At a glance, Imogen Belfield’s jewellery doesn’t look like jewellery. Rather more like clusters of golden meteorites that have been beautifully crafted after a swift descent from space. And it just so happens that you can wear these extraordinary little rocks around your neck, on your fingers and even across your knuckles. So as a bit of a space nerd and a jewellery fanatic, I find this stuff pretty exciting.
As one of London’s emerging talents, Belfield graduated from the Sir John Cass School of Art in Jewellery and Silversmithing, and has since interned with jeweller Shaun Leane and collaborated with Alexander McQueen. And as if that wasn’t enough, she has also showcased at The Rock Vault at London Fashion Week and won ‘New Designer of the Year One Year On’ in 2010.
Her creations are inspired by the organic forms and gilded, metallic colours found in the solar system, which informs her underlying galactic aesthetic. Constellations of bubbling filigree and molten rock formations adorn each encrusted piece so beautifully that they wouldn’t look out of place amongst precious stones in a cave or as unearthed artefacts. If out of the ordinary jewellery is your thing, Belfield is most definitely for you.
Her creative process always starts with drawing, taking inspiration from her surroundings, and having grown up in the countryside, her experiences definitely inform those textural, organic qualities within her work. She then creates these forms three-dimensionally into sculptures using porcelain and rubber, which then become the moulds for the metal casts. Once her designs are finalised, they are sent to the prestigious jewellery epicentre that is Hatton Garden, where the stone setting, casting, polishing and plating is completed.
The result is gorgeous clusters of chunky gold and silver at your fingertips. In other words, no one is going to mess with you if you’ve got these boulders on your knuckles. But if her super-sized knuckledusters and asteroid cocktail rings are not for you, her dainty, stackable midi rings still capture her rock like look but on a smaller scale, and are just as precious without losing that wonderful organic look.
Want to see more? Imogen Belfield’s work is featured in free exhibition Made in London: Jewellery Now at the Museum of London as part of their jewellery season. The exhibition showcases the designs and distinctive visions of the most contemporary, imaginative and experimental jewellers working in the capital today. Not to be missed.
Imogen Belfield’s work is featured in new free exhibition ‘Made in London: Jewellery Now’ and runs until Sunday 27 April 2014.
Museum of London
150 London Wall
See more of Belfield’s work at www.imogenbelfield.com
Photograph by Charlotte White