Responding to the Inspired By brief is an exciting & stimulating challenge, starting with the research process itself with its gradual refining down of possibilities. After several exploratory visits to the museum I grew particularly intrigued by caskets & boxes. I then explored online pursuing the general themes of medieval keys & locks & discovered these two beautifully battered examples of medieval work which perfectly embody the spirit of intrigue & mystery associated with locks, keys & locked containers.
I have used a deliberately distressed, dark finish for my piece which - with the rust - echoes the age & worn appearance of the original inspirations. The etching gives surface interest to the silver & hints at a story to be told, & the gemstones & gold add colour & more typical jewellery values. In addition the moonstone traditionally represents mystery. I arrived at the final design by working through different ideas in a series of drawings to decide on form & materials.
It's no exaggeration to say that studying jewellery-making at Morley College has changed my life. It is an enormous pleasure & a source of great satisfaction to develop & experiment with new skills & explore new sources of inspiration. None of this would be possible without the unending & generous support of my tutors with their technical expertise & constant encouragement.
A Sogdian merchant riding a double-humped camel
8th century (made)
Earthenware with lead glaze
V&A collection reference number(s):
W. 162-1910 & W.97-1910