Besides presenting the two awards, for excellence in jewellery and silver, the Goldsmiths’ Company sponsored the Jewellery and Precious Metalwork Zone at the event, for the ninth consecutive year.
Director of the Goldsmiths’ Centre Peter Taylor said: “It is always a pleasure to be associated with New Designers. It is without doubt the most important graduate show in the UK and the work that was on display in the Precious Metalwork Zone was of an extraordinarily high standard. It is very heartening to see so much talent and innovative creativity emerging from our colleges.”
To win the Goldsmiths’ Company awards for excellence in jewellery and silver, pieces have to show superlative design, originality and sales potential.
Lorna Watson, creative director of Astley Clarke and judge of the Goldsmiths’ Company awards, said: “There was a really strong show this year, with an encouraging mix of creativity, craftsmanship and commerciality, and Mairi Johnstone of Duncan & Jordanstone College of Art & Design was singled out for the Jewellery Award because of her ability to demonstrate a sense of whimsy and playfulness in tandem with strong making skills.”
Mairi’s collection of work, entitled ‘Come to your Senses’, is made with the intention of bringing life and vividness to the senses, which she believes are hindered by the distractions of everyday life. “I hope my quirky little devices will help people to be distracted from the hustle and bustle of life, if only for a sneaky moment,” said Mairi about her collection.
Meanwhile Noeleen Logue of the National College of Art and Design in Dublin picked up the silver prize for her ‘It’s What’s Inside that Counts’ collection of one-off hand-raised sculptural forms.
Past prime warden of the Goldsmiths’ Company Grant Macdonald presented the winners with a £1,500 prize that consisted of a cheque for £1,000 and £500-worth of precious metal. Both winners also receive a 10-year registration of their sponsor’s mark at the Assay Office London and £200-worth of hallmarking services.
Image: Mairi Johnstone receives her award. (© James Champion for New Designers)