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Fuller Craft Museum opens exhibitions by nationally recognized jewelry artists
Susan Hamlet, Arch, 2006,18K gold Brooch. Photo credit: Nathan Gurvitch.

BROCKTON, MASS.- Fuller Craft presents five extraordinary, highly accomplished and nationally recognized jewelry artists: Susan Hamlet, Linda Kindler Priest, Claire Sanford, Mary Hughes, and Caro-Gray Bosca. This exhibition focuses on their unique voices exploring nature. The show contains 67 pieces of jewelry, including an exquisite gold collar by Linda Kindler Priest fit for a Pharaoh. In addition to jewelry, there will be silver holloware by Hamlet, as well as sculpture by Claire Sanford from Fuller Craft’s own permanent collection.

As each of the artists either are teaching (or have taught) at the college level and doing residencies and workshops. They focus many years of experience on their jewelry. Masters of techniques and understanding of materials, each uses the freedom accompanying this mastery for expressive purposes.

Susan Hamlet
Out of my growing appreciation for historical metalwork and ornamental language, I seek to combine “known” elements in ways that yield an imaginary world where the likely and unlikely collide or collaborate. My jewelry and metalwork incorporates metaphor, allusion, and associations both literal and obscure toward lyrical expression. Through this use of imagery within wearable or functional formats, I strive to offer an array of clues to enjoy and reflect upon.

Linda Kindler Priest
My work is small scale sculptures that are based on themes from nature, and meant to be worn. Each piece is a statement or an environment about a living thing. They are developed by combining imagery, textures, shapes, colors, and chased surfaces. They are made with precious metals and stone. The imagery that is used is sculpted directly into the metal in an ancient process called repoussee and then cut, fabricated, and set with crystals or stones. The meaning of each piece is different, some have a more serious comment to make; excess, pollution, or historical messages. The majority are environments that use stone and texture to imply different things.

I have been working on a new series “brooches in 2 parts” which allows me greater space to create with. The top section generally sets the theme with an image in relief done in gold. The bottom part uses color to further develop the feeling that has already been stated. This is done with the pattern, texture, and color of stones. A lot of these I have cut myself to acquire the right size, shape, and thickness for the design. The 2 pieces are made to complement each other, but they can be worn alone as strong individual statements. I strive to create a harmony between the image, stones, and metal in my work, and a balance between material and statement.

Claire Sanford
There are a few consistent themes that run through my work: Leaves, Branches, and Color. The roots of these different series have grown from a group of pieces titled, My Father’s Garden in which I explored the use of floral or botanical elements played off simple vessel forms. As the daughter of a botanist, raised in Hawaii, these forms have a resonance that goes way back. As one body of work informed another, certain elements were repeated and recycled as I jumped scale from vessels to jewelry and back. Details would be copied and exploited or exploded (scale-wise) and celebrated as elements in and of themselves.

Claire Sanford is a metalsmith and jeweler and a partner of Top Dog Studio with her husband, Charles Crowley. Claire received her BFA from California College of the Arts in Oakland and did graduate studies at San Diego State University and Boston University's Program in Artisanry. She has work in the permanent collections of the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, the Arkansas Art Center, and Fuller Craft Museum. She has received several grants, including a Massachusetts Cultural Council Fellowship in 1999. She is a trustee of Haystack School in Deer Isle, Maine and serves on the Resource Council for the Society of Arts and Crafts in Boston.

Hughes-Bosca: Mary Hughes and Caro-Gray Bosca
The Synergy of Partnership; Discipline and expertise in traditional goldsmithing techniques are the foundation for all fine jewelry creations, but Mary Hughes and Caro-Gray Bosca add the unexpected by blending each one's unique influences over a lifetime of creativity. A long time ago we acquired degrees from good schools in our field: The Museum School of Fine Arts, Boston; California College of Arts and Crafts; Boston University. They added the intellectual boost to our subsequent careers as teachers, pilots, designers, and creators of arts and crafts.

One brings the boldness honed during her training as a blacksmith. One brings the ethereal lightness gained through piloting her own aircraft. Both find fascination in turning something into something else.

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