Establishing an Individual Identity

Following on from my formative assessment, I have done a lot of thinking, really trying to break down and get to the core of what direction I want my MA to travel in.

As much as I am concerned with the assessment criteria, it’s fundamental for me as a mature student giving up work that I simply enjoy this explorative year. That doesn’t mean that I am not taking my studies seriously, quite the opposite considering the risks I have taken to be here. I am so lucky to have this opportunity, I just don’t want to lose sight of the holistic picture and perhaps the right question for me to be mulling over is; What platform do I want my MA to become?

During my assessment the topic arose again, that so many established contemporary jewellers before me have and are tackling themes of sentimentality, whilst also incorporating found artefacts. So, how will I make sure my work stands apart and marks an individual identity.

I start by spending some time looking at the work of Bettina Speckner. I am completely enamoured, I want to own a piece of her jewellery, NOW! In Speckner’s work I see so many qualities I am attempting to approach. Her use of found artefacts, photographs, traditional vase forms and enamel, the framing and layering for me gives way to a haunting feeling of melancholy. Speckner herself doesn’t see any emotional attachment to the photographs, simply treating the images as if they were gemstones, beautifully framing and mounting her material. Speckner’s work often includes traditional precious gemstones, I am intrigued by this, as it doesn’t appear to be a nod towards the traditional hierarchal values of materials but instead confirmation of her skill and attention to detail.


Despite a reticence to social media, my reflective practice and blogging over the past 2 weeks has been so valuable in clarifying and cementing my ideas and focus. In reviewing Bettina Speckner’s work I understand how I want my own audience to engage with my jewellery – So they feel like they will be wearing a piece of history, unlocking and framing the provenance.

There is always a little fear that your own ideas are silly or even laughable. But looking around at similar artists work, I must draw confidence that at least some of my ideas are workable and on the right lines. I have life and industry experience, the more I experiment in the studio instilling this maturity into my work, I am confident that an individual artistic identity will emerge, it’s just going to take time and my main objective is to enjoy the journey.

One thought on “Establishing an Individual Identity

  1. Yes, this is beginning to make sense to me. Enjoy the experience and have faith that you are well rooted with industry and professional experience.


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