‘Oh Opal! (re-imagining Australia’s national gemstone)
A new exhibition by Part B – a Melbourne-based research jewellery group
17th – 28th July 2012
CELEBRATION DRINKS Saturday 21st July 2012 4-6pm
ARTIST TALK Saturday 21st July 2012 - 3:45pm
It’s a conundrum! What to do with the opal? Why don’t more Australians love it? Melbourne-based research jewellery group Part B takes on the challenge of exploring the history and legend surrounding the opal and bringing a new fire to this strange and alluring gemstone.
Since Roman times, the world has been fascinated by the opal. Queen Victoria and Prince Albert were great proponents of this mysterious gemstone, and Art Nouveau master René Lalique used it to great effect in his jewellery designs. In Australia, however, the opal still languishes, perhaps a result of one too many souvenir teaspoons. But given our bounty of these brilliantly-coloured beauties (Australia’s opal fields are bigger than the rest of the world’s combined), surely there is more to be done to improve the opal’s lot!
Exhibiting jewellers: Justine Austen, Dianne Beevers, Femi Coppi, Susan Frisch, Mary Hackett, Jill Hermans, Gillian Hillman, Inari Kiuru, Claire McArdle, Karyn Nankivell, Christine Scott-Young, Justin Siow, Karen Thompson, Amy Zubick.
Founded in 2009, Part B is a Melbourne-based research jewellery group, made up of a fluid collective of emerging and established jewellery practitioners. In this age of online social media, Part B is quietly flourishing with its focus on first-hand experience of exhibited works and face-to-face communication through monthly ‘gallery gatherings’ in and around Melbourne.
Image: Justin Siow – Chrysolopus Spectabilis, 100% recycled 925 silver, 100% recycled 375 gold, one rectangular piece of titanium, stainless steel 2012