Sunday, 15 January 2012

Under That Cloud - Jewellery in Manchester's Art Gallery

Under that cloud was an exhibition of jewellery by 18 international artists produced in response to their experience of being stranded together in Mexico City in April 2010 under the Icelandic volcanic ash cloud.

Their enforced stay became an exciting opportunity to make new work inspired by their impressions of Mexico – the vibrant colours, the traffic chaos, the architecture, the ancient heritage, the music and the people.

This was one of my favourite pieces. It was created from wires which were found along the streets of Mexico and transformed into wearable pieces of jewellery. Totally impractical, but what a statement piece of jewellery!

This 5 set necklace was created using very strict techniques. The first piece was created using 2 finger tips, the next 4 finger tips and so. Each piece was slightly bigger than the last but all are to be worn together.

This piece was quite futuristic. It was made from gold and suspended in air. The wearer wears the bracelet quite high on the arm and ties the lace around (or so i imagined)

These bracelets were really quirky. Each one was threaded by hand by the artist.

These pieces excited the eco side of my brain. They were made from plastic found in Mexico, off cuts and scraps stern across the street. I loved the idea of up-cycling material which would have remained on the streets, and turning it into wearable pieces of jewellery.

These brooches were really cute. Loved the colours and they are totally SS12! I would have had one in every colour but I was too afraid to ask the price!

This pieces was another one of my favourites. It was made from copper and had ruby and sapphire gem stones suspended within the copper. I could only imagine what this piece will look like in time if it gets left outside.

Totally statement jewellery, but maybe a little too in your face for my liking. Although the detailing on the plane was fantastic and really inspiring for me.

I have left this one for last. It was a gold ring, encased in a spanish novel. Subtly placed on a page in the book with powerful text.

I think it's really important for me as a designer/buyer to keep up to date with what is happening in todays jewellery market. These pieces were very unique, and I think a little too "out there" for the brand but I have had some amazing ideas from today which I plan to take forward into the AW12 collection.

I loved how free the pieces were, and some of the more unusual materials which were used - especially the copper brooch. Quite a few of the pieces were gold plated with the odd gemstone concealed within. As for a good day out on a Sunday, today has been amazing and I recommend everyone in our field to take a trip to the gallery. Whats even better, is that is it free!

Photographs from today were from the brands photographer, Steven. To view the full collection, just go HERE.

Hope you have all had as much fun as we have today!

Love, Xander & Steven.

x x x

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