In the current Metalsmith

There’s a one-page ad for a show I’m in, where my work has been butted up against Boris Bally’s. I’m pleased as punch!

I met Boris in Arizona at the SNAG conference in 2012, and when I did I thanked him for being an early-adopter of the internet. I would contend that his site was one of the first made by a jeweller/smith themselves. Back in those days I used to get much of my jewellery fix by visiting the Dazzle site, but that site was by nature more of a little taste rather than a big helping of each artist. Given that it’s advertising makers for the Dazzle shows, it was (and still is) an aggregate of jewellery makers/designers, with only a couple of images per person listed in alphabetical order, so I guess it was pretty similar to what it is today – though now boasting about ten times the images. Having a dedicated website for your own work would soon become the norm, but in the early days people like Boris stood out for having consistently amazing photographs and adopting the new technology early. Back then I was grateful to see that other makers existed, in fact thrived, doing what is was that I wanted to do.

Enough reminiscing – here’s the ad!

cCC_ReRe_MetalsmithAd_1805_PRINT (2)(1)

Deadlines June 2014

You know the drill.

18th June – New NEWS: Note the corrected date on this call-out “New Necklaces: 500+ Designs from Around the World – image request for a book edited by Nicolas Estrada. Due 20th July 2014.”

Sorry if I scared you with the 20th of June date I had posted earlier (if it’s any consolation, I scared me too…). But hey, now you can use that extra time to make more work/get better photos/teach yourself to knit.


For recent CaFE entries I encourage you to see what is being offered by checking out their site and even signing up for the email updates.

Are you in The Britain? Sign up to the benchpeg newsletter, whydoncha? They’ll send you a much more professional newsletter with this kind of material, weekly.

*** This month’s new additions***

Opportunities with deadlines

My apologies – I just noticed some weird shenanigans with dates conflicting with the order of things below. Every call out still had the correct date listed, but I had some June dates mashed into with the July section. Sincerest apologies, folks, but now it’s all back in order. (See above for main culprit.)

Mari Funaki Award for Contemporary Jewellery. Applications close 18 June 2014 (11:59pm, Australian Eastern Standard Time. That’s a day ahead for you US peeps.)

National Contemporary Jewellery Award presented by the Griffith Regional Gallery. (Yup, Aussie residents only.) Entries close 25th 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.

*** Medalta International Spoon Show – Open to all media – Deadline June 30th

*** Metal Arts Society of Southern California, Metal Extinction Exhibition. Call closes 1st July 2014.

*** SNAG’s ACC Baltimore Wholesale/Retail Show Call for Entry – to be at the SNAG booth. July 1, 2014

Harpo Foundation Grants – Emerging Artist Fellowship (residency). (Still not THAT Harpo…) Americans only. Deadline July 5, 2014.

*** Job Opportunity *** Grants and Office Coordinator, The Center for Craft, Creativity & Design. Full-Time position. Application Deadline: July 7, 2014, 5 pm

Stanley St Gallery in NSW (Australia) Invitation to submit contemporary jewellery for a juried exhibition and a chance to gt a solo show. Deadline 11 July 2014.

So Fresh + So Clean. 1st Annual Ethical Metalsmiths Student Exhibition and Emerging Artist Award. Closes 15 Jul 2014.

*** Ethical Makers Movement – out of Melbourne, are having their nest meeting at Northcity4, which will be a presentation by local artist Vicki Mason. 6.30pm @ 61 Weston St, Brunswick. Thurs July 17, 2014. RSVP to by July 11th.

New Necklaces: 500+ Designs from Around the World – image request for a book edited by Nicolas Estrada. Due 20th July 2014.

Mesa Arts Center – various opportunities from juried craft shows to solo exhibitions. Various deadlines from August 2014 onwards.

Koru 5. Triennial event organized by Finnish Jewellery Art Association. DEADLINE for applications is 1.8.2014. (That’s the 1st of August for you Americans ;) )

Niche Awards. For “craft artist[s] residing in the U.S. or Canada, and especially seeks artists who are designing and making work for resale by stores and galleries. ” Professional Deadline: August 18, 2014

*** Stables Gallery run by Orleans House Gallery, Twickenham: Lacemakers. Call due Friday 5th September 2014.

*** The Metal Arts Guild of Canada, CONCEAL/REVEAL: Exhibition in Print 2014. Submission Deadline: 30 September 2014

Wayne Arts Center juried exhibition Craft Forms 2014. Entries due September 20th, 2014.

*** Preziosa Young 2015. “Worldwide goldsmiths, silversmiths, designers, artists, professionals, students, may submit their candidature, provided that they are not older than 35 years at the end of 2014. The selected artists (6 to 10) will be invited to take part to PREZIOSA Exhibition in Florence.” Deadline: 15 Nov 2014.

