Thursday, June 23, 2011

Day trip

Bowl, 24K forged gold
On Tuesday I piled into a van with Sun Kyoung Kim and her session 2 Penland metals class and drove to the Mint Museum to see "Attitude and Alchemy: The Metalwork of Gary Noffke." The show includes an incredible array of objects and jewelry (124 pieces) that span Noffke's career. It was truly fantastic to see the work in person! His technical mastery of metal is astonishing and I especially appreciate his surface treatments and attention to detail, details that are evidence of the his process and also appear effortless. I jotted down a few notes in my sketchbook about his details that I will pass along to my students anytime I teach: Noffke's hammer marks are expressive; he believed details add another layer of "information and depth." I was also delighted to see a selection of tools and personal objects from his studio accompanied by several large-scale photographs of his workspace. It made the retrospective feel complete.

Evon's Old Chopper, forged steel, carved, etched from circular 8” saw blade, hickory and silver
Chanel Evening Dinner Suit
Afterward we drove to the Mint Museum Randolph to see "Chanel: Designs for the Modern Woman" and the Historic Costume Collection. Both collections are exquisite, but I especially enjoyed seeing the costumes. In the last year or so my interest in historic costume has grown so it was exciting to see so many examples of antique clothing and accessories. Among the many gowns were several cases of jewelry, gloves, hats, and shoes including some fine examples of mourning jewelry. The necklace pictured here is a style I have not seen before in which the the hair has been woven and cinched to resemble beads. I was also excited to see several Wedgewood pieces including a chatelaine.

The day was very, very inspiring. I knew the Noffke show would be great, but I did not anticipate just how much I would enjoy it. The clothing exhibitions were an unexpected bonus and, together, all three exhibits left me in awe. Finally, I loved spending time with Sun and her class and I am grateful that they invited me to join them.
More pictures on Flickr.
Thanks for reading.

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