Co:Operation GARNISH

Can the metal and jewelry field overcome its division and send out a much-needed signal?

We appreciate and respect our historical past and acknowledge that current materials have a rightful place in jewelry/object making!

Arriving at this message is the goal of this exhibition cooperatively arranged by Rachel Timmins and Brigitte Martin.

Please join this group to stay informed !! This is the official exhibition blog.

Members: 97
Latest Activity: Mar 6, 2017


An exhibition traveling to the following locations: 

  • Pop-Up during SNAG Conference, Boston - May 20-23, 2015 (details to follow)
  • Crafthaus, online exhibition (excerpts) - June 15 - July 15, 2015
  • Velvet da Vinci, San Francisco, CA - Aug 19 - Sept 20, 2015
  • Equinox Gallery, San Antonio, TX - Oct 16 - Nov 15, 2015
  • Baltimore Jewelry Center, Baltimore, MD - Dec 11, 2015 - Jan 8, 2016
  • Brooklyn Metal Works, Brooklyn, NY - Feb 5 - Mar 4, 2016
  • New: April 1 to June 25, 2016 @ Thomas Mann's I/O Gallery, New Orleans

Additional venues currently under deliberation.


A modern metalsmith/metal artist can be found working in traditional metals as well as in nontraditional materials. The designs can range from the classic to the extravagant, and the techniques can either be centuries old or decidedly current.

    The wide range of expression preferences, design options, materials, and processes has lead within our field to unfavorable misconceptions, misunderstandings and in some cases even outright disdain between artists. Each side considers itself superior to the other, seemingly not appreciating the clear advantages, benefits, and experiences each faction brings to the table. Quoting from Damian Skinner’s 2013 SNAG keynote lecture in Toronto:    

    We are all family. Sometimes, family members don’t speak with each other, but we still are one big family. Let’s recognize this fact.

      Can our field overcome family division and send a much-needed signal to the metals + jewelry community?

      We appreciate and respect our historical past and acknowledge that current materials have a rightful place in jewelry/object making!

      Arriving at this message is the goal of this exhibition.

      Call for Artists (detail information)

      Entry Form & Checklist (includes downloadable pdf form)

      Deadline for submission entry: Feb 15, 2015
      (via DropBox to )

      Discussion Forum

      Getting the CoOp Garnish Show Ready for Boston!

      Started by Brigitte Martin Apr 22, 2015. 0 Replies

      Getting things ready for Boston is in full swing by now, all artists contracts have been sent out and Rachel and I are currently in the process of fine tuning the exhibition side of things.Priscilla Mouritzen and Mette Saabye "Objects of Desire", Wood, paint, string, various sizesAs many of you may have seen, CoOp Garnish will be part of the Adorned Spaces POP UP exhibition at the…Continue

      Tags: Priscilla, Timmins, Mouritzen, Mette, Saabye

      A Fresh Start

      Started by ROY Jan 3, 2015. 0 Replies

      Mindy Eshelman, a Hollywood Costume Designer and I, a metal artist, have been working on a collaborative "art garnish" since August.It has been a humorous way to rekindle an old friendship.The project has mutated many times, at the chopping block for months and, finally,I think the work is coming together!Never finished or editing:We are still brainstorming through texts, studio hook-ups and meeting at a local coffee shop.Continue

      Tags: #mindyeshelman

      On the power of collaboration - CoOp Garnish Interviewed on Klimt02

      Started by Brigitte Martin Nov 11, 2014. 0 Replies

      Co:operation Garnish - an interview with Rachel Timmins and Brigitte Martin on the power of collaboration.Editor: Sanna SvedestedtIn the open call for Co-operation Garnish you describe a troublesome gap between artists from different backgrounds. Do you see this division as a global…Continue

      Tags: Garnish, CoOp, Klimt02, Sanna, Svedestedt

      25 e-mails

      Started by Linda Savineau Oct 13, 2014. 0 Replies

      Well, when initially Steve Shelby posted this:"This will be a challenge for me (1) because I have never done any kind of collaboration, and (2) I will be collaborating with someone whose work Ireally don't like, and if it's a good match-up, they don't like my work either! " ,I was really intrigued and I contacted him. And yes, after a few mails we decided we could hit it off as 2 totally different personae !.Now,some 2 months later, we've exchanged 25 mails, discussed 3 projects and we're…Continue

      Exciting news: Thomas Mann Gallery has been added to the gallery lineup

      Started by Brigitte Martin Sep 26, 2014. 0 Replies

      Rachel and I are happy to welcome Thomas Mann's I/O Gallery in New Orleans to the roster of exhibiting galleries for the CoOperation Garnish project!You may have heard this announcement during yesterday's…Continue

      Tags: Orleans, New, venue, project, Rachel

      Co:Op Garnish Radio Interview Live on Sep 25

      Started by Brigitte Martin Sep 9, 2014. 0 Replies

      We are happy to announce that Rachel and I will be appearing on the wonderful Jay Whaley Metalsmith Benchtalk Radio Show. We will be talking about our Co:Operation Garnish project, how we came up with the idea, what the project is about and our plans moving forward.The radio show will be LIVE on air September 25, 2014 @ 6PM EST / 3 PM Pacific.…Continue

      Tags: Timmins, Brigitte, Martin, Rachel, garnish

      About Brigitte Martin

      Started by Brigitte Martin Aug 12, 2014. 0 Replies

      Brigitte Martin, a native of Germany, apprenticed with a German Master Goldsmith after working for Sotheby's and an international Contemporary Fine Art Gallery.In 2008, Martin created the international online social network CRAFTHAUS to foster camaraderie and professional exchange within the international craft community. As the site’s editor she works closely with the membership to help…Continue

