Workshops in Sydney

3 01 2012

Ooh … just noticed that Square Peg Studio in Sydney has some one-day workshops during January …. check them out here!

These jewellery intensives are in response to many requests from our students and colleagues who want to improve their skills and techniques in a specific area.
One day courses include:

  • Stone Setting – Tension Setting and Tube Setting
  • Intensive Torch- Soldering
  • Intensive Torch- Fusing and Reticulation
  • Chain Making
  • Finding – Or How to Make the Perfect Brooch Back

Personally, the brooch-back one sounds good …

Jewellery workshop

26 12 2011

Some excellent jewellery focussed workshops are being planned for 2012.

This one was on Anna Davern’s blog and information was also sent to me by the coordinator at Fibre Arts Australia.

Now you may not usually consider Fibre Arts to be a jewellery kind of thing – but you’d be wrong on this occasion!!

—- (info from Fibre Arts Australia site) —-

Art Jewellery @ The Winter School

Dates: 30th June – 5th July 2012
Where: Ballarat
Enrolment by: 1st March 2012

Workshop teachers:

BOWMAN Katherine, AUSTRALIA: Wax carving and casting including casting from nature

DAVERN Anna, AUSTRALIA:  Jewellery from sublimation printed metal and plastic

DOREMUS Sarah, USA: Kinetic Jewellery

GUINEY Caz, AUSTRALIA: Location based jewellery making 

HASH Arthur, USA:  Up cycling/ Design challenge

LIMB Ali, AUSTRALIA: Design and make simple contemporary jewellery pieces.  

PFEIFER Hilary, USA:  the playful object | ssǝɔoɹd lnɟʎɐld ǝɥ

SIMON Marjorie, USA: The Essentials of Torch-Fired Enamel

TAVERN Amy, USA: The Whole Jewel


workshop media; from Anna Davern's post; click on image for original source

Sounds a-maz-ing. I just may consider going myself … though you know I’m not so magnificent in workshops … this does sound great though…

RMIT workshop

22 12 2011

Information on an RMIT workshop in February 2012:

“Not knowing, Not wanting, Just playing.”
Transformation from a drawing to a 3-D object with Doris Betz, Germany

workshop media

A 5 day workshop that will give participants the opportunity to work closely with renowned artist Doris Betz.
The outcome of the workshop might be a complete piece of jewellery, or several models as a starting point for further investigations.

3rd – 7th February, 2012
9.30am – 4.30pm
5 sessions by 6 hrs
Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday

More information here.


5 10 2011

I’ve signed up for the “How to make a Rip-Snorter” (David Bielander) workshop at RMIT at the end of the month.

Strange really – I’m not usually one for workshops. I don’t think, or create, well at all in a ‘group’ environment – my energy is often elsewhere-directed when surrounded by lots of people. Workshops actually usually stifle my creativity.

However I’ve been a bit stuck with my making lately, and I’ve always admired makers who can retain the joy and spontaneity in their making … so the brief for the workshop seemed perfect for me.

Workshop description:
What makes a good jewellery piece?
Why do you want to turn your brainchild into jewellery?
Why do you want people to wear your piece?
When do we think, when do we make?
How authentic is your work?
This is a workshop about mastering the process between the spark of an idea to a convincing piece, without losing the fun, flow, the lightness and spontaneity on the path. The source of the spark will be the departure point of the investigation.

It is also super in that while it’s a five-day workshop I only need to take two days off work, as it’s being run Friday-Tuesday over a weekend and the Melbourne Cup Tuesday public holiday. How great is that!

workshop media; click on image for original source

I wonder what will come of it.
I wonder what my experience will be.
I’m willing to risk it, experiment and see.

Update (24th October): unfortunately I’m no longer going to this workshop … had a bit of an over-scheduling issue and something had to give … you know how it can happen …

Summer Master Class: Manon Van Kouswijk

29 11 2010

A quick post to pass on information about a Summer Master Class at RMIT with Manon Van KouswijkLongings and Belongings‘.

