Cat and Dog brooch - Differences Unite Us

Materials: Sterling silver and recycled copper
Dimensions: Approx. 5cm diameter

I thought about opposites and combining them with the Yin Yang symbol as this is something that has fascinated me for a long time.

Photo credit: Renee Clothier

Renee Clothier
Blenheim, Marlborough. New Zealand

I have been collecting treasures like a magpie since I was a young girl, storing my finds in jars around the house for later. I always had a fascination for things that I found on family holidays, such as shells, glass that had been worn down by the sea and the skeletons of leaves found on the forest floor.

My jewellery and other artworks comes from my desire to utilise some of the things I have collected over the years, as I feel it is essential to create something precious from the things that I have collected as a tribute to the earth and its power and generosity.

For as long as I can remember I have had the need to create things with my hands. This is my therapy in a sense, as when my hands are busy my mind is calm, due to the focus that is required on the piece that is unfolding; A form of meditation that produces a treat at the end of it.

Ganoksin hosts the jewelry list Orchid, with over 13,000 list members from all over the world, speaking from a wide range of technical and aesthetic experiences. The exhibition theme grew out of a desire to celebrate the creativity encompassed in this wide variety.

Artists were free to interpret the theme in any way they chose. Each artist could submit up to six pieces. Interpretations include uniting different materials into one cohesive form; intellectual and emotional “unitings”, where the meaning of the piece unites multiple concepts; the uniting of time - past, present and future; and a number that focus on the harmony created when uniting multiple materials and/or concepts.

The work submitted involved a wide range of jewelry techniques, from very traditional to very cutting edge, as well as using materials from traditional precious metals and gemstones to “re-purposed” and “up-cycled” materials.

The exhibition showcases 330 images chosen from entries from over 111 artists representing 26 countries.

Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Czech Republic, France, Greece, India, Israel, Italy, Malta, Mauritius, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Philippines, Serbia, Spain, Trinidad, Turkey, UK, USA, Venezuela, and the Virgin Islands

Many of the participants began their interest in jewelry at a young age. Some are relative newcomers to the field, and some have over 35 years of experience as professional jewelers and goldsmiths. While some grew up in families that were goldsmiths, and followed in those footsteps, others only began creating jewelry as adults.