31 May 2010
27 May 2010
This is a detail of a blackened silver brooch I made a while back. Its all hand fabricated, rather than a cast burn-out of a real plant... I snipped the buds out of really thin sheet with little scissors and then scored texture on them with a pin. They are about 5 to 8mm across. Can you see the fine, grainy texture in the stems and so on? ( click to enlarge) This is done by heating up the silver 'til the surface is just melting- flashing- then at that exact moment, sprinkling on silver dust! The dust fuses to the momentarily molten surface! Yikes! ( its tricky- you might melt the whole lot, the sheet is ≈0.1 mm thick dude!) ( just incase you thought I wasnt much good)
25 May 2010
20 May 2010
17 May 2010
Last week Mari died after a long struggle with cancer.
She has been a very significant figure in my life, both as a gallery director, and as a maker whom I admired, so it is with a pained heart that I try to express these things. My sympathy goes out to all who knew her.
For those unfamiliar, these are some of her works; very intuitive arrangements of planes- and she had a gifted sense of the 'space between' - I wish I had my own photos of these works- we all have a different eye, and there is plenty more to see amidst the gaps and edges of Mari's work.
Recalling how I met Mari...
During my 2nd year of university studies in Gold and Silversmithing, I began to feel guilty about devoting myself to something that wasnt... I dont know, saving the world? So, I quit.
Strangely, given that I had just quit- Mari saw my work in the end-of-year student exhibition, and invited me to visit her gallery and show her some more of my work.
I was 19 years old- or maybe just barely 20.
I vividly remember walking to this appointment, up Crossley St, with very sweaty palms, clutching a wooden box of my trinkets.
Though small, Gallery Funaki is very prestigious in this genre, representing internationally acclaimed makers like Otto Künzli and Karl Fritsch.
Sitting at the back of the single-roomed gallery, beautiful and elegantly dressed (as always), was Mari. Expecting rejection, I laid out my jewellery for her consideration. Some of it she liked, some not...
And so it has been for the last 10 or so years.
When she would assess any of my new work, she would be straight up with me, rejecting anything that she wasn't sure of.
"mmm, I dont know...what do you think?"
or just straight out -" I do not understand this one."
I was thinking that she was just like that with me- but other artists have told me the same story.
This is what kept the calibre of her gallery so high.
To be honest, I was afraid of disappointing her, which would freeze me up completely at times- and so just not make much jewellery- no doubt to her actual disappointment! She was gracious about this- she must have believed in my potential.
To my great relief, I was able to thank Mari before she died, and to express to her how much of an honour it has been to be represented at her gallery- how this has dignified my work, and thereby dignified me... quite a gift, when I think about it.
I will miss having someone who was hard to impress, and whose praise was never empty platitude.
I will miss her honesty.
Mari, I will miss you, your voice stays with me. Until we meet again!
9 May 2010
One of the guerrilla Ghost Gums planted by my Grandpa ( aka The Tree Ninja) in the neighbouring park-(the follow up on an earlier post)
Alistair Knox- well yes, hardly a planted garden!; nothing but eucalyptus; very earthy modern. In Eltham? Note obligatory hand-adzed dining situation / homespun wool sweater