The Contemporary Jewelry Exchange 2015
The materials I used, recycled and reused sterling silver, found plastic, dolls hair and bronze.
I participated in the 2015 Contemporary Jewelry Exchange. The TCE is an initiative of Olga Raben - Thank You Olga! Contemporary Art Jewellers from around the world were invited to apply to be involved.
Olga matched the selected jewellers with a partner with the agreement that they would commit to making a quality/significant new work for their partner. The exchanges were required to be documented to be published online and there will also be a book published.
I was excited to be matched with Molly Gabbard from the USA. It turned out that Molly and I know some of the same people, Olga wouldn't have known this when she was matching us.
The appeal of the exchange idea for me fitted well with my interests in participation, exchange and community. It was up to Molly and me to make the exchange work for us. Our discussions about what interested us and what we were pursuing in our own studios informed what we we made for each other.
Molly introduced herself as interested in "color and kinetics and engaging the viewer on and off the body. Quite playful work and bit humorous". I introduced myself as liking mechanical elements, often incorporating a found element. We also exchanged images of existing works. I'm not known for colour, but do love red. I primarily work with sterling silver, but also use titanium, stainless steel, gold..
Thankfully my chickens turned up a section of beaded red plastic so I had a starting point for my work.
I am interested in the role jewellery plays in holding and conveying stories. It is important for me to know where the materials I use come from, as these contribute to the story the work conveys. A red plastic worm-like form turned up by my chickens was the starting point for the necklace. I combined this with a sterling silver skull from a previous series of work, a bronze bird from another series and new dolls hair diverted from landfill. These items all have significance for me.