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Dragon and Phoenix - Differences Unite Us

Materials: PMC3 (fine silver) and PMC Gold 22k clays, fine silver bezel wire, 12.26 ct. natural Sphene
Dimensions: 2.02 x 1.48 inches

The Dragon and Phoenix is one of the greatest depictions of the “uniting of differences.” The dragon represents the male, the phoenix the female, and together they are meant to represent the perfect union. They are the Yin and the Yang - complete opposites - that when brought together bring great prosperity and luck. That is what happens when we let our differences unite us.

Photo credit: Eleanor Phillips

Eleanor Phillips
Southern Pines, NC. USA

I’ve spent most of my life as a painter and sculptor, so my jewelry is usually quite “sculptural” in design with very organic forms. Working primarily in precious metal clay allows me to create this sculpturally-based work with high detail. I’ve always been inspired by images of nature and animals, and their depictions in ancient art and jewelry have always had a great influence on my own work. I guess I would say my jewelry has a mixture of Chinese, Celtic, and Victorian influences in it with a bit of the modern thrown in.

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.