Skirting the edge

Odox provide affordable studio spaces, supporting the development of emerging and more established practitioners.
“Within our welcoming community, we promote diverse, ambitious and cross-disciplinary practice, focused on contemporary art and design.”

Alongside the studios, they offer workshops, connect artists with local businesses, hold events, talks and exhibitions, and contribute to the growing contemporary art scene in Birmingham. 

With so much going on it’s great to see them working with Zoe Robertson from Dual Works on their latest exhibition, Jims is a site specific installation has been created to engage audiences by offering an immersive experience which has been designed to enable participants to physically interact with and “wear” the space.

You need to book ahead for Jims are there is a 4 person maximum timed entry here’s the link but you can visit the rest of gallery without booking.

open 23/24 November the gallery is just 4 minutes away from Dual Works and Pavlov Ceramics

Aiming High

Mountains, skiing and tradition are some of the influences used by The Little Workshop to create affordable silver jewellery.

“In the early morning before the sun has had a chance to rise above the beautiful peaks, the snow has this glistening, shimmering light that is crisp and sparkly.” The textured pendants in the collection perfectly reflect this special light.

Handmade, using traditional jewellery techniques and tools, passed down from generation to generation whilst The Little Workshopp is one of the newest members of the Jewellery Quarter Open Studios family they are certainly already telling the story of their art.

A love of the the mountains is also reflected in the studio location which is on the top floor, be prepared for steep stairs but just like climbing up a snowy peak once you get there the view is fabulous.

Open 23/24 November 11-16

Resident Gems

Its been a busy year for Rhiannon Lewis who has completed a masters in business at BCU alongside running her jewellery practice.

Rhiannon designs and hand makes all of her jewellery from her own studio and workshop. Working predominantly in gold and silver, Rhiannon uses bold recurring forms of arcs, curves and teardrop shapes, creating striking and elegant jewellery. A qualified gemmologist Rhiannon incorporates the highest quality gemstones in her jewellery, using various cuts to reflect the graphic lines featured in her designs. Each piece is made to the highest standard with the precious metals treated to a matte surface finish.

Rhiannon is currently artist in residence at The School of Jewellery based at Birmingham Assay Office bringing her skills and knowledge to the students based there alongside continuing her practice.

Visit Rhiannon on 23/24 November to see her latest collections, talk gems or commission a piece of fine jewellery with considered stones.

One ring to rule them all

Whilst many designer makers work alone in their workshops the way they were trained is quite different. The School of Jewellery has been training jewellers since 1890. Originally set up by the trade itself to create additional training it has remained on the same site in Vittoria Street since then. But if you look closely at the map you will see that this time for Jewellery Quarter Open Studio there are two sites. Yes “the school” as we know it around here is now in two buildings in the Jewellery Quarter.

The School of Jewellery is part of Birmingham City University and they have an open day in 24th November this ties in well with Jewellery Quarter Open Studios (we planned it!). On 24th at the new St Paul’s site you will be able to learn about the postgraduate offer whilst being part of their opening ceremony. Open from 11am there will be speeches at 3pm and an official opening event. It’s really an exciting time to see the school expand and to hear first hand about their ambitions for the future.

The original site in Vittoria Street with its traditional Birmingham red brick facade holds a warren of making spaces. Whether your interests lie in horology, fine jewellery or enamel there is something to view and learn. As well as taking part in the BCU open day on 24th this space will also be open on 23rd with demonstrations, workshops and the chance to see the building from the inside, it’s quite different to what you would expect!!

Many of the designer makers in the Jewellery Quarter started their career at the school so a visit to see the biggest open studio of them all is a must!

Vittoria Street open 23/24 , St Paul’s open 24th only

Controlled heat

Chloe Minihane Slater of Spearworks Jewellery trained in the UK and Cyprus. Inspired by structure and organic forms co-existing balance.

Her signature reticulation techniques, geometric patterns and pyramid shapes highlight this tipping point in a contemporary fashion. Reticulation in jewellery making is a heat based technique that creates ripples and ridges across the surface of the silver. Working with a flame and a natural material means that sometimes the results can be unpredictable its this knowledge and how to articulate the effects that gives the jewellery its flowing but yet controlled edge.

