Anna Gordon introduces the specialist programmes of silversmithing and jewellery design.
Our reasons for decorating the body are wide-ranging and complex and the wearing of jewellery (shell beads) is the earliest recorded form of modern human behaviour, dating back over 100,000 years. Historically, people have expressed themselves through relatively superficial body adornment to extremely sophisticated symbols as a means of communicating the concept of position, rank, status, etc.
Contemporary studio jewellers continue to challenge perceived boundaries and use the artefact as a way of defining a personal response to social and cultural issues such as gender, relationships politics, and the environment. Similarly, silversmiths explore this interaction between fine metalworking and ideas, through the vehicle of the functional domestic object.