I am fascinated with the dialogue and provenance that surrounds our most valued belongings. Treasured family stories are rarely written down or recorded, but accrue as memories imbued in our heirlooms, evidencing lives lived before us. Passed down through generations, inaccuracies inevitably creep in and our inheritance becomes entangled with a contemporary view. Facts begin to merge with fiction and a new narrative is born. And so the cycle continues.
The impression of the biography that is carried with jewellery has become central to my practice. I create simple geometric forms that outwardly do not appear to be wearable yet can nestle and wrap around the contents of a jewellery box. The multi-layered narratives of past and present are represented through stripped down imagery set in enamel and steel of identical sizes and shapes. Thus each memory becomes equal to the next, but interchangeable as magnetic components allow for the wearer to rearrange them, creating new and wearable ornamental narratives in doing so.
Crafted through hand processes that reflect the emotional investment carried in the heirlooms and the stories that surround them, my jewellery represents a singular, sensory expression of the relationships that exist in owning and wearing jewellery of mixed histories and heritage.
Naomi graduated in June 2005 from Loughborough University’s Silversmithing and Jewellery course. Leaving education with the experience of working for the enigmatic Andrew Logan, she became Bilston Craft Gallery’s Artist in Residence. Exhibiting, crafting and teaching, the residency offered many opportunities to develop her portfolio, commissions and connections.
Looking to supplement both her knowledge and income, Naomi started work as an Auction Valuer at Fellows & Sons in Birmingham. Here she developed a flair for the business, specialising in Silver, Coins and Medals and becoming Head of Department as Senior Specialist in this area. Not content with cataloguing, valuing and investigating provenance of pieces, she was also promoted to Auctioneer establishing her expertise in the salesroom as well as behind the scenes.
In 2017 and after over ten years in the auction trade, Naomi left for a creative path, wanting to bring to life ideas and designs inspired by her work to date. She started her MA in Jewellery and Related Products at The School of Jewellery, Birmingham City University, and has innovatively combined her cataloguing and valuing background with the development of new skills, research and practice. As likely to be inspired by BBC Antiques Roadshow and old silversmithing tomes as by contemporary jewellers and artists, Naomi’s work is a playful and experimental exploration of both the purpose and provenance of jewels we call our own.
Naomi's unique practice of researching into an individual’s jewellery collection together with its provenance, stories, mementos and archives manifests in creating contemporary wearables in vitreous enamel. For examples of her current work such as the Unwearable Wearables collection and What's Your Story? series, see the gallery section.
Interested in commissioning Naomi or would like to learn more then please get in touch.