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Mixing Bowl - Holding Place


Materials: Copper, Brass, Nickel, Microbolts
Dimensions: 8" wide x 6" tall

Formed copper bowl with patina housed inside two fabricated brass rims, held together by four formed nickel plates, featuring a mapped etching and patina, and then microbolted to the rim.

Photo credit: Caroline Kaiser

Caroline Hope Kaiser
Milwaukee, Wisconsin. USA

As time passes, the term “design” has been defined and redefined numerous times. But what really is the true meaning of design? In my work, I have come to the conclusion that design is not something that has a singular, definite answer. Design is everywhere and every thing. It all begins as an idea. From there, it morphs and changes into many creations, yet the possibilities are endless. Design is not just a two-dimensional aspect, but it is all encompassing - pushing its way into the three-dimensional world where an idea becomes a physical reality. Coming from a graphic design background, I have experienced many two-dimensional projects, yet something was always missing. As the three-dimensional world of art started to spark my interests more and more, I decided to dive right in head first. I found that using my graphic design techniques of creating layers, flow and harmonious compositions really pushed my work to be extremely successful. The techniques and skills I have a acquired in the graphic design field work seamlessly with the metalsmithing field. Creating a beautiful layout in graphic design is like using spatial thinking to put pieces together and create a physical piece of work. I found the whole process of idea to drawing board to two-dimensional creation to three-dimensional creation an obsession. The process in and of itself is beautiful. The ability to adapt and change the design throughout the process is a critical skill I have picked up in the short amount of time I have been practicing being a metalsmith. The difference between the two fields is virtuality versus reality. There is just something about working with my hands that I just cannot get away from, even for a day! Metalsmithing is a physical practice where creations can be touched and experienced in relation to the body and the world in general. Experience is one of the strongest sensations there is. My inspiration comes from the things I experience both day to day, in my past and what is to come. Beauty exists all around us, and many take that for granted. The reason I create is to show others the beauty that surrounds them as well. It is real. Just take a look around. Experience it; breath it in; it’s right in front of our noses. Open your eyes and experience everything, you will without a doubt be blown away.

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.