Jane Adam necklace 2010, silver, gold & tourmalines

Jane Adam writes about her new work and change of direction 

image: large necklace of scribed silver & gold with tourmalines, 2010


The way I work has changed enormously over the last few years – in terms of its design and how it is made, and the materials I use; and in how I support its ongoing development within my business.

For nearly thirty years, I have involved myself in innovation and experimentation with anodised aluminium, a metal which offers wonderful possibilities for colouration and mark-making, but with formal limitations for jewellery - it can’t be soldered, and tends to crack when stressed.  I responded to these challenges by creating a whole repertoire of new processes of dyeing, mark-making, crazing, texturing, assembling and forming, which have spearheaded a new movement in anodised aluminium jewellery in this country. 

However, after some twenty five years of work, these limitations were beginning to feel like just that – restrictions rather than creative challenges. I was feeling I had gone as far as I could, and was questioning my previously solid commitment to making jewellery from a material without inherent value.

 Gradually I began applying my particular way of working to precious metals and stones. I delight in the differences these materials have from aluminium: their physical weight and substance, subtle colours and inherent beauty, their sense of timelessness and their emotional power, and the colours, forms, and textures of precious and semi-precious stones, particularly those which are not perfect or pure.

And technological developments now offer new ways of working in aluminium. My work is now digitally printed, and I am relishing discovering a whole new set of creative possibilities in the metal I know so well.

The success of these new developments has meant I have needed to tighten up the financial aspects of my business. I have set up a limited company, changed my bank and accountant, and established new accounting and stock control systems.

In middle age and in mid-career, I am now loving my work again and excited about the future.