Drawing - The Rim - May 2014
My entry in the Border Art Prize has won second prize! I am truly chuffed and a little stunned too. The artwork is part of a series of individual studies of plants and formations in the Caldera region where we live. The piece is titled 'The Rim' and uses 4B lead pencil and pastel on charcoal-water monotype prints. It is 105cm x 64cm.
The exhibition is at The Tweed Regional Art Gallery in south Murwillumbah from Friday 13 June - Sunday 3 August. The Border Art Prize is an annual exhibition that is shared between Tweed Regional Art Gallery and Gold Coast City Art Gallery and is held at those venues in alternate years.
Click on Gallery, then Drawings on the right to see details.
Exhibitions - March 2014
I have some new work in two exhibitions in April.
In Sydney, jeweller members of the Arts and Crafts Society of NSW are exhibiting work in an exhibition themed - 'Stories'.
My jewellery for Stories is inspired by the cycles of life in my garden. The seasons, the weather, and light and dark all bring influence to what grows (or doesn’t grow) in that interconnected habitat of plants and small creatures. Seeds sprout, vegetables form, flowers bloom and fade. There are thousands of small stories in a backyard garden. These pendants are influenced by the colours of dawn and dusk.
In Darwin, I am one of ten jewellers taking part in 'Alluring' - an exhibition of new innovative work.
stg and fine silver, cloisonne enamel, black rubber
32mm x 22mm
Stories April 8-27 2014 Craft NSW - 104 George Street, The Rocks, Sydney
Alluring April 3-30 2014 Framed - The Darwin Gallery - 55 Stuart Highway,Stuart Park, Darwin
Commission - Dec 2013
This triptych, named 'In The Garden, Future In The Present' has been a special commission. The piece deals with the relationship between us and our natural environment and the importance of bio-diversity and seeds to our future.
The clients, one of whom is an accomplished enameller herself, provided the widest of briefs that consisted of an insightful (and helpful) list of the things that appeal to them about my work.
These included -
- the integration of different motifs to form a design
- the use of internal divisions of contrasting colour, or internally framed motif elements, linked by the intrusion of elements from one compartment into or over another
- the breaking of both internal frame boundaries and the external boundary by some of the motif elements
- the delicacy of approach to colour and line weight, and the perception of depth within the piece by the use of colour gradation
With these guidelines I was free to design and make something special for them. The piece is an extension of an earlier series of square miniatures named 'In The Garden'.
Triptych – In the Garden, Future In the Present
Cloisonné enamel on fine silver
1800mm x 60mm
New work - September 2013
These pendants and other new work will be on show as part of an exhibition of the Queensland Enamellers Guild to be held in Brisbane in November. I have been invited to be guest artist this year.
The exhibition will be held at The Richard Randall Art Studio in the Brisbane Botanic Gardens, Mount Coot-tha. November 1- 3. Hours - Friday and Saturday 9:30 am - 5 pm, Sunday 9:30 am - 3pm
55mm x 22mm
Sterling and fine silver, cloisonne enamel, peridot, amethyst and tourmaline.
Drawing - September 2013
I have had one of my drawings accepted as a finalist in the 2013 Caldera Art Prize exhibition to be exhibited Oct 28 - Dec 6 at the Caldera Art Gallery, World Heritage Rainforest Centre, Murwillumbah. The exhibition is to celebrate the biodiversity of the region and to highlight conservation issues.
Bastard Weeds Study #6
pencil, pastel, gouache on paper
760mm x 550mm
Weeds. Like it or not, they are a part of our environment. Like all gardeners, I do continual battle with weeds and have developed a grudging admiration for them. Their tenacity and devious ability to propagate themselves and to distribute their seed is extraordinary. However it was only when I started looking closely at weeds as part of a series of botanical drawings that I came to see many of them as quite beautiful as well. In reality, weeds such as tobacco bush, lantana, crofton weed, ageratum and molasses grass are a serious ecological problem and a major threat to our biodiversity. Sometimes I try to imagine what the landscape would look like if we could have that magic wand and make them disappear. That would be really effective weeding!
For more drawings of weeds - click on Gallery - Drawings
New gallery section - May 2013
I have added a third category to my gallery pages - drawings.
I’ve been doing a lot of it this past year, in between enamel work. Life drawing when I can find a group, but mostly smaller botanical studies of plants in the garden using pencil and mixed media.
I’ve become a bit obsessed!
To see more, click on gallery then drawings. I'll be adding more images every now and then.
Commission - December 2012
I have just completed a commission for a cloisonne enamel pendant featuring an opal. The client had seen a picture of a brooch from the ‘In The Garden’ series which featured an opal and an amethyst - but she didn’t wear brooches. Could I make a pendant for her instead? Yes I would love to! Most of my brooch designs could easily be adapted to be suspended from a chain.
The pendant is 34mm x 34mm - a little smaller than the brooches. It includes a beautifully coloured 12x6mm oval crystal opal from Quilpie, is set in a sterling silver frame and hangs from a heavy 3mm snake chain choker. It has been a pleasure to make this piece.
