Ethical Metalsmith Students proudly present:
So Fresh + So Clean 2017
Student Exhibition and Emerging Artist Award
EM Students, VCU Chapter: Anne Bujold, Everett Hoffman, Haiyin Liang, and Meg Wachs
Guest Juror: Christine Clark
So Fresh + So Clean 2017 Award Winners
2017 EMERGING ARTIST
Prize $1000, Sponsor: Richline Group
Masters of Fine Arts 2016, Indiana University, USA
“One of the primary goals in my studio is to use as much recycled material as possible. My work is mostly constructed from found materials which have been discarded because they were broken, old, or outdated. I have also begun to source material from discarded packaging; as my city only recycles #1 and #2 plastics, and #3-7 plastics are all sent to a landfill. In keeping with this mindset, I also strive to create pieces that are durable, yet impermanent. By using cold connections, pieces can be taken apart again and remixed into new works. It is important to decrease our plastic consumption, and by juxtaposing contemporary plastics with thrifted or salvaged items from the 50’s and 60’s, my work highlights how non-biodegradable these materials are. Many of the pieces I use still look brand new and by transforming them into wearable jewelry I hope to not only show the dangers of excessive plastic waste, but also to inspire viewers to find new uses for their old plastics. I aim to make art that is not purely decorative, but that will help to change habits, and decrease consumption.”
RACHEL ANDREA DAVIS
2018 GUEST JUROR'S CHOICE (Christine Clark)
Prize $500, Sponsor: Rio Grande
Master of Arts 2017, Kent State University, Kent, OH, USA
“I am an avid recycler and reuser. Within my studio practice, I reuse items from my home life, integrating them into my studio practice. Empty yogurt containers hold components, my silver scraps go into a gelato container, and my flux container is an old spice jar. As the storeroom manager at Kent State, I have also taken to saving every shipping box and all of the packing materials and plastic bags that come in. This stash makes it easy to package and ship work to different venues while also keeping plastic out of the landfills.
Recycling and reusing also comes into my work through material usage. Eggshells, often thrown away despite being able to be composted, have become an integral part to my work. Not only do they serve for a delicate surface embellishment, but they also allow me to achieve a unique texture with the rolling mill, avoiding harsh etching chemicals. The wood used in my pieces has either been found on walks or come from scraps given to me by my woodworking colleagues. I strive for every bit of my materials to be used or recycled, oftentimes storing leftovers until I stumble upon a suitable use.”
2017 EM STUDENT'S CHOICE
Prize $250, Sponsor: No Dirty Gold
Graduate Student, Rochester Institute of Technology, USA
“By working with found objects, my metalsmithing practice results in not only unique and one of a kind pieces, but also remains ethical and responsible. When walking and exploring outdoors, I often have my eyes towards the ground, subconsciously looking for interesting bits and pieces that differ from their surroundings. By picking up discarded objects, I am not only collecting fragments for future creations, but I am also removing things that are often classified as litter. To me, these materials have much more personality and tell a truer story than mass-produced, sourced components. My desire to give the found objects a second life is how I keep my materials and practice sustainable.”
Greetings from Ethical Metalsmith Students,
It is a great honor to be a part of this process, and we would like to extend our gratitude to Guest Juror Christine Clark for her contribution to the success of this year’s exhibition.
Finding a way to make a completely green practice is a lofty goal, and continually expanding the knowledge base of ethical studio practices remains the heart of our mission. This effort will always be a product of the contributions of our community members, without whom this would be a hollow effort. We are incredibly thankful to the Ethical Metalsmiths, our award sponsors, and everyone else who volunteers their energy and efforts to move this project forward.
Ethical Metalsmiths Students, VCU Chapter
Anne Bujold, Everett Hoffman, Haiyin Liang, and Meg Wachs
We are thrilled to present the 2017 So Fresh + So Clean Online Juried Exhibition and Emerging Artist Award. The array of work and number of submissions left us truly humbled. To see students engage in environmental, social, and human health concerns in growing numbers speaks well for the future of our field.
Each year, we ask the student community to submit their best work, highlighting their connection to craft tradition as well as the ways in which they view contemporary concerns. By bridging the connection between material sourcing and crafted outcomes, these students show us many approaches to altering our impact on the planet. Through considerate recycling and reuse practices, we find opportunities to keep materials out of the landfill and in useful circulation. In approaching their making from many different perspectives – from the aesthetic to conceptual to environmental – these artists represent a community of makers who will change the landscape of the metalsmithing field for years to come.
So Fresh + So Clean 2017 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.
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