Hannah W. Craig Title: Coleoptera  Materials: Sterling silver, labradorite  Dimensions: 13 x 11 x 27 cm
Hannah W. Craig Title: Coleoptera  Materials: Sterling silver, labradorite  Dimensions: 13 x 11 x 27 cm
Hannah W. Craig Title: Coleoptera  Materials: Sterling silver, labradorite  Dimensions: 13 x 11 x 27 cm

Hannah W. Craig

Regular price $10,000.00
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Title: Coleoptera

Materials: Sterling silver, labradorite

Dimensions: 13 x 11 x 27 cm

Date: April 2022

Artwork Statement: This teapot was created as a celebration of the physical process of traditional silversmithing techniques, an embodiment of William Morris’ philosophy of joy in labour. I was inspired mostly by a desire to explore my favourite hollowware techniques—hand raising, spiculums (hollow tube forms), and chasing and repoussé—in a precious material. By engaging in these laborious traditional processes which are not necessarily immediately evident in the finished piece, this work also poses questions about seen and unseen labour, and the value of hidden things.

The body of this teapot was raised entirely by hand. Over the course of many months, I slowly hammered a flat sheet of silver into shape, working intuitively with the material without a concrete final form in mind. I allowed the silver to grow into the space between what it wanted to be and what I wanted it to be. The handles and spouts were also fabricated by hand from silver sheet, hammered into shape and then bent gently by hand into sumptuous curves—again a negotiation between my own desires and the physical limits of the material.

Over the past year, I fell in love with chasing and repoussé, and in the spirit of finding joy in hidden things, decided to embellish the bottom of the teapot with a chasing and repoussé scarab beetle. The “back” side is visible on the bottom of the teapot, but the full beauty and detail of this intricate work can only be accessed by peering within the vessel itself. I was often asked: “Why put so much work into something that no one will see properly?” The answer is really the only statement I believe this piece needs: I did it because the work brought me immense joy. To see metal move in such a way under the power of your hands is true magic. Silversmithing is magic. This teapot is magic. Life can be magic if you look out for it. Take a moment to lie in the grass and look real up-close at bugs sometimes. It’s important.

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