Commission - November 2012
Once again I have been commissioned by
Australian author Bryce Courtenay to make cloisonne enamel brooches illustrating a character or scene from his newest novel.
The brief was simple - the brooches were to be a picture of an congo african grey parrot holding a jack of diamonds playing card in it's beak. The birds are beautiful and quite dynamic with grey feathers and a cheeky bright red tail. As the deadline was quite short, the brooches needed to be as simple as possible.
The brooches are cloisonne and champleve enamel 45mm x 46mm.
'Jack of Diamonds' was launched November 12 in Canberra.
Postscript. Bryce Courtenay passed away November 22. I never met Bryce but had some lovely phone conversations with him about jewellery and his brooch commisssions. He was very knowledgeable about enamel and techniques and was a perfect client. He would give me the briefest of descriptions of what he wanted, I would email a drawing to him, he would enthusiastically approve it and then just trust me to do the work. It has been a great pleasure to work for him.
New work September 2012
Another brooch using imagery from the garden and amethyst. The brooch is cloisonne enamel on fine silver, with a beautiful square cut amethyst and is set in a sterling silver frame 38mm x 33mm.
New work June 2012
This is one of two brooches made for Architextural - a group exhibition of jewellery inspired by architecture.
The brooches are based on the patterns made by the grid of house plans and views from above. This brooch is 30mm square and is made from cloisonne and champleve enamel, fine and sterling silver.
I have been taking a bit of a break from enamelling this year, and have been exploring other art mediums including drawing and linocut. It's been great to step away from the intensity of this miniature art form and find new ways to be creative, Funny though - just when I wasn't thinking jewellery at all, the designs for these brooches evolved from other drawings. They immediately looked like cloisonne brooches. Once an enameller, always an enameller!
Architextural opens 6.00pm 31st of July at the Craft NSW Gallery, 104 George Street, The Rocks, Sydney 2000. and runs until August 19.
New work November 2011
I have some new beautiful Quilpie crysytal opal
that I have set into a pair of brooches again using imagery from the garden.
I am in love with the combination of opal and amethyst - and keep returning to it in this series. There's something about the colour violet and the soft blues and green of the opal that works so well with the enamel - each complimenting and bringing out the best in the other.
The pictured brooch is cloisonne enamel on fine silver, with a pear shaped crystal opal and a rectangular amethyst, set in a sterling silver frame 36mm x 36mm.
Tinker Tailor Soldier Sailor - Brisbane October 2011
Tinker Tailor Soldier Sailor is an exhibition celebrating 100 years of International Womens Day. 100 Australian women jewellers were invited to make brooches telling the stories of 100 notable Australian women.
I was very pleased to have an opportunity to make a brooch honouring the garden designer Edna Walling for this exhibition. I have long been an admirer of her pioneering design philosophies and her championing of relaxed natural garden design. All a bit messy and comfortable, just the way I like gardens to be.
However it was Edna’s drawings that really fascinated me when I started looking through books about her. Her soft hand-coloured pen and ink garden plans have a beauty and originality of their own – and it was these that I used as inspiration for my brooch. I used the fine silver lines that are so characteristic of cloisonne to emulate her drawing of plants and rock work paths, and her limited palette of pinks, greens and lavender for colour. I added gemstones in the exact colours of her painting to add richness and highlight to the brooch.
This inspiring exhibition opened at Gallery Artisan in Brisane 3 September 2011 and will be travelling to selected regional galleries throughout 2012 and 2013. An itinerary can be viewed at http://www.artisan.org.au/index.php/gallery/tinker-tailor-soldier-sailor
New work August 2011
This is the first of four new pieces for the 'In The Garden' series of cloisonne enamel miniatures. The series deals with our presence and relationship with plants and gardens. I am asked sometimes what the figures mean. The figures are us, you and I - and represent our 'better selves'.
The panel is 600mm x 600mm (320mm x 360mm framed)
New work - June 2011
I have just completed two more brooches in the Night and Day series.
The brooches are designs of silouettes of plant forms and reflections of silvery night light on leaves. I have used a combination of cloisonne and champleve enamel techniques, and have included an amethyst cabachon in one of the brooches.
Each brooch is 58mm x 18mm and is set in a sterling silver frame.
Exhibition - Melbourne, June 2011
The enamel exhibition 'All Fired Up' has moved from The Goldsmiths Gallery in San Remo to the Ken Gray Alister Reid Gallery in Collins Street.
A small collection of my brooches, pendants and earrings as well as several framed miniatures are included in the exhibition which will run for most of June.
Pictured - framed mainiature cloisonne enamel 'Leaves of Glass' 120mm x 60mm
The Gray Reid Gallery is at 156 Collins Street Melbourne.
Bench Mark - London Jewellery Week, June 2011
I will be one of six enamellers from the gallery Studio Fusion who will be included in a joint exhibition of jewellers from the Oxo Building participating in London Jewellery Week.
The exhibition titled 'Bench Mark' celebrates traditional jewellery hand skills and for Studio Fusion Gallery it is an opportunity to re-emphasize their enduring commitment to enamelling. Work from enamellers Sarah Letts, Joan MacKarell and Tamar Winter, Jane Short, Jane Moore and myself will be featured.
