Last night, at a swanky celebration dinner at JCK Las Vegas, the twelve winners of the 11th annual Saul Bell Design Award competition were announced. The long-awaited gala event was the culmination of a year of creation, submission, and deliberation. Here are the spectacular winners:
2011 Hollowware Category
The 2011 Saul Bell Design Award Competition Grand Prize was awarded to Wayne Meeten of London, UK. Meeten’s stunning “Inner Golden Facets” was hand-raised completely by hammer using the Japanese shibori technique. The hollowware form was made from 32 metal layers fused together and hand-forged into a single flat sheet. The sheet was then hand-raised and chased by hammer to bring out the incredible combination of colors and metal. The inside is gilded in 24 karat gold, and represents “the inner golden facets of the self,” a reflection of the artist’s Tai Chi Chuan philosophy. This is the second year in a row Meeten has taken home the grand prize and first place in the Hollowware category.
Sung-Yeoul Lee of Stillwater, OK, was given the honor of second place in the Hollowware category. Lee’s creation “Hollow” is a teapot form fabricated from sterling silver, copper mesh, and stainless steel wire. Much of the artist’s work includes mixed media and contemporary designs created using traditional metal forming techniques.
2011 Gold/Platinum Category
Robin Waynee of Chimayo, NM, was awarded first place for her “Green Moonstone Bracelet.” This 18 karat gold bracelet is constructed of twelve alternating cast pieces and twelve hand-fabricated bezel mountings that hold twelve green moonstones. The pieces weave together with the help of hand-drawn tubing hinges that remain mostly hidden during wear. The piece is accented with tourmalines, diamonds, and a handmade white-gold clasp. Waynee won first place for the second year in a row; in 2010, she won the Silver category.
Second place in the Gold/Platinum category went to Kelly Liddicoat of Deerfield Beach, FL. Liddicoat’s piece “Swirling Spirits,” inspired by the swirls of grape vines and by the whirling motion of a car’s spinning rims, is an 18 karat gold ring with a spinning top of delicate gold scrollwork. Encased inside is a rich, grape-color, 9.5mm amethyst accented by diamonds and an Akoya pearl.
2011 Silver Category
Janice Grzyb of New York, NY, took first place in the Silver category for her delightful, hand-crafted “Bird Ring.” A charming sterling silver bird perches atop the ring shank and sparkles with a sandblasted finish and two ruby-set eyes.
Second place in the Silver category was awarded to Eva Martin of Boston, MA, for her Mobius-shaped bangle, “The Collider.” The Argentium® Silver bracelet, designed using CAD software, looks like two intertwined forms but it is actually one continuous channel with a single edge. Inside, three synthetic ruby balls race around the channel and collide with each other. This is the third time Martin has won the Saul Bell Design Award. She took home second place in the Gold/Platinum category in 2009 and won the grand prize in 2006 for her Silver category entry.
2011 Metal Clay Category
Barbara Becker Simon of Cape Coral, FL, received first place in the Metal Clay category for her pendant, “Mandala.” The pendant is a hollow form that was hand fabricated into a mandala shape using fine silver metal clay, with fine detailing meticulously sculpted in clay and applied before firing.
Barbro Eriksdotter Gendell of Springfield, VA, was the second-place winner in the Metal Clay category with her piece “Equilibrium.” Two halves of this PMC3® pendant are connected by undulating strips of silver and a gold bimetal sphere. Blades of gold keum-boo lend a brilliant contrast to the polished silver. Gendell previously won first place in the same category in the 2003 Saul Bell Design Award Competition.
2011 Beads Category
Andrea Williams of Cohasset, MA, was the first-place winner in the Beads category with her “Night Grass Necklace.” The necklace (which is my personal favorite) was inspired by the image of moonlight shining on an open field. Reclaimed silver “blades” of grass were inlaid into black beach stones using a variety of lapidary techniques. The beads were then sanded until smooth, and pearls were set in to the backs of each bead.
The visually buoyant necklace, “Slices of Life,” was awarded second place in the Beads Category. The necklace was created by artist Melissa Schmidt of Saint Louis, MO, who gave it as a birthday gift to her 60-year old mother. The unusual necklace is strung with glass-blown bubbles, each of which encases a piece of film that captures a moment from Schmidt’s mother’s life: snapshots from her childhood, wedding day, and more slide along the sterling silver neck wire.
2011 Enamel Category
James Carter of Pensacola, FL, has spent the last two years on a series of pieces called “Katrina: Rebirth of a City.” Carter’s bracelet, “Rebirth,” was the recipient of the first-place prize in the Enamel category. It features enameled panels that depict New Orleans scenes, from water pouring into a window to fish swimming in the French Quarter to balloons filling the sky in celebration of the reopening of one of the city’s landmarks.
After spending a year living by the ocean on the Ireland coast, Amy Roper Lyons of Summit, NJ, was inspired to explore marine life in a series of jewelry pieces. The artist created “Speckled Squid Pin/Pendant,” this year’s second-place winner in the Enamel category, by building over 20 layers of glass enamel. The cloissone center piece of this pin shimmers in different shades of violet. The squid’s tentacles are made of 18 karat gold sheet, and the base features seven brilliant-cut, bezel-set diamonds. This is Lyons second Saul Bell Design Award. She won the grand prize in the Gold/Platinum category in 2007.
In addition to all these stunning winning pieces, three winners in the Emerging Artist Category were honored. They were:
- 1st place winner: Lam Nguyen of Lewisville, TX
- 2nd place winner: Sam Pollard of Pacific, WA
- 3rd place winner: Emily Bennett of Lancaster, PA
To see photos of their winning pieces and additional images of ALL the winning pieces, visit the Saul Bell Design Award Competition website!