Saturday, 23 July 2011

Ties that Bind Us

Material: Silver
Ring Size: P (Aus) 56mm and O (Aus) 55mm
Weight approx: 19g

This piece is inspired by Gijs Bakker’s ‘Everyone’s Friend’ (1984). Bakker’s piece consisted of 6 rings linked together with different sizes that allowed the wearer many possibilities: 1. wear one ring at a time and let the rest hang loose, 2.wear all rings at once and 3. share the rings with loved ones. Here my piece consists of two linked rings, each ring is of a different size that represents a different people. Similarly to Bakker’s piece, the rings can be worn in many ways. Furthermore I used this piece to experiment with engraving. 

High Tea Extension

Material: Copper and Humbrol Matt enamels: no.200, no.61 and no.34
Ring Size: B and H
Weight approx: 51g
Height: 20mm
Width: 22mm
Length: 230mm

Forged from 8m (diameter) copper rod, this sugar spoon is designed to be worn on and extend the pinky finger. ‘High Tea Extension’ was inspired by many of the myths surrounding why it is believed to custom to extend the pinky finger at a 90 degree angle whilst drinking tea. Some of the myths I discovered included previously high society requiring to eat all food and drink with only three fingers, whereas the lower classes ate with more fingers if not the whole hand. Similarly sugar was once an expensive commodity reserved for the rich, so the rich used to use their pinky to dip (when wet with water) into the sugar. Therefore they would keep their pinkies erect and out of the way of touching any substances that would taint the pure sugar.  However other myths were based on practicality rather than social split, this included the notion that the hottest part of the tea cup is the bottom so naturally we want to move the finger closest to the heat away. Even a disorder based on the inability to bend the pinky finger is believed by some to be the birth of the pinky extension tradition. However no matter the origins, the extension of the pinky today whilst drinking tea to many is silly and a little humorous. Thus to comment on this ridiculousness, High Tea Extension,’ through the use of two rings, prevents the pinky from being bent when worn. Furthermore the extended length of stem the spoon adds to pompousness as it allows one to elegantly reach to obtain a cube of sugar or to simply extend the pinky when picking up a sugar cube from a sugar bowl in the other hand. To highlight the notion that this piece is an extension of the pinky, the piece is painted with a pastel, porcelain skin colour that was mixed to match my own skin colour.

Friday, 22 July 2011

The Natural Fetishism of a Castor Oil Seed Pod

Material: Brass and Copper
Weight approx: 221g
Height: 90mm
Width: 75mm
Length: 75mm

This container was inspired by the notorious weed, the castor oil plant. The spikes were individually formed from a brass rod and a single copper spike is included. The compartments were created from 20mmx20mm brass tubing and brass sheet was transformed into the top and bottom lids with a individual bezel for each compartment. The finely sharpened points make the container highly uncomfortable to handle; presenting little desire to pick it up Therefore like the weed, it can be seen as an undesirable object, however it is made into something that is generally considered practical; a container. This mockery of the practical, a paradox in itself, allows the container to sink into the world of fetishism. Furthermore a single copper spike highlights the notion that something is amiss with the piece.  

Wednesday, 20 July 2011


Material: Brass
Ring Size: O (Aus) 55mm
Weight approx: 28g
Height: 3mm
Width: 60mm
Length: 45mm

Requiring no soldering, this piece was inspired by the constant movement of the space surrounding fingers. Three circular forms are adapted to best fit three fingers by minimizing the size underneath the ring and flowing smoothly across the two fingers either side of the finger the ring is worn on. Each piece of the ring has had a length of brass removed that varies in position between each piece. Thus when the rings are worn together the impression of movement from one piece to the next is created. This gives the piece movement. However should one of the pieces be worn out of line, movement becomes discontinuous and disconcerting. Therefore each piece is numbered with 1-3 indented dots: 1 dot representing the first piece to be worn closest to the tips of the fingers, 2 dots representing the piece to be worn second from the tips of the fingers (in the middle of the two pieces) and 3 dots representing the piece to be worn third from the tips of the fingers. However on presenting this piece to friends the wondrous phenomena that is individual interpretation was witnessed as many ways to wear these three forms were created and some are depicted above.

Monday, 18 July 2011

Pipe Ring

Material: Brass, Cut 4.5mm and 5mm Diameter Garnets and Heat Shrink Inner Tubing. 
Ring size: O (Aus) 55mm
Weight approx: 38g
Height: 20mm
Width: 69mm
Length: 49mm

This is the third and final piece that resulted from my exploration of the St. Kilda Community Gardens. This piece was based on the requirement of water in the gardens and the use of pipe connections to allow the water to circulate. Here a pipe connection, represented by the brass ring, is given an organic form by tapering one end of the ring to fit the finger more comfortably and by squashing the two brass tubes. Thus the man-made becomes natural. The natural becomes man-made by the cut garnets that in mythology represent the life of pomegranates. The garnet plants have stems made of heat shrunk inner tubing around brass wire. Therefore like the merging of nature and manmade in the gardens, here too does the natural and manmade intertwine.

Lady Brooch

Metal: Copper, Gilding metal, Silver, Brass
Height: 28mm
Width: 73mm
Length: 110mm

This brooch like ‘Sight Obstruction Project’ was inspired by the St. Kilda Community Gardens. The piece is based on a sculpture I saw in the gardens of women with no skull and empty eyes. Her eyes you could look through to her missing skull that allowed one to view the garden. The photo I took became the bass plate made of gliding metal; the earth to my piece, thus figuratively the female figure represents Mother Earth. Upon the plate grows the plant life I found around the sculpture. Moreover the plant life pushes through to the underside of the plate, becoming an image of what lies underneath the earth. Winding engravings were made on the plate to represent the random, intertwining paths of the gardens and miniature figures of various items in the gardens are included on the plate. This includes a water tap, dinosaur sculpture, well and bench and all are made of at least 3 different types of metal to represent the relatedness of all the objects. Furthermore wooden stakes found in the gardens are presented in the piece by brass wire that pushes through to the back of the plate becoming hooks for the brooch pins. A double pin brooch design was required due to the weight of the piece.