Francesca takes her art to next level

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Contemporary jeweller Francesca Lobb has lots to celebrate.

The 21 year old from Blackley near Elland is about to have her first exhibition at Kath Libbert Jewellery Gallery at Salts Mill.

Francesca caught the eye of the prestigious gallerist and curator with her graduate show that combines traditional jewellery making techniques with contemporary materials - including found objects such as pencils, paper and pocket watches.

“My jewellery collection has a lot to do with the wearer’s experience and how people wish to wear the jewellery,” said Francesca.

“For example it can be hidden or apparent and different parts of each piece are interchangeable.

“Producing small scale objects with close attention to detail, I question how the user will interact with each piece. Creating intricate designs that evoke engagement, generates an individual narrative upon each item through the user’s choice of how it is worn.”

Francesca, who studied at Mirfield Free Grammar before gaining a first class honours degree in three dimensional design from Manchester School of Art is excited about continuing to create her jewellery in the future.

‘There aren’t many opportunities available for jewellery makers at the beginning of their careers.

“Which is why it’s great to be spotted by a gallery such as Kath Libbert Jewellery Gallery.”

Francesca will be exhibiting her work alongside that of 11 other new graduates from around the country in an exhibition called ‘New Tastes - Twelve New Graduates’.

This annual exhibition attracts major collectors and in the past has included new jewellers who have gone on to become well known both nationally and internationally.

Kath Libbert Jewellery Gallery has been set within Salts Mill, home to the world’s largest collection of work by David Hockney, since 1996.

Open daily, it specialises solely in contemporary jewellery, silver and metalsmithing showcasing diverse collections by over seventy renowned designers and emerging talents from Britain and abroad.

The business began selling from a table top at The Corn Exchange in Leeds in 1994. Now Kath Libbert’s gallery has been described in The Times Luxx Magazine as ‘For clients who want jewels that push boundaries…the antidote to the high street’.

Much of the work on show pushes and blurs the boundaries between art, jewellery design and fashion resulting in jewellery that is, perhaps, best described as wearable art.

The exhibition runs until January 29.