Artwork Statement: This vase was inspired by research into the concept of the abject—the feeling when one is simultaneously repulsed by, and yet also attracted to something. There are many things, especially in nature, that occupy this strange space between the disgusting and the tantalizing. How interesting it is that a similar formal element can be beauteous (a delicate tendril of hair, the creeping vines of a flower) or repellant (a sea creature’s tentacles, the horrible tongue of a science fiction monster). I am interested in these strange spaces in our psyche where seemingly oppositional emotions enmesh. In creating this piece I played with this idea of similarity and difference, attraction and repulsion, taking advantage of the elastic possibilities of delicate copper tubing to create forms evocative of both. My visual inspirations came from Art Nouveau designs, in particular the signature ‘whiplash’ curves of Victor Horta, and also from the tentacled eldritch creatures of H.P. Lovecraft such as Cthulhu. The resulting form is both foreboding and beautiful, conjuring images of delicate flowers and terrible creatures of the deep. The vase is created from a collection of seven hand-formed and bent spiculums, attached to a hydraulic pressed base.
Artist Statement: As a craftsperson, I am interested in the power of craft in supporting our spiritual wellbeing; craft can be fundamental in our daily routines, and craftsmanship makes life feel beautiful. Jewellery in particular is intimately engaged with our inner selves, as it occupies a unique intersection between ritual items and everyday objects. My work explores the spiritual power of jewellery, and how it can bring a sense of magic and ritual into our lives. Conceptually, my work takes shape around research into philosophy, psychoanalysis, art history, and theology. An affinity for history shapes my work physically as well, with a focus on traditional materials and techniques as a means of energetic connection to a long lineage of ancient jewellery production. In the tradition of the Symbolists, I believe that art should give you something that feels powerfully and intimately connected to the mysterious undercurrents of life. I explore this space with jewellery, leveraging its symbolic weight in our lives to engage a deeper emotional sensation. Precious metals and gemstones have captured the human imagination for thousands of years, and thus figure prominently in my pieces. My work argues that spiritual and material joy can be one and the same.