Last weekend I went up to the National Centre for Craft and Design (NCCD) in Sleaford, Lincolnshire. I went to see the Association of Contemporary Jewellery's (ACJ) ICONS exhibition and to take part (as an audience member) in the exhibition symposium. I am so glad I went, it was a really fascinating and inspiring afternoon. The exhibition looks great, and it was so good to see in person what I had only seen in photos previously. Photos are a poor substitute for seeing things first hand - you lose the sense of scale, colour and texture.
It was so cool to see my own work in the exhibition! It feels great being in a show alongside many eminent jewellers - I would like to do more!
The symposium started at 2pm and we had Joanne Haywood, Helen Noakes and Dauvit Alexander talk about the ideas and processes behind the work they made for ICONS. It was so interesting hearing three very different approaches to making jewellery.
Jo made a necklace for Patti Smith, 'Woolgathering', made from a hand felted surface, Italian silks, silver, gold, English paper pieced patchwork and faceted stones. There were many links between text and the final piece and hearing these described was a real insight. The faceted stones were a response to, "There it lies on the ground before us, a drop of faceted blood, more real than a ghost".
Next Helen Noakes talked about her piece 'Solo Voyager'. Helen works mainly in resin and described the time consuming process of building up many thin layers. Some of her work glows in the dark!
And lastly Dauvit Alexander talked about his piece, 'Fashion: Victim - in Memoriam Alexander McQueen'. The number of materials, processes and collaborations that took place to realise this piece are amazing.
It was great to see the exhibition, attend the symposium and meet other ACJ members for the first time. The exhibition continues until July 27th.