Alex O’Connor

Alex O'Connor

I design silverware that is unadorned yet subtly tactile, celebrating the material while evoking ephemeral sensations through the metal.

Vessels are a consistent presence in my work; these potent, archetypal objects are functional but they also serve a purpose that is more reflective or contemplative. They are containers for memory, meaning and a sense of place; sculptural objects that merge ideas, form and technique.

My recent work is an impressionistic response to the resilient, dynamic topography of West Cornwall and unsurprisingly, the creative process always begins with walking.  I move through the landscape, observing and gathering fleeting details; light falling on water for a moment, particular shadows, the sound of dry grass; fragments of sensation that become sketches, working drawings and models for pieces in silver.

I think and design through making, and multiple paper prototypes enable me to evaluate balance, visual weight, scale and composition before working in base metal and finally silver.

When fabricating the silver vessels it’s important to translate a sense of immediacy and spontaneity  into the metal sheet and I do this by decisive scoring, folding and forming. The metal surface is treated almost like a drawing, with many layers of fine lines being built up to give an expressive, nuanced finish.

I am a recent graduate from the Jewellery and Silversmithing BA at Truro College but my love of working with form has its origins in my early twenties when I studied for a degree in sculpture. This led to ten years as a sculpture and ceramics technician.

How to contact Alex O’Connor.