Metalanguage - Holding Place

Materials: Silver-plated copper, wenge wood, cork
Dimensions: 18.5H x 21W x 7D cm

This teapot is inspired by linguistic articulation diagrams, representing the tongue and mouth. The texture along the spout and inner ring of the lid consists of English letters, corresponding to the sounds produced during speech.

Photo credit: Mary Lynn Podiluk

Mary Lynn Podiluk
Saskatoon, SK. Canada

Human language is not only a system of communication;
it is creative, allowing us free expression to respond to
new experiences and situations in novel and innovative ways. (O’Grady 1-2)

Most of what we know about our language is subconscious; there is not much that the average person can say offhand about how language works. By translating the aural to the visual through concepts of language and linguistics, my jewellery and holloware are intended to illuminate nuances of language that people don’t often consider. Combining silver with the vibrant qualities of cast resin, I highlight fundamental aspects of speech and sound by visually representing language through anatomical and organic forms, alphabets, and acoustic analysis. By virtue of the familiar and universal nature of these elements, I intend to inspire the viewer to consider aspects of language they normally take for granted.

These containers and vessels definitely hold their place in the world of stunning art objects as well as in the world of metalsmithing.

Since the dawn of time humans have created containers to hold things that were important to them, from large vessels to hold food and harvests to intimate containers for small precious things. They might hold memories, ashes, medicine, beverage, fruit or food - but all spring from the imagination and skill of the maker. Some have specific religious functions, some are meant for everyday use. When one thinks of a vessel or container the inclination is to think of something with solid walls - yet many of these works involve the exploration of positive and negative space, and the use of negative space to help create the illusion of the wall of the vessel.

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. Participants are from The Netherlands, the USA, Canada, Australia, Costa Rica, the United Kingdom, Israel, Hong Kong, Colombia, Romania, Italy, Ireland, Japan, Malaysia and Denmark. While most of the pieces are by an individual metalsmith, some are collaborations, one of three artists spanning 50 years.

In total 319 artists contributed 729 show pieces for the permanent online exhibition.

Objects in the exhibition include boxes, lockets, urns, ash containers, bowls, wine cups, reliquaries, match holders, vases, teapots, pitchers, sugar bowls, baskets, nests, pillboxes, clutches and a range of sculptural forms. A variety of techniques are showcased covering a wide range of metalsmithing techniques. Materials used include everything from gold and silver to less expensive metals. Ornamentation includes the addition of enamel, chasing and repousse’, gemstones and found objects.

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.