Archive for September, 2011

honours project

I’m currently reading a lot of information to prepare myself for writing my honours proposal. I am hoping to get into honours for 2012 as a lead in to doing a PHD or DVA further down the track.

My main focus is looking at Cultural Value Systems. Within that I am looking at the sub-categories of Social, Political, Environmental and Humanistic value systems. These are all related topics. I am wanting to look at the artist as the commentator on these value systems and create work that is reactive but well thought out and holds a message. Works that will mean something and will give a message. Wearable protests that will send a message.

I have been looking at the work of an artist by the name of Ken Cory who was an American jeweller. He was influenced a lot by the Beat, Funk and Pop movements in the jewellery art form and his makes comment on social and political situations. In reading about his influences and what he wanted to create with his pieces, I feel some what an affinity with Cory. One of the quotes that comes up in the book discusses how he first stumbled upon jewellery making:

“Before that,” he said ,”I thought jewellery came out of factories and it was something you needed big machines to make.

So I took a jewellery class and all of a sudden, it was like magic.

I was making things out of metal with just a few simple hand tools.

And I thought, ‘Boy here is a whole area that hasn’t been explored yet’.”

I love this quote as it is a similar story as my own discovery into the jewellery area. I never knew I could make it, nor did I know where you could go to learn. When I started going to university it was to become a high school art and drama teacher and not a jeweller. I didn’t even know they offered jewellery! Now I am addicted and I found what I wanted to do with my life, and Cory is right. It is like magic!

With further investigation, I have read up on Funk jewellery and I can identify with it’s focus. It was public, political, part of social upheavals and anti war as well as free speech focused. It is closely related to the Dada and Fluxus movements. Artists of this movement revelled in the industrial & consumer culture’s detritis, in junk and in the every day object.

I think of where my art is heading. It may not be my pieces up until this point in time that has been the focus or that closely relates to this theory, but the fact that I am always getting students to look around them and to have a go at making pieces out of recycled goods rather than thinking that they need to make things out of gold and silver all the time, and have a focus on environmental issues and the effects we as a jewellery community have on the environment stands for something. My current jewellery focuses on the commercialisation of practice. It focuses on the money spinning jewellery to create works that will be purchased and I can survive on.

The risk is to create works that speak about an issue, that is attractive and that does not throw it up in your face to the extent that people are turned off by it. One way I could be told that I am being too commercial and not arty enough. On the other hand, the message could be lost if the message is too obscure. I want to create work that is obvious but is not crass. Only if crass is called for!!

But for now I am looking into Environmental Ethics, Social Systems, Environmental Value Systems as well as body image and adornments. This is an exciting research area and the level of information that has been written about all the various areas is immense! The field of investigation on a whole, looking at the Cultural Value Systems and its sub headings could lead to a whole new direction for me and I am embracing the information!

Read On!!!!


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Brah-voh BIA Staff Exhibition

This Saturday is the opening of the Brisbane Institute of Art staff exhibition of which I am exhibiting wall mounted works, sculptural works, as well as jewellery.

I went in today to set up my display cabinet of goodies as well as drop off the sculptural works for the set up that will happening over the next couple of days in the lead up to the opening.

This should be a great event as there are a number of participants this year, given that there was no staff exhibition held last year. It is also a great way to see what the staff can produce and that they practice what they preach – or at least they practice what they preach!

Here are some of the sculptural pieces that I will have on display at the exhibition:


Wood, Steel, Polymer Clay, Paint, Brass


Acrylic, Wood, Steel, Twine, Leather, Fluorescent Light

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Busy Day!

It’s just turned 11am and already I have emailed one stockist for the hand over of work, emailed RSPCA for the hand over of work, contacted the BIA to have a letter printed with the BIA letter head to contact art supply shops for gift certificates for the end of year BIA student show, emailed students regarding the trip to Bali next year, emailed students regarding the Urban Mine Project at the BIA starting this Sunday, and messaged another client regarding the approval of a wax before sending it off for casting and payment on previous work!

Now I hope to get into the studio to do more work, but first I may have to make a trip to find 4mm round rod that I can adjust a belt buckle with!!

The fun never stops!!!


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I was asked a short number of weeks ago if I would be interested in helping the RSPCA raise funds for all the great work they do by donating a couple of pieces for auction at their annual fund raiser.

The pieces I have donated are focused to the younger crowd. Bigger and bolder I suppose, but that does not by any means restrict them to this demographic!

Essentially they are at a lower price point to some of the other pieces of jewellery that will be on display. They will also feature in their silent auction and will hopefully go towards raising some much needed funds.

This will also enable me to promote my brand at the function by having business cards and post cards available for people to take.

It is usually a big night and the more promotional material I can have there the better, especially leading up to the studio sale in the coming months.


Here is the link for the Ball information on the RSPCA’s website:


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Orders Ready

Exactly 1 month down from the trade show and I have managed to have my orders ready for shipping.

I have contacted each of the retailers to inform them that their pieces are ready and am waiting for confirmation of postal addresses and final payments prior to shipping.

I was hoping that I would have the orders ready by last week but there were a few hiccups regarding cutting and anodising this time around that added on a bit longer than I expected to my delivery time – although I am officially only 3 days late on my first order and 3 weeks early on my third order!


Now I can focus on trying to get everything ready for both Cherish in October and the studio sale in November.


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I’m sitting in a Chinese restaurant while I wait for my car to be looked at by the mechanics. Of course, the car starts playing up just as the warranty runs out.
The Electronic Stability Control system is not working. A dangerous thing in a car that is almost as wide as it is long, and the hill assist does not work when this happens!
Next, I will pay for lunch and sit in a cafe reading all about political art! I can see me having a lot of chai!

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Ultimate Bling Ring

I wanted to create a ring that had a lot of bling. I also had a beautiful hand carved Lemon Quartz that needed a home after having it in a box for the last two years!

This is the result – I think I managed to achieve the bling-iest cocktail ring I have ever seen, using some pretty damn nice bling too I might add!

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