It’s time to visit the iconic OXO Tower on the South Bank, says Ko­hi­noor Sa­hota, as Daz­zle Lon­don show­cases more than 4,000 hand­made pieces for men and women from new and es­tab­lished jewellery de­sign­ers

Where London - - Contents -

Head to the OXO Tower on the South Bank for Europe’s big­gest con­tem­po­rary jewellery ex­hi­bi­tion, Daz­zle Lon­don.

The Tower of Lon­don is home to the Crown Jew­els – Lon­don’s most fa­mous gems – but this month they may be out­sparkled as Daz­zle Lon­don opens in the OXO Tower’s

gallery@oxo (from 13 Nov). The ex­hi­bi­tion­cum-shop­ping ex­pe­ri­ence, now in its 35th year, is a sta­ple in the fash­ion cal­en­dar. With pieces start­ing at £20 and go­ing up to £5,000, it’s a great place to buy a one-off gift.

The ex­hi­bi­tion started in 1981 as a way to cre­ate more ac­tiv­i­ties in Man­ches­ter’s Royal Ex­change The­atre’s foyer. ‘ We had to take £1,000 dur­ing the course of Daz­zle, but we ended up tak­ing £10,000 on the open­ing night,’ says Tony Gor­don, co-founder and di­rec­tor of Daz­zle Lon­don. ‘We have helped launch the ca­reers of hun­dreds of enor­mously ta­lented de­sign­ers, and have en­cour­aged some wild ex­per­i­men­ta­tion that has con­trib­uted to ex­cit­ing de­vel­op­ments in jewellery de­sign’.

To­day, Daz­zle Lon­don is the old­est and largest con­tem­po­rary jewellery ex­hi­bi­tion in Europe. This year’s event in­cludes works by es­tab­lished de­sign­ers who dress A-list celebri­ties as well as those who have re­cently grad­u­ated. One of Daz­zle’s aims is to pro­mote new tal­ent, so the se­lec­tion feels fresh and cut­ting edge. All of the de­sign­ers have one thing in com­mon: the pas­sion to cre­ate hand­made goods. There are up to 4,000 pieces for men and women from 80 jewellery de­sign­ers from across the world.

De­sign­ers in­clude Bel­gian Jelka Quin­te­lier’s brand Black Lune, which pro­duces laser-cut neck­laces; Lynne MacLach­lan’s vi­brant geo­met­ric ear­rings, neck­laces and ban­gles that are made us­ing 3D print­ing; and cus­tom-made ear­rings by Lucy Martin.

Flora Bhat­tachary‘ s fine jewellery is par­tic­u­larly im­pres­sive. The gold pieces are in­spired by the ro­mance of In­dia’s past. The lo­tus di­a­mond Lak­shmi ring, for ex­am­ple, is in­spired by the Hindu goddess of pros­per­ity and sym­bol­ises luck and fortune, while the Baoli pavé ring is made to order and im­i­tates the ge­om­e­try of wa­ter across In­dia.

The lo­ca­tion of Daz­zle Lon­don is just as spec­tac­u­lar as the event it­self. Three years ago, Daz­zle Lon­don moved to the OXO Tower, an icon that sits on the South Bank and con­tains a gallery, craft shops and the OXO Tower res­tau­rant, which pro­vides a spec­tac­u­lar view over the city. Go on, be daz­zled! Oxo Tower Wharf, Barge House St, SE1 9PH. T: 020-7021 1600. www.daz­zle-ex­hi­bi­

This im­age: Lynne MacLach­lan’s 3D-printed Ny­lon­sponge from the Mesh Col­lec­tion Be­low: Sky­line ear­rings by Lucy Martin

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