The addition of exquisite pearls, amethyst and jade creates a full stop in the textured silver landscape. Truly beautiful accessible pieces.

Chloe states that ‘The enjoyment of handmade is one that I always cherish’ and a visit to the studio on 23 and 24th November will provide you with an insight into the techniques she uses and how pattern and shape informs her practice.

The studio is listed as having an address on Warstone Lane but the entrance is on Vittoria Street just up from The School of Jewellery. The workshop will be clearly marked, Spearworks shares the space with Charlotte Lowe who we featured earlier in our blogs.

Do you Keum-boo?

Sometimes less is more, a change in texture, a change in metal can give jewellery a considered effect. The process of Keum-boo (an ancient Korean gilding technique) employed by Katherine Campbell-Legg Does just that.

Considered processes create jewellery that doesn’t shout but almost demands a closer look. Texture and different finishes create further interest. It’s interesting to watch Katherine work as the placement of gold seems to be intuitive gaining the best from the metals.

A founding member of Centrepiece Katherine has helped and supported many designer makers over the years, as well as teaching at The School of Jewellery. During the summer Open Studios event Katherine invited Artists in Residence from the School of Jewellery to exhibit in her traditional jewellery workshop, a great opportunity and very generous to those early career makers.

A great way to see a designer maker who has made a career of process and practice whilst supporting others.

A Stitch in Time

Tina Francis Tapestry

Working with stitch gives you a different perspective on time, Tina Francis measures her days in inches not hours. Using second hand wool in her stitched work Tina continues the history of those that used the wool before her.

Unable to blend colours like a painter Tina relies on resonance to bring depth to her work. Colours that maybe have no place together soon fall into line when part of a larger design.

Tapestry needlepoint kits are where Tinas heart lies, bold bright design with a touch of 1970S caravan mean that these kits look great in today’s modern homes. Over the last year Tina has been writing a book on Bargello stitching and so many of her new kits and designs use this fast growing long stitch.

Tina believes that “craft builds community” and so runs workshops to share her skill from her Jewellery Quarter studio, a beautiful space where the warmth comes from the people as within it as much as the colour that surrounds it.

Open 23/24 November entrance is on the junction between Vittoria Street and Regent Place.

Circling Architecture

JAD Jewellery

After graduating from Sheffield Hallam University, Julia returned to the Midlands to set up her business in Birmingham’s historic Jewellery Quarter.

Julia hand makes delicate contemporary jewellery, finished to a high quality. Taking Inspiration from the surrounding architecture Julia creates elegant forms by layering curved lines perfect for holding precious gemstones. Julia’s new collection shows varying combinations of circle clusters, set with precious gemstones to inject colour and sparkle in to the jewellery.   We really love the glow that stones give to this new collection.

Julia also offers a bespoke service, working closely with customers to create personal one-off pieces. This is often a special gift for a loved one, engagement rings and bridal jewellery.

As well as opening up her studio for Jewellery Quarter Open Studios Julia will also be exhibiting with Centrepiece at their annual winter show, this year the show takes place in The Rep whilst the Symphony Hall undergoes building work in the foyer.

New collection

Environmental Elements

Elizabeth Ann Norris Jewellery

After a 16 year career in environmental science Elizabeth Ann Norris decided to follow a passion for design and train as a jeweller. The influences of their former career can be seen in the shapes and textures found in the silver pieces that won Lux Life magazine best eco jewellery brand in 2018.

Luxury in the everyday is something that Elizabeth Ann looks to put into every piece of jewellery “My jewellery aims to bring an ‘everyday extravagance’ to the wearer.“

As well as continuing to create wearable nature inspired pieces Elizabeth Ann also runs one to one jewellery making workshops in the Jewellery Quarter. Traditional skills using traditional tools and techniques means that students Gain a well rounded experience with skills that will last a lifetime.

Visit Elizabeth Ann Jewellery in the workshop space behind Artisan Alchemy on 23 and 24 November to see and learn how multiple careers can create beautiful results

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