THE IT: Bright young things

Story by Lorraine Forster. Cufflinks and tie pin by Ivanne Binetruy. Photographs courtesy of George Brown College.

LUXE 2010 (until May 9, at Bounty Contemporary Craft + Design at Harbourfront Centre. Free to get in; all pieces are available to buy).

Jewellery often comes in the form of shiny necklaces, dangly earrings and dainty rings—things we inherently associate with femininity. As a woman who loves jewellery, I’m always impressed with a man who knows how to pick out a good piece of bling—for himself. That’s why I was pleasantly surprised to see the strong masculine influence at LUXE 2010, the exhibition by this year’s graduates of George Brown College’s Jewellery Arts program. The only program of its kind in Canada, Jewellery Arts trains students in the rare skills of the goldsmith.

The show is the culmination of three years of work by 13 designers, and it doesn’t disappoint.

Fanny Luo, Ivanne Binetruy, and Mariangela Aguirre Guzman (whose “Bulls and Bears” cufflinks are pictured below) all stand out as champions of the men’s movement. Their quirky cufflinks and matching tiepins are fresh takes on old classics. At a time when shows like Mad Men are helping bring traditional men’s dressing back to the office, these pieces deliver a touch of personal flair to the cookie-cutter suit.

While the masculine influence is at the fore, the women are not left out. The show features a wide range of styles, pieces and perspectives in female accoutrements. Ivanne Binetruy’s silver bangles (below) are accented by pencil crayon segments—a use of innovative material that is more than out of the box.

Brenda Yoon’s delicate silver drop earrings are expertly finished, as is Kristin Calkins’s intricate gold ring. Kathleen Kerr’s resin cuffs (below) evoke a cool graffiti feel, and Michelle Hishmeh’s rosette pins, made from bright pink and purple measuring tape, capture a similar whimsical spirit.

And Miranda Scott’s statement earrings (below) would take centre stage in any girl’s jewellery box.

2 thoughts on “THE IT: Bright young things

  1. Great work and awesome to see this as a feature.
    However as a correction NSCAD, OCAD, ACAD, Georgian College, Arctic College, and I think the Sadie Bronfman School in Montreal all offer goldsmithing, silversmithing and jewellery arts programs.

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