Created specially for New York City Jewelry Week, we’ve taken inspiration from the rich tradition of still life painting to create individual compositions highlighting key pieces from six modern makers who use ethically sourced materials.
Created by Local Heroes in partnership with the Incorporation of Goldsmiths, the exhibition has been conceived and styled by Stacey Hunter using a selection of plaster and gypsum objects by Chalk Plaster and photographed by Gabriela Silveira. It features contemporary work by: Soizig Carey, Michelle Currie, Ruth Leslie, Alison Macleod, Silvia Weidenbach and Heather Woof.
Still Lifes offers audiences in New York – and internationally – a glimpse of what’s new and fresh about contemporary jewellery from Scotland.
Meet the Designers
Live Stream Show & Tell
Meet our designers in a live link-up with New York City.
Watch on YouTube
Soizig Carey’s jewellery practice is rooted in slow design and making, and she is conscious of the impact her work has on people and the environment. Using both ancient and new making processes, she is drawn instead towards creating modernist and long-lasting pieces. Collaboration is a very important part of her practice, in particular with women artists whose aims are thought-provoking and playful. Soizig regularly recycles and re-makes heirlooms, modernising symbolic pieces which are passed from generation to generation. Soizig's Estética collection explores geometric formulas, rotating movements and principally, the circle. It is presented here with smooth plaster objects by Chalk Plaster.
Pendulum Earrings, 35 x 90mm, 24ct Gold Plated Silver (Fairtrade and recycled), £300
Torc Ring, 2-3mm diameter hand drawn wire, 18ct Yellow Gold (Fairtrade), £600
Rotating Circles Brooch, 120 x 350mm x 20mm, 24ct Gold Plated Silver (Fairtrade and recycled), £500
All pieces available made to order in Silver, Gold Plated Silver and Gold. All metals Fairtrade and recycled.
Ruth Leslie has been designing and making playful, sculptural jewellery since 2015. Working in a variety of metals including silver, gold and titanium, she creates contemporary pieces that are both inspired by the subtle details within fabrics as well as the structural forms within textile machinery. Ruth finely twists each individual wire using an old-fashioned drill, wrapping it around frames to create tactile, refined forms—like dangling architecture. Along with these sculptural pieces, Ruth produces a range of wearable, precious metal jewellery influenced by design products such as kitchen and homeware. Her designs are distinctive, modern and tactile. Here they are pictured with glass, Turkish Selenite and marble from the Chalk Plaster.
Inkle Neckpiece, Silver, £1,095
Heald Brooch, 9ct Gold & Oxidised Silver, £460
Drum Earrings, Silver, £750
Silvia Weidenbach fuses historical techniques and new technologies to create striking, unique pieces. Her work explores form, complexity and colour to develop an entirely new aesthetic for jewellery in the 21st century. A leading exponent of new techniques, Silvia has pioneered the use of 3D printing and haptic devices to make jewellery and objects that cannot be created using conventional Techniques. She draws inspiration from the 17th century ‘Cabinet of Curiosities,’ combining new global discoveries with the natural world, the precious with the extraordinary – all elements expressed in her jewellery. We created a backdrop for Silvia using vividly coloured blocks of scagliola, handmade by Chalk Plaster using natural pigments and gypsum plaster.
Sparklers_01, Brooch, 3D printed Moondust, gold, silver, gemstones, £4,350
Hyperlink, Cufflink, 3D printed PlatinGold in collaboration with C.Hafner, Price on request
Visual Feast “ctrl gemTHREE”, Brooch, 3D printed Moondust, gold, diamonds, mother of pearl, £3,250
Captivated by the unseen forces that govern and shape our world, Michelle Currie’s work is a celebration of her love of the interconnected realms of science and art. Through her exploration of ferromagnetic materials containing iron particles and magnetic forces, Michelle creates stunning visual examples of the physical laws that govern the beauty of physics. Michelle sculpts iron directly onto the invisible field lines created by magnetic forces, capturing their explosive moments in static miniature sculptures and wearable objects. The iron used in this collection contains recycled iron shards collected from beaches across Scotland. Her work is presented with undulating plaster objects cast by Chalk Plaster.
Iron Moon Brooch with Vessel, Approx. 70x70x50mm, 18ct Yellow Gold, Silver, Iron, Copper, Resin and Pigment
Fe+Ag Brooch, Approx. 70x50x30mm, Morganite, 18ct Yellow Gold, Oxidised Silver, Iron, Resin
Expanse Pendant, Approx. 40x30x10mm, Silver, Iron, Resin
Prices on request. All items made to order.
Alison Macleod makes delicately patterned fine jewellery inspired by antique treasures and the stories they tell as heirlooms passed through generations with their own hidden histories. With ‘Catkin’ she draws on a pattern seen long ago on an antique ring, laying dormant in her memory until the time came to make her own wedding ring. From this, her signature technique of layering developed, building sometimes hundreds of tiny disks to make a pattern reminiscent of the spring Catkin flower.
