Danaca Enamel Workshop 2

My enamel practice for 2014 started with teaching a Saturday mini-workshop at a local jewellery studio here in Seattle. The owner of the studio, Dana, was holding this class for a bunch of her close friends and so most of the attendees were acquaintances, if not actual friends of mine.

So what was I to do when shenanigans ensued?

kiln forks at 2 paces...
kiln forks at 2 paces…

Luckily they all worked as hard as they played – here’s some of their test firings on steel can, regular mild steel and Thompson’s Low Carbon Steel test squares. Dana even made a pair of ‘potato chip’ earrings, firing the beige onto ovoid sections of the rippled steel can.

Montage of samples produced
Montage of samples produced

It was also my first opportunity to test the Thompson GC-16 Cobalt Blue, otherwise know as their ground coat. It worked really well, though a couple of people remarked to me that they actually preferred the colour of the clear enamel on the raw steel and so would probably stick to that as a base coat. I’m inclined to agree, but I’m happy to have some of the GC-16 in my supplies for more stubborn pieces of recycled steel.

As a real test for the ground-goat I slathered a layer over a piece of low carbon steel that I had not sandblasted, only washed with some detergent and scoured it with a pretty crummy piece of Scotchbrite. It actually fared better than I expected.

Thompson GC-16 fired on a low carbon steek square. Not great, but I didn't sandblast it first, so not bad...
Thompson GC-16 fired on a low carbon steek square. Not great, but I didn’t sandblast it first, so not bad…

January Deadlines 2014

New year, new Deadlines.

***This month’s new additions*** (rendered with Pantone’s much-touted “colour of the year” Radiant Orchid, especially for Aran Galligan whose jewellery show is ON NOW! [btw, it’s HTML: B163A3 y’all] )

Are you in The Britain? Do you want to be? Might I suggest you sign up to the benchpeg newsletter? They’ll send you a much more professional newsletter with this kind of material, weekly.

Opportunities with deadlines

*** Radical Jewelry Makeover wants your old jewellery/jewelry! From now til Feb 14th, get it to Richmond ASAP! MAIL-IN DONATIONS CAN BE SENT ANYTIME:
Mail to: Susie Ganch/RJM, VCU School of the Arts, 1000 West Broad Street, room 239, Richmond, VA 23284

Stephen F Austin University: Texas National 2014. Open art show to all in America. Entreis due 18th Jan 2014.

Arts Business Institute Scholarships sponsored by SNAG. “The Arts Business Institute’s 2014 Winter Workshop, taking place at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia on January 18-19, 2014.”

Womens Works 2014. Old Court House Arts Center on the Historic Town Square in Woodstock, Illinois. Due 19th Jan 2014.

*** Studio Rian de Jong | Amsterdam, Summer residency. Deadline for application: January 19th 2014

***Gioielli alternativi” (“Unconvetional Jewels”) at Abilmente Fair, Vicenza, Italy. Call for entries due 20th Jan 2014.


*** More Classes. I’m teaching Kiln-Fired Liquid Enamelling on Steel at Danaca Design again on the 25th and 26th of January, 10.30am – 5pm. Gonna demonstrate the basics of enamelling onto steel including surface preparation using the sandblaster. Hup hup!

Functional Art: The Wine Country Home exhibition open for US residents at Larson Gallery, Yakima, Washington. Submissions: January 25, 2014 (MST)

2014 The Alice Prize: National Contemporary Art Award – Australians only. Deadline Jan 31st, 2014.

2014 SNAG “Exhibition in Print: Animal Instincts” Deadline Jan 31st, 2014.

*** ONoff: An exhibition of makers that work ON and OFF the body. Juried by Susie Ganch. Deadline for submissions: January 19th, 2014. New extended deadline February 2nd, 2014 at midnight.

Passion to Perform… art competition which celebrates the success of Yamana Gold.” Deadline Feb 7th, unless they reach 1000 entries before that time.

LaGrange National XXVIII. Exhibition opportunity for US residents. Deadline Feb 11th, 2014.

Changing Hues: Color Embraced by Metalsmiths Around the World. Ganoksin online exhibition. They really wrote this: “We do not judge your design work, but we do reserve the right to refuse photographs of lesser quality.” Deadline Feb 15th, 2014.

Origomu: Master and Protégé Contest. Pair up with a demale someone who does not enjoy the same privileges as you, and submit your entries by Feb 15th 2013 to win cash prizes for you and your protégé.

*** RESOLUTELY AMBIGUOUS: Exhibit during SNAG 2014. Entry Fee: $25. Entry Due:  March 1, 2014.

*** Yavapai College Art Galleries are accepting proposals – the Gallery committee reviews submissions yearly in March and schedules exhibitions two years in advance. (I’m going say that means…) Deadline March 1 2013.

*** Haystack Summer Residency. Application deadline is March 1, 2014.

Houston Center for Contemporary Craft – Residency Program. March 1st, 2014.

Play That Funky Music ! A crafthaus Online Exhibition. March 15th, 2014.

*** 23rd Legnica International Jewellery Competition ‘CLASSIC’. Work to the theme, prizes ahoy! Deadline for sending works:  30th March 2014.

TOP Jewels – National Jewelry Design Exhibition, “A showcase featuring the very best artists working in the medium of jewelry design to educate the public about their craft.” USA only exhibition opportunity, entries through CaFE. Deadline April 11th 2014.

