Writing for pleasure to showcase the best Australia has on offer.
Jewellery Designers from Australia & New Zealand
Nestled in the heart of Strathpine along Gympie Road, I found The Pine Rivers Art Gallery. The Gallery is currently showcasing the "Contemporary Wearables'13 Exhibition" which is a Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery Touring Exhibition. This particular exhibition is being run in Strathpine between 31 July to 13 September. Admission is free; however a small booklet is on sale for just $10 picturing the exhibited works, the name of the artist and his/her inspiration behind the creation of each unique piece of jewellery.
Entries into this amazing exhibition came from all over Australia and New Zealand with one particular necklace from New Zealand incorporating authentic New Zealand wool. Justine Fletcher of Wellington created this design using hand-dyed wool, a tea strainer and cake tin remnants. She is inspired in all of her work by the lives of the New Zealand Suffragists and this exhibition piece "Tea and cake at night" remembers the shear hard work and organisation that went into the women achieving the vote in 1893, while also maintaining the management of domestic New Zealand.
The Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery along with the Toowoomba Gallery Society Inc. has been holding this biannual event for the past 24 years. This year 107 entries were received with 61 being selected to be included in this exhibition. The exhibition will also tour to other venues across Australia's states and territories.
The winner this year was a neckpiece created by Claire McArdle of Victoria; it was named "The Emu". The Emu is made of leather and polystyrene and consists of carving, cutting and adhesion techniques. Claire has exhibited her work both nationally and internationally and has recently completed her residency at RMIT University receiving an Art Start Grant from The Australian Council of Arts.
As every piece of jewellery is as individual as the wearer, the option to choose just one of these exquisite masterpieces as my favourite was not only extremely difficult, but individual as well. So what took my fancy? For simplicity I couldn't go past "I used to be a plate" by Esther Graham of WA. Ninety percent of us would throw broken plates in the bin; however this clever lady decided her rose plate would make an excellent simple necklace.
What a statement this could make on the simple black dress!
For a statement and I do think my overall favourite would be – Momentum an orange painted piece of aluminum which was pierced, sawn and bended to create a sweeping effect around the neckline, something similar to a scarf. Created by Leandro Martins, also from Western Australia, Momentum was inspired by the places around the World he has travelled. Leandro is currently studying a design and jewellery course.
To complement an entire outfit, one must also wear a bangle. Although I was immediately drawn to Gerhard Herbst's Tyre Bangle, I do wonder how heavy it would be if worn all night. Named Ozzi on a Roll, the bangle consists of copper, 14ct gold nugget, oxidised, pierced, formed, hollow and constructed by 1.2mm copper plate. It even has a stone chip in the tyre tread which gave the piece a very real quality. I loved it.
Coral Trawl, created from recycled electrical wires
Coral Trawl" created by Pennie Jagiello of Victoria made use of reclaimed and recycled electrical wire, fishing rope and vintage costume jewellery, crochet and knitting. The message behind this piece of work is to raise awareness of our environmental impact and the damage bottom–trawl fishing does to our ocean floors.
Luke Abbot, NSW with "Suzumebachi"
Luke Abbott of NSW designed a ring that when worn the stone is secure; however when taken off the ring can be collapsed and the stone removed to insert another. This certainly affords us the opportunity of not having to purchase different rings to accompany different colours of attire! His design named Suzumebachi was inspired by the giant Japanese hornet and he is currently studying at the Hiko Mizuno College of Jewellery in Tokyo where he won a scholarship. The above is only a few of the great designs on exhibit.
To complement the Contemporary Wearables '13 exhibition, jewellery artist Tracey Wallace is holding a series of jewellery making sessions at The Pine Rivers Art Gallery. Tracey has a background as a professional commercial jeweller; however believes jewellery doesn't have to be expensive to make a statement. Classes are being held in August and September. Time and what to bring can be advised by ringing Tabitha at the Gallery from Monday to Saturday.
Other classes include U3A talks and workshops with Lillian Tebesceff, Children's Free Art Lessons and Photography Classes. If you are looking for a gift for someone special, pop into the Gallery as they have cabinets and display shelves full of beautiful gifts, jewellery and crafts items for purchase.
Beautiful gifts made by local artists for purchase