14 Pittsburgh area metalsmiths show their diverse work.
This online exhibition provides an excerpt of the show currently on view at Luke & Eloy Gallery through March 20, 2010.
“The memory of southland in China-An Explanation of Yixi Tea pot”, 2009
H 106mmX W60mm X L248mm
H2 1/8'' x W2 3/8'' x L9 3/4",
Sterling Silver, Padauk,
My intention is to make a series of works that is a fusion of my Chinese aesthetic with an expressiveness that reflects my brief experience in the United States.
Throughout these pieces, I find a way to express my feelings when I am balancing and adapting to cultural differences, relationships and family. I instill my pieces with meanings of balance, change and escape. My mission is to achieve changeable and adaptable art forms that enable escape from the rigid confines of life's existence. My art forms should enable a harmonious and fluid crossing of boundaries, and defy the limitations of definitions and descriptions.
Lindsay Huff, "Last Light", mixed media, plastics
Coming to craft after initially defining myself solely as a poet, my literary background has
helped me to understand why I am drawn to the arts and why I have a need to be a maker of things. A great teacher and friend once shared a quote with me, its original source long since forgotten but the message remaining: "I don't write to say what I mean, I write to see what I mean." There is a thrill in the intimacy of making - an intimacy in the scale of jewelry with which I primarily choose to work; an intimacy with my materials that comes from knowing how a piece of copper will bend under my hammer or how a layer of dusty enamel will begin to glow and shine like glass; an intimacy that comes from the study, practice, and repetition of slowprogressing processes. I imagine the objects I create not as static things, but like landscapes constantly shaped by the wearer or viewer’s own experiences, their own past and present tenses, their own memories being etched upon the art each time it is encountered.
Brian Ferrell, Breakfast set, Pewter Pitcher, 2 tumblers
I create sculpturally functional objects that can be held in the hand as well as objects that hold or support. My work blends asymmetrical geometry, basic shapes, and gradual shifts in composition. These pieces rely on subtlety, as lines and shapes intersect through careful transitions of form. The interplay of curves, contoured edges, and tapers creates an uncluttered composition, sculptural yet inspired by the function of the object’s purpose.
“Oil can” - copper brazed steel
Jim Bové, "Harvest Necklace", Sterling, Glass
Jim Bové attended West Chester University in Pennsylvania where he earned his B.F.A in 1993. His teacher certification and M.F.A. in Jewelry/metals was granted by Edinboro University of Pennsylvania in 1998. His work has been shown at the national and international level and is featured in several books including “500 Necklaces”, “The Art and Craft of Jewelry Making” and “500 Wedding Bands”. Prior to moving to Pennsylvania, Jim had taught at the Armory Art Center in West Palm Beach and Grand Rapids University in Michigan. In 2006 he returned from two lectures in Japan, one at the internationally renowned Hiko Mizuno Jewelry College in Tokyo. While in Japan Jim worked as an envoy for the Society of North American Goldsmiths and distributed materials to both colleges and a representative of the Japan Jewelry Designers Association. In 2007 he organized an exhibition of American metalsmiths in conjunction with Hiko Mizuno Jewelry College entitled Metalsmiths Linking: A cross-cultural exchange, which opened at Gallery YU in Tokyo. His artwork has since become part of Hiko Mizuno’s permanent collection in Tokyo, Japan. Following this successful exhibition, Jim was contacted by the Japan Jewelry Design Association (JJDA) and asked to work on their behalf in selecting 20 American metalsmiths for inclusion in JJDA’s biennial exhibition that toured five cities throughout Japan. Bové Traveled to Japan in 2008 in order to assist with the show opening in Tokyo and to deliver gallery talks in Tokyo and Osaka. Jim Bové Presently teaches at California University of Pennsylvania.
He is presently organizing and coordinating an international show of Japanese artists for the Armory Art Center in West Palm Beach, Florida for December 2009.
Jon Radermacher: "Universal Remote Control", Copper, plastic, electronics
The RTronics Products series is a series of mock technological products that explores a common assumption about how technology invariably improves the quality of life. Under the guise of cutting-edge technology, some of the products will make absurd claims while others will hint at misconceptions. Exhibited with each item will be the point-of-sale marketing information, such as features, warranty information, and cost. This series has a place in my ongoing research with art and technology and the elements involved tend to revolve around viewer accessibility, interactivity, ergonomics, and traditional design. I have always liked to use technology as a springboard in my art, whether it provides a conceptual basis or if it makes the work more interactive or accessible to the viewer.
ROY, REVELATIONS, bible, fabricated chain, brass
For twenty-five years, I have been creating sculptural metalwork inspired by architectural shapes and forms. My work consists of one-of-a-kind jewelry, mostly sculptural bracelets, and functional objects. Often, I research and sketch the concept beforehand. Each bracelet has over 100 solder connections. My architectural metalwork allows a glimpse of imaginary or real cities.
Through hinging, my architectonic bracelets become a minute skyline sculpture when displayed off the body. Sometimes I incorporate gemstones or mixed media for a spark of color. I hope my metalwork communicates beauty and inventiveness.
