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The Festival of Silver is a series of selling exhibitions which celebrate contemporary British-made silver objects, art and sculpture. With the Goldsmiths’ Company as lead patron and sponsor, the exhibitions will take place at eight locations around the country, exhibiting and selling original handmade silver pieces for £90 to £90,000. 

There will be approximately 500 silver works on display and sale by more than 100 leading British silversmiths; many of the pieces having taken hours of painstaking labour to craft, combined with years of experience and skill.

Many collector’s items commissioned especially for British Silver Week bear the special Queen’s Diamond Jubilee hallmark.

Venues for the Festival of Silver 2012 will include:

- William & Son in Mayfair, owned by William Asprey

 - The Goldsmiths’ Centre, a £17.5 million spectacular new development incorporating a listed 19th century building, which will host the dazzling Pearson Silver Collection, one of Britain’s largest privately held 20th and 21st century silver collections this July

 - Pangolin London Gallery, specialists in British sculpture, located in London’s edgy cultural venue King’s Place, Kings Cross.

 

Look out for:

Rod Kelly – his clients include St Paul’s Cathedral and the Royal Mint. (He designed the £2 coin.)

Rising star Miriam Hanid – she uses tools bequeathed by her great-grandfather who made silver pieces for the Queen in 1952, and is currently silversmith-in-residence at National Trust property Ickworth House in Suffolk.

Hiroshi Suzuki – whose silver is highly collectable and commanding high prices in the London salerooms.

Star silversmithing talents, Ndidi Ekubia, Malcolm Appleby, Olivia Lowe, Brett Payne and special guest Dutch silversmith Robert Thalen.

Whose idea was it?

British Silver Week founder and managing director Gordon Hamme, recently honoured with the title of Freeman of the Goldsmiths’ Company, is an avid silver collector. He began his career building a company supplying craftspeople with precious metals, tools and jewellery components with his wife Angela, and then publishing The Goldsmith magazine.  Hamme began collecting silver after a visit to the Goldsmiths’ Fair in the 1980s and has been hooked ever since.

Gordon’s first piece of silver was by award-winning enameller Phil Barnes. His most recent acquisitions are a Malcolm Appleby bowl and a rice spoon by Lucian Taylor to be engraved by Nan Nan Liu.

In four years, British Silver Week has held 65 selling exhibitions across the UK, Germany and Malaysia and sold over £1 million of British silver.

During British Silver Week 2009, a staggering 40,000 visitors visited a promotional exhibition at Chatsworth, the country estate of the Duke of Devonshire, one of Britain’s biggest silver collectors.

Festival of Silver selling exhibitions:

Goldsmiths’ Centre, London – 10-14 July

Pangolin London Gallery, King’s Place, London – 12-18 May

William & Son, Mayfair – 11-22 June

John Higgins Contemporary Silver, Lindfield Sussex – 15 June – 1 July

Styles Silver, Hungerford, Berkshire – 11-30 June

Cookson Precious Metals, Birmingham – 19-22 June

Craft in Focus, Henley-on-Thames – 22-24 June

Craft in Focus, Winchester – 16-18 November

 

Silver seminar sessions on 12 July at Goldsmiths’ Centre at 2.00pm – 4.00pm 

Given by John Andrew Curator of the Pearson Silver Collection and George Styles, Freeman of the Goldsmiths’ Company and Director of Styles Silver.

www.britishsilverweek.co.uk

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