News and Articles
and youtube video at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Fl7uXusl00
According to historical sources, this most beautiful variety of precious metalwork originated in the second century AD and lasted until the middle of the fifteenth century. It was spread throughout two countries, Byzantium and Georgia. Only later, in the eleventh century, did it spread from this area to KievanRus'.
After the fifteenth century the technology of making cloisonné enamel was lost and we no longer come across objects made using this technique.
A project led by Ermile Maghradze entitled ‘In the Footsteps of Lost Technologies: Cloisonné Enamel' was initiated by the Georgian National Museum with the financial support of UNESCO.
The technological processes described in these treatises were studied as part of this project, and all those tools were reconstructed that would have been needed by medieval workshops to make cloisonné enamel.
As this project progressed, archaeological material was studied in parallel with various other activities, thus lending greater plausibility to research work.
In this respect the discovery of a conical iron hood with apertures, together with its plate, on the territory of historical Colchis, specifically, during the archaeological digs on the site of the former town of Vani in 1966, represents an important scientific find.
After the reconstruction of the enamelling hood described in Theophilus's treatise and experiments carried out on it, it became possible to determine the function of this hood. Many experiments undertaken in this direction showed that the ‘Colchian hood' was a tool for goldsmith work, used by the ancient Colchians in the early classical period for soldering operations on precious metals.The crowning stage of the ‘In the Footsteps of Lost Technologies: Cloisonné Enamel' project is a copy of a cloisonné enamel medallion of Saint Simon the Apostle from the Khakhulitriptych icon of the All-Holy Mother of God, which was made by Ermile Maghradze, the project leader, using tools which had been prepared as part of this project.
Address: Simon Janashia Museum of Georgia, 3 Shota Rustaveli Avenue
In 2013 applications came in quickly and some workshops were fully booked very early in the process. This led to some members, who were away when the journal came out, being disappointed. To try and avoid this in 2014 (and help if there are postal delays) details of the workshops and conference cost will be available on the website from the same time as the journal should be received (Dec 28th).
I hope that the majority of applications will still be submitted by post accompanied by a cheque (or cheques). However, I will accept e-mail notification of workshop preferences and, if necessary, payment can be made by direct transfer (not paypal) to the Guild’s bank account after emailing me for the necessary details.
To try and keep allocation as fair as possible and avoid timing discrepancies, I will not ‘open‘ for applications until Tuesday 31st December and although workshop places will then be provisionally allocated, these will not be confirmed unless payment has been received and will not be held for more than 7 days. If by any chance a workshop is over-subscribed on the 31st then a ballot will be held.
“Anything with enamel has a type of magic or mystery about it. The lustre and quality of colour is just not possible with any other medium” - Fred Rich British enameller
The Goldsmiths’ Company is sponsoring a major exhibition showcasing the work of Britain’s leading enamellers. Entitled Heart of the Heat this stunning and fascinating exhibition is on view at the School of Jewellery in Birmingham from Monday 11 November to Friday 13 December 2013.
A joint initiative between the British Society of Enamellers and the Guild of Enamellers, the first in a 30 year history, the exhibition features prominent, influential and innovative contemporary enamellers from both associations.
The list of enamellers featured reads like the Who’s Who of British enamellists. Most notable are Jane Short and Fred Rich, both Liverymen of the Goldsmiths’ Company, together with Phil Barnes, Vladimir Böhm, Stephen Bottomley, Gillie Hoyte Byrom, Pat Johnson, Joan Mackarell, Liana Pattihis, Elizabeth Turrell, Jessica Turrell, Tamar de Vries Winter, Ruth Ball, Sheila Macdonald, Jenny Edge, Penny Gildea and Evangeline Long to name but a few, as well as other skilled members of both organisations.