"What Is Jewellery?" Exhibition Piece No.2 Sweet Ruin Ring

Jewellery Is...JOY

The exhibition this ring is in is about answering the question "What Is Jewellery" by using unorthodox materials. With this piece I have included a marble, a lovely object to enjoy but not considered precious, or a usual material for jewellery as it is, although it is delicate and made of glass. By working in resin I also get to explore colour in my work. This sweet pink shade brings many comments on how tasty it looks, "nougat" being a word often heard from people seeing some of these pieces for the first time. 

Sweet Ruin  Ring, 2014 silver, resin, glass marble, granite, Jade Mellor.  Read about this ring and the Modern Ruin series in the shop   HERE

Sweet Ruin Ring, 2014 silver, resin, glass marble, granite, Jade Mellor. Read about this ring and the Modern Ruin series in the shop HERE

Chanel Jelly Shoes! 

Chanel Jelly Shoes! 

Playing marbles. The milky white one above was used in the Sweet Ruin Ring!

Playing marbles. The milky white one above was used in the Sweet Ruin Ring!

One of my studio snacks, sweet dried papaya! I love the bizarre chewy, squidgy crystalline texture and it gives me a sugar buzz!

One of my studio snacks, sweet dried papaya! I love the bizarre chewy, squidgy crystalline texture and it gives me a sugar buzz!

Here's a wonderful comment from a visitor to our annual open studios last month on seeing my work for the first time:

They’re playful, not stuffy. They cheer me up.
— Michael Flood 2014

This ring is about enjoying life and celebrating and sharing the things you love! By wearing jewellery you are offering it to the world. You are communicating, you nearly always HAVE to touch it, it invites you to interact, it is playful. It is sharing a bag of sweets. It is saying to the lady on the bus, "I like your hat..." it is smiling at a funny looking sausage dog on the street. That extra effort of dressing up, to take pleasure in life and decorating the world around you, taking the time to finish off an outfit, making a statement of who you are or what you like. 

My mother was very chic and she used to say you could have a single dress but with different accessories you could have 27 different outfits.
— "Rare Bird of Fashion" The Irreverent Iris Apfel.

Even the plainest outfit is transformed with an interesting piece of jewellery, or that exquisite piece could also be the cherry on a delicious, fruity, multicoloured, hot fudge, nutty ice cream sundae of an ensemble.

Iris Apfel The "Rare Bird of Fashion".

Iris Apfel The "Rare Bird of Fashion".

So now let's spread the jewellery rainbow! If you don't do it already, or if you have gotten out of the habit (I know my studio scruffs don't always lend themselves to "accessorising" beyond safety glasses) then let's take that extra two minutes to put on something extra, not for habit or practical reasons, but just for the sheer pleasure of choosing something you like. And if you are already a strong card carrying member of the accessories club, how about acknowledging someone else you see who has worn something just for the joy of it. 

The "Sweet Ruin Ring" is currently in the exhibition "What Is Jewellery?" at Manchester Craft and Design Centre, curated by Eve Redmond. Details HERE.

"What Is Jewellery?" Exhibition Piece No.1 Gold Cubed Ring

 

Jewellery is... DESIRE

Gold Cubed Ring, metal, resin, metal dust, Jade Mellor 2014

Gold Cubed Ring, metal, resin, metal dust, Jade Mellor 2014

Box of pyrite specimens: A cube of cubes...

Box of pyrite specimens: A cube of cubes...

In the exhibition What Is Jewellery?" curated by Eve Redmond the purpose was to show unorthodox materials being used by artists today. This ring is made from resin, very different to jewellery traditionally created from precious metal. The piece is also inspired by another material which I use a lot in my work which is Pyrite...


"Pyrite is one of my favourite minerals, the cubic formation has always fascinated me, it looks manufactured with it's crisp metallic edges but builds naturally in this way because of it's unique structure. I love learning about the formation of our environment, triggered by unusual finds like this and researching in Manchester Museum's amazing stores of specimens. This ring is my homage to the beautiful mineral. If Fool's Gold is called so because it appears like gold, this must be (Fool's) Gold Cubed." (my description for this piece)


So with this first ring I want to explore the aspect of jewellery meaning DESIRE: To want something for how it looks, the glint of metallic catching your eye with the magpie's instinct to swoop in and fly off with these shiny treasures. 

This ring was inspired by pyrite. The sparkling mineral nicknamed "Fool's Gold" could be all about it's appearance for those who would be tricked into thinking it was the real thing. 


