Wednesday, October 3, 2012

MISUN WON

Sterling Silver Circular Rings
with Garnet and Citrine

A Zen monastery is among one of the many highlights of the picturesque surroundings of Mount Kumgang located in North Korea.

Walking and hiking trails, hot springs and scenic beaches are among other attractions.  Korea is also the birthplace of Misun Won.

Israeli jewelry designer Dori Csengeri and Ranjana Khan (India) based their respective designer jewelry collections on the complex and beautiful embroidery handicraft. 

In the same vein, Scotland-based Won takes inspiration from Korean patchwork—or Jogakbo as it is known in Korea—to build her distinctive sterling silver jewelry collections.

Won meticulously handcrafts dangle earrings, silver rings and silver pendants that form a unique visual language that is part contemporary art and part classic design.  

Without the use of sketches or CAD (Computer Aided Designer) Won carves out intricate patterns of circles from sheets of sterling silver and folds these patterns into jewelry items possessing complexity and breadth.

Sterling Silver Simple Pattern Pendant Necklace
“The first time people see my work they think it was machine made,” says the award-winning designer.  “I use a technique of hand piercing circle patterns in a sheet of silver and fold them over to make a three-dimensional form.  I really like using my hands. I really like the suppleness of the silver.

I chose a circle for my basic pattern to convey the idea of Korean patchwork because I feel that a circle is a more efficient geometrical figure than the traditional patchwork square form,” she explains.

“I try to build a structure from one sheet of silver using basic techniques like sawing, bending and soldering.  When I did background research on Korean patchwork I discovered that the process of making patchwork is the same as creating jewelry.”

A graduate of both South Korea’s Hanyang University and Scotland’s Edinburgh College of Art, since 2007 Won’s pretty and buoyant jewelry creations have been featured at numerous exhibitions in the UK, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Germany and the USA.  Her idiosyncratic work has also garnered her numerous awards including the Goldsmith’s Craftsmanship and Design Award in 2009.

“I wanted to make jewelry that contained the symbolic meaning as well as the appearance of patchwork.  Korean women collected pieces of cloth left over from making garments to form wrapping cloths. 

The meaning of the wrapping cloths is very important and the act of connecting the pieces of cloth in patchwork symbolizes the wish of the maker for long life and good fortune.”
Sterling Silver Shadow Earrings with Pearls

A selection of Won’s differentiated jewelry items is available for purchase at  Dazzle-Exhibitions.com.
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