New Traditional Jewellery 2014. As a part of the SIERAAD arts fair in Amsterdam, this competition has taken ‘ CONFRONTATIONS’ as the 2014 theme. Registration due 1st June 2014.

Call for papers for c+de#7 (2015) NOW OPEN:“Landscape, Place and Identity in Craft and Design”. Guest Edited by Kay Lawrence. (c+de#7 = Craft and Design enquiry issue 7). The Call for Papers for this issue is now open and will close on 30 June 2014.

Rolling Opportunities

PORTFOLIO AND EXHIBITION PROPOSALS FOR LINCOLN CENTER ART GALLERIES – entry via CaFE, but instructions on the linked site (hint, scroll down).

The Peoria Art Guild. “Currently accepting submissions, and are sending out a call to artists, around the world and at all stages in their careers, to submit their portfolios for consideration.”

Commissioners’ Choice Invitational Lone Tree Arts Center.– entry via CaFE, but instructions on the linked site (hint, scroll down).

Contemporary Metal in Perth have updated their class timetable and there is some great stuff on offer. Check it!

Dallas County Community College District – Visiting Artist for our Art Metals Summer Workshop in Summer 2014.

Tributaries: Call for entries. The Metal Museum, in Memphis, has an ongoing call for exhibitions from emerging and mid-career artists. First deadline Feb 2013, for upcoming shows, and they keep applications on file for 2 years.

The Imperial Centre for the Arts + Sciences in North Carolina have a permanent exhibition call out, with shows booked 2-3 years in advance.

**** And finally ****

More huge props to Melbourne Jeweller for finding this Art Prize Website for Aussie artists and publishing it here with her monthly Calendar posts. It’s a good ‘un. Thanks Karen!

Categorized as Deadlines

Opening tomorrow night!

Works by Aran Galligan
Works from the collection of Bob Corson

SPAC Gallery
3 West Cremona
Seattle, WA
January 13-February 14
Opening Reception January 16th, 5-7:00pm

My buddy Aran Galligan is having a show just down the road from my place in Seattle. You should totally come and check it out. It looks awesome! (I know, I helped install it 😉 )

Enroll now!

Kiln-Fired Liquid Enameling on Steel!

I’m teaching another liquid enamel on steel class at Danaca Design over the weekend of the 25th and 26th of January (yes, fellow Australians, I’m working in Invasion/Australia Day, even when it’s on a weekend..!)

My last class went really well, or at least well enough for me to be invited back in the next teaching quarter, boom boom! But really, (I know, I was so high-larious there) I had a blast and the people in the class – all proficient enamelers already I might add – learned a little something and made many really interesting samples, so what more can you ask for?

I recently bought a copy of the Thompson Enameling Workbook which I have been studying with the aim of trying some enameling on titanium, so perhaps I’ll insert that material into this course? I’ll have to see how my attempts go… If you are interested in keeping up with all my progress with all things hot and glass-covered check this page out. I update it regularly.

Sup Brooch

I made some brooches recently, specifically for the Sup Brooch call out that I was pretty loudly beating the drum about in the usual Deadlines posts. The images selected for the show (as well as the unselected pieces) have gone online and the book of the online exhibition will be published soon. Yup, I’m not in it, and nope, that doesn’t worry me. Once I finished my shoot, at an unnamed South Lake Union office location, I knew that what I had recorded was not what some of my contemporaries were up to, and if it were up to me, I’d have had no choice but to have to go for their images over mine, too. I’m actually more proud of my work (in this case the work is the images) than I expected to be, and seeing the images that made it in, I know why I’m not amongst ’em.

Despite some misgivings about making jewellery for men, again, (this is the 3rd instance in which I’ve made jewellery to this brief and I wonder at it being reductionist as well as an attempt at a panacea for what could be a much more nuanced discussion through jewellery objects, but more on that later…) I took the advice gleaned over a dinner party, the core of which was that jewellery for men must be, at the least, dual-purpose. (Now I’m not sure if the whole conversation was ironic or post ironic, but we were dealing in broad types, if not proper stereotypes, in that discussion.)

Admittedly, I (possibly deliberately) misconstrued the advice, which implied, – or in fact may have even overtly stated – (we were well into the dinner party by the time this discussion was tabled) that men’s jewellery has to be multifunctional with hidden tools, or agendas or a purpose greater than ‘just’ jewellery.

Given my penchant for reused, recycled and generally re-appropriated existing objects, I got to a point early on where I realised that I was going to make tools into jewels. So I found 3 tools for the modern bloke (you know, ones that a soft-handed desk-jockey might actually handle in his day-to-day) and made them into brooches. At first glance you may, well, I’m not going to tell you what you think, but I will end this with saying that I have a bit more to say on this subject, so I’ll be back with Part II as soon as I finish thinking/writing it.

The tools:

Tools for Life - Hex Key, Bottle Opener, Bike Wrench. Melissa Cameron, 2013.
Tools for Life – Hex Key, Bottle Opener, Bike Wrench. Melissa Cameron, 2013.
Tools for Life - (L-R) Michael Martin, Sean Oczkowski, Bruce Cooper.
Tools for Life – (L-R) Michael Martin, Sean Oczkowski, Bruce Cooper.