In my discussions with Judy, we have talked about our shared interest in use of paua in new Zealand jewellery and the rich history that surrounds it. I feel the pull to explore this further in my own work especially in relation to acknowledging the influence of my grandfather Morrie Wins practice. so as a starting point I decided to visit with my uncle Ronald in Marton, to get some tips on working with shell and borrow some machinery for the job. Ron is also a maker and spent many hours by his dad’s side as a young person cleaning up shell and castings at Grandad’s home workshop in Elsdon Porirua, here are some images from my visit to Rons studio, which holds many of granddad’s tools, materials, designs molds and even Grandads old workbench. I took a copy of Elly van de Wijdeven’s book Vintage Paua Shell Jewellery which uses images of many of Morrie’s pieces along to go with the collection.
Ron Win, in his studio 2017
Morrie manufactured for jewellery designer Ida Hudig. pictured is one of her designs. Morrie also made work for the late Maori Queen – Dame Te Atairangikaahu for many years.
sketch and casting, a collaboration of Morrie and Hazel Win ( my gran sketched many of the designs), Interesting to look into the idea of NZ motif and cultural appropriation so prevalent in the kiwi kitsch souvenir market
grandad’s lead punch block
NRA rifle ( Morrie made countless badges and trophies for the national rifle association over the years), stag and fish badge casting blanks, Morrie Win, the handmade maker (image of his work are used in the book vintage paua shell jewellery)
detail of rubber mold, early filigree brooch
one of my all time favorite designs which is so much fun. Granddad let me make casting from it and set with various materials for a group show at Pataka called Kitsch.
nice to discover this guy, I have made many cowboys over the years I must have seen this design at some point as a kid, nice to find such a direct influence.
some observational sketches I made of some of my favorite pieces.