My first solo exhibition at Hipotesi in 2000 – Beyond the Wire – was a collection of work through which I had investigated the application of textiles techniques to jewellery in precious metals.\ud \ud My second solo show at Hipotesi in 2005 – The Space Within – was the major vehicle for my then current research into the shellform. My specific interest had been that which is unknowable, the space inside an object which we can never properly know without destroying the object itself – perhaps in itself a metaphor for the human condition.\ud This collection appeared to be totally unconnected to more than twenty years spent investigating textiles techniques. The final objects, the materials, technology, and practical techniques were all very different. The only apparently common factor was my individual approach to creating the work: a combination of visual and other research, drawing, making, periods of reflection, followed by quite explosive bursts of creative energy over very intensive but relatively short periods of time at the bench: what Schön might have been describing when he talked about reflection-in-action.1It was only in 2007 when I assembled a body of work utilising textile techniques for a retrospective exhibition at the Birmingham School of Jewellery that I realised how much the later works in this opus had somehow metamorphosed into the first of the shellforms. My final experiments with fusing and pressing thousands of very fine silver wires to create what I called illusion weaving were actually proto-shellforms
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