I am a designer-maker of handmade jewellery. I make my work from recycled silver by anticlastic raising, a hammer process. I established Anne V Massey Jewellery in 2002 at Brass Monkeys Studio in Hove, where I still have my workspace. Being close to the sea and the beautiful South Downs helps recharge my creative batteries.
My work has always been about form. I think of it as wearable sculpture. I have always loved natural objects such as shells, seedpods and marine invertebrates. Over the years they have become embedded in my imagination, where they are abstracted into simple, timeless forms such as spirals and helices. I am fascinated by forms which curve through two planes perpendicular to one another – a clumsy way of expressing something ravishingly elegant.
These forms are precisely those produced by anticlastic raising; curvaceous, seductive and strong. They are also light and deceptively easy to wear. Work is formed over metal or nylon formers with mallets or hammers. Many pieces are hammer-forged before forming to introduce texture and to vary the thickness of the metal sheet. It is a technically demanding process which requires years of practice. Here's a short video demonstration.
The process of creating a three-dimensional form from flat metal sheet by use of a hammer is fascinating and compelling in its immediacy and intimacy. It creates a highly personal connection with the work which I have never felt with more removed techniques. I tend to design with a hammer in my hand rather than a pencil.
I am constantly striving to improve my mastery of my chosen technique and to explore its design potential to the fullest.
Since 2015 I have been a member of the Sussex Guild, a group of makers who have come together to collectively promote their work and champion the crafts in general and whose membership criteria are originality, good design and skill. For more information visit the Guild's website. It contains information on upcoming events as well as a page for each of its members.