Monday – Gun Day

Concluding my research into guns that killed in the USA on January 1st, 2017

An enormous big THANK YOU to everyone who has got in touch from locations all over the USA in repose to my call for containers to help this research project take concrete form. I have almost half the objects I am seeking, with 41% of the places claimed. If you are in, or know people nearby, the following as-yet unclaimed places (a number next to the place indicates I need that more than one objects from that place), I will send you a newly made limited edition piece of jewellery in exchange for your item. Shoot me an email (with a pic of the object if you can) and then send the container here:

Melissa Cameron
2212 Queen Anne Ave. N. #412
Seattle WA 98109

See the original post for more details, and I need the objects ASAP as my deadline is looming…!

List of places still to be claimed for the container-jewel swap

/// Now, back to the last 10 guns

Twenty-five year old Jeffrey Pope was shot in Meridian, Miss. before 5am on New Years Day 2017. After an investigation Aundre Rashaun Tubbs handed himself into police on February 27 after a warrant was made for his arrest earlier that day.

Tubbs was later arrested in connection with a later fatal shooting in Meridian,  at which time it was reported that for his January 1st crime:

Meridian City Court Judge Robbie Jones ruled at Tubbs’ initial hearing on March 2 that Tubbs couldn’t be held on bond until the next available grand jury and had to be released due to lack of evidence.

The dismissal, made during an initial hearing for Tubbs, does not rule whether Tubbs is guilty or not guilty. It determines if it is likely he committed the crime.

It is unknown if Tubbs is still a suspect in the ongoing police investigation into Pope’s death. What that same article could shed light on was the weapon:

The city’s evidence at the preliminary hearing consisted of conflicting statements on Tubbs’ wardrobe and testimony from Tubbs’ associates who said Tubbs carried a 40-caliber pistol. Forty-caliber shell casings were found near Pope’s body the night of the murder.

Back in February I nominated a .40 semi-automatic pistol for my list, the Smith & Wesson Military & Police. It happens to by the weapon I’ve used as Default Pistol 2, and owing to its origin (and title – though remember that S&W like to recycle familiar titles to help out with marketing ) it crops up for officer fired weapons too. We add an extra one now to make an unbroken run of three.

Default Pistol 2 – S&W M&P

Christina Anderson (30) was shot in Birmingham, Alabama, on January 1st at close to 10pm. Police went to the scene to find evidence of a shooting but no victim, as she had been taken it to a local emergency room by way of the car of a Good Samaritan.  She was transferred from Princeton Baptist Medical Center to UAB Hospital, where she died on the afternoon of the 2nd from her injuries, having not regained consciousness.

The mother of one had been walking down the street with a friend when a group approached and there was a discussion/altercation. Her friend then told her to run. She received a bullet while fleeing. Police investigating think that her killer may have been known to her.

No evidence of gun reported. DP 1

Ruger SR1911 – Default Pistol 1

In Cypress, Texas, we have an unnamed homeowner killing an unnamed guest at a 200 person invitation-only New Years celebration. The killer, a 48 year-old male said that his son was hosting the party.

 The homeowner claims it took a turn when a drunk guest refused to leave.

According to that homeowner, the guest began fighting with him, and he had no other choice but shoot.

The wounded guest was pronounced dead on scene.

It was also reported that the homeowner shot him to prevent further disruption.

The neighborhood in Cypress is Dry Creek Airport – a gated community with private airport, with many of the neighboring properties having hangers on their land. A witness said the the party was taking place in the hanger of the property.

My multiple searches did not reveal any further evidence of the weapon, or even the names of the killer or his victim. It is reported that the killer has been cooperative, and that a grand jury will decide if the man faces charges.