Adrienne Grafton, Mirror Mirror on my Wall, (Inspired by Bruce Nauman) 2009
copper, vitreous enamel, silver, mirror
Emotions and memories inspire my work as a metal artist. My most recent pieces are about conflicting feelings. I’ve found that in the cycle of life, there are both positives and negatives, such as pleasure and pain, loss and gain. I fabricate copper, silver, and bronze to create jewelry about this cycle. I further embellish each piece with gemstones, gold, enamel, pearls and sometimes epoxy resin. Rough textures and sharp edges are added to convey conflicting emotions.
Sean Macmillan: "Vessel" Hammer formed, forged, TIG welded-Copper, Scrap Yard Steel, Patina
My sculpture establishes a duality: a symbiotic relationship that has an affective interaction between two disparate forms. The relationships of how individual objects react to one another are simulated by cause and effect representations of one form applying a force on another. These forces are meant to be ambiguous to allow a transcendental experience originating from a moment stopped in time. My formal influences are a combination of my observations as a child, growing up in the woods of western Pennsylvania, microscopic imagery of parasitic organisms, and elements taken out of the interior of the human body. The suggestive anatomical references unite the organic forms to the natural world and the juxtaposition of organic copper and geometric steel alludes to the interactions of man and nature.
I am attracted to the sensuality of metal and captivated by its elasticity and tactility. Traditional hammer forming techniques allow me to intuitively respond to the material throughout its development. The resultant textures are derived from my observations during the forming process. Establishing a personal dialog with the forms enables me to respond to the dictation of the piece throughout its progression; therefore achieving an unconventional sense of spontaneity to a typically deliberate process.
Sharon Massey: "Mill Hunk Badge," Decorative iron wire, muslin fabric, iron, rust
In this body of work, I hope to express the value of sentimentality through ornamentation. I fabricate decorative iron wire and combine it with cotton muslin fabric, allowing the iron to rust into the fabric, creating color, additional pattern, and hopefully a sense of the passage of time. The iron wire patterns are borrowed from historical ornamental motifs which I reinterpret to suggest a feeling of familiarity and nostalgia. I attempt to pay homage to goldsmithing traditions through technique and format, while challenging conventional materials and their value. The content of my work lies in its use of appropriation and material innovation.
Stacy Rodgers: "Resurrection of the Springtime," copper
Incorporating anatomy into my art originated when I was seventeen. I began to use images of nude females and internal reproductive organs into my journal drawings. Desire, sexuality and reproduction were internal drives that I needed to explore in my art. I've referenced a variety of anatomical reproductive images in my work, continually obsessed with the idea that the ability to create and develop life is contained within my body. I create these pieces as a means of creation, to fulfill within me the need to create life. These pieces also contain my reverence for the beauty that lies within the interior of the human body. The structures of cells, tissues, organs and bones all delicately designed to maximize function and sustain life. All containing the tiniest of imprints that connect each of us to a diverse past ancestry and contains the hope of our future, our legacy continued. Each piece explores my curiosity for the anatomy that resides underneath the skin I see everyday. What does the muscle look like that moves my fingers with such precision and delicacy? What is the texture of the bone that protects my heart allowing it to beat, feeling joy and pain? How are the female organs interconnected to create and harbor life? I produce these pieces of jewelry to satisfy my fascination for the body, to expose its tantalizing lines and textures.
Todd Rodgers: brass,steel, glass
My curiosity for the natural world and my surroundings has fueled the creation and construction of my work for years. Recently the instruments that I have invented to facilitate my curiosity have also piqued the curiosity of others. These tools have been created to allow me to investigate and examine plants I come in contact with in my environment.
Of particular interest to me is the reproductive cycle of these plants. The structures that house their seeds, the manner in which the plant disperses these seed, and the shape of the seeds themselves have all been focal points of examination. My desire to have a family of my own and the ability to understand my own reproductive cycle has been the driving force behind my research. They are both dependent on the right time and place.
The inner workings of these tools are an integral part of my investigation process. They operate in such a way that the viewer must work for the. The viewer is free to imagine the intended outcome even though the tools have a very specific function.
The viewer is to come away with a heightened curiosity for their natural surroundings and a desire to explore things they may have overlooked in the past.
Paul Bierker: "Titanium and Stainless Steel Cuff Bracelets"
Paul’s Design philosophy is one poignant irony where product ideas are derived from emotions and social constructs. His work is transitional using elements of different periods and styles in a contemporary homogenization of materials and cultural expectations.
Derek Sober: "To Be Heard"
horsehair, antique silk, found tintype photograph, silk velvet, sterling silver, brass, burnt oak. 11 1/4 x 8 1/4 in. 2009
My artwork functions as a reliquary for the intangible; memories, emotions, and relationships. Our most treasured and irreplaceable objects are always about the people in our lives. My brooches are rooted in 19th century mourning jewelry for the sincerity and devotion to deep friendships associated with this time period. Antique silk and old photographs are used in conjunction with natural materials, such as horsehair and human hair. These tactile-visual materials signify familiarity, authenticity, and honesty.
About the curator:
"Clown Rings" (Set of 3), Sterling, Plastic, Resin
Brigitte Martin is a goldsmith from Germany who loves ALL things craft. Brigitte is the Director of the Luke & Eloy Gallery in Pittsburgh PA, and the creator and editor of crafthaus.