Australian Jewellery 1970 –2012

Travelling Dates + Venues

  • Lake Macquarie City Gallery, Booragul NSW
    10 April 10 May 2015
  • Artspace Mackay, Mackay QLD
    22 May 5 July 2015
  • Rockhampton Art Gallery, Rockhampton QLD
    18 July 23 August 2015
  • Craft ACT, Canberra ACT
    11 September 24 October 2015


The celebration of the local, the regional, the private and the personal, and the value of experience and memory, is territory that many contemporary jewellery designers and makers seek to articulate and make real.

Jewellers preside over the manipulation of materials and the transformation of their meaning and value. Design involves working on a small scale in relation to the intimate site of the human body and exercising advanced craft skills to bring a variety of materials together as desirable and durable objects. The juxtaposition of materials, the recycling of objects and the subversion of traditions can also bring a new understanding to familiar forms and imbue everyday materials with a poetic presence.

This exhibition includes the work of 42 Australian jewellers exploring jewellery from a number of viewpoints within six broad themes: Romanticism, Interpreting the Vernacular, Encapsulating Nature, Technics, Social Message and Sculpture for the Body. All of the works are from the collection of the National Gallery of Australia.

Educational Material


Brenda Ridgewell Space edifice, armband 2002 National Gallery of Australia, Canberra Purchased 2003