Thankfully, I caught the tail end of contemporary jewelry artist exhibition of work by Helen Britton, Industrial Romantic, at the Antonella Villanova Gallery in Florence, Italy. I brought my jewelry students to see the show last week and they really enjoyed it. And how could you not after visually studying the intricate combinations of forms and materials? Images and information about her work from the installation can be seen below.
Britton creates her own sentimental world of fragmented objects made from components of several types of materials — both precious stones and metals composed with non-precious plastics and other metals.
According to the artist, she hopes to transform the materials in unpredictable ways while giving them a new life as a jewelry object, of which she maintains a strong empathy for these “hidden beauties” while giving their materiality credit within a popular culture.
Her choice of materials reflect her memory of growing up in an industrial city in Australia in the 1970s. In fact, her aesthetics range from industrial to playful combinations to organic shapes, some of which might resemble sea creatures.
Her “Romantic notion” extends a sentimentality for these objects and fragments of materials which she collects in her every day life. She finds a certain type of pleasure in their simple inherent qualities which might otherwise be overlooked by many: their form, color, and texture.
Drawings and sketch books by Britton were a nice addition to the installation. Although the drawings expressed some familiar shapes, they are not necessarily studies for her jewelry pieces, but they certainly relate.
Britton is a jeweler from West Australia living and working in Munich since 2002. See more photos of Helen’s work in a previous post.
Helen Britton, Industrial Romantic
18th December 2013 – 8th February 2014
- Galleria Antonella Villanova
Palazzo Ricasoli, Piazza Goldoni 2, Firenze