Festive Focus – Contemporary Craft for Christmas
15th November – 24th December 2014
Opening Reception with the Mayor of Lisburn City Council
Saturday 15th November, 2pm – 4pm
17th November – 24th December 2014
Tuesday – Saturday, 11am – 5pm
An exhibition of contemporary Irish craft with work available to buy from:
Hannah Grainger is a designer specializing in woven textiles, having just graduated from the Belfast School of Art. An instinctive pattern maker, many of the references for her designs are found in organic structures. Another focus of her practice is utilizing unusual natural materials to dye her yarns, and incorporating core interests in trend and colour analysis.
Hannah is currently working as a personal assistant for luxury textile designer, Jude Cassidy. Also as the guest coordinator for R-Space Festive Focus exhibition she has a great desire to see the boundaries between art, design and craft blur through unique presentations of contemporary craft.
Dr Sarah McAleer
Dr SARAH McALEER is an award winning contemporary jewellerysmith with over 20 years experience. Boasting a varied career-path, she wears the ‘hat’ of goldsmith, jewellery historian, researcher, lecturer, curator and writer.
Originally from Northern Ireland, McAleer is proud to be a graduate of Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s famous Glasgow School of Art and she holds a PhD from the prestigious Royal College of Art in London (1993 – 2003). In 2004, McAleer established Gold-Digger 79 – a Northern Ireland gallery exclusively dedicated to contemporary jewellery. From 2008 – 2011 McAleer lived in Western Australia where she gained experience of the Australian jewellery industry, before returning back to Northern Ireland in 2012.
Currently McAleer is focusing on reinforcing her unique brand identity. She concentrates on developing her successful client commission work and production ranges whilst experimenting with her studio-based practice.
Lotus de Wit
I am a jeweller based in County Down. I create small sculptures, silverware and jewellery. Current influences include entomology, origami and illustration. There is a divide in my ranges between abstract, geometric jewellery and whimsical, small sculptural pieces. Indulging both these themes creates a balance of my eclectic inspirations. The silverware ranges include tea infusers, strainers and teaspoons. The jewellery ranges are predominantly made using precious metals. I enjoy translating ideas into pieces to adorn the body.
I am a B.A Hons graduate in 3D design, specialising in jewellery. I love to create eye catching clever designs that people love to wear. A wide variety of materials are used in my work, both precious and non- precious metals and I keep a close eye on up and coming trends but am not dictated to by fashion. I simply mix elements of good design with new influences to create an original collection of work.
“As a contemporary applied artist, I create Jewellery beyond its normal parameters. Influenced by the language of European contemporary Jewellery, I am inspired by the blurring boundaries between craft and art. I use a bold colour palette to highlight everyday objects and attract the viewer to the simplicity of their design and function. Through questioning and my exploration of Jewellery, I invite the Public to challenge their perceptions of it.”
A life changing moment came with a diagnosis of arthritis in my wrist and hands. I had to give up work as I needed strong hands to be a panel beater. Suddenly my life had changed direction and it was hard to see where I could go next. Going back to art was my therapy, this led me to complete a degree in fine & applied art .
Making can physically be a challenge, but the journey can be as worthwhile as the outcome. Solving and experimentation are large parts of my practice. I remake iconic objects which have played a part in my life.
At present I am exploring making instruments using clay. Being able to make music is one of life’s great achievements. The pleasure for me is hearing my ceramic instruments being brought to life by musicians around the world. Sometimes we have to give up what we love, the last motorcycle crash made the decision for me, so along came the ceramic helmets, it’s easy to think you are invincible but it’s easy to get broken, as with all my work they are fired in my hand-built kiln with wood and waste engine oil.
Jewellery is personal
…and so, I am determined to encourage women to be expressive, confident, contemporary and direct in how they wear their jewellery.
It is part of your image, your identity
Materials are the language in my work.
Colour, contrast and feel are the essence of qualities that surpass traditional material values and aim for unique and accessible objects of our time.
Kerrie Hanna (b.1990) is a figurative sculptor, recently graduated from the University of Ulster with First Class Honours. Her work is centred around the expressive potential of the face. Quietly her figures sit and observe the room, and as we observe them we are tempted to draw our own emotional narratives from them.