 
Five "Fool's Gold" Rings of mine,  all using real specimens of the mineral pyrite available now at Craft & Culture  HERE

Five "Fool's Gold" Rings of mine,  all using real specimens of the mineral pyrite available now at Craft & Culture HERE

 


I am attracted to pyrite for how it looks*, it's natural facets twinkling and the smoothed areas gleaming make it a good choice for jewellery, as who doesn't want to wear something that lights up the room in such a way? However the benefits of using this mineral instead of expensive real gold is that I can manipulate it more and I am not afraid to experiment without knowing what the final outcome may be. Gold is a wonderful material to use, but it's preciousness makes it a material you plan for, savouring it, using just enough to make what you intend. Pyrite is much more available to me, this means the exciting part comes from how I can push it. I can smash it, I can grind it, I can use the BIGGEST GOLDEN CHUNKS of it for maximum impact. And when it is worn in this way, it is not showing off value and wealth in the way that a giant 24ct medallion might. It's golden glow is great, but after the wow of the initial impact, there's the head tilt and the chirrup of the curious sparrow. What IS it? How did that come to be? To realise these angular nuggets or magnificent cubes have formed in that shape by themselves as a wonder of nature, that is the thing that continues to excite me, the thing that I love, as well as desire which will never lose it's lustre. 

For some excellent insights into materials and exploring their values vs appearances and how they are being used in contemporary art jewellery today check out the latest CURRENT OBSESSION: FAKE  ISSUE. These guys are the cutting edge of what's happening right now...

 

 

The following posts will look at the other rings in the exhibition. It's been good for me to take the time to think about why use certain materials in my work. Be great to hear what you choose to make your work with! Sometimes having limits can even be the best way to be inventive...

 

 

*(call me a fool, but an honest fool)

 

What Is Jewellery? Exhibition at Manchester Craft & Design Centre

Very excited to join the work of some amazingly talented artists in this exhibition, hosted by Manchester Craft & Design Centre and curated by Eve Redmond. Showing during the Free For Arts Festival from the 3rd - 12th Oct. Preview starts at 3.30pm this Friday, event details HERE hope to see you there! 

Magnetic Attraction

I have created a new Ferromagnetic ring for the supremely creative fashion designer Charlotte Booty.

                                                                                  Macramé work from Charlotte Booty

                                                                                  Macramé work from Charlotte Booty

 I wanted to make her a piece that would have unique properties, as her textile work pushes the boundaries to create three dimensional "fabrics". See more of her work here.

 

The beautiful patterns she creates in her macramé are by utilising materials in repetition such as cable ties, leather and chain. They seem to me to form naturally like iron filings in a magnetic field. The new Ferromagnetic ring is set with magnetic Haematite, I hope she enjoys using it to explore her surroundings, testing and picking up more found objects for her inspiration.

If you are interested in learning more about commissioning a unique piece, get in touch! Email me at info@jademellor.com and I'll be happy to answer your questions :)

Seashells Sanctuary

Shell shapes are amazing and varied. These beautiful calcareous sculptures are each a bespoke outfit for an individual soft bodied sea creature...

Damien Hirst,  "Forms Without Life"  1991

Damien Hirst, "Forms Without Life" 1991

Some new rings in methods inspired by the beautiful lumicella rock which contains prehistoric sea shells.

Joanne Stoker's shapely seashell shoe-styles appeal to me!

Keep an eye out for these new rings arriving in the SHOP! 

Kneon Magazine

Loved being part of the Dalston Tropics editorial for the latest Kneon Magazine! You can read the August Summer Supplement Issue here.

This piece is available  t o purchase from my  STUDIO SHOP  you can see more  HERE.

This piece is available to purchase from my STUDIO SHOP you can see more HERE.

Marbled Black & Pyrite Hewn Ring, have yours bespoke made with a unique mineral specimen email info@jademellor.com  for detail.

Marbled Black & Pyrite Hewn Ring, have yours bespoke made with a unique mineral specimen email info@jademellor.com  for detail.

Thanks to a great team for the beautiful images!

Art direction & Prop Design: Rebecca Rose Carey,

Photography: Natalia Salminen,

Stylist: Kelly Jordan

Hair & Makeup: Eliie Blackwell 

Models: Lena Marie @Profile Model Management & Illy Jay @Body London 

 

 

A Twist on Tradition

"Something old,
Something new,
Something borrowed,
Something blue,
& a silver sixpence in her shoe"

A mixture of vintage beads and sterling silver chain with a hand engraved detail on the safety clasp to match the bridesmaid necklaces with the brides new initials as a secret personal touch to mark the occasion.