      Tags: SNAG, call, artists, garnish, cooperation

      Entry Form & Checklist Cooperation GARNISH

      Started by Brigitte Martin Aug 8, 2014. 0 Replies

      Co:Operation Garnish - Submission Form Can't copy/paste the form ? Request emailed .doc or pdf formats from: cooperationgarnish@hotmail.comI. Information about applicant team: A) Name: Address: email: website: phone: B) Name: Address: email: website: phone: I. Title of Artwork:   II. Media: III. Dimensions (in inches): IV. Photo Credit: _________________________.The submitting artists grant full permission for their images to be used in all promotional efforts the exhibition…Continue

      Tags: Brigitte, Timmins, Martin, call, artists

      Call for Artists "Cooperation Garnish"

      Started by Brigitte Martin Aug 8, 2014. 0 Replies

      An exhibition traveling to the following locations:  Pop-Up during SNAG Conference, Boston - May 20-23, 2015 (details to follow)Crafthaus, online exhibition (excerpts from core exhibition) - June 15 - July 15, 2015Velvet da Vinci, San Francisco, CA - Aug 19 - Sept 20, 2015Equinox Gallery, San Antonio, TX - Oct 16 - Nov 15, 2015Baltimore Jewelry Center, Baltimore, MD - Dec 11, 2015 - Jan…Continue

      Tags: call, artists, cooperation, exhibition, crafthaus

      Comment Wall


      You need to be a member of Co:Operation GARNISH to add comments!

      Comment by Brigitte Martin on August 15, 2014 at 8:36am

      Update: From what we hear through the grapevine, some truly remarkable garnish teams are currently being formed. Honestly surprising maker combinations. Keep it up!

      For those still looking, please email us via asap so that we can get you on the contact list as well. The list is updated daily as we go along.

      Comment by Brigitte Martin on August 14, 2014 at 9:41am

      Update: We will soon open up a separate (but hyperlinked) group blog on crafthaus for teams who wish to chronicle their collaborative journey publicly. Everybody is welcome to join and share. Having teams blog openly about their progress and the issues they face would be beneficial for everyone to witness. We will open this up in a week or so when artists who are currently still looking for a partner have had a chance to catch up. Stay tuned.

      Many thanks to Katja Toporski for this great idea!

      Comment by Steve Shelby on August 14, 2014 at 9:30am

      Thanks for the link. Some interesting collaborations there. My brain works slowly, and the muse comes to me in her own good time. It will happen.

      Comment by Brigitte Martin on August 14, 2014 at 7:54am

      Steve, this might be helpful to get you started:

      A few years back, I organized a similarly collaborative exhibition Co:Operation Tableware. For that exhibit metal artists were asked to collaborate with someone outside of our field and the artist response was incredibly interesting: Metal artists collaborated with ceramicists, furniture makers, a dentist, a poet, a costume designer, a glass blower, fiber artists and so on. Some collaborations also crossed continents. If you click on the link above you will be able to see some images of that show with artist statements.

      What I gleaned from the exercise back then was that collaborations unfold in a variety of ways and that there are no rules other than that each side has to give up some creative control and be open to have that piece be 'different'. Some collaborations were meticulously planned out from start to finish, others operated organically. In some instances one artist started a piece, the other took over and put their finishing touches directly on it. In other cases the pieces were worked on separately and then joined for meaning (i.e. cup and saucer, bowl and ladle).

      In a few weeks, Rachel Timmins and I will also start our own collaborative piece and we will blog about the process right here in this blog as an example of a partnership across the spectrum. Our work couldn't possibly be any more different but we both share the same irreverent sense of humor and you bet that this will come out one way or the other.

      Once you have selected a partner I am pretty sure you will find common ground very quickly. Oh - and going against the rules is totally the point!

      Comment by Steve Shelby on August 14, 2014 at 7:21am

      As I look at other artist's work, especially those whose style and use of materials is diametrically opposed to mine, I keep thinking "how in hell can my work and theirs be put together into a unified work of art?" It goes against all the rules, which I guess is the whole idea of the exercise. I just hope as I get further into this, some inspiration comes along, because right now, I've got nothing. I would think others of you might have these thoughts. Can we discuss it?

      Comment by Poppy Porter on August 14, 2014 at 4:21am
      This looks like a great opportunity :) I think I will join in!
      Comment by Louise Perrone on August 13, 2014 at 10:04pm

      This is a great thread so far. 2Roses offering up some excellent advice as per usual!

      Comment by 2Roses on August 13, 2014 at 11:57am

      We collaborate with other artists (and non-artists) all the time. The results can be amazing, and take you to places you never thought of. They can also be disappointing at times. But these things also happen when you are working alone.

      For us the secret of good collaboration is to set aside our preconceived notions of everything and work in the moment. Be open to what is and what it could be instead of what you think it should be. Some of our best collaborations have been with people completely outside our field who's work we neither understood or appreciated. Like a great party, the synergy between the people involved is what makes the magic.

      Comment by Steve Shelby on August 13, 2014 at 11:36am

      Linda, I was being a little hyperbolic. I'm not really going to try to team up with someone whose work I don't admire or appreciate. 

      Comment by Linda Savineau on August 13, 2014 at 9:33am
      Steve: I admire and like (some) jewellers who work in media totally different from mine and appreciate their jewelry and know-how. The collaboration is sometimes frustrating but mostly enriching if both parties are open-minded. That doesn't mean it always works out!!!

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