Alison works from her studio in Dumfriesshire, beginning each signature piece in silver and building up the Catkin design until it is finally cast in Fairtrade gold. Each piece created reflects her belief in making items that people will love and treasure forever. For our exhibition Alison’s work is arranged alongside pieces of Moroccan and Oxford gypsum and selenite from Chalk Plaster.
Catkin Reflections Pendant. Pendant measures 30 x 14mm. Chain measures 51cm (20”). Chain width is 1.2mm. Fairtrade 18ct yellow gold with a brilliant cut white diamond. Diamond measures 2mm in diameter and weighs approximately 0.03ct. whole. £3,740
Catkin Brilliant Edge Studs. 14 x 14mm with 10mm ear post. Fairtrade 18ct yellow gold with 20 brilliant cut diamonds. Each diamond measures 1mm in diameter with an approximate weight of 0.1ct. £2,980
Catkin Vignette Ring with Diamond Scatter. Oval measures 24 x 14mm. Band measures 2mm wide by 1.4mm deep. Fairtrade 18ct yellow gold stamped with 26 brilliant cut diamonds. Each diamond measures 1mm in diameter with a total weight of approximately 0.12ct. £2,900
Heather Woof is a jewellery designer based in Edinburgh. Her signature style is characterised
by understated simplicity and effortless movement, reflecting a pared back aesthetic that is integral to her work. Through a methodical process, Heather explores themes of pattern and rhythm to create pieces with intricate structures. Her work balances clean lines and simplicity of form with repetition and subtle movement. Working with precious metals, Heather combines traditional techniques with contemporary design. Each piece is made by hand in her studio with a focus on detail and craftsmanship. Here you can see a new necklace created for the exhibition titled Grid. We photographed this against a geometric black plaster wall panel handmade by Chalk Plaster.
Grid Necklace, Sterling Silver, £1,500
Grid Earrings, Length of drop 45mm, Oxidised Silver and 18ct gold, £310
Drop Earrings, Length of drop 40mm, 18ct gold, £950
Our curatorial vision was to create a contemporary jewellery composition that captured the stillness and richness of a traditional oil painting. Just like a physical exhibition might do, we wanted to give people a reason for pause in a fast paced world. And to encourage them to appreciate the craftsmanship and precision within this elegant and eclectic collection of jewellery.
Our six exhibitors responded to an open call inviting applications from jewellers who make work using ethically sourced materials. They were selected by an expert panel of industry leaders. Each of our participating designers received a funded masterclass in jewellery photography from New York’s Alain Simic in order to further strengthen and sustain their creative practice.
The exhibition features individual still life compositions highlighting key pieces from each jeweller. These have been styled by Stacey Hunter and photographed by Gabriela Silveira. The resulting images have been unveiled on the first day of NYCJW, 16th of November. Our jewellers each had one-to-one sessions with us to discuss the themes of their work and these were developed into a concept for a photoshoot. These took place on location at the workshop of Fife company Chalk Plaster who make traditional and contemporary decorative plaster reliefs. The resultant images have been produced collaboratively and offer audiences in New York and internationally a glimpse of what’s new and fresh about contemporary jewellery from Scotland.
On the last day of NYCJW20 we ask jewellery lovers to join us for a fun, immersive and celebratory show and tell event. Meet our jewellers, see their work up close and ask questions in a specially created, live-streamed green screen powered environment where Edinburgh and New York link-up online for an hour of design themed discussion and exploration.
New York City Jewelry Week is one of the world's most modern jewellery festivals and the largest and most diverse showcase of talent, ideas and jewellery in one virtual week. It runs from 16 to 22 November 2020. For the 2020 iteration it expands its exploration of all things jewelry beyond New York's borders and across the globe with the first ever virtual jewellery week. The event offers everyone intimate experiences, uniquely personal stories and unforgettable jewellery moments from inspiring innovative voices from around the world, all from the comfort of your own home.
“I’m thrilled to be experimenting with radically new exhibition formats that can make jewellery more accessible to everyone and to be able to bring high quality Scottish design to international audiences.” — Stacey Hunter, Director/Curator, Local Heroes
“This is an exciting partnership and I’m confident this experience will be of great value to our makers. The focus on ethical making is important to us as it underlines Scotland’s proactive role in supporting more sustainable methods and sourcing in jewellery.” — Ebba Goring, Director, The Incorporation of Goldsmiths
In our current circumstances it is more important than ever to create imagery that represents objects well, especially when you are shifting the context of an exhibition from the physical to the digital realm. The result is a physical-come-digital exhibition that clearly communicates the craft of each designer whilst also keeping emphasis on the story that each set tells—a demanding task at times considering that photographing jewellery in itself is technically demanding. — Gabriela Silveira, Photographer
This exhibition is made possible with the support of the National Lottery through Creative Scotland.