Ching, Brenda May

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My jewelry is made from sterling silver sheet and wire. I manipulate them into forms by sawing, hammering, forging, soldering, fusing, etching, using a hydraulic press and stakes, and more. Stones or finds of various materials are sometimes included. Using a Korean technique called “Kum Boo,” allows me to add gold accents to pieces. It involves attaching a thin sheet of 24 kt gold to the sterling silver by pressure and heat.

The work I am presenting explores forms and what I can do with the most tools and the least tools. Spending time away from my studio forced me to restrict tooling to create simpler forms.

“Tide Pool Necklace” is inspired by beach pebbles that I had collected while walking my dog. I translated their forms into metal by first cutting them into plexi sheets and hydraulically pressing printed sterling sheets. The sheets were made by etching a pattern that reflects water swirling around as wavelets rush up the beach and recede back into the ocean.

“Chain of Fools” was a fun piece to make. I played with shapes created from wire, integrating a simple clasp. Earrings include hollow forms made from sterling sheet. It uses a synclastic method of shaping the metal with a hammer and plastic stake. I forged wire into shapes and included bezel set stones.

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