Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Q & A with jewellery designer Christine Davies

This years call for artists and makers for SAT 2012 was extended far further than for previous event.  Christine, based in Birmingham, answered that call and is looking forward to her first 'solo show' at Saltaire.

Christine Davies Jewellery will be exhibiting in the grand surroundings of the Victoria Hall as part of the Makers Fair.

Tell us about the work you do and the types of materials you use.

My work is as a result of an exploration into the skeletal and linear structures that surround me in Birmingham's urban environment, the scaffolding, the gates and the grids that normally go unnoticed. I translate the geometry and interplay of lines when looking at these structures into my work. I embrace the ability of simple lines to create beautiful compositions, patterns and shapes.

Where do you produce your work? Does your working environment form part of the
inspiration for your art?
I am still in my first year of setting up my company Christine Davies Jewellery. I hand make each piece in my shared studio in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter. The studio is a Birmingham City Council and European regional development funded workshop. It means that I not only get a free bench space for a year but they also provide us with business advice and mentorship. It is a great environment to work in; with 20 other jewellery designer makers it is a melting pot of ideas, creativity and most of all, support.

How did you get started?
I am a traditionally trained jeweller and silversmith, I did my apprenticeship in Dublin and then moved to Birmingham to do a BA in Jewellery and silversmithing in the jewellery school based appropriately in the amazing Jewellery Quarter. The Quarter is renowned and is a haven of all things jewellery, weather its for specialist tools, materials or master crafts- (wo)-men, as a jeweller I am spoilt and it is the perfect setting to launch my career.

What work will you be exhibiting at the Saltaire Arts Trail?

I have two collections of work that I will be showing at Saltaire, my circular Radial range and my Criss Cross range. I might also have some of my one off pieces of jewellery, pieces I make either for special exhibition commission’s or ones I make sometimes just for the fun of expression, weather it’s a ring with a beautiful unique stone or a large complicated brooch design.

Where else can we see and buy your work?
I have a busy year ahead of me, I’m going to be at stand 300 at the British craft trade fair in Harrogate in April, after Saltaire I will be exhibiting in treasure in London and I have just been accepted into Desire Jewellery fair in Winchester as well.

I currently have work in Dublin’s project 51 and Birmingham’s Artful Expressions. I also have a website with an on-line shop that is constantly being updated with new pieces and news.

What was it about the Saltaire Arts Trail that made you want to apply to exhibit?
I wanted to exhibit at Saltaire because it felt like one of the most accessible and welcoming craft fairs, it will be my first solo exhibition and so far the way it is run and how well I have been kept informed and updated has meant I feel really excited and positive about it rather than nervous. The quality and standard of design, of the other exhibitors work was also a major factor and I’m so flattered to be exhibiting beside them.

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