Rolling + Undated Opportunities

***** Job Opportunity ***** Curator of Fine Metalwork – Exhibitions Manager
Metal Museum, Memphis, TN. Please email or mail resume, letter of interest and three references to Carissa Hussong, Metal Museum, 374 Metal Museum Drive, Memphis, TN 38106,

Artist in Residence in the Industrial Monument Jakob Bengel – Idar-Oberstein, Germany. 1-3 month residency for jewellers in the factory, including stipend and accommodation! Looks amazing.

Assistantships, Residencies, Volunteering & Employment at Touchstone Center for Crafts, Farmington, PA.

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!

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

There’s this Art Prize Website for Aussie artists, where you can sign up for regular updates.

Categorized as Deadlines

Lasers and welders and sanders, oh my!

A couple of things. I’m working hard on pieces for the One Design exhibition – I’m just about done with the titanium pieces, and I’ll be starting on the stainless cut possibly as early as this Friday, so long as my new (cheap) orbital sander arrives on time.

Orbital sander on stainless steel? Are you nuts, Melissa?

Probably, but that’s of no consequence to the matter at hand. (Or perhaps I should replace ‘no’ with ‘little’…)

The cuts I have been working on have a bit of laser spatter over the surface, which, I might add, is quite normal. The job shop I used in Australia would either dunk the finished cuts in acid to clean them, or linish them if they were of a suitable size (or cuts in titanium.) Not owning a lishishing machine, and having been subject to a spatter (perhaps not even – there’s a weird shadow on my cuts that seem to have gone into the metal – see the photo – though once I start cleaning I might find that I’m just not seeing them right and it’s still atop the sheet) or something that’s being a little more persistent, I’ve decided to try sanding them before sandblasting them with fine glass beads.

Ripe for sanding -spatter  'shadows' after holes - upside of lasercut
Ripe for sanding -spatter ‘shadows’ after holes – upside of lasercut
shadows and colouring of side profiles
shadows and colouring of side profiles
Shadows around lines - underside of stainless steel lasercut
Shadows around lines – underside of stainless steel lasercut

If this is not more time effective than changing out the glass beads to aluminium oxide for a first pass then switching back for the finale – ie blasting all of the pieces twice (necessary in some recent earrings) – then that’s what I’ll end up doing instead. Preliminary attempts to grind back the offending marks on the titanium cut, using my diamond abrasive pads (normally reserved for working on enamelled surfaces), were not bad, so I’m crossing fingers that a little more elbow grease (in the form of a machine to actually do most of the grunt work) will be quicker than a double-blasted finish. Which is what I must have done in previous situations. Though I think the more-matte Al-Ox finish was predominant in my earlier works. It makes heat-colouring look more vibrant, but is a little less resilient when worn.

OK, to be less confusing in this next paragraph is a new goal. I’ve already failed… I do backwards sentences well, in case you hadn’t noticed. I’m like Yoda.

I have also been testing out a new laser cutter called Pololu, specifically for the timber cut that I’ve had done more recently. They actually specialise in electronics and seem to have picked up laser cutting to help build the robots they were supplying all the electronics for, and happily they were super fast and super good. And they advertise timber as a preferred medium, so they had what I wanted in stock. The one big caveat? Their site says the thickest stainless steel or spring steel that they can work with is .060″, which comes out at about 1.5mm in my native tongue. Luckily I work in 1mm, so I am going to test them when I next have a cut to do, and I’ll see if they might do titanium for me – I’m guessing I’ll have to provide the sheet, but I’ve done that before.

PUK welded titanium - posts and lasercut Ti
PUK welded titanium – posts and lasercut Ti

Finally, I mentioned welding. Just today I slipped out to my buddy Kirk Lang‘s studio to have a demo of and a play on his super-awesome Lampert PUK welding machine. And what can I say? It’s love. It is a very pretty machine and it welded these titanium posts to these old Sieve parts soooo easily. The reason I still have Sieve parts lying around is because I didn’t have a machine like this to weld titanium back in 2010 (or 2011, or ’12 for that matter). In fact the titanium welding shown at the JMGA conference I went to in 2010 was in a sealed argon environment (looking quite like my a sandblast chamber it necessitated doing the job in gloves whereas the PUK allows one TO USE HER BARE HANDS) that had me thinking that I’d be lucky to play with one in my lifetime. Incidentally, excitement about this technology is why you might have noticed me barking on about the Orion Pulse Arc Welder in previous posts, and I finally saw one at SNAG a month ago and I liked it a lot, but now I’ve seen then Lampert… There’s something about precision German engineering, y’know? And did I mention that it’s pretty..?

It’s a design thing.