Review of Glisten by RBSA Volunteer, Katie Loewy

13 December 2012

Full of sparkling stones and sumptuous precious metals, Glisten is the perfect contemporary craft exhibition for Christmas; but all is not as it seems, for among the shining gold and silver it is full of innovative, modern twists.

These are just three of my favourites among many:

Craig Macauley has built an impressive repertoire of beautiful work from a chance occurrence. His work utilises the properties of nylon monofilament strands, creating the effect of dew drops on gossamer threads. These delicate forms are layered together to create striking, statement jewellery. To me, Craig Macauley’s work is a perfect example of how often unregarded materials can be combined to create something precious.

By contrast, the work of Amy Keeper uses the traditional beauty of silver and gold.  Her work tells stories of days gone by, remembered with a fond nostalgia. In her Vintage Postcard collection she has sought to reinvent the cameo using modern, cutting edge technology. It is this juxtaposition of old and new which makes her work so appealing to me.

There is a wonderful simplicity to the work of Rhiannon Lewis. Her sweeping, arced forms draw in the viewer’s eye to their muted detail. Rhiannon’s work is elegant and accessible, modern and yet timeless. Their subtle shapes belie the complexity of making, as the most simple forms can often be the most difficult to execute. It is this finesse and attention to detail that I most appreciate about Rhiannon’s work.

I have barely scratched the surface of the breadth of work on display in Glisten. From jewellery to ceramics and decorations, there is bound to be something to suit every taste and every budget.

Review by Katie Loewy                                                                            Volunteer Weekend Gallery Assistant                                                           Third year student at School of Jewellery, Birmingham City University


Craig Macauley