The New Abstraction: Sculptural Silver Exhibition

September 4, 2017

Goldsmiths’ Fair is delighted to present The New Abstraction, a special exhibition featuring sculptural silver in which form supersedes function. Curated by Christina Jansen, Managing Director of The Scottish Gallery, the display features more than 25 exquisite objets d’art for the home, with both newly commissioned and recent work made by UK-based artist silversmiths. Some of the works on display are from the world-renowned Goldsmiths’ Company Modern Silver Collection.

While the novelty and appeal of abstraction in silver originates in the post-war era, today’s fast-paced, high-tech lifestyles have redefined luxury. Nevertheless, sculptural silver remains highly sought after. Contemporary high-end interiors now balance innovative high and low-tech as well as machine and handmade objects – abstract silver being a perfect expression of beautiful objects made with care at a slow pace.

A material synonymous with domestic luxury and charged with historical and cultural significance, silver today has endless possibilities. Its malleability and strength mean that it can be used to create either large or small functional, sculptural or purely decorative works, including cutting-edge pieces made using traditional skills reflecting contemporary aesthetics.

Ane Christensen’s ‘Crumbling’ Bowl demonstrates an innovative exploration of the bowl form – the piece is deliberately made from one sheet of silver as an exercise in restriction and creativity. The small perforations on the metal allude to the bowl’s container-like qualities, however, nothing can be placed within. Similarly, Juliette Bigley’s ‘A Bowl for Fruit’ explores functionality and notions of inside and outside while redefining the bowl concept altogether.

The freedom and originality inherent in the output of the contributors to The New Abstraction speaks of design that shape-shifts away from function while sitting comfortably in the evolution of metalwork, acknowledging the importance of tradition and innovation.

New Abstraction is free to view at Goldsmiths’ Fair as part of the general admission ticket.

Read more about our other special exhibitions during Goldsmiths’ Fair 2017 here, or buy tickets here.


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