A mixture of vintage beads and sterling silver chain with a hand engraved detail on the safety clasp to match the bridesmaid necklaces with the brides new initials as a secret personal touch to mark the occasion.

Interior designer, artist, model and all round babe, Laura letting me borrow her body when I was testing out the design.

Interior designer, artist, model and all round babe, Laura letting me borrow her body when I was testing out the design.

jade mellor vintage bespoke bridal jewellery pearl silver antique beads.JPG

I enjoyed working closely with the bride to be to create something unique and special for her big day, that could also be adapted for future wear so that it could join her treasure trove of jewellery. Worn shorter for the wedding to show off the delicate décolletage of a strapless, sumptuous wedding gown I also designed it so that a long line of vintage rhinestones could drape dramatically down work as a statement with a chic sixties cocktail dress or sparkling on a long-line bold coloured dress. I researched antique jewellery sets when coming up with this piece as I love the versatility of historic fine jewellery where secrets between the master jeweller and the highborn wearer would mean pieces could be broken up or joined together to create different styles, making the most of their wondrous precious rocks and stones.

if you have some ideas you would like to chat about or know more about having your own bespoke pieces get in touch! info@jademellor.com 

Summer Celebration Ring

Let's Celebrate!

confetti_party_cake_3.jpg

Confetti Cake! Recipe can be found on Best Friends For Frosting.

My dear friend Natalie recently asked me to make her a ring for some summer parties she was going to. The dresses she had bought for these occasions were mostly a black background with splashes of gorgeous bright florals, perfect for dancing outside on balmy summer evenings, sipping champagne cocktails under colourful paper lanterns...

                                                                         Photo by Tanja Lippert Photography via   Bridal Guide

                                                                         Photo by Tanja Lippert Photography via Bridal Guide

These studio fragments selected for their corresponding colours look just like the bits of rock left at the bottom of a sweetie jar! 

These studio fragments selected for their corresponding colours look just like the bits of rock left at the bottom of a sweetie jar! 

To stand against the black Natalie wanted something in a happy, sunny, summery yellow, and we added flecks of colour in hand picked shades that would also highlight the floral details in the fabric.

confetti hand.png

Scattering confetti in celebration!

The finished ring, the coloured and metallic fragments appear like scattered confetti!

confetti sky.jpg
yellow contemporary jewellery resin bright colour hewn ring jade mellor art piece.JPG

If you would like more information on having your own special ring made, get in touch! I'll be happy to answer your questions!  :)

You can email me at info@jademellor.com

Life's a Beach

I was recently swimming in this gorgeous Grecian sea, overlooked by the beautiful monument of The Kalithea Springs. The beach here is amazing, formed from volcanic stone making inlets and rock pools to explore and laze in. 

Fancy a dip?

Fancy a dip?

Here is a new necklace I've created from volcanic stones I've gathered as a little tribute to the beauty of the beach. 

Sunbathing, in a lunar landscape...

Sunbathing, in a lunar landscape...

This unique, summery piece has just been added to the shop, you can check it out here!

If you have your own finds you would like working into your own original piece email me at info@jademellor.com and have a chat!

One off Volcanic Pebble Necklace made by Jade Mellor, details here.

Society of Island Universes

Society of Island Universes, Produced by Lisa Denyer and Michael Thorp.

Featuring work by Holly Rowan Hesson, Jo McGonigal, Lisa Denyer, Sarah McNulty, Willow Rowlands.

Holly Rowan Hesson  Spark , 2014 Acetate and glass

Holly Rowan Hesson Spark, 2014 Acetate and glass

I was so glad I made it to the preview of this exhibition last night. Produced by Lisa Denyer and Michael Thorp, Lisa was able to give me a mini-tour of the exhibition explaining how the pieces had been installed and how the space had been a big influence on the work.

The artists had use of the space for a couple of weeks beforehand,  so it became more like a residency with much of the work being influenced by being created in, or specifically for the venue. 

Holly Rowan Hesson's  Riot   2014 Projects directly onto the bare grey walls.

Holly Rowan Hesson's Riot  2014 Projects directly onto the bare grey walls.

They used aspects of the architecture to their full advantage. Paintings by Lisa Denyer and Sarah McNulty were perfectly paired with breeze-block walls with left over drill holes and daubed on marks from the raw construction. This was much more interesting than a completely sterile blank space, where any object can hold your attention due to the absence of other stimulus. This made the exhibition feel like one whole installation. 

