Jessica Jue (born 1993)

'Whispering Reeds' beaker


Hand-raised sterling silver beaker with a pickled, textured surface decorated with applied strands of 24 ct gold, designed and made by Jessica Jue. Height 11.4 cm. Marked: Jessica Jue, London.

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Jessica Jue was commissioned to make a piece for the Company Collection after displaying a ‘Brushstroke’ beaker at Goldsmiths’ Fair 2020. The textured surface of this small silver vessel was decorated with strands of gold foil in an abstract, painterly fashion, as though applied with a brush.

The brief for the commission was to produce a similar beaker made of a heavier gauge of metal, and of a slightly larger size, giving a wider area for the gold brush strokes to move across the silver surface. Jue peened and hand-raised a flat silver disc to form the bottom-heavy beaker, which has a slight wave to the lip. The rich surface texture was achieved with a textured hammer, and the white colour by heating and quenching the beaker in pickling acid to bring the fine silver to the surface. The gold strands were fused to the silver using the ancient Korean keum-boo technique, whereby a combination of heat and pressure permanently bond the two metals. The design, inspired by the fluid movement of flowing reeds in the wind, was achieved strand by strand; “It’s a process similar to painting where the “brushstrokes” develop a natural way of taking you towards the final design”. The finished beaker won a bronze Lindström Award for originality of design at the 2022 Goldsmiths’ Craft and Design Council Awards. 


Jue exhibited her work as part of silversmithing collective The Five at Collect art fair in 2022, see here.

You can read about Jue’s ‘Whispering Reeds’ beaker in the context of other new acquisitions to the Goldsmiths’ Company Collection in 2021-2022 here.

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