Phoenix Artist of the Month, October 2017
1. How long have you been at Phoenix?
I moved into Phoenix Brighton in 2006 having been part of Cockpit Arts in Holborn, where I established my business in 1994. In looking for a studio in Brighton and Hove I discovered Red Herring Studios and applied to be a studio member hoping for a space at Phoenix.
I inherited my studio from Cynthia Cousins, a jeweller who I much admired, and who taught me as a student.
I love the light and the position of my studio, but most especially the pins and marks in the walls that Cynthia left behind.
2. What are you working on at the moment?
I am fortunate to have some really interesting and fulfilling commissions ongoing at the moment, I make engagement and wedding rings, as well as other private commission pieces.
Alongside these I am working on new pieces and work for the collection to show and sell at the ‘pop up’ Brighton Maker Store at the end of October.
I am part of a small group of creatives with many years of experience of selling events for applied artists and designer makers. Brighton Maker Store is responding to the changing nature of galleries and events in the south east. We believe in the value of designing and making beautiful, and desirable, functional objects by hand. Seven well-known designer makers will be exhibiting at our first event at Phoenix Brighton.
3. Which media do you like to use?
I predominantly use precious metals; silver, gold, palladium and platinum, I work with diamonds and semi precious stones.
Whilst I love machinery, I also love making with my hands and tools at the workbench. Some of these tools will be on show at the Brighton Maker Store.
4. Which other artists do you admire?
I admire jewellers Dorothy Hogg, Cynthia Cousins, Andrew Lamb and Jacqueline Ryan.
I am inspired by the great architects Frank O’Gehry, Richard Rodgers, Norman Foster and Zaha Hidid.
I grew up very near Harlow New Town, love the brutalist architecture by Frederick Gibberd, and have a life long admiration for Henry Moore and Barbara Hepworth.
5. What would you recommend to go see?
Come and see ceramics by Ken Eardley; leather shoes and accessories by Maiko Dawson; resin jewellery by Kathie Murphy; print, paper, cards and curios by Ruth Martin; and stunning upholstery by Emily Beaumont and Nicki Tarr. I will also be selling my work at the Brighton Maker Store.
6. Is there a piece of work you’re particularly proud of?
Having designed the unique ‘ring within a ring’ range approximately fifteen years ago, I wear one every day. It has become a signature piece in my collection, alongside my bangles for which I am known.
Interview ©Phoenix Brighton 2017
Image © Manel Ortega 2017