Needless to say, I’m incredulous at all of this. DP2

Default Pistol 2 – S&W M&P

Another event in which the killer and victim are not named, happened outside of The Crazy Leprechaun in Philadelphia, PA at about 2:15 am on New Years Day. A thirty-one year old security guard was attacked by a thirty-two year old man when the guard refused entry into the closed bar in order to use the bathroom. The man and his friends attacked with a Club steering security lock and the guard also received a knife wound, and so shot his weapon twice, hitting the man once in his back. He was taken to hospital but later died. The last reports imply that charges were unlikely as the guard acted in self-defense. No weapon named. DP 1

Ruger SR1911 – Default Pistol 1

[We reach the point now where we diverge from the Gun Violence Archive listing again, as this is where the judge from this post is currently placed in the GVA’s list. As it turns out, though, there’s a replacement, which seemingly got added to the list at position 28. Owing to other complicated shenanigans on my initial spreadsheet, you might be surprised to find that I did have this city in the ‘places’ list (above), and I was instead missing Richmond, Virginia. I hadn’t compensated for the Judge appearing twice, and I had incorrectly recorded our Richmond victim (only in the spreadsheet, he’s recorded correctly here) which, lucky for me, meant that I just had to ask one of my Virginian volunteers to switch their allegiances by a few miles. Phew.]

Kristen Zambo for RRstar.com on the 5th of may, 2018, writes:

A Rockford man acquitted of murder in a fatal New Year’s Day 2017 shooting was sentenced on Friday to 10 years behind bars — the maximum sentence — for having a gun the morning four men were shot at a Rockford hotel.

Sean D. Burks, 32, was accused of killing Joshua Jamerson during a party at Cliffbreakers Riverside Hotel & Conference Center, 700 W. Riverside Blvd. Jamerson, 34, of Rockford, and three other men were shot. Burks was charged with 39 counts of various offenses including first-degree murder, aggravated discharge, aggravated battery and unlawful possession of a weapon by a felon. He was convicted of the unlawful possession of a weapon by a felon charge.

On the 9th of March this year Burks was cleared on the murder charges. It is still unclear who shot Jamerson, who died from a gunshot wound to the back that penetrated his spine. Police were called when a gunfight broke out in a hallway of Cliffbreakers. No specific weapons were mentioned in any of the reports I saw. DP 2

Default Pistol 2 – S&W M&P

Brothers Tony Lashuan McRae (31) and Quanta Guan McRae (29) of Ashboro, NC, were killed around 2am on New Years Day when an argument between themselves and suspects Curtis E. Little (25) and Rodney Jontae Patterson (27) escalated. Both suspects were eventually arrested. The men are survived by their children – Tony has six, and Quanta, three.

The last mention of the suspects is in an article about Randolph County’s new district attorney, and his hopes to clear a bunch of cases that are holding many murder suspects in jail. Little and Patterson are in a queue of 13 that begins with crimes that took place in 2007.

Little was reported arrested by East Orange police in New Jersey on the 12th of January, while Patterson turned himself in soon after his warrant was issued. The police were reported as saying that the incident occurred after an “altercation in the parking during a New Year’s Eve celebration in a strip shopping center on Shana Lane.” No weapons were mentioned. DP 1+2, one for each of Little and Patterson.

Ruger SR1911 – Default Pistol 1
Default Pistol 2 – S&W M&P

Brandon Moles (22), was shot in Knoxville, Tennessee just before 10:00pm on New Years Day, outside an apartment building. Taken to UT Medical Center for treatment of his injuries, he later died. The reports say he was shot in a dispute over illicit drugs, but did not name any suspects, and further internet searches revealed few other details about Moles. DP1

Ruger SR1911 – Default Pistol 1

Adrian Anguiano (20) was shot in the neck outside an apartment complex in Redmond, Washington, around 2am on New Years Day 2017.

Redmond firefighters responded to a fire alarm set off inside a large recreation room at the complex at 16800 N.E. 39th Court around 2 a.m. Sunday, police said. They didn’t find a fire but determined the alarm was likely set off by people smoking indoors.

