Handshake 2Contemporary Jewellery8th July - 1st Aug 2015 | Stanley Street Gallery

Handshake 2
Contemporary Jewellery

8th July – 1st Aug 2015


In 2014 a new group of New Zealand contemporary jewellers started the Handshake mentoring program with their chosen hero.  10 Handshake2 contemporary jewellery mentees Amelia Pascoe, Karren Dale, Kathryn Yeats, Kelly McDonald, Lisa Higgins, Raewyn Walsh, Renee Bevan, Sarah Walker-Holt,Tineke Jansen and Vanessa Arthur,  who are mentored by Ruudt Peters, Gemma Draper, Ben Pearce, Kirsten Haydon, Cal Lane, Henriette Schuster, Harrell Fletcher, Helen Britton, Ela Bauer, David Neale will be exhibiting at Stanley Street Gallery in July 2015.

Their first event together was the Jewelcamp weekend. This weekend was organised to create the necessary bonding within the group in combination with workshops about communication on the blog and with the mentor, entrepreneurial planning as support for the fundraising of their travel costs to the national and international exhibition venues and exhibition practices.

The first exhibition has been in Toi Pōneke, Wellington (November 2014) with a feedback session by Peter Deckers and Vivien Atkinson.

The second Jewelcamp and Masterclass was held in February 2015 and was coordinated and led by Benjamin Lignel who had been contracted by the Handshake organisation to help the mentees with developing their ideas, recognize the difference between conceptual intent and material outcome, processes for the production of products versus projects and question assumptions about the format we use to exhibit art objects.

The culmination of this work is the The Handshake2 exhibition to be held in Stanley Street Gallery, Sydney during the JMGA Conference -edgesbordergaps (10-12th July 2015).


In the three years since its conception, the HANDSHAKE programme has already built up a reputation for excellence, and places are sort after by well-known and emerging jewellers from all over New Zealand. The participants are selected through an open call and the selection panel built from internationally renowned experts, from a variation of art practices.

“It is a fine-tuning process and we have to ask if a mentorship would further the artist’s practice, whether they have the drive to take risks and experiment, and to become a mentee. The project relies on the concentrated focus of each mentee, and on the relationship and knowledge of the participating mentors.”

Emerging jewellery artists are paired with their heroes – internationally renowned artists, chosen by them to deepen and extend their art practice.  The innovative programme is based on the old apprentice system but in reverse, where the mentor works for the mentee with digital media as the vehicle for communication. The mentee gets a helping hand from their chosen hero artist through their virtual window, using Skype, blogs, and emails as well as the old-fashioned post to connect. Some also travel overseas to meet their mentors face to face.


About the Artists

Sarah Walker-Holt - Mentored by Helen Britton
"Recent foraging for wooden objects has led me to vessels while still keeping the stimulus of my material gathering in the everyday domestic sphere.
I am drawn to the irony of finding these vessels side by side. I see an unsung hierarchy as I acquire them, even though they have both become unfashionable and discarded. Formerly from very different points of origin; one is made as a commodity from an easily accessible material while the other as a leisure pursuit from a treasurable resource."

Amelia Pascoe –  Mentored By Ruudt Peters
“My journey to contemporary jewellery has been winding, scenic and rewarding. My adventures, a rich source of inspiration. I have terrible memory for facts and figures, but I think a lot, love a quirky story, and a good technical challenge. Small details, contradictions and surprises are things I hold dear. Through Handshake I am exploring new ways. Ruudt Peters is my conspirator. Don’t make beautiful things he says. Be less rational he says. Embrace chaos he says”. OK

Kathryn Yeats - Mentored by Ben Pearce
Kathryn worked alongside award-winning New Zealand visual artist Ben Pearce. Pearce is concerned with the effect time has on objects and spaces: how they have been used and the deterioration that leaves marks behind. Kathryn uses timber and steel to create complex structures with compartments that hide unexpected stories. Her designs are reminiscent of domestic objects and architectural spaces that have been well used and occupied, but are now abandoned.

Kelly McDonald - Mentored by Kirsten Hayden
Kelly focuses her making around the exploration of materials and their previous human interventions, often as a counterpoint to mass production, built in obsolescence and 3-D printers.

Karen Dale – Mentored by Gemma Draper
These works were made because the materials required that they continue in some way.  Not content to just be.  Not ephemeral to the end.  It was necessary to let the works be subtle reincarnations of themselves.  Not so much changing but more so allowing them to just be as they once were, with a little extra added.

Renee Bevan - Mentored by Harrell Fletcher.
After all, one should not tempt fate.
Premonition #1 is part of an ongoing series of works in collaboration with psychic mediums.

Tineke Jansen - Mentored by Ela Bauer
“You’re so lovely,” Kyle whispered raggedly. “So slender and graceful, so cool and elusive…” His hand was caressing her hip, the saintly skin of her thigh. “From the moment I saw you, I’ve been burning for you. And I know you feel the same way, too.”

“You don’t know anything of the kind,” Sophie retorted. But she had to speak between his kisses, and the blood was rushing in her veins, like molten gold being poured into a new mould, a new shape.– Duel of Passion,  Madeleine Ker

Vanessa Arthur - Mentored by David Neale
Vanessa is a jeweller based in Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand. Her work is often influenced by memories formed during daily travels; imperfect and impermanent objects, fragments and facades. In the workshop, while cutting, hammering, constructing. She picture’s her jewellery inhabiting these explored streetscapes. A drifting trove waiting to be discovered, treasured and worn.

Lisa Higgins – Mentored by Cal Lane
Referencing what has gone before and reinterpreting this through material choice and abstraction of familiar forms Filling the Void embraces the ‘space between’ - the past and the present, the visible and the invisible, the real and the imagined.
‘...We become aware of the void as we fill it.’  - Antonio Porchia

Raewyn Walsh - Mentored by Henriette Schuster
Raewyn’s work is grounded in materials and process, and she has a particular interest in traditional methods such as silversmithing and granulation.



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