Ethical Metalsmith Students proudly present:
So Fresh + So Clean 2014
Student Exhibition and Emerging Artist Award
EM Students, VCU Chapter: Lucy Louise Derickson, Kelley Morrison, Jane Barton, Brian Fleetwood
So Fresh + So Clean 2014 Award Winners
2014 EMERGING ARTIST
Prize $1000, Sponsor: Richline Group
Master of Fine Arts 2015, Bowling Green State University, USA
“In my most recent series of brooches, I combine memory foam with repurposed silver-plated brass holloware. I am interested in the symbolic (associative and suggestive) nature of hollowware and its ability to both reveal and conceal, while giving structure to the shapeless. The salver, historically a symbol of dignity and high society, is dismantled and then reconstructed with familiar elements and forms to create new narratives of personal value and self-worth through body adornment. By salvaging and encasing the memories of the past between layers of metaphorical cultural consumption, I am laying those former abusive practices to rest while simultaneously breathing new life into wearable objects.”
2014, 2nd place winner
Prize $500, Sponsor: Rio Grande
Bachelor of Fine Arts 2015, Birmingham City University, UK
“I try to work in the most ethical way as possible and think that a sustainable approach underpins most aspects of my practice. Specifically, I source materials as locally as I can and make considered material choices. The sterling silver I use is all recycled and I use a salt and vinegar mix to clean the silver after soldering. The bamboo silk is a far more sustainable choice because of its reduced environmental impact and also the strength and durability of the material itself. I hope that in using high quality materials and striving for a high standard of finish, I have created pieces that will last a lifetime, fighting against the prevalent trend for resource-draining, throwaway fashion. My printing is done locally, using water-based inks and by a company with a strong environmental responsibility policy. I use all recycled packaging from another sustainably focused printer.”
2014, 3rd place winner
Prize $250, Sponsor: No Dirty Gold
Master of Visual Arts, San Diego State University, USA
“Waste lies in the streets; evidence of their former use found in their stains and wear. A thing that seems to be devoid of value and meaning waits to be noticed.
It is my hope that the audience will become more aware of waste, and may begin to question their intimate relationships to objects in an attempt to develop new consciousness in daily life. I believe that by making the invisible, visible; we can begin to acknowledge our role and responsibility in our environment. In my studio practice, I am always striving to be as green as I can. By finding alternatives for chemicals or trying to recycle as much as possible. I think by doing the little things we can begin to create good habits, and through those habits we can effect change in our practice and our environment.”
A message from the Executive Director, Christina Miller
So Fresh + So Clean, Ethical Metalsmiths’ first annual student exhibition, and Emerging Artist Award mark a new era for our community. EM is grateful for the tireless work of the volunteer student committee and thankful for all the students that became members and submitted work for the exhibition this year. Thank you also to our sponsors of So Fresh + So Clean.
Students are innovators, always trying new things, managing fears and failure – prerequisites for learning – and exposing their ideas to critique. It is their duty to be “So Fresh”. Ethical Metalsmiths is inspired by the students and recent graduates located around the world that took the risk and shared their work and ideas for public exhibition. The statements, a mandatory aspect of the application process, include a range of “So Clean” approaches that reveal the personal values informing best practices.
Ethical Metalsmiths believe that independent jewelers and artists are the pioneers of the ethical jewelry movement. If made from a point of awareness of mining issues and respect for people and the planet jewelry and metalsmithed objects can generate good and decrease harm in the world. By working together and sharing ideas about responsibility, environmental protections and human rights, we will continue to develop innovative solutions for the future.
Both the So Fresh + So Clean exhibition and the Emerging Artist Award act as transparent benchmarks for the ethical jewelry and metalsmithing movement. The pieces and statements inspire an optimism for the future as well as challenge what has already been accomplished. Benchmark measurements necessitate re-evaluation and inquiry. Some questions Ethical Metalsmiths is asking include whether or not students have enough opportunities to contribute their ideas to the movement and whether or not the purveyors of the movement are doing enough to educate students. The goal: responsibility is the norm.
Ethical Metalsmiths is committed to student makers – their ideas and their futures (our future). The works and statements of So Fresh + So Clean engage, inspire curiosity and stimulate a constant re-evaluation of our habits and beliefs.
Christina Miller, Executive Director
So Fresh + So Clean 2014 Showcase
Work that’s happening now, challenging how we define the field of metalsmithing and jewelry.
Looking at how our studio practices impact the environment and human health.
To view all image and artist details, use a computer rather then phone. Click on image and hover to see details.