While on scene, firefighters heard what sounded like a gunshot and called for police backup and medical assistance. Arriving officers found Anguiano dead from a gunshot wound just outside the recreation building, where a party had been under way.

As of March 30th, police were still looking for his killer and were hoping to speak with some of his over 200 fellow-party-goers from that night.

Default Pistol 2 – S&W M&P

Trevis Stephens (33) was shot inside bar by man who had just been kicked out. The alleged shooter, John Word (35) banged on the door in an attempt to reenter the bar. He eventually got a gun and fired two shots into the bar, hitting Stephens as he was attempting to hide. Stephens later died in hospital.

Initially another man wanted for questioning turned himself in and was released, no longer considered a person of interest. A warrant was later issued for Word, after police released security-camera image of him, and hours after they arrested a woman with complicity to murder. He then turned himself in. Several articles later revealed that he has a long criminal history, and had been let out of his last term early.

Clairese Murray (35) was the woman charged, for allegedly acting as a getaway driver. There were no details of the gun in any of the reports I read. DP 1

Ruger SR1911 – Default Pistol 1

On New Year’s Day, police found 41-year-old Mark Fields with a gunshot wound to the neck around 3 a.m. on a porch on the 1900 block of West Williard Street in Tioga. He was pronounced dead at the scene at 3:03 a.m. Police later arrested and charged 36-year-old Cauras Garland, of the 5300 block of North Camac Street.

Once again, there is a real paucity of information on this incident. The above was the extent of the mention in an article about eight shootings in early January in The Inquirer, and the only article that I, or the Gun Violence Archive before me, could find. Thanks to a different Mark Fields being a fortune 500 player, it’s hard to get any more intelligence down that line of googling.  Cauras Garland is a unique enough name hereabouts, but the only other thing that comes up aside from Facebook is his telephone number.

On a lack of evidence, I close my investigations with one final DP2.

Default Pistol 2 – S&W M&P

 

The investigation is over. Begin the making.

Monday – Gun Day

More events from the 1st of Jan, 2017, from the Gun Violence Archive

No time for a deep dive today, so just a quick pair of guns:

Eighteen year old Kiara Tatum was killed when a man and a boy fired into a crowd standing outside in Memphis, TN, at about 8pm, from their vehicle. One report said that:

According to Memphis Police Department, 22-year-old Devante Robinson is accused of being one of two people inside a white car that fired shots at a crowd of people on Danville Circle. Kiara Tatum, 18, was killed in the shooting.

The other suspect was identified Tuesday as 17-year-old Jaylen Clayton.

Robinson is charged with first-degree murder, five counts of attempted first-degree murder, and using a gun during a felony.

An earlier report said that:

Clayton is charged with first-degree murder, five counts of attempted first-degree murder, and using a firearm during a felony.

Robinson was out on bond for reckless endangerment at the time, having been in another vehicle from which shots were fired (at children playing outside,) less than a week earlier. And as for Clayton, one of the latest articles I found said that the 17 year old was to be tried as an adult.

Between everything I read, a lot of weapons and ammunition were mentioned, but none named. Amazingly with two guns fired, and reportedly up to five other victims, Tatum was the only one found dead from a gunshot wound.  We’re up to DP 2 yet again, but I’ll add DP1 too, since the exact killer will probably go unidentified.

Default Pistol 2 – S&W M&P
Ruger SR1911 – Default Pistol 1

 

Monday – Gun Day

The half-way point of incidents of Jan 1st, 2017 is only visible in the rear view mirror. Small mercies.

Amongst other things, I’m reading The Gunning of America: Business and the Making of American Gun Culture by Pamela Haag, that I stumbled across in the Queen Anne branch of the Seattle Public Library. (A quick cheers for the humble public library.)

I wrote this quote down, not because it’s particularly relevant to what I’m researching, but owing to what I do, and really, who I am, it was very ‘sticky’.

P7: “Here, on the cusp of its demise, gunsmithing entered a golden age of craftsmanship. Gunmaking was similar to the high-end crafts of silversmithing and goldsmithing, clock-making and pewter works.”

