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RAE 2008

Sir John Cass Department of Art, Media and Design

Zimmerhof Project. Tutors: Andi Gut, Herman Hermsen, Tim Carson and Nedda El-Asmar

Sophie Hall and Daria Nikitina at work

Sophie Hall work in progress

Suzanne Jamieson at work

Tim Carson at the weigh in

Project work

Another view of project work

Daria Nikitina's piece

Student group project


Zimmerhof International Jewellery Project (Germany)

Three BA Jewellery & Silversmithing students have just got back freshly inspired and energised after representing The Cass as part of an International Jewellery Project in a barn, in the middle of nowhere, on the edge of the Black Forest, in Germany. Level 2 student Sophie Hall and Level 3 students Suzanne Jamieson and Daria Nikitina, accompanied by lecturer Tim Carson, spent a week designing jewellery, making jewellery and exchanging ideas with 18 students and lecturers from Dusseldorf Academy, Pforzheim University and Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp.

The group, which included internationally renowned jewellers Herman Hermsen, Andi Gut and Nedda El-Asmar, spent the week working, eating and sleeping in the barn. But despite the challenges of the weather and the rudimentary environment, everyone had a fantastic time and, more importantly, worked hard. Heated but good-natured bi-lingual discussions, were often heard going on to the early hours, around the blazing bonfire.

The theme for the project was Measurement and Value, which the students explored through a series of drawing projects, peer discussion, group projects, group presentations and development of ideas in 3D. The students had to adapt to the non-traditional ‘workshop’ environment within the barn using just the tools that they had managed to bring with them through customs. They were challenged further still by a brief that asked them to work with exactly one kilo of one material and one gram of the opposite material.

But they rose to the challenge as highlighted by Tim, "I was impressed by the intelligent discourse, the high level of quality within the outcomes and the consistent work energy that fuelled the project throughout the week. I was particularly proud of the contribution from Suzanne, Darja and Sophie. They involved themselves with every aspect of the project and left a positive and lasting impression with the people they worked with. It was a very successful experiment, although it was great to get home to a warm bed and hot shower!”

And it is evident that the experience had a positive effect on the students that participated as well, as expressed by Daria, "The whole experience inspired me. It left a very warm impression and also allowed me to forget for a short while about my fear for my final year at University! I am now using the material and ideas I worked with in Zimmerhof in one of my final year modules.”

The idea for the project was hatched up in May 2011 by Herman, Andi, Nedda and Tim around a sun drenched table at a bar nearby to the barn, where Tim and Nedda were both delivering papers at the Zimmerhof Schmuck Symposium 2011. Such was the success of the project that plans are being laid for a presentation of the results at The Zimmerhof Schmuck Symposium in 2012 and a series of follow on projects at various other challenging venues.


London Metropolitan University