Lisa Denyer,  Blue Gem,  2014 Acrylic and gloss spray on found plywood 

Lisa Denyer, Blue Gem, 2014 Acrylic and gloss spray on found plywood 

"The exhibition brings together practices which demonstrate a strong interest in materiality, each piece of work provoking the viewer to examine and consider their immediate environment." Society of Island Universes, exhibition information 2014

Sarah McNulty  Right Off , 2014 Gouache on Canvas

Sarah McNulty Right Off, 2014 Gouache on Canvas

I enjoyed seeing this style of abstract show, for this kind of work has a home in this landscape. These artists often work everyday in places like this, creating studios in old industrial spaces as an affordable workspace in a city centre rather than pristine, pre-packaged office spaces advertised to the businessman. Life isn't perfect, art isn't perfect but it's all about interacting with the space around you and seeing it's potential. The exhibition then invites us to find a dynamic between them.

Black acetate part of Jo McGonigal's Painting 1. Piece on wall is Sarah McNulty's Writher (El) 2014

Black acetate part of Jo McGonigal's Painting 1. Piece on wall is Sarah McNulty's Writher (El) 2014

Much of the work here had to form in this space as it is a way the artists has found a way to connect to this environment. Jo McGonigal dramatically drapes black acetate from a giant pipe overhead, showing us the materials properties. Sarah McNulty's Writher breaks down a painting into layers. Appearing to be painted directly on the wall it is an assemblage of printed acetate looming behind taut fabric.  Rather than politely ignoring a structural pillar Holly Rowan Hesson has bound it with scrolls of colour. These rolled photo-prints are so abstracted they appear like chromatography papers, a science experiment literally breaking down a painting into measures of colour.

Holly Rowan Hesson,  Bubbling Under, 2014  Tracing paper, rubber bands

Holly Rowan Hesson, Bubbling Under, 2014 Tracing paper, rubber bands

 

Making up part of Painting I  this piece of carpet was found by the artist Jo McGonigal in a charity shop. Soaked in the stench of tobacco from it's last  home with a heavy smoker, you can really imagine the cumbersome weight  increased by the layers of sickly pink gloss she has coated it with, painted in-situ. 

Jo McGonnigal Painting 1 2014

Jo McGonnigal Painting 1 2014

The sticky looking gloss has helped set it into the slumping form and the fleshy tone also gives the fabric folds a slightly gruesome edge. Nestled nearby is another painted object, Orange and Purple painted stone by Lisa Denyer 2014. 

The pink painted carpet forms part of Jo mcGonigal's painting. Lisa Denyer's  Orange and Purple painted stone  2014 rests discreetly against a pillar. 

The pink painted carpet forms part of Jo mcGonigal's painting. Lisa Denyer's Orange and Purple painted stone 2014 rests discreetly against a pillar. 

As Lisa had remarked on, the display of the objects at a similar height does make them look like they are having a conversation. In this part you can see stone assemblages by Lisa Denyer "chatting to" Willow Rowlands Dog Fruit 2014 watched over by Sarah McNulty's Paint II on the facing wall.

Left to right, a part of Jo McGonigal's  Painting II , Lisa Denyer   Temple  2014 Acrylic and emulsion on re configured cupboard door, Willow Rowlands  Dog Fruit  2014 Plywood and vacuum plastic, Sarah McNulty  Paint II  2014, Guache, fabric, paper. Lisa Denyer  Untitled   2014 Found brick & Omani stone, 

Left to right, a part of Jo McGonigal's Painting II, Lisa Denyer Temple 2014 Acrylic and emulsion on re configured cupboard door, Willow Rowlands Dog Fruit 2014 Plywood and vacuum plastic, Sarah McNulty Paint II 2014, Guache, fabric, paper. Lisa Denyer Untitled  2014 Found brick & Omani stone, 

Jo McGonigal  Painting II  (It is a patch of yellow and a geometric line and hence an idea) 2014 Yellow Chair, cotton, plastic, modelling clay, acetate, tape.

Jo McGonigal Painting II (It is a patch of yellow and a geometric line and hence an idea) 2014 Yellow Chair, cotton, plastic, modelling clay, acetate, tape.

Jo McGonigal Painting II adds tension to the space. An empty chair needs to be resisted to either be moved on its casters or sat upon. Nearby a ball of clay in a co-ordinating colour perches precariously on what appears to once have been a piece of corner skirting board, with a wondrous boomerang shape. 

This kind of work needs a large space like Unit 4 to have an impact and in Society of Island Universes the artists have created their own world. Only on until Sunday, and right by Piccadilly Station, if you get the chance you should really check it out to experience it for yourself!

