Our latest featured member is Simone Walsh, of Australia. A very accomplished artist, she has just recently started a new collection inspired by the Victorian Era. You can see more of her work at her Etsy Shop, or on her Blog.
1. Where do you live, and where are you from?
I currently live in an inner city suburb of Sydney, Australia. I grew up in Adelaide, Australia. But I'm still not exactly sure where home might be!
2. How did you get started working with metal?
Originally I got interested in working with wire - just playing at recreating a simple but intriguing design I'd seen using encased marbles. That led me to start creating other simple jewellery with wire, beads and other findings. I fairly quickly realised that I wanted to learn to create metalwork. I was fascinated by the idea of starting with a sheet of silver and turning it into something beautiful. I eventually gave up on my career at the time in the music industry and went off to study visual arts full time at a technical college, majoring in jewellery and metal. After that I lived in London for a couple of years and when I returned to Australia I came to Sydney to study for a Bachelor of Visual Arts with a jewellery and object design major to further develop my work. Now I work from my little home studio.
3. What are a few of your favorite pieces at the moment?
I've just completed a new range of work which is all inspired by the Victorian era. As soon as I sat down at my bench to start work on the ideas I'd been developing (I always do a lot of final design work at my bench), I was really pleased to find that it all came together amazingly smoothly and just as I'd imagined. So of course at the moment those pieces are my favourites! I think my most favourite from the range is a cameo pendant which features a beautiful damask pattern etched into the surface and a contrast of silver and black - I think I've managed to capture the right mix of tradition and modernity that I was looking for. I'm also very pleased with a shell-like cut out pattern using a Victorian metalwork design which I've used for a pendant and earrings.
4. What inspires you (artists, objects, interests)?
Over the last few years I've become increasingly interested in that way that nature and different cultures intersect, which I constantly find to be a source of inspiration. The stylised designs from the Victorian era of leaves and flowers are a great example of this. Beyond that, I'm always inspired by all sorts of particularly ornamental objects - my home is full of a wide variety of them from different eras and in different styles. I'm also always inspired by travel and am often itching to take off somewhere intriguing - my next trip will hopefully take in Spain (again!) and Morocco.
5. Do you have any other artistic interests?
Other than enjoying the work that others make, I don't really have time to pursue other artistic interests of my own. Plus I love the work I do, which always helps to keep me focused. I am very interested in art theory and visiting galleries and museums when I get the time, which is never often enough.
images from simone walsh
all images are links