Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Bijoux Commémorative

Much time has passed since my last big jewelery happening. Lots of things going on, and lots of ideas running in many directions.
Since the start of 2009, I've been thinking of how to bring more great jewelery to my part of the Pacific. So this is it...
a group exposition on the theme of....
Now this title or theme is to be taken in a very large sense. Commemorate anything, personal, impersonal, local, international, a historical event, real or imaginary, the past or the future.
And jewelery is a big word also to be taken in any way imaginable.
Play with these words, and create. In any material imaginable. I will probably be the only jeweler-metal smith involved, but many talented, creative people have already confirmed their spot in this event.
New Caledonia is a great place for artists. There is a lot of freedom to organize whatever you want. So, since my odd-ball addiction to amazing jewelery, wearable or not, commercial-more or less, or not at all, has not gone away after all these years, I'm trying to spread the word and the joy of jewelery.
The date for all this is April 2010. The place is a wonderful open minded and progressive gallery in downtown Nouméa called 11 et demi. (eleven and one half)
There is still space open for any person who feels inspired by this call. Please contact me.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

workshop at the Festival des Femmes Funk

The Festival is over. My stand and jewelery put away until the next sale, which will be in the end of November. I'm glad it's all over because I have to put in very long hours, and everyone is asleep when I get home, but, that also means that my jewels are all packed up and no one can ooh and ah over them. I love the four days of talking about jewelery, about what inspires me, how I learned, and discovering what inspires other people. I did a lot of talking about how silver jewelery is made and how I hope to share this information with others. It looks like I've got a few serious students lined up. I tried to explain to people that learning to work in silver demands a certain amount of commitment and a lot of frustration. I don't think most people understand what goes into the creative process, and the number of years involved in perfecting and developing new techniques, in silversmithing or any craft.
I did run two small workshops during the festival. My girls were making so much noise, luckily the music stages were far away. I got a lot of laughs from boys when they saw the world's smallest anvil and hammer. There was some frustration, some starting over but most of the girls walked out of my stand with their new earrings dangling from their ears and the others were packed away in little boxes to offer as gifts to their daughters. Thank you to La Petite Chouet for her help, company, and creativity. It was great fun!
here are some pixs from the stand and the workshop.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

getting ready

getting ready! All new displays and deco, and of course I get to keep company with the very clever and crafty La Petite Chouet. We are sharing the stand. Feeling good that all is in order and ready to go.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

River Rocks

I've been on a real "out with the old and in with the new kick". Lots of new work, and new displays for the upcoming Festival des Femmes Funk (funky women's music festival), October 2,3,4, and 5th. The only real festival in NC, where I can show and sell my work. I love being out in the open and talking jewelery non-stop for four days. I even do a small hands-on workshop. Great fun!

Here are some new old rock pieces that will be staying around.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Judge Not

In June I participated in the group exhibition
Métissons- nous, mais tissons nos differences
translation- Let's all mix together, but let's weave together our differences.
36 artists united against discrimination, be it towards people of mixed racial origins or sexual orientations. The only rule was to work with another artist(s), to share or ideas, techniques, and experiences. My collaborator was Laurence Lagabrielle, a Caledonian artist who draws, paints, illustrates books, and works with mixed media. Our idea was to evoke intolerance of "other" and his or her differences, be it physical, sexual, cultural. This other who sometimes unveils his or her strengths and power, or on the contrary, hides his pain and wounds. Often the walls put up between people serve only to self-protect from ones own weakness and fear.
Technically this was a first for me. I was using a new and very powerful torch and was having trouble controlling all the heat. Secondly, enamelling was and still is new to me, and I was discovering it's possibilities and limitations. Lastly, the fabric part was fun. My mother had shown me once how to make a chenille bedspread. I put that to use for the "skin".
This exhibition was on view in the Bernheim Library in Noumea, and will travel to the Northern Province and the Loyalty Islands later this year.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Pacific Ornaments

Pacific Ornaments was a joint exhibition of two artists; myself, Kristine Bourcier and Laurence Lagabrielle. The title gives some ideas about our motivation. We looked to body adornment in Pacific Cultures as inspiration. We also used the word pacific in the sense of non- violent, body protection.
For my part in this exposition, inspiration came from the island of Hawaii. I had recently discovered the Lei of Hawaii; not only the colorful, floral garlands, but also the leaf lei, and the more permanent lei of shell, bone, feather, seeds... Leis are very important in Hawaiian culture. they are prized "jewels" offered and worn at important family or civic occasions, as well to simply brighten the routine of daily life. The fragility of this delicate art form gives real importance to the moment of exchange between the giver and the wearer.
I wanted to make a lei, a maile lei, out of silver. To give my lei a sense of lightness and fragility, I used paper. After my first experiments with paper, glue, and metal, I was hooked. I've since done leaves, flowers, vegetables, and colorful rocks.
I am an artist-crafts person and have a firm belief in the importance of the handmade, whatever it might be, jewelry, clothing, house wares, food,... and especially gifts. Gift giving, for me, is more about the giving and exchanging of love and affection, rather than acquiring the latest fashionable consumer item.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

C'est pas du luxe

In 2008 I organized, with the help of many talented people, the first contemporary art jewelery exhibition in New Caledonia. The title of the show was "C'est pas du luxe" and it took place at a great little gallery called Onze et Demi. The phrase "c'est pas du luxe" has two meanings. Literally it means - it is not a luxury. The second meaning is a play on words which means rather, it's a necessity. Example: C'est pas du luxe to buy new shoes if your old ones have holes in them. We used this term in two ways, first of all referencing the fact that in our jewelery exhibition many unconventional and non-precious materials where used, and secondly to put forward the idea that it was fine time that New Caledonia started thinking about contemporary art jewelery. We formed a group of eight artists from completely different backgrounds.

posted are a few examples of the work I did for this exhibition

Japanese river rocks and variations of...

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Petroglyphes in the Pacific

Petroglyphes are stone carvings found all over the Pacific. In New Caledonia there are more than 350 sites, with more than 6000 motifs. The big island of New Caledonia is the island in the South West Pacific with the greatest number of carvings. The motifs are rather abstract, and sometimes styles are specific to certain sites. There is no instruction book or dictionary available to interpret them. Could they be like earth tattoos, to help remember family lines, important events, or social grades of certain tribes? Or maybe maps to define the separations between regions? These carvings are an extraordinary richness, hidden in the bushes, behind trees, in the hills all around New Caledonia, a gift from the past.
While living in the central area of NC, I discovered the incredible petroglyphes in the Montfaoué area. Overwhelmed by their beauty and mystery, I was inspired to make these silver pendants.