Dates: 21 – 25 February 2011
Fee: $695

Description: “How do objects define us?
This workshop will focus on the value and meaning that jewellery (and other precious objects) represent and the way in which these things often mark significant events and moments in daily life such as birth, birthdays, victory, weddings and death. The different roles that objects play in these rituals, as gifts, souvenirs and heirlooms, will also be discussed. The aim of the workshop is to both open up the possibilities of this universal subject matter, of which the history of contemporary jewellery is only a tiny little part, and at the same time to look at how each individual maker can define their personal approach, to makes sense of who they are and where they come from, as an expression of their place and their own time.
What is it that interests you in jewellery? Let’s find out

Further information see link here. This looks so interesting … now I wonder if I can get more time off work …

Jewellery Practice as a Site for Enquiry #1

9 08 2010

Last Friday [6th August 2010] I attended the RMIT Seminar ‘Jewellery Practice as a Site for Enquiry‘ … well, I made it until lunch time and then had to go home exhausted (I’ve been fighting a stubborn flu for weeks and it just won’t go away). I am disappointed that I missed the afternoon sessions, as there were speakers I wanted to hear; though I very much enjoyed the morning speakers and their topics.

There were lots of people there; I’m rubbish at estimating crowd size, but the Kaleide Theatre was pretty full, so maybe around 200 (can anyone confirm or advise?). So there certainly is audience for such gatherings in Melbourne.

The speakers I saw were:

Then “Rapid Fire Papers”, which I really enjoyed, by:

I’ll write about my thoughts in a few posts… first, the key-note speakers.

1. Christina Tatiana Miller & Susie Ganch

Both jewellers and educators, Christina and Susie run the Radical Jewellery Makeover (RJM; blog) projects, and have a strong view about the contribution each person can make to making the world a better place: saying a number of times that ‘everyone can contribute in their own way‘. Their presentation was very polished and well measured, and quite interesting.

To set the scene for their work, they discussed projects that inspire them and also share their values of recycling, careful material management, community bonding, and social justice through making/craft: bead project, empty bowl and knitting nation.

The mining industry and it’s toxicity and associated dangers for the environment and human health was then raised.  The most interesting part for me was that, in a parallel to many facets of life in recent times (eg. food, clothing), there is a desire to trace materials to their source; however this is incredibly difficult for metals, especially when being reused.

They then spoke of their RJM project – which takes donated jewellery, precious and costume, and hold workshops where jewellers/students remake into new pieces over a few days; the new pieces are then exhibited and available for purchase by the donors (who have credit vouchers based on the value of their original donation) and others. First, the donated pieces are thoroughly sorted, valued and disassembled for reuse. Then made into new pieces under a developing set of rules about future reuse – mixed metals are not encouraged (to ensure purity and possibility of meltdown in the future), prongs are favoured (for easy unsetting), screws and rivets preferred (again, for purity and taking apart).

I have a bit of a problem with the word ‘sustainable’, as it is somewhat of a catch-phrase for the lazy that has lost its original meaning in its overuse – but that’s not what I found here, and in fact though I was expecting it, I don’t remember actually hearing the word used. What I did see was great passion about creating a better world through everyday actions, and fighting for larger actions to be taken by larger entities (ie. companies and governments) to do their best to carry their responsibility in the same manner.

What has stayed with me from this presentation is an awareness of my own practice (when I do make!) – I tend to buy new sheet when I need it, instead of reaching for the scrap bin, or remelting and rolling out scrap; and I don’t think about whether the piece I am making will be easy to remodel in the future, made in such a way that it is simple to mine it for its components if needed … two relatively small things (though of course there are more) all jewellers can do to set up a ‘sustainable’ (in its best definition) practice.

Another interesting point is the great waste of resources that ‘costume jewellery’ presents – made of poor metals (mixed metals with low melting points) and plastics, its value measured only in its fashion-ability (yes, I made that word up), and so it is quickly used and thrown into landfill. I’d love to see the costume jewellery industry radically reigned in and eventually ceased … but how, it’s not a realistic hope is it?

The presentation closed with a quote from Claire Pentecost, who wrote ‘Taste Re-Makers‘ for RJM: The more we learn about our world the more we realize that our system of production and consumption is practically and socially untenable. Changing this system is a vast creative project being addressed now by countless artists who have decided that the world we want is something we are going to have to make. No one invested in the status quo is going to do it. To actually live an authentic life richly experienced requires that we create social arenas to remake our own subjectivities.

Lastly, I loved the brooch Susie wore on the day – I think it’s the one in the top right corner of the image on their blog here (detail below).

cropped from workshop media; click on image to link through to original source; copyright belongs to RJM

I’d be interested to know what others took away from this session.

More on the other speakers shortly.

Update (9th August): after writing the posts in this series (a few to be published over the coming week) today I read Melissa Cameron’s first installment of her impression of the seminar; I liked many of her comments!