Ursula Burke's work explores the psycho-social landscape of Northern Ireland and the region's competing identities.
Based in his native Dublin, Pierce Healy studied metalsmithing and engraving in San Francisco before completing a BA in Metals at the National College of Art & Design, Dublin in 2010 and an MFA at Adellab Konstfack, Stockholm in 2012. A craftsperson with a passion for illustrative mark-making, he draws on the traditions of storytelling to create wearable objects in metal that act as a critique of contemporary life and the history of jewellery.
Pierce is fascinated by the capacity of jewellery to embody our stories and to facilitate their telling. He often harnesses subversive humour as a communication device in his work. He is interested in the idea that jewellery serves as a second skin, a kind of everyday armour. When worn, it takes on additional meaning and becomes something otherworldly as it accumulates the scratches, dings and stories of the wearer’s adventures. Intrigued by the synergy between the hands, head and heart while making, within his practice he harnesses intaglio mark-making textures, reflecting both natural landscapes and the landscape of the everyday. There is no “master plan”; each piece is an experiment driven by curiosity, a study that informs the next piece in perpetuity. Every work conjures up novel visual incongruities, manifesting them as jewellery and objects in an attempt to make sense of the nonsense of the everyday and to question common values and what is deemed valuable.
Pierce Healy applied for a Golden Fleece Award to support the development of his practice through the purchase of specialist studio equipment and tools, and a research trip to Japan to study the inlay metal-working techniques used in the decoration of Samurai swords.