That cusp was brought about by the opening of US government small arms manufacturers at Harpers Ferry and Springfield Armory (not to be confused with the much later Springfield Armory, Inc.), in the late 1700’s, which soon brought with it machine production/mass production of weapons for the US military. And as with most of the industrial revolution, mass production of small arms and ammunition spelled the end for the individual gunsmith. It’s interesting, especially in a series exploring the horrific outcomes of gun use, to think of guns before mass production and commoditization. When guns were hand made (and not always that well) for individuals, and parts were not interchangeable, making repairs as idiosyncratic as the weapons themselves.

Which, strangely, reminds me of this Beretta ad from a few years back that looks like a short film (actually, that’s how it was marketed.) I remember thinking at the time that they were really pushing hard on the craft angle to create desire for this object. I found, and still find, parts of it quite discomfiting,  because of its blatant appeal to my craft/artistic sensibilities – it’s seductively produced, and the weapon is being made with great craft ability, and seemingly, great care. That said, seeing it again now only just outside of the time period in which it was produced, there are several parts that would be laugh-inducing – if not for the actual object being so carefully stage-managed through it’s “production”.

/ / /  Back to the purpose of this post, and for the gun-spotters, incidents 38 – 42 netted no new guns being entered into my drawing archive today.

Tyler Matthew Balais (25) was shot with a hand gun by girlfriend  Kassandra Lorrenne Imbert (22) around 12:40am on the 1st.

From the Herald and News:

The pair had been drinking at a local downtown bar New Year’s Eve when they got into a fight. At one point Balais had locked Imbert out of their home at 617 High St. She later got in and was taking down Christmas decorations when he went upstairs and pulled out a pistol, threatening to kill himself, according to testimony. He and Imbert wrestled with the gun and it went off, shooting him in the head.

The bullet was found lodged in the ceiling, according to Imbert’s defense attorney, Mark Costello.

It was not the first time Balais had threatened suicide. In almost the same circumstances, he had been fighting with a former girlfriend and they had wrestled over the same gun. It went off, but no one was injured, Costello said.

In September Imbert eventually pled no contest to negligently causing his death and received a sentence of five years probation. As to reports, it was a handgun – and we’re up default Pistol 1.

Ruger SR1911 – Default Pistol 1

Christian Rosales (21), was shot when leaving a New Years party with friends around 2am. From KSBW8:

A man approached them asking for change for a $20. When the group said they didn’t have change, the man aimed a gun and replied, “Well that’s too bad homies cause you gotta give me everything you got,” Torres said his brother recalled. “He was pointing the gun at everyone.”

Rosales attempted to overpower the gunman to protect his friends, Torres said.

Rosales was shot once in the stomach, and died at the scene. The gunman fled.

“His courage saved my brother. He’s a hero,” Torres said.

Salinas police Cmdr. Stan Cooper said no suspects have been identified in the killing, and no arrests were made. Cooper said some witnesses have come forward.

DP2

Default Pistol 2 – S&W M&P

Alonzo Cortez  (22) was hit by celebratory fire at about 12:15am on New Years Day. He was taken off life support at Tallahassee Memorial Hospital on Monday at 5:11pm. Officers investigating at the scene noted many people firing as well as fireworks going off well into the morning. Colquitt County Sheriff’s Office Inv. Chris Robinson said “We have no idea where it came from or what caliber.” This is our second accidental death after celebratory fire.

We’re back to Default Pistol one.

