OCG’s 2017 flagship exhibition in Woodstock rides the crest of the wave

Nov 27 2017

The Oxfordshire Museum is currently hosting the Oxfordshire craft Guild’s annual flagship event, and their exhibition included a huge variety of gifts for Christmas pairing traditional quality craftsmanship and contemporary design in many media.

From the array, judges Joanna Simons CBE of Experience Oxfordshire, and previous Chief Executive of Oxfordshire County Council; Joanna Foster CBE former chair of the Crafts Council and President of the Oxfordshire Craft Guild; and Esther Lafferty, Festival Director of Oxfordshire Artweeks chose a pair of earrings created by jeweller Guen Palmer as the wining piece for their craftsmanship, beauty and innovation in design.

Guen designs and makes distinctive contemporary jewellery with 18ct gold, silver with 18ct gold, platinum and gemstones, producing each piece entirely produced by hand using traditional techniques in a Cotswold studio near Chipping Norton, cutting and shaping gold or silver sheet, and adding delicate and intricate surface decoration.

This particular pair of earrings, each only half an inch in diameter, are like miniature circular versions of Hokusai’s famous painting The Great Wave, although it was the smooth sweep of the inside of shells on the beach that originally inspired this series of Guen’s designs. The textured silver waves swirl up as if they are about to break free from the circle whist on the gold background the silhouette shifts as the earrings move in the light: stand at a particular angle so the light is at its boldest and the golden ‘sky’ seems to glow.

The runners up, on display, are a striking five sided stoneware vase twisted into shape by ceramicist Ian Fraser for its striking and unusual use of the materials, and an embroidered fabric collage ‘Insect and Flowers’ by textile artist Amanda Stone.

The exhibition also includes crisp and colourful paper cuts from tinned sardines to the Titanic; sumptuous hand-knitted garments in a rainbow of wool, linen and silk; ceramics from dainty mint greens to bold blues, archeologically-inspired pots and vases, and a grass green jar decorated with Uffington’s White Horse.

The jewellery collections this year are of particular note – created with a variety of materials, style and inspiration so whether you like simple silver or beads, bold colours or iridescent dynamism, there’ll be something unique to catch your eye and add an element of originality to any outfit, and it is jeweller Guen Palmer to whom this year’s OCG Audrey Blackmann Prize was awarded.

The exhibition at the Museum of Oxfordshire, Woodstock runs until 30th December, 2017
Tuesday to Saturday 10.00-4.45; Sunday 2-4.45 (Free admission)

Notes to editors

For more information on the exhibition contact the Oxfordshire Craft Guild www.oxfordshirecraftguild.co.uk/

c/o Pam Fyvie pam.fyvie@gmail.com

The Oxfordshire Craft Guild is a group of skilled designers/makers centred in Oxfordshire and the surrounding counties who secialise in traditional craft and contemporary design. The Guild supports its makers who work in ceramics, glass, jewellery, leather, paper, sculpture, stone, textiles, metal and wood.

The Audrey Blackmann Prize honours a former member of the Guild whose work inspired the development of a special porcelain clay suited to delicate work which is now produced commercially, and a royalty from this product supports the Guild and the OCG annual prize.