Tuesday, November 19, 2013

My Pompeii

My Pompeii, is a series of earrings and one ring.
All are in sterling silver. Some pieces have yellow gold plate, some are oxidised. One pair of earrings has 18ct yellow gold wires.
All can be made to order in different metals.
There are a series of stud earrings which go with this work and should be finished by the end of the week.

Earrings 2
Sterling silver with yellow gold plate.

Earrings 1.
Sterling silver with yellow gold plate.

Earrings 3
Sterling silver with yellow gold plate.

Earrings 5
Sterling silver, 18ct yellow gold.

The oxidised pair of hoop earrings are called Earrings 4

Sterling silver, oxidised; yellow gold plate.

I have been making jewellery for a while now.
Lately people have been suggesting to me that I simplify my work and mass produce certain pieces, which makes sense from an economic perspective, as often what I do is labour intensive and is often not economically viable. 
The conundrum of hand made work. 
Over 15 years or so of making I keep coming back to this. 
A decision I made when I first started making jewellery was to celebrate the hand made nature of working, which is why I leave file marks, and prefer a more organic texture. 
A machine can beautifully make an accurate/symmetrical piece, and I will leave that to the machines.
I also wanted to ensure, that when someone buys a piece that I have made, that I actually made it myself. Not only that, that it was my own design. 
After all this time, this is the cornerstone of my practice. 
It is just me making these pieces, not anyone else. My workshop consists of me and my dog Milly. 
This is something people often forget when they buy things, and when they ask you to drop your prices. Factory work allows for factory prices and a singular maker has different over heads.
I write all this as I came to the conclusion that as long as Katherine Bowman jewellery continues, Katherine Bowman will be making the work and I will leave mass production up to people who excel at this.
I recently read an interview with Amy Renshaw, a jeweller who is a dear friend of mine and who I have a great deal of respect for, and in answer to this question:

What do you love most about being a jeweller?

Amy says:

Making. Working quietly on a piece. It can be a very peaceful process and one that can’t be hurried. I love working with my hands and watching a piece as it transforms from the initial design, through the construction, and then into the finished piece. It is also very rewarding seeing a piece being worn and loved by someone else, especially when that pieces represents a significant event or celebration.

This is from the Pieces of Eight blog.

I feel exactly the same way. 

So, all these words lead me to My Pompeii, and Love Tokens
I want to keep things interesting for myself. So I have decided to create small new bodies of work that inspire me and make me want to keep making. That is why I used My.
My Pompeii is a fabrication of an imagined historical jewellery group. It references what I am interested in and what I look at when I research jewellery.

This new body of work is available at e.g.etal.