Newfoundland is an exhibition of work by contemporary jeweller Romilly Saumarez Smith. Each of the pieces is unique and has at its core Roman, Anglo-Saxon or Medieval metalwork, dropped or discarded hundreds of years ago.
Originally these objects were everyday domestic things, but lost in the ground and buried in time they have become particular and special. A small belt buckle becomes a delicate ring; what had been a metal garment pin turns into an elegant brooch; an old spoon is reawakened with the addition of silver granulation along its handle.
Combined with tiny pearls, gold and diamonds the antique is embedded, fused, sewn and riveted to the new to create tiny fanciful landscapes, both rich and strange. Romilly draws out the inherent characteristic of the pieces and gives them a resonance well beyond their function.
As part of the Newfoundland exhibition, photographer Verdi Yahooda has made some exceptional photographic prints of the original metal finds. She is a long standing friend and artistic collaborator of Romilly's.
Romilly Saumarez Smith. Gertrude’s Jewel, 2013. Photo: Lucinda Douglas-Menzies