HOARD at The Dowse

Hoard is a bookcase and library ladder salvaged from a used-book shop that closed its doors in 2015. The shelves are packed with gilded volumes, displayed with the gold edges facing outwards. It is a continuation of the series On Jewelleryness, which investigates the properties and power of jewellery. None of the works features physical jewellery forms; instead they…

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May ’17: Job satisfaction

One May Sunday, on my way home from a book sale in the Wairarapa, I called in at The Dowse. I wanted to quickly scope out the Blumhardt gallery, where our final Handshake 3 show – Reflect – will be staged in August: While I was photographing and measuring, one of the desk staff –…

Munich 1: Singing in a Dark Time

For It Will All Come Out In The Wash, the Handshake  3/Dialogue Collective collaboration  I teamed up with Wellington designer Greta Menzies. It’s March 2017 and we’ve 800 mm of precious Munich Jewellery Week air-space… What to send across the globe, in the face of all this crazy? Something hopeful; something for the artists. ‘In a…

July: Walking on Sunshine

Walking on Sunshine  For Playthings in Nelson I made Walking on Sunshine, five pairs of tin can stilts When I was at high school I thought that to be an artist you had to look the part – tall, obviously, and enigmatic I got over that, as you can see, BUT when I recently met…

June – Lighten Up

My allocated slot in The See Here window gallery coincided with the winter solstice. Studies show that when people are exposed to bright light in the winter for just 15 minutes a day their mood lifts and their sense of well-being improves. I installed a light therapy lamp with a brightness level of 10,000 lux…

March: Golden Section

I am lucky enough to be a member of Occupation: Artist, a shared studio and crit group. We take our work seriously But not ourselves. In March 2016 we participated in Wellington Sculpture Trust’s Parking Day Project. The idea was Viv Atkinson’s (seen above with fries up her nose). In a comment on land prices, traffic,…

When all else fails… look to books

Refugees Welcome, by VladyArt, September 2015 Kalamaria/Thessaloniki, Greece. A red carpet entry to Europe: plastic pipes, gold paint, red cloth, naval rope, wooden finials for curtain rods, paper plates. From mid-2016 we Handshakers worked with the London-based group Dialogue Collective to build a collaborative show for Munich Jewellery Week 2017. In a flurry of inter-hemispherical bonding we exchanged words and…

TOUCH and PAUSE at Platina

For July’s Handshake show at Platina  in Stockholm I collaborated with Kate Whitley, the photographer who shot the tabletop images for the Touch table. The show coincided with the Rio Olympics and Paralympics, and we wanted exhibition visitors to experience the elation and surge of well-being that occurs at That Podium Moment. We were inspired by a…

Meanwhile, in a parallel universe…

Besides making work for the programmed Handshake shows, we’re each tasked with developing our independent practice. 2016 was a busy year. Here’s a digest of the side projects that occupied me between March and December 2016. March – With Occupation: Artist – Golden Section Click here for details This lighthearted, ephemeral group project was pivotal…

Week 1 – Place

So my plan was to check the lay of the land and see what the location, available tools and materials and culture, prompts. After a week I’ve taken heaps of images of things that spark my interest for various reasons, from things around the garden to Bass Rock out from Edinburgh. So far there’s no particular…

On Jewelleryness: TOUCH at Objectspace

In the end, our collaborative piece came together just as planned, so here’s the description I wrote for Objectspace. On Jewelleryness: TOUCH We aim to demonstrate jewelleryness rather than explain it. Outside, we’ll gild the window frame: Inside by the window is a glossy black-topped table: At first look the table top is bare, but when warmed…

Show, don’t tell

Once we had settled on Touch to Reveal as the means by which we want gallery visitors to experience our work, the challenge was to dream up a form of engagement where the viewer’s action – of touch – renders something visible. We wanted to somehow conjure for our viewers the wonder of that childhood experience of…

Keeping it loose

When you’re new back to making after a considerable break initially it’s easy to ‘have fun and be playful’ in the workshop, but now after two years in the HS2 project and part way through another 2 years in HS3, I can feel my process tightening up. It’s less about fun and much more about…

Post show (the reflection).

As part of the Objectspace exhibition, there were several pairs of collaborators who participated in the artist’s talk following the opening. Not being a natural public speaker, but recognizing it’s often part of the requirements of an exhibiting maker, I did a short ToastMasters course a couple of years ago. To go from a position…

Objectspace – Show time

As well as the catalogue, I also produced a series of 152 sterling silver and steel rings titled The Evolutionary Pinch, based on the opposable finger and thumb (detail pictured). My start point involved an exploration of what makes humans unique within the animal kingdom – namely their ability to use tools to make more tools. As a…

Tool as Jewel 3.

My final collaborators were; Juliet Black, Kirsten Haydon and Mary-Jane Duffy. Juliet is a graphic designer and photographer, we met most days across several weeks to put the catalogue together. The process of crafting how a publication communicates through paper weight and colour, typography, layout, binding, size, color of headings, and length of the publication, print…

Tool as Jewel 2.

My second collaborator was Sondra Bacharach, a Senior Lecturer in the Philosophy Programme at Victoria University whose research is in aesthetics and the philosophy of art. Sondra’s speed and ability to make connections between my tangential ideas was a thing of beauty. Our conversations were reciprocally fertile in growing new leads and our mutual admiration for the…