Among the new work that I have made for this exhibition is this brooch featuring a stunning Quilpie crystal opal with flashes of red, hot pink, green and blues, and an amethyst. The brooch is 35mm x 35mm.
The exhibition will open on 6th June and runs until 24th July 2011.
Studio Fusion Gallery is located on the first floor of the contemporary design complex of the Oxo Tower Wharf on London's South Bank.
Exhibition - San Remo Gippsland May 2011
I will have a small collection of work in the enamel exhibition 'All Fired Up' at The Goldsmiths Gallery in San Remo Victoria during the Gippsland 'Light' Festival, 4-26 May 2011.
Brooches, pendants and earrings as well as several framed miniatures will be on display. Pictured is a brooch from the Poinciana Series.
The exhibition will move to the Ken Gray Alister Reid Gallery, Collins Street Melbourne in June.
New work December 2010
I have just completed another brooch using a beautiful Andamooka opal. I have tried to emulate and compliment the cool blues and greens of the stone, as well as the repeating the unusual marquis shape in line and solid silver shapes.
The brooch is 43mm x 43mm and is cloisonne and champleve enamel on fine silver, set in a sterling silver bezel
An exhibition about food - December 2010
I have three small framed miniatures on display as part of the Eat / Paint / Love exhibition of artworks about food being held at Still@the Centre Gallery in Byron Bay, opening Friday Dec 9.
The works are from a continuing series dealing with the importance of seeds and plant diversity to the world's food sources.
Local exhibition - November 2010
A small collection of jewellery and framed miniatures is on show as part of a diverse exhibition of jewellery at Art Piece Gallery in my home town in Mullumbimby until January 2011.
Pictured - Brooch - 'Spring Wind', cloisonne and champleve enamel in fine silver with citrine.
New work - November 2010
I have been setting crystal opals with enamel for several years now – mostly for an opal retailer in Sydney. Occasionally I make pieces to sell through my regular outlets as well.
This is a recent piece using an Andamooka opal. It is a cloisonné and champleve enamel brooch that includes a small square cabochon amethyst as well.
Opal and enamel can be a stunning combination. It is an enjoyable and subtle design exercise to set them together. Care must be taken with colour choices as some colours combined with the opal will steal the stones strength, and others will actually enhance the beauty of the opal. Crystal opals are my favourite and work best with the transparent luscious colours of the enamel. The beautiful translucent clarity of the stones with their flashes of blues, greens and sometimes a little red or violet, are very alluring.
A special commission - October 2010
In September I was commissioned by Australian author Bryce Courtenay to make three cloisonne enamel brooches illustrating the main character from his new novel - 'Fortune Cookie'. As I do not usually make overtly representational work, I was a little reluctant, but Bryce was persuasive and encouraging. After a few days researching, drawing, and testing enamels, I thought that I would be able to make something beautiful for him.
The brief was very specific - it was to be a picture of a beautiful Chinese woman wearing a black cheongsam sitting in a peacock feather cane chair with part of a shapely leg showing. Red shoes, red lips, and possibly a blue lotus or a Singapore orchid as well.
I supplied a drawing which was well received and then made three almost identical copies of the brooch. The final pieces are cloisonné enamel set in sterling silver bezels 62mm x 46mm. The commission was very enjoyable and I thoroughly enjoyed the challenge of creating a realistic picture and extending my skills with tiny pieces of cloisonne wire.
The book 'Fortune Cookie' by Bryce Courtenay was released November 15 2010.
News - May 2010
A brooch from the ‘In The Garden’ series recently won The Kiyomizu Sannenzaka Museum Award, at the 23rd International Cloisonne Jewellery Exhibition in Japan.
The brooch is one of a series of 8 brooches in the theme of the visual pleasures of the garden, and featured pink tourmalines and peridot set into the enamel.
News – October 2009
A brooch from my ‘In The Garden’ series recently won the award for 'Contemporary Jewellery, predominately precious metal' at the recent A&E Metal Merchants fourth annual survey exhibition, Explorations 09. The exhibition was at Gaffa Gallery, Surry Hills, Sydney and is moving to Guildford Lane Gallery in Melbourne from 3 December 2009. Prizes to the value of $1000 worth of A&E Metal Merchants products were won in three categories - Contemporary Jewellery, predominately precious materials, Contemporary Jewellery, predominately non-precious materials and Hollowware and Objects
The winning piece - a brooch from my recent solo exhibition at Makers Mark in Melbourne was from a series of multicoloured brooches containing lush gemstones and illustrating the visual pleasures of the garden and are observations of plant and floral forms and seasonal change.
News - February 2009
My framed cloisonné enamel miniature titled ‘Migration’ has been awarded a Special Award at the 42nd International Enamelling Art Exhibition at the Tokyo Metropolitan Museum in Tokyo Japan. 414 artworks from 18 countries were entered.
'Migration' deals with the movement, relationships and interdependence of different life forms on this planet. The piece is 180mm x 60mm (400mm x 290mm framed).