SHIMARA CARLOW

My jewellery has been inspired by natural forms, primarily seed pods and I have created a body of work based on pod like structures. I use sterling silver, 18ct gold , silk paper and gum nuts to create my jewellery. Collections include "Daisy", "Acorn Cup", "Acorn Cup Wrap" and "Silver Acorn Cup Wrap". These pieces are constructed from individual acorn cup  and daisy units. The cups are assembled to hang in long chains or set in to intricate wire structure that adorn the body.

Gum Nut Neckpiece, silver, 15cm diameter Photography by Keith Leighton

Artist’s statement

Born in a remote coastal area in West Cork, Southern Ireland in 1979, a childhood fascination for collecting shells, stones, mermaids purses', feathers and pods found along the sea shore has been the inspiration for my work. While studying at Glasgow School of Art, I experimented with hand made paper and silver as mediums for creating large sculptural pieces of jewellery and smaller silversmithing pieces. My work has always been very tactile and organic and the use of paper enhances this tactility and also brings a light translucent quality to the pieces.

I began a residency at Bishopsland Workshops in South Oxfordshire in 2002, where I spent two years. While creating work for the ‘Silver Sparks’ Exhibition at Somerset House, in 2003, I had the opportunity to experiment with larger scale silversmithing. My silversmithing range is all based on pod vessels; I create small and large pod vessels, bowls, carafes and tableware. I use fine silver and 24ct gold to create these pieces, which are all hand raised, form flat sheets of metal. I use hammers and mallets to add surface texture and decoration to the pieces, and acid to take the silver surface back to its natural white state. The vessels are constructed to be free standing and off centre, giving them a fluid natural quality. I have created silk paper models that are viewed and exhibited alongside their silver counterparts.

Pair of Gum Nut Vessels, fine silver and gold plate, 5cm tall 3.5cm dia.

While at Bishopsland I also created a range of silver and 18ct gold jewellery. My jewellery has been inspired by natural forms, primarily seedpods and I have created a body of work based on pod like structures. I use silver, 18ct gold and silk paper to create my jewellery, which is constructed from individual acorn cup and daisy units assembled to create both large and small scale pieces of jewellery. The cups are assembled to hang in long articulated chains or set in to intricate wire structures that adorn the body.

Following a recent trip to Australia, I have created new ranges of both silversmithing and jewellery inspired by my visit. These include “gum nut” clusters of small pod and leaf vessels using 18ct gold, fine silver, oxidised silver and gold plate. My new jewellery collection includes “gum nut”, neckpieces, rings and earrings constructed from both silver and real gum nuts; “picture”, a selection of pendants and brooches using wrapped wire and small acorn cups assembled in a silver frame; “honesty”, whitened and reticulated silver ovals, which resemble honesty leaves, constructed in to long articulated neckpieces and bracelets.

I have also developed both my silver and my 18ct gold “wrap rings” to include precious stones such as diamonds, pink sapphire, aquamarine and pink and green tourmaline. I currently have a studio in London where I work and sell my jewellery and silversmithing pieces both nationally and internationally through a selection of galleries, shops, fairs and to commission.

Further Images

Silk paper and Silver dome Bangle

Silk paper and Silver dome Bangle

Gum Nut Rings

Gum Nut Rings

Oval Dome Articulated Neckpiece

Oval Dome Articulated Neckpiece


Set of 3 Wrap Rings

Set of 3 Wrap Rings

line of stone rings

line of stone rings

18ct gold and steling silver wrap rings with diamonds, aqua marine and pink sapphire

set 5 xs acorn with diamonds

set 5 xs acorn with diamonds

18ct gold set of small acorn cup rings with diamonds


5 strand oval dome neckpiece

5 strand oval dome neckpiece

Sterling silver and 18ct gold large oval dome neckpiece

Gum Nut Bangle

Gum Nut Bangle

Sterling silver gum nut bangle

Exhibitions


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