Christine Harmer — Enameller
I have many years experience working as a designer maker having been trained to degree level in Design, and participating in crafts for virtually all my life. At Edinburgh School of Art, I specialised in jewellery and learnt both traditional silversmithing techniques, and was able to explore the use of other non-precious materials in my designs and the creative potential of industrial processes.
Returning to Worcestershire, I set up my home studio and worked from there until I moved to my current studio at Avoncroft Arts Centre, Bromsgrove in 2011. Although I very much enjoy working in new and unusual materials, I am always drawn back to enamelling, having first discovered the craft in my teens. I love the process of taking simple materials and transforming them in the heat of the kiln and still have a real sense of wonder as the powdered glass melts to create a shiny colourful surface on the metal beneath. Today, the majority of my work is on copper and stainless steel and is to a great extent in the form of jewellery, which I largely exhibit and sell directly to the public.
I have long been interested in working on a larger scale and relish the challenge of making pieces combining a range of craft disciplines and materials. Towards, the end of 2019, I was selected to make a multi-media piece which I entitled ‘Random Orbit’. The brief for this commission was to create an interactive artwork designed to inspire creativity in those who did not generally participate in the arts. It was the culmination of insights gained by the ‘Tell me What You Want’ Project, in Bromsgrove, which looked into the reasons for people’s lack of involvement.
During the first Covid 19 Lockdown, I completed another mixed media commission as part of the #CreativeConnections Project organised by Severn Arts in partnership with Worcestershire County Council. The Piece ‘Close Affinity’ has a fluid form combining enamelled copper elements, with hand-painted silk, textured aluminium and pewter.