Traditional methods are still a key element within many silversmiths' making process. Annabel Hood and Katie Watson include hand engraving to create visually appealing surface decorations. Where Watson uses surface decoration techniques to create imaginative illustrations of lively creatures and scenes from nature, Hood uses hand engraving, chasing and etching to reflect the issues surrounding climate change, specifically the melting glaciers in her most recent work.
Echoes from nature also combine with tradition in Scott Smith’s work. Smith uses carving, raising and casting, exploring the importance of meditative craft to create his silverware, which is inspired by the wild Scottish landscape.
Several of the silversmiths who attended this year's fair utilise traditional techniques in a contemporary way to craft elegantly beautiful modern designs. Emma Louise Wilson takes her inspiration from the Scottish landscape and weather, creating unique silver bowls by hand-raising and applying enamel decoration, while Jessica Jue uses the ancient art of hammering to give expression to her sculptural designs which convey a sense of rhythmic movement. Kyosun Jung intentionally uses traditional techniques, like Puk welding, to revive them. Jung’s contemporary silverware blends modest form with eloquent decoration to create great visual impact.
Exciting innovation can also be seen in the digital techniques used in combination with traditional metal skills to create original silverware. Sheng Zhang uses the aid of digital techniques to produce work which conveys the aesthetics of minimal style, demonstrated through purity of visual language. Karen Westland makes handmade 3D printed silverware using 100% recycled materials inspired by equipment built to explore outer space.
This selection of Element’s exhibitors demonstrate the diversity and imagination of the superb makers that attended this year's fair - from tradition, to revival and reinvention. We look forward to welcoming you back to the showroom for the 2023 edition next year!