Ruger SR1911 – Default Pistol 1

There is really little known about the next double murder, other than that father and son were shot within minutes of one another outside their dwelling, and that neighbours didn’t react as quickly to the gunfire as they might have because they were used to hearing gunshots on New Years. Lavar Edwards, 39 and Dejuan Davis, 21 were shot at about 4am, soon after which Edwards was seen running back towards his home, bleeding profusely. Both died from their wounds. DP 2

 

Default Pistol 2 – S&W M&P

Another one from the Archive with precious little detail. The Vernon Parish Sheriff’s Office responded to a call from Anacoco made around 7pm on New Years Day. They discovered Calvin Stubbs, aged 30, and Norma Ross, aged 48, both dead, who witnesses told them were shot by Derrick Ross (36), Norma’s nephew. Derrick was later found dead near the property, from what the Coroner’s Office determined was a self-inflicted gun shot wound. DP1

Ruger SR1911 – Default Pistol 1

Explaining Monday – Gun Day

Why am I still ranting about guns? Explanation finally comes 16 episodes in.

**HERE LIVES THE MOTHER OF ALL TRIGGER WARNINGS**

There’s been a lot of news about guns in the last week. Last Tuesday I filed this article away for inclusion in today’s regular post; the Guardian reported that Remington was filing for bankruptcy, due at least in part to what they had termed “‘The Trump slump.'” A friendly administration for the gun lobby, and gun owners, has spelled radically decreased sales for gun manufacturers. But then on Wednesday, in a turn-around that would give you whiplash were you researching anything other than gun violence in the US, there was a mass shooting at a school in Florida on Valentine’s day. The cycle begins again.

My Monday – Gun Day series began on the 9th of October, 2017, a week and a day after the largest mass shooting involving a single perpetrator in US history had taken place in Las Vegas (all the modifiers are to remind us that there have been larger massacres in US history, usually racially motivated like that at Wounded Knee, or the Colfax Massacre, which was perpetrated by white Southern Democrats against about 150 black men.)

Since then, across 16 posts (including this one) made on Mondays (US Pacific time), I’ve been sharing my research about guns, and more specifically, the guns used in the 63 incidents in which people were killed on January 1st, 2017. But why? Well, firstly, some backstory that might help to explain.

I began the Monday – Gun Day series with an introduction to my work Gun from 2013/14. To design the work I replicated the AR-15 knock-off (made by Remington) used in the Sandy Hook mass shooting of 2012, into which I incorporated facts and figures I had researched about that days killings, which was, at that time, the second most deadly mass shooting perpetrated by a single person ever in the United States. I was making a series of pieces that used the tools of war to make a statement about humanity’s continuing poor relationship with itself, which I entitled The Escalation Series. My use of this gun, with all of its associations, pointed out an additional fact; the other tools of war I made pieces about were designed for, and were chiefly only accessible to, organised armies. This weapon, designed for and known as as the M-16 in the US armed forces, was and still is far too easily accessible to regular citizens of this country.

I thought after The Escalation series, in which I made jewellery pieces that depicted the following weapons of war:

tank
cannon
arrow
fire arrow
sword
gun
rpg
drone
cartridges with Minié ball bullets
Lapua Magnum shells (sniper rifle shells) from Combat Paper
multiple caltrops

as well as 3 versions of HEAT, a work (pictured below) that shows the molten metal spatter and penetration of a HEAT missile through armoured tank steel, that my association with weapons was done for a while. My focus had made a gentle pivot which saw me making mosaics out of enamelled laser cut steel, with which I could write by turns gentle, piercing and witty messages in binary.

From the series HEAT, (1 of 3) 2015
Strike
9 wall-mounted panels (565mm x 565mm – 22 3/16″ x 22 3/16″)
Stainless steel, vitreous enamel. Image Melissa Cameron.
From the series HEAT, (1 of 3) 2015
Spatter
neckpiece (480mm x 480mcm – 19″ x 19″)
Stainless steel, vitreous enamel, titanium. Image Melissa Cameron.

 

Then two things happened. I had been recently juried into the Elizabeth R. Raphael Founder’s Prize, for which I am to make a work out of found materials, and on the 1st of October I decided to do a stock-take of all the found objects I have lying about in my study, the same day that the current most deadly mass shooting perpetrated in modern times (this seems to be accepted as anything since 1950,) by a single shooter, happened.