Society of Island Universes "explores the ideology behind abstraction".

Currently showing at Unit 4C Piccadilly Place, Manchester Thursday 17th July-Sunday 20th July,  1-6pm.

 

Collaboration! Summer Selection with Natalie Stoker

Happy International Collaboration Day! Here's a photo-shoot of some choice objects for the summer season. It's to celebrate my recent collaboration with talented textiles designer Natalie Stoker. Check out her gorgeous designs in her shop here.

SUMMER SELECTION!

jade mellor blue background still life sunglasses mermaid hair cushion necklaces white bangle ring.JPG

One-of-a-kind necklaces made from natural volcanic pebbles and antique cut glass embellishments. Swimsuit not compulsory, I'd suggest thrown over a plain white shirt where it will give a bit of beachy texture to the stuffy city commute. Keep your eyes on the SHOP for when they arrive.

A polished pairing of a hand sculpted bangle and ring in metallic flecked white resin will show off even a subtle summer glow. Finish off with your fave shades and a lick of ice-cream. (I recommend Ginger's Comfort Emporium's "White Chocolate and Pink Peppercorn"...).

The print for these scrumptiously soft cushions has been created by Natalie using photographs taken in my studio of the processes during making my objects. You can read more about the inspiration behind this collab in the new shop here.

Happy Collaboration Day! Hope you all get to spend it working on something fun with friends and family, (even if it's as simple as peeling the spuds for a nice meal together).

"Let's collaborate... You bring the G...I'll bring the T!" Wahoooo :) 

Hello (Stripy) Sunshine

Here's Heather wearing my stripy black facet chain/textiles necklace, she loves stripes (almost) as much as she loves yellow.

Here's Heather wearing my stripy black facet chain/textiles necklace, she loves stripes (almost) as much as she loves yellow.

Here's a better look at the ring in a recent shoot with another new piece, the Fragments bangle pictured with a bright little minaudiere.

You can read about the inspiration behind it here.

Hello Stripy Sunshine! :)

 

The studio was visited by this little ray of sunshine today! My dear friend and glorious fashion designer Heather!

 

She'd heard I'd made a new ring in her favourite colour-YELLOW featuring a giant gleaming Swarovski crystal so she popped by to try it on, (and a couple of other pieces) while we had a catch up.

Yellow & white Swarovski crystal Hewn ring & Fragments bangle

Yellow & white Swarovski crystal Hewn ring & Fragments bangle

 
Basking in the Mancunian Ray.

Basking in the Mancunian Ray.

 
I asked Heather where this supercute pinafore was from, it had comfy elastic straps at the back and looked great dressed down with her bright little T. It was Monki's flagship store in Stockholme. I hope there's a similar one available in the u.k!

I asked Heather where this supercute pinafore was from, it had comfy elastic straps at the back and looked great dressed down with her bright little T. It was Monki's flagship store in Stockholme. I hope there's a similar one available in the u.k!

 
 
heather bomber jacket jade mellor yellow hewn ring.JPG
 

Looks like this sunny creation might have found a new home...let's hope the weather stays bright for another fun day in the studio tomorrow!

Art in the Making. Ryan Gander at Manchester Art Gallery

Artworks that look like palettes and palettes that are spoons...Ryan Gander's exhibition at Manchester gallery has got me thinking about what art might be. 

The palette of French Romantic painter Eugène Delacroix 

The palette of French Romantic painter Eugène Delacroix 

 

Definition of a palette

 

"A palette /ˈpælɨt/, in the original sense of the word, is a rigid, flat surface on which a painter arranges and mixes paints. A palette is usually made of woodplasticceramic, or other hard, inert, nonporous material, and can vary greatly in size and shape. The most commonly known type of painter's palette is made of a thin wood board designed to be held in the artist's hand and rest on the artist's arm. Watercolor palettes are generally made of plastic or porcelain with rectangular or wheel format with built in wells and mixing areas for colors."

ryan gander palette wall manchester museum.jpg

Here's a snap I took at Thursday's buzzing preview of Ryan Gander's exhibition, "Make Every Show Like It's Your Last" at Manchester Art Gallery. My favourite part of the exhibition was this wall of colourful discs. Instead of showing the paintings behind them, these are the palettes he was using for each one. It is accompanied by a laminated diagram with fantastically detailed descriptions of the people in the phantom portraits that co-ordinate with each paint splashed platters.

"I paint myself every day but I don't show the portraits, I only show the palette. I'd have to kill you if you saw the portrait as you would know how bad a painter I am'. It is a discipline for him, as he admits he is "not a massive fan of painting", but this is conceptual work. Gander says it is "nice to have missing bits as it allows the viewer to imagine their own painting".

