Handshake5 comprises a masterclass with Roseanne Bartley and a series of coaching sessions with Roseanne, Vernon Bowden, James Anderson and Sian van Dyk, all to support the making of work for two exhibitions occurring later this year.

The first, at CODA in the Netherlands, focuses on a jewellery response to 3 works specially selected from CODA’s vast collection (a dialogue with things).

The second (a dialogue with space) will show a conversation between jewellery and the architecturally beautiful space that is Te Uru Gallery, Auckland, but I’ll get to that in another blog.



CODA has a monumentally large collection of contemporary jewellery, made more impressive through the dedicated collection of key works throughout the careers of many makers of note. Onno Boekhoudt is an even more impressive exception. His entire workshop, including letters, objects, tools and finished pieces, can be found within the collection.

For me, Onno is a maker’s maker (wearers feel free to disagree). I see process and material play as central to all of his making decisions. His work demonstrates a freedom that I strive for in my making and there’s much to learn from looking at his process and his extensive collection of archived ‘workshop objects’.

So what do you do when you have only an image? How do you translate dimension, sensation, materiality and weight from a piece of paper or a computer screen? And how do you not get overwhelmed by a body of work you’ve admired for 20+ years?

Get some parameters and a plan…


THE PLAN (so far):

  1. Play
  2. Chinese Whispers
  3. No material hierarchy

In the spirit of playfulness and keeping process at the forefront, I propose to play the childhood game of Chinese Whispers with these objects (where players whisper a message down the line until the last person in the line reveals the message to the group, all delighting in the silliness of the final message which bears no relation to the initial whisperings).

I am the sole player, each week I will re-make the 3 pieces again, with the start point being the works from the previous week, until…..


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