Six Jewellers Six Ways opened with excitement at Ari Athans Jewellery, in Brisbane, at the beginning of July 2013. This group exhibition featured new explorations by jewellers Danielle Boal, Anna Varendorff, Julie Smeros, Jane Bowring, Bibi Locke and Ari Athans, and coincided with The National Jewellers and Metalsmith’s Conference.
“…Six Ways” refers to each jewellers’ experiments and idiosyncrasies that make their practice and jewellery unique. The exhibition maps Ari Athans’ professional relationships with the practitioners – formed over many years. A personal knowledge of each jeweller’s “way” stems from the experience of working closely together on Ari’s production pieces in her studio.
Danielle Boals’ pendants for the exhibition draw on Pareidolia or “the imagined perception of a pattern or meaning where it does not actually exist (as in considering the moon to have human features)”.
“I thought it was funny” states Danielle,”how such simple shapes can so quickly be interpreted as a human face.”
Glazed ceramic, brass, cotton, and polyester were combined to form Danielle’s haunting pendants.
Melbourne jeweller Anna Varendorff presented a dynamic body of work using insulated electrical wire composed with traditional materials. These new pieces were playful and reminiscent of squiggles or doodles. They reinforced Anna’s love of drawing in space; but in a free and relaxed way that diverges from her past completely minimal and reductionist collections.
Julie Smeros'”patience and dedication to detail … has been with her since our days in kindergarten” recalls Ari. Julie explored the lost wax casting technique to produce the series of faceted silver rings for “...Six Ways”.
Balance and measure underpin the work of Jane Bowring. Each permutation and combination of process, form and material are informed by Jane’s avid research.
“…Six Ways” provided an opportunity for Bibi Locke to present her latest retail range; closely informed by a recent study sojourn in New York. The range explored regeneration and degrees of permanence within the natural and urban landscapes.
Ari Athans’ playful earrings for the exhibition were made from detritus plastics found at North Gorge beach, Stradbroke Island. Working on this series while preparing for a solo painting exhibition at Edwina Corlette Gallery at the time, Ari found the plastic’s softened yet geometric shapes against the pumice resonated deeply;
“I immediately connected the plastic’s shapes and colours to my brushwork. I started collecting like mad. It was quite a contrast – the pumice with the plastic. Different origins but they travelled together and deposited on this beach because they share the same density.” Ari.
Six Jewellers Six Ways in essence reflects the mutual respect held between these practitioners, and celebrates the differences or their creative approach. It also marks the important ways established practitioners, like Ari Athans, continue to support, challenge and showcase the creative practice of peers.
Thank you Ari Athans for another delightful exhibition opening. Photography of the jewellers’ individual works (as noted) courtesy of Ari Athans’ Blog.