Gander in the studio with the Independent 2012

The collection of palettes is a wonderful sight, I enjoyed picking out my favourites from the colour combinations and abstract formations.  You can match up the palette to the description of the painting or enjoy them as they are, using your imagination to interpret them however you like. Some reminded me of petri dishes with colourful moulds and germs thriving happily. Others could be a blurred dinner plate, "On Today's menu a miscellaneous fillet and a smudge of peas".

Gander said about his approach, "You can choose to engage or not. By leaving blanks there is room for you. If I hand it to you on a silver platter you won't like it" Or maybe on a silver spoon?

I use these spoons to mix my pigments. Rather than washing off the material, by letting them harden I can then use them as colour samples, and also get the satisfaction of smashing of the solidified colour for future use.  These reminders of my past makes are my version of a palette.

This amazing formation was gifted to me by fellow Third Floor studio artist Olivia Pilling after I fell in love with these synthetic stalagmites in her workspace.

Pilling's palette started out as an old dinner plate. The shapes made by the accumulations of materials which have formed whilst she skilfully works on her paintings are quite extraordinary. In creating her expressions on canvas she has simultaneously brought a unique 3D sculpture into existence. Even though the creation of this work was secondary it could sit equal to her meticulous and thoughtful paintings as one wouldn't exist without the other, made through the colours she has chosen and mixed with her own eye and hand.

The palettes pictured below are from some of the world's most famous painters. As well as being important artefacts from their connection to the artists, they are beautiful, expressive objects in their own right.

A palette from Paul Gauguin

A palette from Paul Gauguin

Vincent Van Gogh's smudgy strokes

Vincent Van Gogh's smudgy strokes

My favourite of these is this palette of Georges Seurat, conjouring up an image of conspiring figures wrapped in colourful cloaks.

My favourite of these is this palette of Georges Seurat, conjouring up an image of conspiring figures wrapped in colourful cloaks.

                                           Hand shaping my pieces has left patterns of residue on the textured emery paper.

                                           Hand shaping my pieces has left patterns of residue on the textured emery paper.

I am really interested in the outcomes of working practices. Hands on methods of making often lead to other interesting outcomes, either forming a by-product or through observing sparking further ideas, feeding the creative process. When using wet & dry emery paper to shape my work it leaves beautiful patterns on the surface like the one above. In a strange way they are a sort of canvas, the strokes of colour made by the pieces marking the surface. It has been painted by jewellery.

These cushions using images captured in the making process are a collaboration with textile designer Natalie Stoker. They made their début in the Soho showroom, reminding me of aerial photographs of deserts and seas, or the surface of a distant planet. A limited edition will be available to pre-order for £45 each, if you would like more information email me at info@jademellor.com 

Collection Bites: Designed By Nature, Made by Hand

Check out the feature from this weeks Benchpeg's Newsletter on the event I'm running on Wednesday:

"Jade Mellor is a sculptural jewellery artist based in Manchester where she has been researching at Manchester Museum.

She will be showing work there to demonstrate how important the museum collections can be for inspiration for contemporary design from the 4th June.

Jade will share a unique insight into her experimental processes and unique designs which have graced the pages of Vogue Magazine, The Contemporary Jewellery Yearbook and Swarovski Trends. To kick off a series of events she will be hosting a free ‘Show and Tell’ where she will talk about how she utilised the museum collections and the importance of having these resources for process led and conceptually driven work. This show will delve deeper than surface aesthetics where science and nature meets art and design to create something new.
 

She will also be getting some beautiful treasures out for attendees to look at.

Since studying 3D Design at Manchester School of Art, Jade has found a rich resource in the Museum’s collections, her research and discoveries shaping the pieces she makes

The purpose of the events held at the museum are to encourage others to make use of our amazing Museums and see them as somewhere for new discoveries rather than just old things!"

Date Wednesday 4th June
Time: 1.05pm – 2.00pm
Venue: Manchester Museum, Seminar Room, 3rd Floor
Book on: 0161 275 2648 
Or email: museum@manchester.ac.uk
Cost: Free.

For more information:
[w] events.manchester.ac.uk

[w] www.jademellor.com

Many thanks to Benchpeg for supporting this event, I hope it will lead to some inspiration for all of us! You can read about more news and opportunities in the jewellery world on their website here and also subscribe to their newsletter. It's a great resource for everything going on in jewellery and it's all free! 

