Sunday, December 06, 2015

Lot Fifty-Eight

Another bonanza of a week as I returned to work on Tuesday after a long weekend in Brighton to all my students handing in their first assessment, which I then spent the week marking and writing up. (Photographs in next post, if they give permission!)

Met up with Mark Fenn, who was in the building for an interview and who might yet be one of my colleagues! Always a pleasure to catch up with him.

Tuesday night saw the launch of the second-year BA Jewellers' selling project, "Lot Fifty-Eight" which is an enterprise-based module and sees them produce a body of commercial work which is then sold in an exhibition/gallery environment which they have to set up. Over the years, I've been involved in a lot of student projects like this, but I have to say that the Lot Fifty-Eight crew this year have produce the most impressively professional show that I've been to.

Lot Fifty-Eight - Selling Show - 1

The 'gallery' was the marvellous Boston Tea Party just outside the town centre (alas! not serving their superb Eggs Florentine) and was really well-attended.

Lot Fifty-Eight - Selling Show - 12

Lot Fifty-Eight - Selling Show - 2

The whole event was incredibly well-organised and I was impressed by not only the work but by the attention to detail, such as the unified business cards, displays and packaging and even the fact that they had a card-reader system for taking payments.

Lot Fifty-Eight - Selling Show - 3

The work was of a very high standard and the prices modest:

Lot Fifty-Eight - Selling Show - 10

Although the show was busy, it was a very mixed group of people who had attended, not just mums and dads as you might expect but students from other courses, such as Hannah-May from the MA who bought some beautifully cheerful kinetic earrings by Ke Liu:

Lot Fifty-Eight - Selling Show - 5

And nearly all the staff from the School of Jewellery:

Lot Fifty-Eight - Selling Show - 11

I also made a purchase: a kinetic brooch by Dong Ding which I had spotted in construction in the basement some weeks ago...

Lot Fifty-Eight - Selling Show - 8

He also made a kinetic bow-tie...

Lot Fifty-Eight - Selling Show - 6

Lot Fifty-Eight - Selling Show - 7

Although the course is "Jewellery And Silversmithing", only one of the students made any objects:

Lot Fifty-Eight - Selling Show - 9

I may still buy one of these rather lovely bowls.

On Wednesday afternoon, I was in the basement for a hands-on demonstration of the Engine Turning Machines there, given by John Moorehouse:

Engine Turning - 4

Engine Turning - 1

I have been wanting to learn about engine-turning for years - after my abortive attempt to buy an engine-turning machine in the early 2000s, not realising that it was so heavy! It is one of those things which is being gradually forgotten but which I think has enormous potential. One of my favourite artists, Daniel Brush, uses it extensively and since the demonstration, I've been buzzing with thoughts about using it.

Engine Turning - 6

Like so many other processes in jewellery, the concept is simple, but the practice takes a lifetime to learn. The machines are rather lovely in themselves:

Engine Turning - 8

Back in the workshops again and preparing the last few items for Christmas, including another sapphire "Nut Ring":

Sapphire Nut Ring - 1

And nearly completing the watch chain for Russ at "The Dirty Pen"...

DirtyPen - WIP - 19

Lovely weekend, despite the appalling weather: Janine visited from Glasgow - delayed by nearly four hours due to the bad weather - and we went to the Christmas Market before coming back to Bearwood, where she became the first visitor in the house which I hope will be mine before Christmas!

City Centre Crafts - 1

The plus side of the four-hour delay was that I got a chance to wander about in the city centre and went to parts I haven't been to yet, stumbling upon a high-quality student art festival in The Square Shopping Centre where the aforementioned Lot Fifty-Eight had a stand. Excellent.

City Centre Crafts - 3

Finally, why, in the middle of winter, are there rows of potted palms in a semi-derelict alley in the city centre?