Q&A with Aurelia Yeomans
Aurelia Yeomans joins e.g.etal with a new collection titled Crystallised, inspired by the intricate molecular structure of water as it transforms from liquid to solid, creating exquisite crystal forms when exposed to different atmospheric conditions and vibrations.
Aurelia’s jewellery has won international recognition and has been exhibited extensively in Australia, Europe and the USA. We asked the artist to share some insights into her work.
What was the impetus for this collection?
The development for this body of work came from a trip to Iceland and an artist residency I undertook in Germany in 2016, where I studied rock and ice formations and did a lot of exploring through ice caves. It was an incredibly transformational experience and triggered me to think deeply about our relationship to water as a fundamental connection to all life. There are so many stories to uncover that are embedded in the elements in the natural world.
My work is informed by metamorphosis and phenomena in nature. I’m fascinated that from an atomic level, we as humans are all directly connected to it in a sort of biological and energetic symbiosis. I often contemplate how sunlight, oxygen and different energy frequencies impact on water, plants and animals. Simultaneously, I’m fascinated by how we are impacting on each other and the environment around us through the energy that we emit.
What made you want to become a jewellery artist? What led you to this point in your career?
A powerful instinct to pack up my life and move to the other side of the world, a natural inclination towards the arts since I was young enough to draw, and after many years painting huge canvases, the decision to follow my instincts: Exploring making small three-dimensional objects, and studying goldsmithing as a craft and a fine art.
What influences you and inspires you?
My upbringing has influenced me a lot – I’ve developed a close love of nature growing up in the rainforests and mountainous regions of Australia, where the majority of my time was spent outside. Also, I am intrigued by the notion that we are, on a fundamental atomic level as humans, all made up of energy. That although this energy is not easily visible, it can be felt and perceived, and carries different vibrations. The thought that this energy is not only a part of us, but is the foundation of life and exists in all living things is fascinating to me as it shows we are in fact not separate, but are all part of a symbiotic relationship with the natural world.
How do you approach making new work?
Sometimes I start by sketching, then rendering designs either by hand or on the tablet. If I’m developing pieces for a new range, often the process is more free-form and I fabricate models at the bench or in wax, often working on multiples simultaneously and altering them until I have resolved the design.
What are your favourite materials to work with and why?
18kt gold and diamonds, because they always work so harmoniously together. Gold especially has the most beautiful lustre that gives the pieces a lot of depth. It’s also a great material to work with when using traditional tools such as hammering, filing and sawing.
I also love working with steel and enamel, although it is a much more difficult material than gold. Fusing enamel in the kiln can have very spontaneous and beautiful effects that can’t be reproduced, and I love the rich blackness that comes from complete oxidisation.
How would you like people to respond to your work?
My aim for this collection is to bring attention to nature and the details embedded in the ethically sourced natural materials that I use; both as something beautiful that is externally all around us, but also within us. Wearing a piece of handcrafted jewellery that is made with respect for its materials is a great way to honour nature and bring the beauty of its gifts to our consciousness.