Ceramics and Clay All Grown Up As Jewelry Medium
There have been some prominent exhibits and collections around the country highlighting the work of ceramics artists in jewelry. Some of it is high-fired clay, some raku, some polymer clay and some metal clay. It’s always very exciting to see how artists can achieve good jewelry design goals with new materials or new applications of materials.
One of the most prominent exhibits was called Wearable-Ceramics, at Pewabic Pottery, in Detroit, Michigan.
From their promotional materials:
Wearable Ceramics: Jewelry from International Artists is a collaboration between Linda Ross Contemporary: Art + Projects and Tara Robinson, Curator of Ceramics, Pewabic Pottery. It brings together some of the finest established and emerging artists who are staking out new territories of design, transforming clay into jewelry often combined with found objects and other non-traditional materials. The show features a collection of intriguing and innovative brooches, necklaces, earrings and rings which demonstrate the bridge between ceramics and functional objects for the body; form and material. The tactile nature of ceramics creates a particularly visual language when translated into functional objects to wear – clay is fragile, yet direct contact with the body provides a personal resting place that is warm, protective and very intimate.
Sixteen established and emerging artists representing six countries are participating in the exhibition. The new generation of Dutch designers will be well represented in the show. True to their country’s reputation for producing outstanding craftsmen, they bring a unique international overview of avant-garde jewelry design to the mix. Likewise, artists from the U.S., Spain, Taiwan, Germany and Australia are all masters at technique and highly innovative makers who are staking out new territories of experimentation.
Some works of artists featured:
Pilar Cotter Nunez
Rian de Jong
Ford & Forlano
Another exhibit, running through september 2011, is this new ceramics jewelry show at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York City.
Some of the works on display here:
Ceramics always have great eye-appeal. They are very alluring. They can have stark colors, or unusual colorations and color blendings. They can be almost unnervingly smooth, or have many different kinds of textures — all drawing the viewer to want to touch. Ceramics can be modelled or cast, and are very versatile.
It is fascinating to see the many ways ceramics are used in jewelry. In some cases, they are used to mimic traditional jewelry materials and forms. In other cases, they are a material cast against type.
In the thousands of years between Egyptian faience and today, ceramics, for the most part, have not played a major role in jewelry. People found the material too close to the earth, too humble to use to convey wealth and elegance. But this is changing.
This online Gallery showcases sculptural jewelry by Canadian artist Erika Ferrarin. Some of her pieces: