there, I first saw his work when I was in college many years ago and have loved how his approach to silver has changed from his perfectly balanced silver fruit displays to these refashioned old spoons and teasets.

As well as giving us these beautiful objects to look at the show allows us examine our own relationship to the utensils we use, whether they be sentimental, decorative or functional.

The exhibition runs until the 29th of October so you have plenty of time to go along and see these beautiful pieces for yourself.

 

Geoffrey Mann

Geoffrey Mann’s Crossfire work in ceramic and glass. The video accompanying the work shows the vibrations of an argument (an audio excerpt from the film American Beauty) altering, melting and changing the inanimate objects on the table.

 

Chien-Wei Chang

Chien-Wei Chang goblets, Martini, wine and Champagne flute…I’d happily sip my drinks from any of these!

Sharon Blakey & Ismini Samanidou

Sharon Blakey and Ismini Samanidou’s gorgeous collaboration of textiles and ceramics.

 

Maike Dahl

 

Maike Dahl

Maike Dahl’s extremely thin silver forms which are influenced by take away disposable containers.

 

Debbie Wijskamp

Debbis Wijskamp vibrantly colour paper forms.

 

 

Metal Portraits

Wire Mesh Portraits by Seung Mo Park

I came across the work of South Korean artist Seung Mo Park a few weeks ago and thought a rainy Thursday moring would be the perfect time to share it with you. He creates these amazing portraits by cutting through thick layers of wire mesh sheet.

Wire Mesh Portraits by Seung Mo Park

Wire Mesh Portraits by Seung Mo Park

I included the image above to give a sense of the size of each piece. As someone who has worked with wire mesh in the past it makes me appreciate how long its takes to cut out each section! He begins the painstaking process by projecting a photograph onto the thick layesr of wire and then using a subtractive technique he snips away at the mesh. Each piece starts out several inches thick to achieve this sense of light and shade.

Wire Mesh Portraits by Seung Mo Park

The layers of mesh give the work this amazing ghost like feeling, they look really fragile and as if with the slightest touch they could disintegrant. This ephemeral quality works really well with the subject matter to create these haunting portraits.

Wire Mesh Portraits by Seung Mo Park