Materials: Fine Silver, Sterling Silver (cable), 22k gold, vitreous enamel, lapis lazuli
Dimensions: 20" high x 14" wide x 4" deep
This piece, "Babl", is about the millennia-old miracle of written language, the babble of Babel. It's a minor history, through the choice of its forms, symbols and gemstone, of the surprisingly successful communication between human beings, via innumerable vocabularies, and despite the many forms and formats this communication may take.
The Forms of the Pendants
The larger of the pendants is an extrapolation, though not quite as lofty, of the mythic breastplate of Aaron, an oracular jewel worn when evoking the divine and a symbol of that unearthly contact. The smaller, cone pendant reflects in a three-dimensional form, the cuneiform of the written language of ancient Sumeria, Akkadia, Assyria, Babylonia, and Persia. It is also a form that is used for divinatory pendulums. Both the pendulum and the breastplate are constructs for speaking/knowing truth.
The Symbols on the Pendants
The symbols on both pendants and on the clasp are drawn from Sumerian clay tablets, a Himyaritic stone carving (Yemen); Linear B (Crete) and repeated on the reverse of the large pendant, with the addition of the initials of my hallmark, my symbol.
The gemstone is Lapis Lazuli. An Italian gypsy friend of mine informed me of an alternate name for this stone, "Lapis La Lingua", which she said referred to it being the tongue of God, a stone for divination, a stone with which to speak. If translated literally, it means "language stone" or perhaps less formally as "speaking stone".
The Nesting Case/Enclosure
The symbols on the Nesting Case reference characters from ancient languages.
Photo credit: Evan J. Soldinger
Pittsfield, MA. USA
My jewels concern themselves not simply with function, but can also express the narrative capacity of adornment, and may include enclosure as sculptural form. They are an extension of my intention to build fully realized objects by constructing jewels within environments or protective dwellings, "Nesting Cases", often incorporating an original textual element (poem/song/prose). Each jewel, when not being worn, merges with a 'nesting case' in mutual consistency, becoming one unit.
The sources of inspiration for my work are varied: ancient artifacts; the architectural fantasies of Brodsky and Utkin; the mediaeval reliquary; the mysteries inherent in the work of William Harper, Keith LoBue and DX Ross; the complex and complicated structures that speak on many levels of human experience, especially humanity's delight in the body-embellished.
My work thematically integrates jewelry fabrication techniques (metal clay, engraving, stamping, fold-forming, oxidation/patination, roll-printing, cold connections), enameling, precious metals, precious stones, and can include found objects blockprinting, assemblage/collage.
My pieces explore the fusion of all these elements with the stories my objects relate, each object speaking as a sculptural encyclopedia of connected and coherent images, symbols, and concepts.
The exhibition explores metal works whose primary theme is color embraced as their primary visual focus, whether that be using colored materials, exploring creating colored surfaces, or encasing the object in color.
As the world's largest jewelry related internet site, Ganoksin strives to develop exhibitions showcasing work from around the world. This exhibition was open to all metalsmiths, professional and amateur, advanced and beginner.
In total 303 artists contributed 814 show pieces for the permanent online exhibition.
The exhibition was curated by Beth Wicker, President of the North Carolina Society of Goldsmiths in the United States, and Adjunct Instructor at Northeastern Technical College in South Carolina. Director of the exhibition is Hanuman Aspler, founder of The Ganoksin Project, the world's largest internet jewelry site.
Hue is one of the primary properties of color, it refers to the place the color occupies on the visual spectrum. Humans have used hues throughout time, to create cave paintings, to decorate themselves, their clothing and their housing.
Different hues have taken on different meanings throughout time. Gold traditionally has been a color of purity - the metal gold is relatively unchangeable, and the hue of gold has come to stand for gods and goddesses, for royalty, for durability and for purity. Red has often meant love, or passion. Hues often reflect the meaning of the seasons, with pastels referring to spring and the burst of new life after the pale hues of winter. Summer is reflected in vibrant, deep hues, followed by the browning of hues in the fall as plants go to seed and die, and the land turns fallow.
The worth of a hue has often been tied to what is necessary to make the pigment that creates the hue, and the expensive involved in the process. Often created from crushed stones that had to be mined and carried by caravan over thousands of miles, or from fermented roots of plants only grown in certain areas, or the carapaces of rare insects - the creation of hue in a way that could be used by man was an involved and generally expensive process.
In today's world metalsmiths have access to perhaps the widest range of materials and hues in the history of man - and in some of the most affordable ways ever.
This exhibition celebrates hue - color - as an integral, inherent element of the work. We talk of the "richness" of color, and examples of this abound here. One expects hues from the colors of gemstones used in metalsmithing, but we also have hues from some less expected places. Glass enamels are an ancient way of adding color, as are a variety of patinas. Today's artists also use synthetic man-made materials to add color in ways that didn't exist a century ago.
We invite you to enjoy this celebration of hue, and the ways hues and their use have changed over time.