Having memorialised a single-person shooting before, I did not want to go down that route again. I’ve read a lot of stories about Sandy Hook, and will continue to do so the rest of my days (it’s reportage on unjustified killings of defenseless white children in a 1st world nation, and thanks to our social/political/class climate, we will find it in the media for the foreseeable future,) and it’s a lot. And I don’t want to have to repeat myself.

I have other things that horrify me just as much as 59 deaths by one person in a day. 59 deaths on any day is a pretty shit day by most of the world’s standards, and I wanted a way to make that point. So I picked a day, New Year’s Day 2017, and got to work.

We know the weapons of the mass shootings because they get so much publicity. (The Guardian already has 3 pages of articles about last week’s shooting.)  [I’m getting cynical, which I usually try to banish from my writings, but it’s almost as if the amount of publicity is inverse to the amount of action that will be taken against the problem, despite the fact that I learned in another Guardian article linked to the Trump Slump article that, “Only 22 to 31% of Americans adults say they personally own a gun.” And what they call “gun super-ownership” is actually concentrated to 3% of the population.] Anyway, digressions aside. We know so little about the other gun deaths that happen in this country because everyone is so inured by the frequency of the killings that everyday gun violence doesn’t make it to the national news. But the weapons used by the mass murderer are studied ad nauseam, so of course we learn about the guns, the shells, the alternate weapons, the victims, the scene, the police department response, the slow and painful moving on.

But what about all the the other shootings? Which guns are responsible there?

Hopefully in just a few years time the gun lobby will face a shakedown that will be compared to that experienced by the tobacco lobby, and their unconscionable actions will be pored over in as much details as the lives of those involved in the Sandy Hook massacre. For right now, I’ve learned that there are great resources for finding out who was killed, when, and where, and more loosely, how. What’s becoming clear is that there is no focus put on the gun responsible, nor its manufacturer. In any other arena, should over 30,000 people get killed by any single type of object in a year, we, the public, would cry out for all the statistics on the make, model, age and condition of the thing responsible.

Thus my research project; for each person listed as killed on the Gun Violence Archive on the 1st of January, 2017, I am finding out what make and model of gun killed them, (or my best estimation thereof,) to draw a picture of what that gun looked like.

And when I have a picture of those weapons, I’m going to make a wearable piece of jewellery that incorporates every f*cking one of them.

Monday – Gun Day

Monday is the day Melissa searches for the guns that killed the first 60 people in the United States in 2017.

Another Monday, another chance for the Department of Homeland Security staff to enjoy my ‘colourful’ internet search history. (Thanks to for reminding us that all legal US immigrants are now denied the protection of the First Amendment – you know, the one about free speech.)

But lets get this protest back on track, eh?

Emory Sharod Lewis was shot at around 1am on January 1st, 2017. He was found outside Andrew’s Discount Market. Two weeks later a 19 year old suspect, Branden Prioleau, was arrested. At this stage I can’t find conviction information, so I assume he is awaiting trial. Charleston City Paper reports that Lewis was shot with a .40 caliber round. Regular readers will not be surprised to find out that the .40 caliber is a round for a semiautomatic pistol. Turns out the .40 was developed by Smith and Wesson in 1990 to go into a pistol as the FBI wanted to phase out revolvers as they were too slow to reload but wanted to keep a minimum ammunition size (= payload) to stop the intended recipient.

The .40 caliber was developed by Smith and Wesson, and as it turns out that we’re up to the S&W M&P in our sequence of alternating pistols, so allocating the Default Pistol 2 to this crime is apt.

Default Pistol 2 – S&W M&P

Luz Rosado was shot around 3:45am in Hartford, Connecticut by her friend Ulises Robles, with a “black handgun”, according to the Hartford Courant. I can’t find any details of the Robles conviction, but he was arrested after a police officer, who happened to witness the argument that preceded the shooting, chased him on foot. As for the weapon, the Ruger SR1911 (Default Pistol 1) I originally drew (true fact, I inserted in my Autocad file as a reference raster image) was a black model.

