Interviews

The WOMEN of Element47

To end up my month of fab FEMALE creatives I popped over to the Abbeymount Studios (filled with lots of lovely creatives!) in Edinburgh, to meet with some of the women from jewellery collective, Element 47.

Started 10 years ago by Lisa Arnott, SilverHub now forms the jewellery school and transition space for those looking to begin their career in jewellery design, while Element47 represents the professional jewellers based in their own studio upstairs.

SilverHub has grown from a small scale platform for creating, evolving into a teaching studio with varied teaching schedule, including a new foundation course. As SilverHub evolved, Element47 was formed to house the 12 professional jewellers as their own collective, with their own branding.

What SilverHub has created in the Abbeymount Studios is incredible. A circular economy, teaching and providing their own employment through the school, by skill sharing and teaching the next up and coming jewellers. Element47 provides opportunities that enable jewellers to critique, skill share and collaborate. Their unique collective aims to provide a supportive environment for professional jewellers to develop their practice.

Speaking to the women of Element47 they shared how they were more than a collective, they are a family, sharing in far more than just jewellery but in all of life’s ebbs and flows. They work together but it is clear that it’s so much more than that, these women clearly have a bond that goes beyond the creative.

Working creatively as a maker can be lonely, with many choosing to work alone for financial or logistical reasons.

Being a part of a collective is a great way to connect with like minded folk

And it’s clear that they form one big family. Read on to meet some of the Women of Element47!

Lisa Arnott is a jeweller, enamel artist and researcher. As a jeweller and artist, drawing, creating collages, material testing and making are all important aspects in the production of the contemporary jewellery she creates. Her aim is to create wearable sculptural objects which hark back to the post-industrial age whilst also responding to the area in which she lives.

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Jessica Howarth is an artist jeweller. Her work is inspired by pattern, colour and mark making found within the journeys she has undertaken. She specialises in vitreous enamelling as she enjoys colour in her work. Alongside teaching at Silver Hub and her own studio practice, Jessica is undertaking a Masters in Adult Education, Community Development and Youth Work at Glasgow University.

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Sarah Kate McAdam‘s work explores an enjoyment of materials and colour. She rarely produces the same piece twice, preferring to work spontaneously with materials including precious metals, wood and semi-precious beads and stones. She is inspired by urban environments and the small details found in materials, structures and patterns discovered in unexpected places. Using processes such as saw piercing, wire work and mixed materials she lets each piece develop its own micro-personality.

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Nicola Turnbull is a jeweller, artist and silversmith. She createms geometric jewellery in silver, gold and enamel. She is working on her ethical practice, using Fairtrade and recycled metals, as well as locally sourced Scottish gemstones wherever possible. A continuing source of inspiration for her jewellery is the weather, movement the mathematical patterns of the natural world. She is currently focusing on an artistic exploration of the Scottish wilderness.

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Carolyn Kinnaird is a jeweller whose designs are reflective of the places, and women she has encountered around the world. Kinnaird Jewellery combines inspiration from her travels, particularly through countries such as Peru, Morocco and Vietnam. Here Carolyn was captured by the scale of tribal styles of jewellery, and by the intricate detail attributed to traditional tribal tattooing.

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Ann Shearer is a jeweller whose work expresses her interest in materials and how they behave. Her current work focuses on the structure, properties and behaviours of metals to create jewellery. She enjoys seeing the transformation of a flat sheet of metal or a length of wire into something beautiful and wearable. Her inspiration is from physical aspects of the natural environment.

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Eleanor Kerr-Patton‘s pieces demonstrate a unique approach to jewellery as a wearable art form. She explores her own experiences with mental illness and recovery. The philosophy of the technique is to treat damage and repair as part of the history of the object, rather than something to disguise. Her pieces act as a visible representation of a journey that might otherwise be invisible to others.

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Whether you’re looking to buy a special gift, or commission a unique piece for yourself, you’ll be in great hands with these creatives! And of course, if you fancy having a go yourself they have classes for all levels and abilities.

Support local creatives and head on down to Abbeymount Studios next time they have an open day to really get a feel for what goes on there – it’s a great hub, full of interesting and talented artists and makers.

In the mean time you can find out more on short courses and opportunities with SilverHub by visiting their website or following them on Instagram and facebook!

If you like what you see, leave a COMMENT and SUBSCRIBE to OiOi Arts for MORE!

Check out the rest of my blog/website, to get a feel for what makes me tick! See you next time…

*Photos taken by Anna Thomson, or provided by Element47 for use by OiOi Arts. All images remain sole copyright OiOi Arts/ Element47.

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