British Silver Week gears up for UK-wide events

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Fifth year of celebrations include shows in Winchester and Edinburgh.

British Silver Week is set to bring together more than 100 UK silversmiths and silverware designers for exhibitions and selling shows across the UK commencing in May and running through the summer.

Silverware, sculptural work and jewellery will be featured in British Silver Week’s Festival of Silver, while the first silversmithing exhibition to be hosted at the new Goldsmiths’ Centre in Clerkenwell in London will take place later in the summer.

The programme of events includes a press day for British Silver Week on May 14th, the Festival of Silver from May 12th to 16th and a celebration of enamellers and engravers and the rising stars of silversmithing on May 17th and 18th.

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Gordon Hamme, the managing director of British Silver Week, said: “We consider that there have rarely been more fine silversmiths working in Britain at the same time.

“When we exhibited in Europe recently the pundits were amazed by the quantity and quality of the silversmiths’ work we displayed. There truly is a renaissance of British silversmithing at the moment.”

The collection set to be exhibited at the Goldsmiths’ Centre has been chosen by “prominent dealers and collectors” and is said to demonstrate the renaissance of British silversmithing “in our generation”.

The Festival of Silver will be held at the Pangolin Gallery in London, close to King’s Cross station, from May 12th with five days of themed exhibitions featuring more than 100 contemporary British silversmiths.
Silversmiths taking part in the week include Rebecca Hill, Rebecca Joselyn, Wally Gilbert, Jenny Edge, Olivia Lowe, Phil Barnes, Belinda Solarte, Stuart Jenkins, Brett Payne, Angus McFadyen, Ben Ryan, Esther Lord, James Dougall, Miriam Hanid and C. Tollyfield.

During the remainder of the summer a number of silver retailers will take part in celebrating the metal.

John Higgins Contemporary Silver, the Pearson Collection, William & Son and Hamilton & Inches will pay tribute to silverware and silversmithing.

The Goldsmiths’ Centre will host an e xhibition from July 10th to 14th, with a range of silver objects created by British designers, a chance to meet the makers and attend seminars by some of the curators.

The Desire Fair, which takes place in Richmond, Winchester and now Henley-upon-Thames will feature a number of contemporary silver designers, while John Higgins Contemporary Silver, Williams & Son, Styles Silver, Cooksons and Hamilton & Inches will take part in various selling exhibition during June and July.

Seminars by John Andrew, curator of the Pearson Collection and Derek Styles of Styles Silver will also be held on July 11.

Now in its fifth year British Silver Week has benefited hugely from patronage and sponsorship by the Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths’ as a lead patron, also the UK Assay Offices, trade organizations, the Duke of Devonshire and Lord Cunliffe.

The original launch at Goldsmiths’ Hall set the tone for British Silver Week in 2008. Over 40,000 people saw a major exhibition in 2009 at Chatsworth House, the home of the Duke of Devonshire, a renowned contemporary silver collector.

In the last four years 65 selling exhibitions in England, Scotland and Wales, Germany and Malaysia have sold more than £1 million of contemporary silverware.

 

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