A Really Rather Remarkable Thing

It is not an exaggeration to say that I was completely  captivated by this tiny wasp's nest that I found hanging from the rafters.  It is a thing that is completely and utterly beautiful to me.  As I rolled it around in the palm of my hand, inspecting the 'craftmanship', the neat coils of the the outer paper skin and the perfect geometry of the protected interior, I unpacked the reasons for my fascination with this tiny little object.

The plain and simple reason is that its very construction is an arrangement that I emulate time and time again in my work as a goldsmith.  I fabricate tiny constructions from silver, to create a protected void, into which precious objects become suspended or set.  The idea is pedestrian perhaps but hinges on a more complicated ideal; that it is what is inside that really matters.  The partially hidden bit of ourselves, the bit we examine everyday, the bit that gets tested, that grows better if we try, that begins to die if we neglect it. Its the part of us that enlarges when we are generous to others and that part that shrinks when we only focus on ourselves. Perhaps this is an ideal that is too large for a piece of jewellery to take on.

Perhaps it is too lofty an ambition for an object to aspire to be.  Perhaps an object made from precious metal should just be beautiful for the sake of it.

But I don't think so.  And so, I shall keep making these tiny meditations on what constitutes 'the good life' and hope that the intentions with which they are made shine through.

Jewellery by Cari-Jane Hakes 2010-2013