Transforming found objects
■ Tell us a bit about yourself.
I am a local in Rotorua but have travelled extensively, and lived and worked overseas and in many parts of New Zealand. I spent a decade teaching and loved the many challenges and opportunities this gave me. I approach life from a creative angle and am passionate about being kind and caring to other people and the world we all live in.
■ How long have you been a jewellery designer for and how did it start?
I suppose I have always been an artist but have only recently been willing to call myself one. However, making jewellery is a more recent development. I studied creative entrepreneurship at Toi Ohomai and through working with the amazing tutors there discovered my love of found objects. I wanted to present these in an unusual but commercial way.
Jewellery seemed like a good solution and I am now passionate about this field of creativity. New Zealand has a rich and diverse history of amazing jewellery designers, and I am lucky to be able to access this legacy and become a part of this great community.
■ What media do you work with? I work with a wide range of media and am always experimenting with new-found materials. I am currently obsessed with transforming plastics into fashionable jewellery and giving it a new life as pieces of cherished adornment.
■ Where do you get inspiration from with your work?
Inspiration is not something that magically happens. It is not a lightning bolt from the sky.
Inspiration is more like a muscle — the more you use it the stronger it becomes. In saying that, I am continually inspired by small acts of kindness and rebellion, by authentic and honest people, by love and compassion and by people who give a damn about our people and our environment.
■ What do you enjoy about designing and creating?
Designing and creating is the space where time is not relevant and I am in my element.
Having the opportunity to live a creative lifestyle is important to me for my wellbeing and my mental health. It is a part of who I am and it makes me happy.
It’s also my way of sharing with the world different solutions to current problems. My ability to transform objects into new exciting commodities keeps them from landfill and is a small part of trying to save our planet and ensure our legacy is positive. ■ What do you have coming up/ what will you be up to in the near future?
Currently I am working collaboratively with The Arts Village on a community arts project called ‘Exposed Objects’. This project is all about exploring found/everyday objects and using these to create cyanotypes, which is a photographic process that relies on the sun/uv light to expose images.
We want the Rotorua public to get involved.
Book in for our sessions, which are currently on Saturday November 17 from 11am to 12pm and Tuesday November 20 from 5.30pm to 7pm. Everyone is invited to participate in creating their own cyanotypes which will be exhibited collectively at the Rotorua City Council Galleria in January and February.
I am always working on new ranges on jewellery and multiple other projects where up-cycling is always a major component.
I am planning to complete my Masters in Fine Arts, majoring in Jewellery at Otago Polytechnic in the near future.
Fiona Frew discovered a love of found objects.