Ruger SR1911 – Default Pistol 1

This next one hurts.

Regina Hernandez, 5, was shot and killed by 34-year-old Fidel Rodriguez-Canchola after he began firing shots into the ground outside to celebrate the New Year when the girl came out and walked into the line of fire. The weapon, a .22 caliber revolver, was retrieved on the other side of a fence at the location while the suspect made his way on foot. Once found, he was charged with, “Criminally negligent homicide, a class A misdemeanor.” according to the The News Courier.

He pled guilty to that crime in February, for which he faces a maximum of 1 year in jail. Once arrested for the shooting there was trouble establishing his credentials. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) were called in and it was established that Rodriguez-Canchola is an illegal immigrant, and thus was ineligible to hold a fire-arm legally. He was then arrested for the federal crime of illegal possession of a firearm with a maximum 10 year/$250,000 penalty. (Reporting from WAFF 48, an Alabama-based NBC affiliate.) He was due to be sentenced on the federal charge, to which he also pled guilty, on October 12th, but I have found no more information about the outcome.

Ruger Single Six .22 revolver

This is gun #15. I’m a quarter of the way there.

Drawing the Line @ Facèré in Seattle

Melissa is exhibiting at a group show at Facèré Jewelry Art in Seattle. Lecture and opening: Wednesday, May 3 at 4 and 5pm!

“Attempts to kill…” 2016

I’m really pleased to share the Drone works (half of which is in the image above) will be showing alongside the the Drawing the Line exhibition at Facèré Jewelry Art when it opens this Wednesday, May 3rd, in downtown Seattle. Come to the opening lecture from 4pm to hear me talk about the works in the show – the new additions to the Body/Politic series, and their progenitor, the Drone series.

May 3, 2017 – May 23, 2017
Lecture: Wednesday, May 3 at 4:00 PM
Reception: Wednesday, May 3 at 5:00 PM

social unit

Melissa is showing a collection of new works in the Drawing the Line exhibiiton at Facèré in Seattle, starting May 3rd.

social unit*
2017

stainless steel, vitreous enamel, titanium

Introducing the ‘social unit’ pieces \/|- . Once again the binary sequence (rendered using enamel in different skin tones) in each neckpiece spells out the same two words, ‘social unit’. The unfurled pieces (in the image social unit *) give little hint to their original format.

These works will be on show at Facèré Jewelry Art in the exhibition Drawing the Line which opens on the 3rd of May in downtown Seattle. Come to the opening lecture from 4pm to hear me talk about these and their friends, the Body/Politic  and Drone works.

#PlateGlassExhibition

#PlateGlassExhbition and other upcoming ventures.

works by Danielle Embry, Sharon Massey, Kat Cole, Nicolette Absil and Laura Eales

The adequately-oiled machine that is my studio practice has had some time out from being even that reliable of late (for many reasons, a great one being fixing the moisture problem that normally creates a less-than ornamental pond in my studio over the winter months,) so right now I’m busy finishing works and preparing images for two upcoming exhibitions that begin in early May – from the 3rd there’s a group show called Drawing the Line at Facere Art Jewelry in downtown Seattle and then opening on the 4th there’s Seattle Metals Guild and the Wawona –  at Northwind Arts Center in Port Townsend.

It’s too early for image spoilers on those (as in, I’ve not taken them yet..!), but if you are keen to get a fix of new works, check out the hashtag #PlateGlassExhibition on Instagram, for a bunch of new works in development by the 29 invited artists of the Plate Glass exhibition. This is the one that I’m curating for the Enamellist Society and will be shown during their biennial conference, this year in Gatlinburg, Tennessee at Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts in August, from the 2nd – 9th.

Several of the artists are new to the format of the plate, though needless to say I think they’re all doing an amazing job, and I truly cannot wait to reveal every single one of them to y’all in August. Until then we’re all lucky to have these images to marvel at and ponder over.

