My jewellery collection #4

25 09 2009

I’m having fun going through my collection in detail and remembering how each came to me and what was going on in my life at the time.

Another piece I collected through the RMIT jewellery auctions, is the below pin from one of my most favourite jewellers Joung-Mee Do. I’m pretty sure this was in second year, so that makes it 2005. I recall I lost out to Kirsten Haydon for the other piece, a pendant I think, Joung-Mee donated that year!


It’s a little piece of mild steel (approx 3cm long) which shows three of Joung-Mee’s signatures: etched floral iconography (though it’s difficult to see in this image; it is more clear on the reverse), a beautiful dark-blue ground effected through heat-colouring, and the use of the traditional Korean technique of metal inlay Choum Iybsa. I participated in a workshop with Joung-Mee in early 2006 to learn more about this technique; it’s incredibly labour intensive, but by now we all know that’s something I love!

The metal is ridged with a fine-edged tool (less than 10mm long and a sharp edge), kind of like chiselling but only hammering directly down into the metal. Depending on the intended pattern, this is usually done in columns down the metal and then at right-angles and then diagonally in both directions – so much work, and in my experience about half of the time was spent sharpening the tool. Then small-gauge wire is hammered into the ridged metal.

There are a number of places to read more about Joung-Mee and see some more images: here, here, here, Workshop Bilk, e.g.etal, fotograf, RMIT, Studio 20/17, Buda 2009, among others. I’m glad to own a piece by her, even if it’s a wee little one.

… last post on my jewellery collection #3



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