Spinosis Tutella (Thorny Protection) - Holding Place

Materials: Copper, Prismacolor pencil, patina
Dimensions: 18"x 16"x 18"

Spinosis Tutella (Thorny Protection) is inspired by the milk thistle plant. Milk thistle has been used since the days of the ancient Greeks to treat a variety of different liver disorders including cirrhosis of the liver due to alcohol abuse. The medicinal liquid contained within the barbed, thorny, brightly colored thistle bud dictates the antithetical nature of the thistle, both beautiful and dangerous, appealing and yet injurious.

Photo credit: Robly A. Glover

Rebecca A Beals
Lubbock, TX. USA

I am an artist and metalsmith inspired by botanical forms and the cycles of life, death, and rebirth inherent in the natural world. By examining the interconnectedness of fecundity, life, death, and rebirth via the macrocosm of nature, I am better able to understand my place in the world. Simultaneously, manipulating material (metal, found objects, and non-traditional materials), form, color, and texture of my works allows me to exert a modicum of control over the microcosm of my consciousness. In December 2012, I received my MFA from Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas and am very much looking forward to continuing to pursue my artistic research.

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.