Seashell, steel, silk clay: a new generation of jewellers shows material worth

Necklace in silver, acetate and acrylic paint by Hannah Lornie.
Necklace in silver, acetate and acrylic paint by Hannah Lornie.
(Image credit: Shannon Tofts)

Kath Libbert’s eponymous gallery in Salts Mill, Saltaire, has made a commitment to nurturing talent central to its ethos. Libbert’s own expertise as a curator means her annual selection of the best new UK jewellery graduate talent is a notable calendar highlight. The jewellers taking part in this year’s exhibition, ‘Identity’, are high on our new talent hotlist.

Adrienn Pesti, from the Glasgow School of Art, incorporates a plethora of textured materials including silk clay, enamel and steel in a bid to explore how jewellery can prompt social interactions. ‘My  design work carries its own visual language creating conversations and interaction between people,’ Pesti explains. She hopes cheerful, bright hues and inviting designs will encourage playful dialogue stimulated by simple curiosity.

Rings in silver and gold plated silver by Hannah Lornie.

Rings in silver and gold plated silver by Hannah Lornie.

(Image credit: Shannon Tofts)

Miki Asai, also a student of Glasgow School of Art, finds beauty in impermanence: ‘My jewellery captures preserved fragments. Ephemeral phenomenon like shadow and light or morning dew portray the nature of everything in this world.’ Her philosophy translates into soft, nebulous forms – fragile materials like paper and veneered seashell resemble cracked eggshell and shimmering pearl. Also intrigued by tangibility, Glasgow graduate Mara Balode transposes urban photographic fragments of urbanity onto minuscule acrylic squares.

Other Wallpaper* highlights include Hayley Grafflin of Sheffield Hallam University, whose pipe detail brooch and necklace is unusually finished with orange rust and soot. Also unconventional, Glasgow School of Art’s Hannah Lornie transports the hypnotising patterns in lichen into her jewellery, while for Paula Treimane, a graduate from the same university, it’s the intrinsic values in natural materials like bone and wood which are captivating.

Left, 'Colour of the Wind' brooch in paper, Japanese lacquer, veneered seashell, silver, steel wire. Right, 'Pair' brooch in paper, Japanese lacquer, eggshell, veneered seashell, silver, steel wire, by Miki Asai

Left, 'Colour of the Wind' brooch in paper, Japanese lacquer, veneered seashell, silver, steel wire. Right, 'Pair' brooch in paper, Japanese lacquer, eggshell, veneered seashell, silver, steel wire, by Miki Asai

(Image credit: Shannon Tofts)

'Linear Thinking' brooch in African blackwood, silver, mild steel, paper brass and low temperature enamel by Hayley Grafflin

'Linear Thinking' brooch in African blackwood, silver, mild steel, paper brass and low temperature enamel by Hayley Grafflin

(Image credit: Shannon Tofts)

Left, 'Mixed Materials' necklace in oxidised silver, bone, wood and rubber cord by Paula Treimane. Right, 'Beyo(u)nd' earrings in silk clay, enamel, steel and silver by Adrienn Pesti

Left, 'Mixed Materials' necklace in oxidised silver, bone, wood and rubber cord by Paula Treimane. Right, 'Beyo(u)nd' earrings in silk clay, enamel, steel and silver by Adrienn Pesti

(Image credit: Shannon Tofts)

INFORMATION

’Identity’ is on view until 28th January 2018. For more information, visit the Kath Libbert website (opens in new tab)

ADDRESS

Kath Libbert Jewellery Gallery
Salts Mill
Saltaire
Bradford
BD18 3LA

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Hannah Silver joined Wallpaper* in 2019 to work on watches and jewellery. Now, as well as her role as watches and jewellery editor, she writes widely across all areas including on art, architecture, fashion and design. As well as offbeat design trends and in-depth profiles, Hannah is interested in the quirks of what makes for a digital success story.