Laser Cutting

Laser cutters. I know you want them, well here they are. Be kind to them, they are pretty great.

Clouds - One Design

In response to a pretty consistent question, I’m going to share with you my laser cutters. I know, it’s either a very brave or completely overdue move…

OBLIGATORY CAVEAT: both of these companies will only deal with you if you have a drawing capable of being machine-read. Which means, you need to have a drawing in vector format (Autocad .dxf or .dwg is most common, [if in, say, Rhino, I’d imagine that’s a ‘save as’ option] or perhaps an Illustrator file saved to .eps – I have had some cutters deal very well with Corel Draw [and if you remember playing/working with that program, you’re older than you look!]) before they will look at the file to quote you a price. Real talk: if you need help with that, I’m not your person. I dream in AutoCad (*not actually true, but admit it, I almost had you?!) so I’ve never had to outsource that part of the process.

The drawing part is essential as the quote that either of these companies will want to give you is based on the machining time – which is a calculation on how long it will take the laser to trace the lines you have drawn. Part of that calculation is an allowance made for the thickness/hardness the material. For instance, working in wood is normally faster, ergo cheaper, while working in 1.5mm/0.59″ stainless steel is going to challenge some lasers, and therefore be more expensive.

These two cutters are best for very low tolerance work; they are precise, as I like to be able to put a .5mm hole in the middle of a 1.5mm channel (see above). If you’re looking for less precision, take a look at other options, as it’s likely that there are cheaper local people who can do your thang. TBH, that might even be a challenge for one of these people to do neatly, but I know their machine is more or less capable.

One Design - #07 Ring 01Image of Melissa Cameron, 2014

 

Ok, no more pfaffing:

Starting at the top – and I mean in terms of price, and from the image at top: expensive, great quality, medium turn time, will source and cut low carbon steel (for enameling)and titanium along with their regular lineup of metals: Laser Services USA

My preference for wood and mass production:
Cheap, medium quality (some deburring required with metal, depending on the cut), stainless steel and a huge array of default non-metal materials and with the option of very, very fast: Pololu

Please be nice to them, y’all, I want to be able to show my face at either of their establishments (or rather, web portals) well into the future 😉

Co:operation Garnish

Cooperation, collaboration, unification. By makers who are about 6 or 7 hours flying time from one another.

Cooperation GARNISH pattern- tests

A little while back I posted on Crafthaus, waaaay down in the termite mound somewhere, that I that I’ve teamed up with another maker to have a bash at this exhibition. What exhibition? Read on…

Sean Macmillan got in contact with me to see if I would be interested in collaborating with him for the Co:operation GARNISH show, being curated by Rachel Timmins and Brigitte Martin. After some initial discussions about our suitability (it’s meant to be a collaboration of unlike forces aimed at building links between a fairly disparate jewellery community,) we decided that a large-sculpture-making, techno-challenged academic in Slippery Rock and a delicate-jewellery-making, CAD-using, basement-studio-hermit from Australia was about as different as we needed to be!

True to my roots, I got straight into drawing a pattern in Cad, which we had both agreed, over a long text-message conversation, needed to be ‘lacy’. And true to his, Sean produced a mobile-phone image of a model that was clearly hand sketched before being cut-out, made out of computer-paper and masking-tape, with felt-tip-marker line-work clearly visible across the pages.

Cut to a few months later, and here are some images of the sample squares of pattern that I’ve had cut, checked out and then sent off to Sean to play with. (Notice the miscommunication with the laser-cutters resulted in the lead-ins being on the wrong side of the line – we’re after the sheet more than the ‘drop-outs’ in this instance as that’s what Sean will work with.)

Next time, what I’ve done with those drop out parts – the pieces I’m calling the pattern’s internals…

Cooperation GARNISH pattern- tests Cooperation GARNISH pattern- tests Cooperation GARNISH pattern- tests