 

I am really looking forward to hosting my Collection Bites Event at Manchester Museum this Wednesday, 4th June. I have been to see many of the previous talks (and blogged about some including which you can read about here and here) and they have included a wide range of people who work with the Museum. From curators, artists, conservators and visiting experts they provide a personal insight into the influences the museum has and the importance of the objects it holds. My own talk will be a show and tell featuring the amazing specimens that have inspired my work and the pieces it has resulted in. I want you to experience the objects which have had an impact on me for yourself and hopefully we can engage in more of a chat sharing ideas and looking at some really cool things and some of my own one-off pieces, experiments and processes.

I may also be asking you to help me create something based on one of the objects!

 

Hope you can make it!

Celebrating Modern Ruin

Following on from Tate Britain's Ruin Lust, I call this work a "Celebration of Modern ruin" . As in the Tate's recent exhibition I want to look at the positive aspects in the unravelling of our environment.

I was recently interviewed by Kerry Flint for The 405 who asked the question "Who do you see wearing your jewellery?" I said; "A person who stops to look at a tree with a perfectly round knot hole, or notices that in the partly demolished building on their street there's layers of '60s wallpaper exposed in the crumbling remains of a half wall." 

I walk past this old lamp post most days. I love the weird faded pink and I have no idea how the paint has puckered in this way, it always reminds me of a peeling silver birch tree. From the other perspective, the rock in the other picture looks like a brightly painted chunk of masonry but the colours are natural and this is a real mineral called Orpiment.

I hope that if we can look at our own modern surroundings with the same rose-tinted view we use for aged ruins and natural objects, appreciating the processes and textures for what they are we will be happier in our daily lives.

One of my latest pieces using workshop fragments

One of my latest pieces using workshop fragments

Using fragments of ruins to make something new

"The very materials which we build with retain the vulnerabilities of their natural state: In truth, all stone weathering is stone disease. No stone resists the action of atmospheric agencies indefinitely; otherwise we would have no sediments, no soil, no natural sculpture. Chemical change belongs to the beauty and liveliness of stone: it is the natural carving that records Time in immediate form within the pattern & colour of the surface."  Adrian Stokes, Stones of Rimini. 

The rock cycle doesn't end or begin but shows us how one material can form another through different processses and combinations that create the various substances in our environment.

As one breaks down into sediments it finds itself in one of these processes it eventually goes on to become whichever new type of rock that it leads to. My workshop practices mean that in making there are broken pieces and surplus material left over. I have been collecting these fragments and using them in new pieces, to emulate the sequence in nature.

Each one of my pieces I personally make by hand. Every one of these coloured flecks is the result of a piece of jewellery being created. They wouldn't exist without the previous work, each a record of the pieces before it. In the same way by using hand working processes rather than having my work manufactured by others or machines means that with each piece I gain experience. Each one a tiny fragment gained that can build into something more varied and interesting. So everything I have learned also goes into the next piece.

The Berlin Wall has been crumbling into ruin for 25 years this November. It's demolition and the end of the separation of East and West Germany is a massive celebration, a positive Modern Ruin after decades of oppression. The bright colours are the expressions of artists from over the years, and the flecks throughout are the bits of rock, minerals and detritus in the concrete. This chunk of rubble has become a treasured memento, sold as a souvenir and creating a business for entrepreneurs. (there's an interesting interview with one of the main "wall sellers" here).

I love this image of a party goer sharing a light through a hole in the wall.

For this bright yellow ring I've used granite for a rugged edge.

For this bright yellow ring I've used granite for a rugged edge.

A piece of the Berlin with a Thierry Noir painting.

A piece of the Berlin with a Thierry Noir painting.

Here's a quote from the artist Thierry Noir: "Painting on the Berlin Wall was an act of liberation. I had been living close to it for two years in April 1984, when after a while, I started feeling the need to rebel against its oppressive stature. I decided to physically react against the pressure and domination of daily life near the Berlin Wall. So I went to the back of my house at Mariannenplatz, five metres away from the wall and started painting. Living near this wall was very melancholic and after two years, I felt a little dizzy because nothing was happening in the morning, nothing was happening in the afternoon, nothing was happening in the evening or at night. So initially painting on the wall was a way for me to change my ideas and then it became a full time job!" Taken from his interview in Oyster Magazine, read it all here.

A collection of pieces made using workshop fragments, inspired by textures in our surroundings combining natural and urban. 

Here's a close up of some of the textures.

Here's a close up of some of the textures.

