Lola Brooks turns tightly woven stainless steel chains into brooches and rings in a fun rethink of contemporary jewellery

Lola Brooks turns tightly woven stainless steel chains into brooches and rings in a fun rethink of contemporary jewellery

Lola Brooks stainless steel chain jewellery
(Image credit: press)

Lola Brooks has brought to life the surreal time in which we’re living with mischievous rings and brooches crafted from tightly woven lattices of stainless steel chains. ‘These pieces reflect my state of mind, and the culture as it has unfurled around me, and while I see them as being somewhat dark and disconcerting, they are also ridiculous,’ she says. ‘We have become steeped in the illogical; the current set of emoji on my phone do not begin to cover it.’

An alumna of New York’s Pratt Institute and the State University of New York, jewellery designer Brooks has taught at Rhode Island School of Design, Philadelphia’s University of the Arts and Cranbrook Academy of Art as well as creating jewellery which explores the conceptual possibilities of stainless steel.

Lola Brooks stainless steel chain jewellery

(Image credit: press)

‘Each piece is fabricated out of stainless steel chain, which is wrapped around a core made of a specific type of plaster,’ she says. ‘Hundreds of tiny, individual pieces of 14ct gold solder are then flowed in between every link of chain, essentially freezing it to itself. Once this is achieved, the inner core can be removed by dissolving the plaster in hot water without compromising the structural integrity of the remaining empty chain shell.’ The pieces are then faceted, softening the harsh outlines of the chains and creating new plays of light across the surface. The features of the face are created from leftover materials in Brook’s studio – antique blown glass dolls’ eyes, leaves, coral branches and diamonds have all been used in the past for the exaggerated features.

‘I think that jewellery is inherently entangled in traditional notions of beauty, and good jewellery design understands this, exploiting the entire spectrum of possibilities,’ Brooks says of her medium, adding: ‘Emoji clarify tone, lend depth and tell elaborate stories in a single haptic stroke. My work, for all intents and purposes, has essentially morphed into an elaborate set of emoji.’

Lola Brooks stainless steel chain jewellery

(Image credit: press)

Lola Brooks stainless steel chain jewellery

(Image credit: press)

INFORMATION

Lola Brook’s work is available exclusively at Sienna Patti Contemporary

siennapatti.com

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.