Monday, July 15, 2024

New Goldsmiths’ Fair Promises Cutting-Edge Jewellery & Silver Design

Tina Engell

The UK’s most exciting showcase of fine jewellery and contemporary silver returns with a fresh look and a raft of new exhibitors at London’s magnificent Goldsmiths’ Hall, from 22 September to 5 October.

The event will showcase the latest collections from 170 leading designer-makers and the next generation of precious metal stars. Building on over 30 years of success, Goldsmiths’ Fair celebrates the very best in British design and craftsmanship.

Goldsmiths’ Fair is the antidote to high-street humdrum, giving visitors the chance to buy original and distinctive works of art direct from the maker. Exhibitors are selected from across the UK by an expert-judging panel assembled by the Goldsmiths’ Company, the UK’s leading patron of jewellers and silversmiths. Each artist-maker will unveil their latest collections, the result of months of creativity in their independent workshops.

The Fair is a unique showcase of innovative design in gold and silver, traditional and cutting edge techniques, exquisite precious metals and gemstones, riotous colour and intricate detailing, poetry written in metal and celebrations of nature’s most beautiful materials. Prices range from £150 to £50,000 and the event is ideally timed for early Christmas shopping. Held in the sumptuous surroundings of Goldsmiths’ Hall, the Fair delivers a unique shopping experience complete with restaurant, champagne bar and for the first time, a programme of special talks by leading figures in jewellery and design.

Free from the restraints of fads and trends, Goldsmiths’ Fair offers something extraordinary for every taste and occasion. Bold geometric pieces, elegant organic creations, and work inspired by everything from ancient Greece to contemporary architecture all vie for admiration. Visitors will discover sculptural rings and glittering brooches, delicate and decadent necklaces, statement earrings, engagement rings like no other, as well as cufflinks and jewellery for men. Meanwhile, interior design lovers are treated to the very best in contemporary silver, including sinuous vases and modernist beakers by leading silversmiths including Ndidi Ekubia, Esther Lord and Rebecca de Quin.

First-time exhibitors this year will include Jacqueline Mina OBE; one of Britain’s most acclaimed jewellers, whose new collection encapsulates her extraordinary vision and skill with gold. Also new to the Fair is Cristina Zani, creator of vibrant architectural jewellery incorporating gold and surprising materials; the pearl virtuoso Melanie Georgacopoulos; the masterful silversmith Yusuke Yamamoto and jeweller Tanja Ufer, who sets outstanding gemstones and found objects into magical compositions. In addition, following a recent visit to Sri Lanka, Mirri Damer’s latest collection includes the most exquisite sapphires personally selected from the country’s mines.

Several of this year’s exhibitors are making waves in international fashion circles, including Hannah Martin, Jo Hayes Ward, Ornella Iannuzzi, Jacqueline Cullen, and Tomasz Donocik. Each will be unveiling new work at Goldsmiths’ Fair.

Other names to look out for include the multi award-winning jeweller, Andrew Lamb, who works fine lengths of gold and silver wire into extraordinary woven patterns and textures. Jonathan Boyd, the Glasgow-based designer of the 2014 Commonwealth Games Medal, uses advanced technologies to cast conversations in metal. Tina Engell draws on her Danish heritage to create bold designs, which celebrate beauty in simplicity, as in the bracelet pictured. Meanwhile, Jack Row takes inspiration from intricate Islamic design to create the most luxurious writing implements using gold, silver, platinum, diamonds, and sapphires.

As well as bringing together the leading figures in jewellery and silver, Goldsmiths’ Fair provides a launch pad for rising stars with a bursary and mentoring scheme, managed by the Goldsmiths’ Centre. Names to look out for include the 24-year-old jeweller Bola Lyon, who emulates anatomical structures with astonishing results. Meanwhile, the up-and-coming silversmith Hamish Dobbie creates powerful pieces inspired by ancient rock formations.

Goldsmiths’ Fair provides uplifting proof of Britain’s bright creative future.

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