For my graduate collection, I have created a collection of imagined rediscovered treasure from the sea, titled "Ocean Archives". As a key part of my work is storytelling through jewellery, I have given it this narrative, imagining that these pieces have been rescued from the ocean. Each piece carries a story that links them to the sea and to the past. At the same time, they have an air of mystery that is part of their charm and identity. The aim is for the collection to create a sense of a medieval, couture world, for the wearer to be able to relive a bygone past without ever knowing its full story.
The designs have been inspired by illuminated manuscripts. Illumination was used in historic periods to aggrandise ancient documents, being visually decorative to ornament text. What I liked about this form of art was that the added ornament did not take away from the value of the words it adorned, rather it was an extension of what the texts expressed. I have used frames, text and ornament to emulate a similar effect in my jewellery pieces. All of the metal used has been manipulated and punctured in a very rough manner, to emphasize the imperfections and scars the pieces have, almost as if they had ‘lived to tell the tale’.
When the whole collection is grouped together, they make up a collective narrative. There is a sense of history and nature being reimagined through a rugged, flawed lens. The combination of text, ornamental elements and frames create an aura of a past and stories held within the jewellery that have further saturated with the passing of time.
ocean archives 2018