Here's a quote from the artist Thierry Noir who risked his life painting the Berlin wall before it fell:

"Between the LACMA (The Museum of Modern Art in L.A.) and the Variety Tower, there are ten pieces of the Berlin Wall on display. In the afternoon, during lunch break you can see people having their lunch in front of the pieces of the Berlin Wall. This shows the Californian people that not every wall stays up forever and I just loved being able to observe how the new generation was staring at the remains of past history."

Ruin Lust: Tate Britain

Ruin Lust "An ideal of beauty that is alluring exactly because of it's flaws & failures."

One of my granite and resin Hewn rings, inspired by the crumbling textures of ageing and weathering in our surroundings.

One of my granite and resin Hewn rings, inspired by the crumbling textures of ageing and weathering in our surroundings.

Ruin Lust (from the German concept of appreciating ruins - Ruinelust) is the exhibition at Tate Britain which finished this time last week. Now that it is over (as anything must end to become a good ruin) I will collect the fragments which I left with and assemble them here on my blog.

 

I was very excited to visit this exhibition as this idea of discovering partial remains of a bigger thing and capturing the textures of erosion have long been a big part of my work. But knowing me, I am a curious beast and the look of something has never been enough. I always want to find out the why and how, and these not only form the concepts behind my work but also my experimental processes. I was not disappointed by Ruin Lust, there was a great variety and depth on this cultural phenomenon to explore.

The main idea I'd like to take away from the exhibition is that Ruins can be seen as a positive thing.

 

Ruins as a Memorial

"Sublime warnings of the past" Ruin Lust, 2014

"We were intrigued by the World War II bunkers that were being drawn back into the water," Jane says. "It was like something from an ancient civilization, but darker."

"We were intrigued by the World War II bunkers that were being drawn back into the water," Jane says. "It was like something from an ancient civilization, but darker."

 

Louise and Jane WIlson's work had a big impact on me. At first glance these angular forms could be contemporary sculptures, but they are the remains of Nazi bunkers in Normandy. These clean and crisp images with no discernible date let the stark forms stand out without complication. They could be from any time or place but in learning their origin presents them as symbol of the end of a devastating chapter in History with many things to learn from. "The ruin may remind us of a glorious past now lying in pieces or point to the future collapse of our present culture." Ruin Lust, 2014

 

 

 

Reinventing the Ruin

"Find new uses for ruins and new dreams among the rubble" from Ruin Lust, Tate Britain 2014

David B McFall, Bull Calf 1942

David B McFall, Bull Calf 1942

I was charmed by this sculpture by David B McFall. Following the Wilson's ruined bunkers this is a remnant from Great Britain's experience of the Second World War.The Portland stone used for this piece was once a part of a London Bank, one of the buildings destroyed in the bombing of Southwark. You can see the original carvings of the 19th Century swags and flowers from its architectural past. This wonderful re-use of debris and the subject of a young Bull Calf is a symbol of new hope and seeing the potential to grow strong and rebuild.

You can see why it was chosen for the Royal Academy Summer exhibition in 1942, even when McFall was still a student.

 

 

Engraved by J Greig, from a sketch by L Francia, for Excursions through Norfolk

Engraved by J Greig, from a sketch by L Francia, for Excursions through Norfolk

"The ruin traffics with more than one time frame: it arrives from the past, but incomplete; it may well survive us."  Ruin Lust 2014

Another example of a ruin reused which not part of the exhibition is this unusual sight of St. Benet's Abbey. The ruined abbey is situated on the River Bure within The Broads in Norfolk England. Demolished from the dissolution the gatehouse remained, which is now a grade I listed building. In the second half of the eighteenth century, a farmer built a windmill inside the abbey ruins, (adapted even further to make a wind pump later on),  The windmill is now itself a grade II listed building, creating a ruin within a ruin.


Ruins to Incite 

I enjoy the fact that a ruin leaves space for your imagination. The journey it has gone through to get to that point had affected it and it is up to us to use our minds to investigate, elaborate and furnish the remaining bones. This is what engages us with it and makes our experience a personal discovery rather than being presented with a perfect, pristine place or object, which could literally be a brick wall to creative ideas.

Paul Nash, Steps in a field  near Swanage 1935

Paul Nash, Steps in a field  near Swanage 1935

These concrete steps look out of place in this surreal image by Paul Nash. Without trying to envisage the lost structure of the demolished building they can be enjoyed as a curious sight in their own right. Like an Escher drawing these impossible stairs let us create an invisible doorway wondering where or when it might lead to, a portal to another time or dimension.

 

In my next blog post I will be presenting my response to this exhibition and some of my latest work, looking at these ideas and a few more...