Thursday 31 May 2012

AGIdeas inspiration - Johannes Kuhnen

Charlwood Design's latest team member Dean Benstead was particularly inspired by Australian Silversmith Johannes Kuhnen at this year's AGIdeas event.

Johannes Kuhnen from the Australian National University, Gold and Silver smithing department, spoke passionately about the importance and benefits of materiality in design. Developing jewellery, vessels and spectacles like art forms.  He spoke about his short attention span with one design (laughing), he will only work on a design if there is a great opportunity to improve or develop the function and form.
He uses inspiring traditional techniques for production of such quality and timeless designed pieces. Bending, twisting, cutting and forming, Kuhnen’s design and making process just makes you want to get some metal and head to the workshop.  His constantly evolving spectacle designs show an amazing amount of problem solving, material use and technique. They are like art forms. He spoke about the love of fabricating short runs and not making thousands of his designs. A passion for the bespoke and personality within a product for an individual user.
Manipulating different metals, with chemical treatment, bending techniques and fine fixings are the key to his highly aesthetic pieces. His use of anodised aluminium allows such vibrant colours and designs. This vibrancy in his work is what stands out and highlights the traditional metal smith techniques and materials. His minimalist approach to the spectacle design is seen with arms that are created with one bend, yet highly detailed fine joints and hinges just look amazing. We love the detail (tiny bolts, tension wires, o-rings, amazing hinges and fine lens holders) in the glasses and would love a custom designed pair.

Spectacle Design - Johannes Kuhnen

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